Gargantua and Pantagruel – Book Three

By François Rabelais.

I seem to have enjoyed each succeeding book slightly less. Book III seems to me too wordy and philosophical and not enough about the actions of the characters. The re-invention of Panurge with a different persona is interesting but I would have liked to see Panurge put more into practice his dodgy precepts and justifications in a ribald rambunctious quest. Still, this is good stuff. I have dipped into Book IV and it seems more to my taste. Each of them though, has a distinct character. Some fantastic passages in Book III though:

‘It is true that I can just about make out one sign in me suggestive of old age – I mean a green old age. Don’t tell anyone. It’ll remain a secret between the two of us. I do find good wine more delightful to my taste than I used to: and more than I once did, I fear encounters with poor wine. Note that that does somehow suggest the westering sun and signify that noon-day is past.’

and this:

‘Next time you stick your nose up my bum,’ said Panurge, ‘remember to take off your glasses!’

and finally:

‘A famished belly hath no ears! By God, I’m roaring mad with hunger.’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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