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书虫四级《克兰福德》:2.上尉

所属教程:书虫四级 克兰福德

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2019年12月03日

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2.The captain

2.上尉

It was impossible to live in Cranford for a month and not know everybody's daily habits. So, long before my visit ended, I knew a lot about the Browns. They were indeed poor. And the captain was extraordinarily kind. One Sunday morning after church, he met a poor old woman who was fetching her dinner from the town bakehouse. The street was wet and she was rather shaky on her legs, so the captain carried her baked meat and potatoes home for her! Cranford people did not do this kind of thing, but the captain was not at all ashamed of himself.

在克兰福德住上一个月,不可能不知道每个人的日常习惯。所以,早在我的访问结束之前,我对布朗一家就有了很多了解。他们确实不富裕,上尉又是个特别好的人。一个星期日的早晨,做过礼拜之后,他碰到一个可怜的老太太在镇里的面包房取午饭。街道上湿漉漉的,她两腿都在打颤,所以上尉帮她把烤肉和土豆弄回了家!克兰福德人不会做这种事,但上尉一点儿也没感到有什么不妥。

Miss Jenkyns could not forgive Captain Brown for his unkind opinion of Dr Johnson, so I did not see much of the family until I went on to stay with Miss Pole. I learnt then that Miss Brown was seriously ill. And when I saw how difficult she was, and how endlessly kind her father and sister were to her, I understood a little better and forgave Miss Jessie for her childish way of dressing.

詹金斯小姐不肯原谅布朗上尉对约翰逊博士口出不逊,所以我在搬到波尔小姐那里住之前,很少见到这家人。后来我听说布朗小姐病得很重。当我看到她痛苦的样子,看到她父亲和妹妹尽心尽力地照料她时,我对他们的了解更多了些,也不再介意杰西小姐穿衣服孩子气了。

The captain tried hard to make peace with Miss Jenkyns, but she remained cool. No gentleman, surely, could prefer Mr Dickens to Dr Johnson!

上尉努力想和詹金斯小姐讲和,但詹金斯小姐不加理睬。当然了,没有哪位绅士会喜欢狄更斯先生,而不是约翰逊博士!

That was the situation when I left Cranford to return to my father in Drumble. But several of the ladies sent me news of the dear little town. Miss Pole wrote, asking for some knitting-wool. Miss Matty Jenkyns (Miss Deborah's younger sister) wrote nice, kind, disorganized letters, occasionally giving her own opinion but more often giving her elder sister's. And Miss Deborah Jenkyns herself wrote—grand, slow-moving letters, using words like 'Brunonian' for 'Brown'.

我离开克兰福德,回到德莱姆伯尔我父亲身边的时候,情况就是这样。不过有几位女士给我送来了这个可爱小镇的消息。波尔小姐写信要一些毛线。马蒂·詹金斯小姐(德博拉小姐的妹妹)信写得不错,很友好,但没有章法,有时候她会谈谈自己的看法,不过更多的时候她写的都是她姐姐的看法。德博拉·詹金斯小姐写的信夸张而乏味,用“布鲁诺宁”这样的词来代替“布朗”。

My next visit to Cranford was in the summer. No one had been born or married since I was last there, and no one had died. Everyone lived in the same house and wore the same unfashionable clothes. The greatest excitement was that the Misses Jenkyns had bought a new carpet. Oh, what busy work Miss Matty and I had in the afternoons, covering it with newspaper where the sun shone in!

我再次来到克兰福德时已是夏天了。从我上次到那里到现在,没有人出生、结婚或过世。每个人都住在同样的房子里,穿着同样过时的服装。最振奋人心的事情就是詹金斯小姐买了一条新地毯。哦,我和马蒂小姐下午的时候得把报纸铺在地毯上阳光照得着的地方,可真够我们忙的!

Captain Brown and Miss Jenkyns were still not very friendly. Miss Jenkyns always talked at the captain and, though he did not reply, he made it quite clear that he preferred the writings of Mr Dickens to those of Dr Johnson. Indeed, he used to read Mr Dickens's books while walking through the streets, and was so deeply interested in his reading that once he nearly knocked Miss Jenkyns down.

