**In which is concluded and finished the terrific battle between the gallan_iscayan and the valiant Manchegan**
In the First Part of this history we left the valiant Biscayan and th_enowned Don Quixote with drawn swords uplifted, ready to deliver two suc_urious slashing blows that if they had fallen full and fair they would a_east have split and cleft them asunder from top to toe and laid them ope_ike a pomegranate; and at this so critical point the delightful history cam_o a stop and stood cut short without any intimation from the author wher_hat was missing was to be found.
This distressed me greatly, because the pleasure derived from having read suc_ small portion turned to vexation at the thought of the poor chance tha_resented itself of finding the large part that, so it seemed to me, wa_issing of such an interesting tale. It appeared to me to be a thin_mpossible and contrary to all precedent that so good a knight should hav_een without some sage to undertake the task of writing his marvellou_chievements; a thing that was never wanting to any of those knights-erran_ho, they say, went after adventures; for every one of them had one or tw_ages as if made on purpose, who not only recorded their deeds but describe_heir most trifling thoughts and follies, however secret they might be; an_uch a good knight could not have been so unfortunate as not to have wha_latir and others like him had in abundance. And so I could not bring mysel_o believe that such a gallant tale had been left maimed and mutilated, and _aid the blame on Time, the devourer and destroyer of all things, that ha_ither concealed or consumed it.
On the other hand, it struck me that, inasmuch as among his books there ha_een found such modern ones as "The Enlightenment of Jealousy" and the "Nymph_nd Shepherds of Henares," his story must likewise be modern, and that thoug_t might not be written, it might exist in the memory of the people of hi_illage and of those in the neighbourhood. This reflection kept me perplexe_nd longing to know really and truly the whole life and wondrous deeds of ou_amous Spaniard, Don Quixote of La Mancha, light and mirror of Manchega_hivalry, and the first that in our age and in these so evil days devote_imself to the labour and exercise of the arms of knight-errantry, rightin_rongs, succouring widows, and protecting damsels of that sort that used t_ide about, whip in hand, on their palfreys, with all their virginity abou_hem, from mountain to mountain and valley to valley—for, if it were not fo_ome ruffian, or boor with a hood and hatchet, or monstrous giant, that force_hem, there were in days of yore damsels that at the end of eighty years, i_ll which time they had never slept a day under a roof, went to their grave_s much maids as the mothers that bore them. I say, then, that in these an_ther respects our gallant Don Quixote is worthy of everlasting and notabl_raise, nor should it be withheld even from me for the labour and pains spen_n searching for the conclusion of this delightful history; though I know wel_hat if Heaven, chance and good fortune had not helped me, the world woul_ave remained deprived of an entertainment and pleasure that for a couple o_ours or so may well occupy him who shall read it attentively. The discover_f it occurred in this way.
One day, as I was in the Alcana of Toledo, a boy came up to sell som_amphlets and old papers to a silk mercer, and, as I am fond of reading eve_he very scraps of paper in the streets, led by this natural bent of mine _ook up one of the pamphlets the boy had for sale, and saw that it was i_haracters which I recognised as Arabic, and as I was unable to read the_hough I could recognise them, I looked about to see if there were an_panish-speaking Morisco at hand to read them for me; nor was there any grea_ifficulty in finding such an interpreter, for even had I sought one for a_lder and better language I should have found him. In short, chance provide_e with one, who when I told him what I wanted and put the book into hi_ands, opened it in the middle and after reading a little in it began t_augh. I asked him what he was laughing at, and he replied that it was a_omething the book had written in the margin by way of a note. I bade him tel_t to me; and he still laughing said, "In the margin, as I told you, this i_ritten: 'This Dulcinea del Toboso so often mentioned in this history, had,
they say, the best hand of any woman in all La Mancha for salting pigs.'"
When I heard Dulcinea del Toboso named, I was struck with surprise an_mazement, for it occurred to me at once that these pamphlets contained th_istory of Don Quixote. With this idea I pressed him to read the beginning,
and doing so, turning the Arabic offhand into Castilian, he told me it meant,
"History of Don Quixote of La Mancha, written by Cide Hamete Benengeli, a_rab historian." It required great caution to hide the joy I felt when th_itle of the book reached my ears, and snatching it from the silk mercer, _ought all the papers and pamphlets from the boy for half a real; and if h_ad had his wits about him and had known how eager I was for them, he migh_ave safely calculated on making more than six reals by the bargain. _ithdrew at once with the Morisco into the cloister of the cathedral, an_egged him to turn all these pamphlets that related to Don Quixote into th_astilian tongue, without omitting or adding anything to them, offering hi_hatever payment he pleased. He was satisfied with two arrobas of raisins an_wo bushels of wheat, and promised to translate them faithfully and with al_espatch; but to make the matter easier, and not to let such a precious fin_ut of my hands, I took him to my house, where in little more than a month an_ half he translated the whole just as it is set down here.
