Don Quixote breathes a sigh of relief in being free once again--particularly from Altisidora. He tells Sancho that he never quite enjoys the generosity of others, for he dislikes being in debt to them. He would prefer to eat his own bread, to which he only has to give thanks to God, than a more luxurious meal provided by another. Sancho is thankful for the 200 crowns, which will give them a warmer reception at the inns.
They come across a group of laborers who have some covered items. The items are reliefs they intend to put up in their village. Don Quixote asks permission to see them, which they grant. The first image is of Don Saint George, who is praised by Quixote for being the best knight ever known--a great defender of maidens. The next relief shows Saint Martin dividing his cloak with a beggar. Don Quixote says that he was more generous than valiant. Another relief is the patron saint of Spain, Don Saint James the Moorslayer--a very brave knight. The last is of Saint Paul falling from his horse.
Don Quixote considers this a good omen that he got to see these reliefs. He compares himself to these knights. They were saints, and he is a sinner. They had divine weapons, and he has human ones. They won heaven, and Don Quixote doesn't know yet what he has won.
When they leave, Sancho remarks about how bold Altisidora was. Don Quixote states that love is not bound by reason, and that caused her to act so shamelessly. Sancho says he would have been enslaved if Altisidora had made such passionate remarks to him. He can't figure out what she fell in love with in Don Quixote. He believes physical beauty is the main cause of love, and Quixote lacks that. Don Quixote says that there are other things that can attract a person--which he has even if he is not physically appealing.
They come across a forest with nets between the trees. Sensing adventure, Don Quixote is about to break them when two shepherdesses come out. They tell him that they came here for a holiday, and the nets are to capture the birds that get startled by their activities. They invite him to the festivities. He accepts and offers his services. They have heard of him and consider it great fortune that he has come.
Don Quixote is introduced and given a warm welcome. Don Quixote thanks them, though he tells them that he plans to leave in two days for the tournaments in Sargossa. Sancho calls him a madman, which angers him. He orders Sancho not to meddle.
He sets up a post on the road and says that if anyone wishes to pass by here the next two days, they must challenge him. A group of men with a bunch of bulls order him out of the way. He refuses--so they trample him, Sancho, Dapple, and Rocinante. Don Quixote orders them to stop so he can challenge them, but they press forward. Weary, Don Quixote continues his journey.
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