布朗上尉和詹金斯小姐之间仍然不太友好。詹金斯小姐说话总是和上尉针锋相对,虽然上尉并不予以回应,他还是表明他更喜欢狄更斯先生而不是约翰逊博士的作品。的确,他曾在街上边走边读狄更斯先生的作品,读得很入神,以至于有一次差点儿撞倒詹金斯小姐。

The poor, brave captain! His clothes looked very old and worn, but he seemed as bright as ever, unless he was asked about his elder daughter's health. 'She's in great pain,' he replied, 'though we do what we can.'

可怜勇敢的上尉!他的衣服显得很破旧,不过他人还是像从前那样精神,除非被问到他大女儿的健康状况。“她痛得厉害,”他答道,“虽然我们尽力了。”

Miss Matty told me that, in fact, he and his younger daughter had done everything possible to make the patient comfortable, whatever the cost. 'And Miss Jessie's a wonderful nurse. My dear, if you saw her as I have, you'd never laugh again at her childish pink ribbons.'

马蒂小姐告诉我,实际上,他和小女儿什么可能的方法都试过了,想让病人舒服点儿,而且不惜任何代价。“杰西小姐是个出色的护士。亲爱的,如果你像我一样亲眼看到,你就再也不会笑话她那些孩子气的粉红色丝带了。”

I felt ashamed and spoke to Miss Jessie with twice as much respect next time we met. She looked exhausted, but she pushed back the tears in her pretty eyes. 'What a good town Cranford is!' she said. 'Everyone sends my sister presents.'

我感到惭愧,所以再次见到杰西小姐的时候,我和她说话时口气双倍的尊敬。她显得很疲惫,不过还是忍住没让她那双美丽的眼睛流泪。“克兰福德真是个好地方!”她说,“大家都给我姐姐送礼物。”

Captain Brown called one day to thank Miss Jenkyns for many little kindnesses I had not known about. He had suddenly become like an old man, and his deep voice trembled when he spoke about his elder daughter. 'There is no hope,' he said. 'Thank God we have Jessie!' Then he quickly shook everyone's hand and left the room.

一天,布朗上尉来拜访,感谢詹金斯小姐帮了很多小忙,这些我都不知道。他突然变得像个老人,说起大女儿的时候,他低沉的嗓音都在颤抖。“没希望了,”他说,“感谢上帝我们还有杰西!”然后他匆匆地和大家握了握手,就离开了房间。

That afternoon, we saw little groups in the street, all listening with horror to some story. Miss Jenkyns sent out Jenny the maid, who came back in tears. 'Oh, Miss Jenkyns! Captain Brown has been killed by that cruel railway!'

那天下午,我们看见街上的人一小群一小群地聚在一起,都面带恐惧地听着什么事情。詹金斯小姐把女仆珍妮打发了出去,结果她哭着回来了。“哦,詹金斯小姐!布朗上尉被那条无情的铁路害死了!”

How? Where, where?' Miss Matty ran out into the street and brought back the man who was telling the story. 'Oh, say it's not true!' Miss Matty cried.

“怎么回事?在哪儿,在哪儿?”马蒂小姐跑到街上把正在说这件事的那个男人带了回来,“哦,说那不是真的!”马蒂小姐哭道。

The man stood there with his wet boots on the new carpet and no one noticed. 'It's true, Miss,' he said. 'I saw it myself. The captain was reading some new book while he waited for the down-train. Then he looked up suddenly and saw a little girl on the railway line, just as the train was coming into the station. He ran forwards and caught her, but then he fell and the train went straight over him. The child's safe, though. The poor captain would be glad of that. Miss, wouldn't he?'

那人穿着湿靴子站在新地毯上,却没人注意到。“是真的,小姐,”他说,“我亲眼看见的。上尉边看新书边等火车。后来他突然抬头看见铁道上有一个小女孩儿,而火车马上就要进站了。他跑过去抓住她,可后来自己却摔倒了,火车径直地从他身上碾了过去。不过孩子倒平安无事,可怜的上尉会为这个感到欣慰的。小姐,对吧?”

