In recent the recent chapters of the readings, we have seen many tricks played upon the knight and his squire by the duke and duchess. While these tricks were meant to be funny, I didn’t find them to be so. As mentioned in class, the duke and duchess had gone too far in their tricks against don Quixote and Sancho Panza.
One example of these tricks in the recent chapters is when the duchess, with the help of her maidens and the duke, planned to set a litter of frightened cats on Don Quixote. “The duchess, excessively pleased, arranged with the duke and with her maidens to play a joke on him that would be more amusing than harmful…” (Chapter 46). I don’t believe that they did not know that there was a danger to doing this. Don Quixote ended up having to rest for a week. With everyone saying that the trick will be “more amusing than harmful,” I was a bit concerned about what tricks would follow.
Another trick they played is the governorship of Sancho Panza. While he was the governor, the duke and duchess set many conditions for Sancho without him knowing. One of them being that he was not allowed to eat any of the food that looked good, something that he loved to do. The doctor who was restricting Sancho said “But I know that the señor governor must eat now, and to preserve his health and fortify it I’ll give him a hundred wafers and a few thin slices of quince that will sit lightly in his stomach and be easy to digest” (Chapter 47).
I believe that this is another example of the duke and duchess going too far. While some of the food that Sancho wanted to eat may be unhealthy for him, eating a little amount that is offered is also unhealthy. Also, eating is one of Sancho’s favorite things to do. The duke and duchess are trying to take the enjoyment he feels out of eating from him.
Before these chapters, there were other instances in the tricks that the duke and duchess played having gone too far, such as Trifaldi or the wooden horse to go fight the giants. In most of theses tricks, the two end up getting injured, sometimes more heavily than others.
In my opinion, the duke and duchess end up going to far in all of their tricks. They string the knight and squire along in whatever way they wish just for amusement. In their tricks, don Quixote and Sancho Panza end up getting injured, but the duke and duchess don’t stop. They continue to have their fun in tricking the two “fools,” as they call them, and find too much enjoyment that they did not even realize that they were going too far and injuring Don Quixote and Sancho. I think the duke and duchess should not have played many of the tricks that they actually played. The ones that had the potential of injuring someone should have not been put into action. The ones that were less dangerous could have been played in spirit, but not fully to the extent that the duke and duchess went.