Literature Study GuidesDon QuixotePart 2 Chapters 67 70 Summary

Don Quixote | Study Guide

Miguel de Cervantes

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Don Quixote | Part 2, Chapters 67–70 | Summary

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Summary

Part 2, Chapter 67

Don Quixote and Sancho Panza arrive at the place where they were trampled by the bulls. Don Quixote decides that he, Sancho, Samson Carrasco, Master Nicolas, and Pero Perez should all become shepherds during the year that he's not allowed to practice knight-errantry. Before they fall asleep for the night, he and Sancho Panza get in yet another argument about Sancho's overuse of proverbs.

Part 2, Chapter 68

Don Quixote, unable to sleep, wakes Sancho Panza and scolds him once more for failing to complete his assigned lashings to release Dulcinea del Toboso from her enchantment. They are interrupted by 60 pigs being driven to market who trample master, squire, horse, and donkey. Don Quixote feels this is just punishment for his sins. Sancho Panza says that his master's sins aren't his, and returns to bed.

The next day, they find themselves surrounded by a group of men carrying lances and shields. Don Quixote and Sancho Panza are escorted back to the Duke and Duchess's castle.

Part 2, Chapter 69

A funeral scene greets the former knight-errant and his squire when they arrive at the castle. Altisidora is supposedly hovering between life and death, and it's up to Sancho Panza to bring her back, which requires him receiving 25 slaps to the face as well as numerous pinches and pinpricks. He vehemently opposes this idea but acquiesces after Don Quixote intervenes. Altisidora comes back to life, and Don Quixote begs Sancho Panza to take the rest of his 3,300 lashes to disenchant Dulcinea. Sancho Panza absolutely refuses, and Altisidora suddenly sits up. She curses Don Quixote and heaps praise on Sancho Panza. The fake funeral thus concluded, Don Quixote and Sancho Panza are escorted to their old rooms.

Part 2, Chapter 70

Samson Carrasco visited the Duke and Duchess after learning of Don Quixote's whereabouts from the page who delivered the letter to Teresa Panza. The Duke and Duchess, aware of Samson's plan to make Don Quixote give up his knighthood, come up with one more elaborate prank to play on the former knight, which is why Altisidora pretended to be dead.

The aforementioned young woman storms into Don Quixote and Sancho Panza's apartment upon orders from the Duke and Duchess. She tries to make Don Quixote feel guilty for not returning her (fake) affections. Don Quixote in return tells Altisidora that she needs to forget about him and worry about her own modesty. She finally blows up at him, sneering, "Do you really think, you born loser, you beaten-up hulk, that I died for you?" When the Duchess later asks "if Altisidora was still in his good graces," Don Quixote says she should focus on her lacework instead of falling in love willy-nilly. Altisidora promises she will forget Don Quixote at once.

Analysis

Now that his time as a knight is drawing to an end, Don Quixote sets his sights on another literary genre to imitate: the pastoral romance. Set in the countryside, these stories focus on "pseudo-shepherds" who write songs about the frustrations of love. Don Quixote's easy jump from one genre to the other challenges the idea that chivalric romances were the cause of his insanity in the first place. Maybe becoming a knight- errant was just an escape from the drudgery of everyday life; perhaps he's bored with his current position and wants to lead a life worth writing about. One thing is certain: real life doesn't, and will never, live up to his idyllic expectations.

Don Quixote has so fully embodied his role as a knight that it's hard to think of him as anything else. Sancho Panza can't even remember the Don's birth name, asking, "But what have the Panzas got to do with the Quixotes?" as they discuss how squires are sometimes punished for the deeds of their masters. Don Quixote's real name is Alonso Quixano, and Sancho Panza certainly knows that because he's known the Don his whole life. To Sancho Panza, Don Quixote isn't just a crazy guy with impossible dreams—he's truly a knight-errant. Cervantes is saying that you can be whomever you want to be, but as seen at the end of the story, it may come with a cost.

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