They sleep in the grounds of Giant Despair
|Neither could they, with all the skill they had, get again to the stile that night. Wherefore, at last, lighting under a little shelter, they sat down there until the daybreak; but, being weary, they fell asleep.|
|He finds them in his grounds, and carries them to Doubting Castle||Now there was, not far from the place where they lay, a castle called Doubting Castle, the owner whereof was Giant Despair; and it was in his grounds they now were sleeping: wherefore he, getting up in the morning early, and walking up and down in his fields, caught Christian and Hopeful asleep in his grounds. Then, with a grim and surly voice, he bid them awake; and asked them whence they were, and what they did in his grounds. They told him they were pilgrims, and that they had lost their way. Then said the Giant, You have this night trespassed on me, by trampling in and lying on my grounds, and therefore you must go along with me. So they were forced to go, because he was stronger than they. They also had but little to say, for they knew themselves in a fault.|
|The grievousness of their imprisonment
|The Giant, therefore, drove them before him, and put them into his castle, into a very dark dungeon, nasty and stinking to the spirits of these two men. Here, then, they lay from Wednesday morning till Saturday night, without one bit of bread, or drop of drink, or light, or any to ask how they did; they were, therefore, here in evil case, and were far from friends and acquaintance. Now in this place Christian had double sorrow, because 'twas through|
||| his unadvised counsel that they were brought
into this distress.
The pilgrims now, to gratify the Flesh,
|On Thursday, Giant Despair beats his prisoners||Now, Giant Despair had a wife, and her name was Diffidence. So when he was gone to bed, he told his wife what he had done; to wit, that he had taken a couple of prisoners and cast them into his dungeon, for trespassing on his grounds. Then he asked her also what he had best to do further to them. So she asked him what they were, whence they came, and whither they were bound; and he told her. Then she counselled him that when he arose in the morning he should beat them without any mercy. So, when he arose, he getteth him a grievous crab-tree cudgel, and goes down into the dungeon to them, and there first falls to rating of them as if they were dogs, although they never gave him a word of distaste. Then he falls upon them, and beats them fearfully, in such sort that they were not able to help themselves, or to turn them upon the floor. This done, he withdraws and leaves them there to condole their misery and to mourn under their distress. So all that day they spent the time in nothing but sighs and bitter lamentations. The next night, she, talking with her husband about them further, and understanding they were yet alive, did advise him to counsel them to make away themselves.|
|On Friday, Giant Despair counsels them to kill themselves||So when morning was come, he goes to them in a surly manner as before, and perceiving them to be very sore with the stripes that he had given them the day before, he told them, that since they were never like to come out of that place, their only way would be forthwith to make an end of themselves, either with knife, halter, or poison, for why, said he, should you choose life, seeing it is attended with so much bitterness? But they desired him to let them go.|
The giant sometimes has fits
|With that he looked ugly upon them, and, rushing to them, had doubtless made an end of them himself, but that he fell into one of his fits, (for he sometimes, in Sun-shine weather, fell into fits), and lost for a time the use of his hand; wherefore he withdrew, and left them as before, to consider what to do. Then did the prisoners consult between themselves whether it was best to take his counsel or no; and thus they began to discourse:|
|CHR. Brother, said Christian, what shall
we do? The life that we now live is miserable. For my part I know not whether
is best, to live thus, or to die out of hand. My soul chuseth strangling
rather than life,* and the Grave is more easy for me than this Dungeon.
Shall we be ruled by the Giant?
|Hopeful comforts him
|HOPE. Indeed, our present condition is dreadful,
and death would be far more welcome to me than thus for ever to abide;
but yet, let us consider, the Lord of the country to which we are going
hath said, Thou shalt do no murder: no, not to another man's person; much
more, then, are we forbidden to take his counsel to kill ourselves. Besides,
he that kills another, can but commit murder upon his body; but for one
to kill himself is to kill body and soul at once. And, moreover, my brother,
thou talkest of ease in the grave; but hast thou forgotten the hell, for
certain the murderers go?
For no murderer hath eternal life, &c. And let us consider, again, that all the law is not in the hand of Giant Despair. Others, so far as I can understand, have been taken by him, as well as we; and yet have escaped out of his hand. Who knows, but the God that made the world may cause that Giant Despair may die? or that, at some time or other, he may forget to lock us in? or that he may, in a short time, have another of his fits before us, and may lose the use of his limbs? and if ever that should come to pass again, for my part, I am resolved to pluck up the heart of a man, and to try my utmost to get from under his hand. I was a fool that I did not try to do it before; but, however, my brother, let us be patient, and endure a while. The time may come that may give us a happy release; but let us not be our own murderers. With these words Hopeful at present did moderate the mind of his brother; so they continued together (in the dark) that day, in their sad and doleful condition.
