Now have I understood thee, quoth Panurge, my plushcod friar, my caballine and claustral ballock. I freely quit the costs, interest, and charges, seeing you have so egregiously commented upon the most especial chapter of the culinary and monastic cabal. Come along, my Carpalin, and you, Friar John, my leather-dresser. Good morrow to you all, my good lords; I have dreamed too much to have so little. Let us go. Panurge had no sooner done speaking than Epistemon with a loud voice said these words: It is a very ordinary and common thing amongst men to conceive, foresee, know, and presage the misfortune, bad luck, or disaster of another; but to have the understanding, providence, knowledge, and prediction of a man’s own mishap is very scarce and rare to be found anywhere. This is exceeding judiciously and prudently deciphered by Aesop in his Apologues, who there affirmeth that every man in the world carrieth about his neck a wallet, in the fore-bag whereof were contained the faults and mischances of others always exposed to his view and knowledge; and in the other scrip thereof, which hangs behind, are kept the bearer’s proper transgressions and inauspicious adventures, at no time seen by him, nor thought upon, unless he be a person that hath a favourable aspect from the heavens.
How Pantagruel adviseth Panurge to consult with the Sibyl of Panzoust.
A little while thereafter Pantagruel sent for Panurge and said unto him, The affection which I bear you being now inveterate and settled in my mind by a long continuance of time, prompteth me to the serious consideration of your welfare and profit; in order whereto, remark what I have thought thereon. It hath been told me that at Panzoust, near Crouly, dwelleth a very famous sibyl, who is endowed with the skill of foretelling all things to come. Take Epistemon in your company, repair towards her, and hear what she will say unto you. She is possibly, quoth Epistemon, some Canidia, Sagana, or Pythonissa, either whereof with us is vulgarly called a witch, —I being the more easily induced to give credit to the truth of this character of her, that the place of her abode is vilely stained with the abominable repute of abounding more with sorcerers and witches than ever did the plains of Thessaly. I should not, to my thinking, go thither willingly, for that it seems to me a thing unwarrantable, and altogether forbidden in the law of Moses. We are not Jews, quoth Pantagruel, nor is it a matter judiciously confessed by her, nor authentically proved by others that she is a witch. Let us for the present suspend our judgment, and defer till after your return from thence the sifting and garbling of those niceties. Do we know but that she may be an eleventh sibyl or a second Cassandra? But although she were neither, and she did not merit the name or title of any of these renowned prophetesses,