Book Notes

Volume 2, Chapter 25 Notes from Don Quixote

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Don Quixote Volume 2, Chapter 25

Don Quijote, Sancho, the future soldier, and the innkeeper all sit down to hear. The mysterious man tells how an alderman from his village lost his donkey. Another alderman spots it in the mountains, but the donkey ran away from him, so he offers to show where he saw the animal. Not finding any sign of the donkey, they come up with the plan to make braying noises -- in the hopes that the donkey will answer them. They separate, but both are such excellent brayers that they are at first fooled into thinking that the donkey is answering, when it is a fellow alderman. Each is incredibly impressed by the other's braying skill, and even though they are sad when they finally find the donkey dead (apparently eaten by wolves), they are glad to have had this opportunity to discover each other's braying talent.

Topic Tracking: Donkey Imagery 3

They return to town with the dual news (dead donkey, beautiful braying) and eventually the news travels beyond their town. Unfortunately, the people from other towns find this too good an avenue for teasing and now bray at anyone from the aldermen's town -- anytime, anywhere they see them. And that is why he has all these weapons on the donkey, for his village is going to battle another village (six miles away from theirs), to put an end to this insult.

Another guest arrives at the inn, it is Maestro Pedro the Puppeteer and the innkeeper is delighted to see him. Maestro Pedro wears a large green patch on the left side of his face, which covers his eye and much more. The innkeeper explains to Don Quijote that Maestro Pedro is currently doing a puppet show about Melisendra and Don Gaiferos; also, that he has a prophetic monkey who whispers answers in the puppeteer's ear about people's past and current situations (never the future).

When the puppeteer returns, Sancho asks him to tell him what his wife Teresa is up to. The monkey whispers in his ear and Maestro Pedro falls down on his knees and hugging Don Quijote's hails him as the great Don Quijote and praises him to the skies. Everyone is stunned -- even Don Quijote. The puppeteer adds that Teresa is fine -- she is combing out flax and keeping herself cheerful with a pitcher of wine. Sancho is pleased with this news; but, Don Quijote is not pleased by this monkey for he suspects these powers come from the Devil (who also doesn't know the future). Sancho presses him to ask the monkey if what happened back at the cave was real, or a dream. The puppeteer reports that the monkey says that it's a bit of both and can say no more about it till Friday because he has used up all his powers. It is now time for the show.

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