Miss Jenkyns's face was very white. 'Matilda, bring me my bonnet,' she commanded Miss Matty. 'I must go to those girls... God forgive me if I ever spoke sharply to the captain!'

詹金斯小姐面色惨白。“马蒂尔达,把我的圆帽拿来,”她命令马蒂小姐,“我必须去看看那两个姑娘……要是我以前对上尉说过什么刻薄的话,上帝宽恕我!”

When she came back, she did not want to talk much. Mr Hoggins, the Cranford doctor, had said that Miss Brown would not live for many more days. Miss Jessie did not want her sister to hear the terrible news of her father's death, so Miss Brown was told that her father had been called away on railway business.

她回来的时候,并不怎么想说话。克兰福德的医生霍金斯先生说过布朗小姐活不了多少天了。杰西小姐不想让她姐姐听到父亲去世的噩耗,所以布朗小姐被告知她父亲因为铁路上的事被叫走了。

Next day, the newspaper had the full story of the accident. 'The brave gentleman,' it said, 'was reading this month's Pickwick Papers.'

第二天,报上刊登了事故的全过程。“这位勇敢的绅士,”报上写道,“当时正在读这个月的《匹克威克外传》。”

Poor, dear, silly man!' Miss Jenkyns shook her head, and busily sewed some black ribbon on her bonnet for the funeral.

“可怜、可爱的傻瓜!”詹金斯小姐摇了摇头,然后就忙着在圆帽上缝上黑带子,以备葬礼上用。

She went with Miss Jessie to the funeral, while Miss Pole, Miss Matty and I sat with Miss Brown.

她陪杰西小姐一起去参加葬礼,而我和波尔小姐、马蒂小姐则陪着布朗小姐。

Next day when we returned, we could see that Miss Brown was dying.

第二天我们回来的时候,发现布朗小姐快要死了。

Oh, Jessie!' she whispered. 'How selfish I've been! God forgive me!'

“哦,杰西!”她低声说道,“我是多么自私啊!上帝宽恕我!”

Sssh, love, sssh!' said Miss Jessie in tears.

“嘘,亲爱的,嘘!”杰西小姐含着眼泪说。

And my dear, dear father! He can never know now how I loved him.'

“我亲爱的,亲爱的爸爸!他永远无法知道我有多爱他了。”

He does know, dearest. He... he has gone before you to his resting-place. He knows now how you loved him.' The tears ran like rain down Miss Jessie's face. A few moments later her sister lay calm and quiet.

“他知道,最亲爱的。他……他已经先于你到长眠之地去了。他知道你有多爱他。”杰西小姐泪如雨下。过了一会儿,她姐姐就安息了。

After this second funeral, Miss Jenkyns made Miss Jessie stay with us. Miss Jessie had only about £20 a year to live on, and one day she and I began to discuss how she could earn some money.

第二个葬礼之后,詹金斯小姐让杰西小姐和我们住在了一起。杰西小姐每年只有大约20英镑的收入,她就靠这点儿钱过活,所以有一天她和我开始讨论她该怎么挣点儿钱。

I can sew,' said Jessie, 'and I like nursing...'

“我可以给人缝补东西,”杰西说,“而且我也喜欢看护……”

Suddenly Miss Jenkyns entered the room in unusual excitement. 'My dear Miss Jessie! Such a surprise! There is a gentleman downstairs whom you once knew—'

突然詹金斯小姐走进房间,神情异常激动,“我亲爱的杰西小姐!真是个惊喜!楼下有一位你认识的绅士——”

Miss Jessie went white, then red.

杰西小姐脸色一白,接着又红了。

—a gentleman, my dear, who wants to know if you will see him.'

“——一位绅士,亲爱的,他想知道你愿不愿意见他。”

Is it...? It isn't...?' Miss Jessie could not finish.

“是……?不是……?”杰西小姐说不下去了。

This is his visiting-card,' said Miss Jenkyns. She gave the card to Miss Jessie and made a strange face at me over her head. 'May he come up?'

“这是他的名片。”詹金斯小姐说。她把名片递给杰西小姐,从她头顶上朝我做了个鬼脸,“他可以上来吗?”