In the first pamphlet the battle between Don Quixote and the Biscayan wa_rawn to the very life, they planted in the same attitude as the histor_escribes, their swords raised, and the one protected by his buckler, th_ther by his cushion, and the Biscayan's mule so true to nature that it coul_e seen to be a hired one a bowshot off. The Biscayan had an inscription unde_is feet which said, "Don Sancho de Azpeitia," which no doubt must have bee_is name; and at the feet of Rocinante was another that said, "Don Quixote."
Rocinante was marvellously portrayed, so long and thin, so lank and lean, wit_o much backbone and so far gone in consumption, that he showed plainly wit_hat judgment and propriety the name of Rocinante had been bestowed upon him.
Near him was Sancho Panza holding the halter of his ass, at whose feet wa_nother label that said, "Sancho Zancas," and according to the picture, h_ust have had a big belly, a short body, and long shanks, for which reason, n_oubt, the names of Panza and Zancas were given him, for by these two surname_he history several times calls him. Some other trifling particulars might b_entioned, but they are all of slight importance and have nothing to do wit_he true relation of the history; and no history can be bad so long as it i_rue.
If against the present one any objection be raised on the score of its truth,
it can only be that its author was an Arab, as lying is a very commo_ropensity with those of that nation; though, as they are such enemies o_urs, it is conceivable that there were omissions rather than additions mad_n the course of it. And this is my own opinion; for, where he could an_hould give freedom to his pen in praise of so worthy a knight, he seems to m_eliberately to pass it over in silence; which is ill done and wors_ontrived, for it is the business and duty of historians to be exact,
truthful, and wholly free from passion, and neither interest nor fear, hatre_or love, should make them swerve from the path of truth, whose mother i_istory, rival of time, storehouse of deeds, witness for the past, example an_ounsel for the present, and warning for the future. In this I know will b_ound all that can be desired in the pleasantest, and if it be wanting in an_ood quality, I maintain it is the fault of its hound of an author and not th_ault of the subject. To be brief, its Second Part, according to th_ranslation, began in this way:
With trenchant swords upraised and poised on high, it seemed as though the tw_aliant and wrathful combatants stood threatening heaven, and earth, and hell,
with such resolution and determination did they bear themselves. The fier_iscayan was the first to strike a blow, which was delivered with such forc_nd fury that had not the sword turned in its course, that single stroke woul_ave sufficed to put an end to the bitter struggle and to all the adventure_f our knight; but that good fortune which reserved him for greater things,
turned aside the sword of his adversary, so that although it smote him upo_he left shoulder, it did him no more harm than to strip all that side of it_rmour, carrying away a great part of his helmet with half of his ear, al_hich with fearful ruin fell to the ground, leaving him in a sorry plight.
Good God! Who is there that could properly describe the rage that filled th_eart of our Manchegan when he saw himself dealt with in this fashion? Al_hat can be said is, it was such that he again raised himself in his stirrups,
and, grasping his sword more firmly with both hands, he came down on th_iscayan with such fury, smiting him full over the cushion and over the head,
that—even so good a shield proving useless—as if a mountain had fallen on him,
he began to bleed from nose, mouth, and ears, reeling as if about to fal_ackwards from his mule, as no doubt he would have done had he not flung hi_rms about its neck; at the same time, however, he slipped his feet out of th_tirrups and then unclasped his arms, and the mule, taking fright at th_errible blow, made off across the plain, and with a few plunges flung it_aster to the ground. Don Quixote stood looking on very calmly, and, when h_aw him fall, leaped from his horse and with great briskness ran to him, and,
presenting the point of his sword to his eyes, bade him surrender, or he woul_ut his head off. The Biscayan was so bewildered that he was unable to answe_ word, and it would have gone hard with him, so blind was Don Quixote, ha_ot the ladies in the coach, who had hitherto been watching the combat i_reat terror, hastened to where he stood and implored him with earnes_ntreaties to grant them the great grace and favour of sparing their squire'_ife; to which Don Quixote replied with much gravity and dignity, "In truth,
fair ladies, I am well content to do what ye ask of me; but it must be on on_ondition and understanding, which is that this knight promise me to go to th_illage of El Toboso, and on my behalf present himself before the peerles_ady Dulcinea, that she deal with him as shall be most pleasing to her."
The terrified and disconsolate ladies, without discussing Don Quixote's deman_r asking who Dulcinea might be, promised that their squire should do all tha_ad been commanded.
"Then, on the faith of that promise," said Don Quixote, "I shall do him n_urther harm, though he well deserves it of me."