Book Notes

Volume 2, Chapter 63 Notes from Don Quixote

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Don Quixote Volume 2, Chapter 63

Don Antonio arranges for Don Quijote and Sancho to tour a galley ship, but they get more than they bargain for. It starts off well-enough with the crew yelling hoo-hoos (a traditional yell for important guests) at Don Quijote. But after the galley slaves remove their shirts to row, they pick up poor Sancho and pass him from one set of hands to another. Don Quijote informs them that if anyone tries this with him he'll kill them and places his hand on his sword. Sancho is greatly upset by the lashing of the galley slave's shoulders and wonders what crimes they have committed to deserve this. Don Quijote suggests that Sancho remove his shirt and join them; working off some of the lashings to deliver Dulcinea; who knows, perhaps Merlin will count these lashings as equal to ten of Sancho's!

Another galley is sighted and tries to flee from this quick flagship but can not. The flagship pulls alongside telling them to surrender and a group of drunken Turks from the galley shoot and kill two of the flagship's best officers. Finally captured, the unknown galley's captain is about to be hung. The governor, who has come aboard, is influenced by his handsomeness and nice manner and delays the hanging long enough to discover that the captain claims to be a Christian woman. She asks them to hold off hanging her till she has a chance to tell her life story!

It turns out that she is Anna Félix the daughter of Sancho's friend (the Moor) Ricote. Because of her beauty, she caught the king of Barbaria's eye and he insisted she return to Spain and bring back her father's treasure. The king had also heard of Don Gregorio and that he was beautiful and asked her if she knew him. In love with Gregorio herself, and knowing how hot the Turks are for handsome boys, she told the king that Gregorio was really a woman. She helped Gregoria transform himself into a girl. The king is impressed and decides to make a gift of "her" to the Sultan and sends Gregorio to work at the house of a well-to-do Moorish woman till arrangements can be made.

It is quite a story and no sooner do they remove the rope from her neck, than her father Ricote the Moor dressed as a pilgrim (he had gotten on with the governor), plunges at her feet crying over his long lost daughter. Arrangements are made with a Christian Spanish Renegade on board the ship (whom Anna Félix trusts) to go and rescue Gregorio before his virtue is irreconcilably ruined.

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