Well, towards evening, the Giant goes down into the dungeon again, to see if his prisoners had taken his counsel; but when he came there he found them alive; and truly, alive was all; for now, that for want of bread and water, and by reason of the wounds they received when he beat them, they could do little but breathe. But, I say, he found them alive; at which he fell into a grievous rage, and told them that, seeing they had disobeyed his counsel, it should be worse with them than if they had never been born.
|Christian still dejected||At this they trembled greatly, and I think that
Christian fell into a swoon; but, coming a little to himself again,
they renewed their discourse about the Giant's counsel; and whether yet
they had best to take it or no. Now Christian again seemed to be
for doing it, but Hopeful made his second reply as followeth:--
|Hopeful comforts him again, by
calling former things to remembrance
|HOPE. My brother, said he, rememberest thou
not how valiant thou hast been heretofore? Apollyon could not crush
thee, nor could all that thou didst hear, or see, or feel, in the Valley
of the Shadow of Death. What hardship, terror, and amazement hast thou
already gone through! And art thou now nothing but fear! Thou seest that
I am in the dungeon with thee, a far weaker man by nature than thou art;
also, this Giant has wounded me as well as thee, and hath also cut off
the bread and water from my mouth; and with thee I mourn without the light.
But let us exercise a little more patience; remember how thou playedst
the man at Vanity-Fair, and wast neither afraid of the Chain, nor
Cage, nor yet of bloody Death. Wherefore let us (at least to avoid the
shame, that becomes not a Christian to be found in) bear up with patience
as well as we can.
Now, night being come again, and the Giant and his wife being
in bed, she asked him concerning the prisoners, and if they had taken his
counsel. To which he replied, They are sturdy rogues, they choose rather
to bear all hardship, than to make away themselves. Then said she, Take
them into the castle-yard to-morrow, and show them the Bones and
Skulls of those that thou hast already despatched, and make them
believe, ere a week comes to an end, thou also wilt tear them in pieces,
as thou hast done their fellows before them.
|On Saturday, the Giant threatened that shortly he would pull them in pieces||So when the morning was come, the Giant goes
to them again, and takes them into the castle-yard, and shows them, as
his wife had bidden him. These, said he, were pilgrims as you are, once,
and they trespassed in my grounds, as you have done; and when I thought
fit, I tore them in pieces, and so, within ten days, I will do you. Go,
get you down to your den again; and with that he beat them all the way
thither. They lay, therefore, all day on Saturday in a lamentable case,
as before. Now, when night was come, and when Mrs. Diffidence and her husband,
the Giant, were got to bed, they began to renew their discourse of their
prisoners; and withal the old Giant wondered, that he could neither by
his blows nor his counsel bring them to an end. And with that his wife
replied, I fear, said she, that they live in hope that some will come to
relieve them, or that they have picklocks about them, by the means of which
they hope to escape.
And sayest thou so, my dear? said the Giant; I will, therefore, search them in the morning.
Well, on Saturday, about midnight, they began to pray, and continued
in prayer till almost break of day.
A key in Christian's bosom, called Promise, opens any lock in Doubting Castle
Now, a little before it was day, good Christian, as one half amazed, brake out in this passionate speech:-- What a fool, quoth he, am I, thus to lie in a stinking Dungeon, when I may as well walk at liberty! I have a key in my bosom, called Promise, that will, I am persuaded, open any Lock in Doubting Castle. Then said Hopeful, That is good news, good brother; pluck it out of thy bosom, and try.
Then Christian pulled it out of his bosom, and began to try at
the dungeon door, whose bolt (as he turned the Key) gave back, and the
door flew open with ease, and Christian and Hopeful both
came out. Then he went to the outward door that leads into the castle-yard,
and, with his key, opened that door also. After, he went to the iron gate,
for that must be opened too; but that lock went damnable hard, yet the
key did open it. Then they thrust open the gate to make their escape with
speed, but that gate, as it opened, made such a creaking, that it waked
Giant Despair, who, hastily rising to pursue his prisoners, felt
his limbs to fail, for his fits took him again, so that he could by no
means go after them. Then they went on, and came to the King's highway,
and so were safe, because they were out of his jurisdiction.
|A pillar erected by Christian and his fellow||Now, when they were over the stile, they began
to contrive with themselves what they should do at that stile to prevent
those that should come after from falling into the hands of Giant Despair.
So they consented to erect there a pillar, and to engrave upon the side
thereof this sentence--"Over this stile is the way to Doubting Castle,
which is kept by Giant Despair, who despiseth the King of the Celestial
Country, and seeks to destroy his holy pilgrims." Many, therefore, that
followed after read what was written, and escaped the danger. This done,
they sang as follows:--
What 'twas to tread upon forbidden ground;
And let them that come after have a care,
Lest heedlessness makes them, as we, to fare.
Lest they for trespassing his prisoners are,
Whose castle's Doubting, and whose name's Despair.