Page:Don Quixote (Cervantes, Ormsby) Volume 2.djvu/43

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21
CHAPTER III.

"By God, master," said Sancho, "the island that I can not govern with the years I have, I'll not be able to govern with the years of Methuselam; the difficulty is that the said island keeps its distance somewhere, I know not where; and not that there is any want of head in me to govern it."

"Leave it to God, Sancho," said Don Quixote, " for all will be well, and perhaps better than you think; no leaf on the tree stirs but by God's will."

"That is true," said Samson; "and if it be God's will, there will not be any want of a thousand islands, much less one, for Sancho to govern."

"I have seen governors in these parts," said Sancho, "that are not to be compared to my shoe-sole; and for all that they are called 'your lordship' and served on silver."

"Those are not governors of islands," observed Samson, "but of other governments of an easier kind: those that govern islands must at least know grammar."

"I could manage the gram well enough," said Sancho; "but for the mar I have neither leaning nor liking, for I don't know what it is[1]; but leaving this matter of the government in God's hands, to send me wherever it may be most to his service, I may tell you, señor bachelor Samson Carrasco, it has pleased me beyond measure that the author of this history should have spoken of me in such a way that what is said of me gives no offence; for, on the faith of a true squire, if he had said anything about me that was at all unbecoming an old Christian, such as I am, the deaf would have heard of it."

"That would be working miracles," said Samson.

"Miracles or no miracles," said Sancho, "let every one mind how he speaks or writes about people, and not set down at random the first thing that comes into his head."

"One of the faults they find with this history," said the bachelor, "is that its author inserted in it a novel called 'The Ill-advised Curiosity;' not that it is bad or ill-told, but that it is out of place and has nothing to do with the history of his worship Señor Don Quixote."

"I will bet the son of a dog has mixed the cabbages and the baskets," said Sancho.[2]

"Then, I say," said Don Quixote, "the author of my history

  1. In the original, Grama-tica — grama being an instrument for dressing flax, and therefore quite within Sancho's comprehension.
  2. Revolver berzas con capachos is, according to Covarrubias, a familiar phrase to express jumbling together things of different sorts.