Don Quixote and Sancho, the former weary and remorseful of having stayed so long in idleness in the castle of the duke and duchess, are granted permission to leave. Altisoidora attempts to place one more miserable grievance of the knight, but Quixote declares that it is out of his hands, and he and Sancho gratefully take their leave.
On the first day of their renewed liberty, numerous adventures take place: the first involves meeting men transporting several statues of great saints, which Quixote calls his “most fortunate event” to have been able to view these replicas of valiant knights of heaven; the second takes place when Quixote is entangled in nets set by local villagers as a pastime for catching birds and dressing as shepherds and shepherdesses. As they know the knight and his squire due to the history written about them, they invite the pair to their party; but after Quixote makes a noble speech about the sin of ingratitude, the proud squire offers up his master to a challenge, which Quixote takes up. Unfortunately, the first to come down the road is a crowd of herdsmen who roll over the two men and their beasts completely ignoring Quixote’s threats.