Book Notes

Volume 2, Chapter 13 Notes from Don Quixote

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Don Quixote Volume 2, Chapter 13

The two squires have much in common. The Knight of the Wood's squire also believes that knight errants' squires receive governorships of islands and countships too. They discuss how they would be better off just going home and enjoying life's simple pleasures -- like raising their children. The Knight of the Wood's squire compares his to pearls, and Sancho speaks of his daughter whom he is raising to be a countess. When asked for more information on her, he describes her as comely, tall and strong. The other squire speaks admiringly of her saying she sounds like a wood nymph and then follows this up by referring to her as "whore" and "female dog". Sancho defends her and her mother and says he is offended and surprised to hear such insults and language coming from one who serves a courteous knight. The other squire explains that he meant it as a compliment -- as highest praise! -- and goes on to explain the slang usage of these terms. Sancho is mollified, and goes on to declare that his wife and children are the best whores in the world. (Please note that both squires are still sober at this point!)

Topic Tracking: Idealized Women 26

They speak candidly and at length of the masters they serve till Sancho starts to hack up "thick, dry saliva" (pg. 424). The other squire immediately recognizes this as a severe case of dry mouth and says he has just the remedy in his saddlebag. He brings back a huge wineskin and a huge meat pie. He praises the wine by calling it "whore" and "female dog" and identifies its type correctly, and tells how he comes from a long line of gifted wine tasters. After a while they pass out companionably each clutching the wine skin.

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