Book Notes

Volume 1, Chapter 17 Notes from Don Quixote

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Don Quixote Volume 1, Chapter 17

Don Quijote, upon regaining consciousness, calls out to Sancho. He tells him that the castle is enchanted because he has just been beaten up by a huge giant -- probably because the treasure of the daughter's beauty is guarded by a Moorish enchanter and it is not meant for Don Quijote. Sancho says that it must not be for him either because he has just been beaten up by four hundred Moors.

As the constable returns to the room, they wonder out loud whether he is the Moorish enchanter. He refers to Don Quijote as "my good fellow" and inquires how he is feeling. Not one to be deterred by common sense or cowardice, he calls the constable an idiot for speaking with such familiarity to a knight errant. Having had quite enough, the policeman hits Don Quijote in the head with the heavy lamp full of oil that he was holding and leaves the room.

"I'm sure, Señor, this is really the Moorish enchanter, who's keeping the treasure for other people, and saving, especially for us, all the heavy fists and banging lamps." Volume 1, Chapter 17, pg. 93

Topic Tracking: Grandiosity 11

Don Quijote finally cooks up his magic balm and after saving some in a tin, drinks nearly half a quart and gives Sancho a bit remaining in the pot. Various are the ways this balm effects their digestive systems. Don Quijote explains to Sancho that it affected him worse because he was not a knight. After Don Quijote recuperates from the cure, he decides it is time to leave. As they are about to take their leave, Don Quijote offers thanks to the innkeeper and offers to revenge any wrongs ever done to him. The innkeeper declines this offer and tells Don Quijote that just paying his bill will suffice. He asks, "Is this then an inn?" (pg. 95), and explains that he thought it was a castle and he will not pay because knight errants stay for free, because of the public services they provide. The innkeeper doesn't agree, but Don Quijote rides off anyway.

Sancho also refuses to pay and is treated to a blanket tossing outside by some newly arrived guests; where they make a human trampoline with a blanket and repeatedly toss Sancho high into the air. Don Quijote, finally hearing Sancho's cries, is too weak to scale the fence to help him, but finally the merry-makers grow tired and let Sancho go. Maritornes has pity on him and brings him water from the well; but Sancho says he'd prefer some wine, and so she kindly brings him some -- and pays for it herself.

Unaware that the innkeeper has retained his saddlebags in place of payment; Sancho enthusiastically leaves the inn.

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