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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 952 pages of information about Gargantua and Pantagruel.
ripe walnuts in two while they are yet in the shell, and pick out the kernel, and they found them very fit for the expediting of that weasand-slitting exploit.  In the meantime Friar John, with his formidable baton of the cross, got to the breach which the enemies had made, and there stood to snatch up those that endeavoured to escape.  Some of the monkitos carried the standards, banners, ensigns, guidons, and colours into their cells and chambers to make garters of them.  But when those that had been shriven would have gone out at the gap of the said breach, the sturdy monk quashed and felled them down with blows, saying, These men have had confession and are penitent souls; they have got their absolution and gained the pardons; they go into paradise as straight as a sickle, or as the way is to Faye (like Crooked-Lane at Eastcheap).  Thus by his prowess and valour were discomfited all those of the army that entered into the close of the abbey, unto the number of thirteen thousand, six hundred, twenty and two, besides the women and little children, which is always to be understood.  Never did Maugis the Hermit bear himself more valiantly with his bourdon or pilgrim’s staff against the Saracens, of whom is written in the Acts of the four sons of Aymon, than did this monk against his enemies with the staff of the cross.

Chapter 1.XXVIII.

How Picrochole stormed and took by assault the rock Clermond, and of Grangousier’s unwillingness and aversion from the undertaking of war.

Whilst the monk did thus skirmish, as we have said, against those which were entered within the close, Picrochole in great haste passed the ford of Vede—­a very especial pass—­with all his soldiers, and set upon the rock Clermond, where there was made him no resistance at all; and, because it was already night, he resolved to quarter himself and his army in that town, and to refresh himself of his pugnative choler.  In the morning he stormed and took the bulwarks and castle, which afterwards he fortified with rampiers, and furnished with all ammunition requisite, intending to make his retreat there, if he should happen to be otherwise worsted; for it was a strong place, both by art and nature, in regard of the stance and situation of it.  But let us leave them there, and return to our good Gargantua, who is at Paris very assiduous and earnest at the study of good letters and athletical exercitations, and to the good old man Grangousier his father, who after supper warmeth his ballocks by a good, clear, great fire, and, waiting upon the broiling of some chestnuts, is very serious in drawing scratches on the hearth, with a stick burnt at the one end, wherewith they did stir up the fire, telling to his wife and the rest of the family pleasant old stories and tales of former times.

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