Oh, oh yes!' said Miss Jessie. She picked up some of Miss Matty's knitting and began to be very busy.

“哦,哦可以!”杰西小姐说。她把马蒂小姐的编织活儿拿起来开始忙着编织。

Miss Jenkyns rang the bell. 'Bring Captain Gordon upstairs,' she told the maid.

詹金斯小姐按了铃。“请带戈登上尉上楼。”她对女仆说。

A tall, fine, sincere-looking man of about forty walked in. He shook hands with Miss Jessie, who looked down at the floor.

一位40岁左右,举止文雅,相貌真诚的高个子男人走了进来。他和杰西小姐握手的时候,杰西小姐低头看着地板。

Miss Jenkyns asked me to come downstairs and help her prepare some fruit. Although Miss Jessie tried to make me stay, I could not refuse to help Miss Jenkyns. Instead of preparing fruit, however, Miss Jenkyns told me what Captain Gordon had told her. He had been in the army with Captain Brown and had fallen in love with Jessie when she was only eighteen. When he had inherited an estate in Scotland, he had asked her to marry him—and she had refused in order to nurse her sister. Gordon had then gone angrily abroad. He was in Rome when he saw the report of Captain Brown's death.

詹金斯小姐让我下楼帮她准备一些水果。虽然杰西小姐竭力让我留下来,我却不能拒绝帮助詹金斯小姐。不过,詹金斯小姐并没有准备水果,而是把戈登先生跟她说的话告诉了我。他和布朗上尉曾一起在军中服役,并在杰西小姐年仅18岁那年爱上了她。当他继承了一处位于苏格兰的庄园时,他曾经向她求婚——可是她为了照顾姐姐,拒绝了他。于是戈登一气之下远走异国。他是在罗马得知布朗上尉的死讯的。

Just then Miss Matty, who had been out all the morning, happened to come home. 'Deborah!' she cried. 'There's a gentleman upstairs with his arm round Miss Jessie's waist!' Miss Matty's eyes were large with horror.

正在那时,已经出去一个早上的马蒂小姐碰巧回家了。“德博拉!”她叫道,“楼上有一位先生用胳膊搂着杰西小姐的腰!”马蒂小姐吓得瞪大了眼睛。

Miss Jenkyns's reply surprised her sister greatly.

詹金斯小姐的回答令她妹妹大为吃惊。

The best place in the world for his arm to be in. Go away, Matilda, and mind your own business.'

“那是这世界上最适合他放胳膊的地方。马蒂尔达,忙你自己的事情去吧。”

The last time I ever saw Miss Jenkyns was years after this. She and Miss Matty and Miss Pole had all visited Miss Jessie (now Mrs Gordon) in Scotland and returned with wonderful stories of her home, her husband and her pretty dimples. Now, at the time I am speaking of, Miss Jenkyns had grown old. Miss Jessie's daughter, little Flora Gordon, had come down to Cranford on a visit. When I came in, Miss Jenkyns was lying on the sofa and Flora was reading aloud to her.

我上次见詹金斯小姐已经是这之后的好多年了。她和马蒂小姐以及波尔小姐都到苏格兰去看望过杰西小姐(现在的戈登夫人),回来使劲地夸奖她家、她丈夫和她那漂亮的酒窝。现在,我说这些事情的时候,詹金斯小姐已经老了。杰西小姐的女儿,小弗洛拉·戈登也来到了克兰福德。我进来的时候,詹金斯小姐正躺在沙发上,而弗洛拉则在大声地给她读书。

Ah, my dear!' Miss Jenkyns said to me. 'I cannot see as well as I used to. Did you ever read Rasselas? It's a wonderful book—wonderful! And so good for Flora. Much better than that strange book by Mr Dickens that killed poor Captain Brown...'

“啊,亲爱的!”詹金斯小姐对我说,“我现在视力不如以前好了。你读过《拉塞拉斯》吗?那是一本好书——真的好!对弗洛拉非常有益,比让可怜的布朗上尉丧命的狄更斯先生的怪书要好多了……”

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