Ivanhoe (Penguin Classics)
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"Fight on, brave knights! Man dies, but glory lives!"
Banished from England for seeking to marry against his father's wishes, Ivanhoe joins Richard the Lion Heart on a crusade in the Holy Land. On his return, his passionate desire is to be reunited with the beautiful but forbidden lady Rowena, but he soon finds himself playing a more dangerous game as he is drawn into a bitter power struggle between the noble King Richard and his evil and scheming brother John. The first of Scott's novels to address a purely English subject, Ivanhoe is set in a highly romanticized medieval world of tournaments and sieges, chivalry and adventure where dispossessed Saxons are pitted against their Norman overlords, and where the historical and fictional seamlessly merge.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
The yeoman returned in the course of a few minutes. “Friend Gurth,” he said, “I have mingled among yon men, and have learnt to whom they belong, and whither they are bound. There is, I think, no chance that they will proceed to any actual violence against their prisoners. For three men to attempt them at this moment were little else than madness; for they are good men of war, and have, as such, placed sentinels to give the alarm when any one approaches.
Your keeper is ever a jovial fellow; and none who beheld thy grinders contending with these pease, and thy throat flooded with this ungenial element, could see thee doomed to such horse-provender and horse-beverage (pointing to the provisions upon the table), and refrain from mending thy cheer. Let us see the keeper’s bounty, therefore, without delay. ” The hermit cast a wistful look upon the knight, in which there was a sort of comic expression of hesitation, as if uncertain how far he should act prudently in trusting his guest.
The brilliancy of her eyes, the superb arch of her eyebrows, her well-formed aquiline nose, her teeth as white as pearl, and the profusion of her sable tresses, which, each arranged in its own little spiral of twisted curls, fell down upon as much of a lovely neck and bosom as a simarre of the richest Persian silk, exhibiting flowers in their natural colours embossed upon a purple ground, permitted to be visible—all these constituted a combination of loveliness which yielded not to the most beautiful of the maidens who surrounded her.
Isaac could not find in his heart to part with it, so dropt it into his purse as if in absence of mind, with the words, “Eighty completes the tale, and I trust thy master will reward thee handsomely. Surely,” he added, looking earnestly at the bag, “thou hast more coins in that pouch? ” Gurth grinned, which was his nearest approach to a laugh, as he replied, “About the same quantity which thou hast just told over so carefully. ” He then folded the quittance, and put it under his cap, adding, “Peril of thy beard, Jew, see that this be full and ample!
To say our orisons, fool,” answered the Pilgrim, “to repent our sins, and to mortify ourselves with fastings, vigils, and long prayers. ” “Something more potent than that,” answered the Jester; “for when would repentance or prayer make Gurth do a courtesy, or fasting or vigil persuade him to lend you a mule? I trow you might as well have told his favourite black boar of thy vigils and penance, and wouldst have gotten as civil an answer. ” “Go to,” said the Pilgrim, “thou art but a Saxon fool.