The Adventures of Tom Sawyer - Chapter 21

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汤姆·索亚历险记 - 第21章


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English to Chinese translation 英文到汉语中文翻译对照阅读 of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer - Chapter 21

1 VACATION was approaching. The schoolmaster, always severe, grew severer and more exacting than ever, for he wanted the school to make a good showing on "Examination" day. His rod and his ferule were seldom idle now—at least among the smaller pupils. Only the biggest boys, and young ladies of eighteen and twenty, escaped lashing. Mr. Dobbins' lashings were very vigorous ones, too; for although he carried, under his wig, a perfectly bald and shiny head, he had only reached middle age, and there was no sign of feebleness in his muscle. As the great day approached, all the tyranny that was in him came to the surface; he seemed to take a vindictive pleasure in punishing the least shortcomings. The consequence was, that the smaller boys spent their days in terror and suffering and their nights in plotting revenge. They threw away no opportunity to do the master a mischief. But he kept ahead all the time. The retribution that followed every vengeful success was so sweeping and majestic that the boys always retired from the field badly worsted. At last they conspired together and hit upon a plan that promised a dazzling victory. They swore in the signpainter's boy, told him the scheme, and asked his help. He had his own reasons for being delighted, for the master boarded in his father's family and had given the boy ample cause to hate him. The master's wife would go on a visit to the country in a few days, and there would be nothing to interfere with the plan; the master always prepared himself for great occasions by getting pretty well fuddled, and the signpainter's boy said that when the dominie had reached the proper condition on Examination Evening he would "manage the thing" while he napped in his chair; then he would have him awakened at the right time and hurried away to school.

1暑假即将来临,向来就严厉的老师现在变得比以往任何时候都更加严厉、越发苛刻了, 他目的是要全体同学在考试的那一天好好表现一番。他手中的教鞭和戒尺现在很少闲着,至 少对那些年龄较小的同学可以这么说。只有最大的男孩子和18到20岁的年轻姑娘才不挨 打。杜宾斯先生的鞭子打起来特别重。别看他头戴假发,光秃着脑袋,可他刚到中年,身上 的肌肉没有一点松弛的迹象。随着“大考”的临近,他的蛮劲渐渐暴露无遗。只要学生出了 差错,哪怕是微不足道的小错,他也要乘机发挥,以惩罚学生来获取快感。结果这弄得那些 年龄较小的男孩子惶惶不得终日,晚上就盘算着如何进行报复。他们一有空就捣蛋,从不放 过任何给老师添乱子的机会。可老师仍然我行我素,不睬他们那一套。要是孩子们成功的 话,随之而来的惩罚犹如风卷残云,威风凛凛,总是以孩子们的彻底失败而告终。但他们并 不甘心失败,而是聚在一起密谋,最后终于想出了一条妙计,这一定能取得辉煌胜利。他们 找到了做招牌人的孩子,先让他发誓保密,然后将他们的秘密计划告诉他,请他帮忙,这真 是一拍即合。原来这位老师在他家吃饭,在很多事情上已经得罪了这个孩子。过几天,老师 的太太要到乡下去串门,这样他们就能顺利地实施计划。另外,每逢重要日子,老师都要喝 得酩酊大醉。那孩子说大考那天晚上,等老师差不多醉倒在椅子上打盹的时候,他就“乘机 下手”,然后再伺机弄醒他,催他快到学校去。

2 In the fulness of time the interesting occasion arrived. At eight in the evening the schoolhouse was brilliantly lighted, and adorned with wreaths and festoons of foliage and flowers. The master sat throned in his great chair upon a raised platform, with his blackboard behind him. He was looking tolerably mellow. Three rows of benches on each side and six rows in front of him were occupied by the dignitaries of the town and by the parents of the pupils. To his left, back of the rows of citizens, was a spacious temporary platform upon which were seated the scholars who were to take part in the exercises of the evening; rows of small boys, washed and dressed to an intolerable state of discomfort; rows of gawky big boys; snowbanks of girls and young ladies clad in lawn and muslin and conspicuously conscious of their bare arms, their grandmothers' ancient trinkets, their bits of pink and blue ribbon and the flowers in their hair. All the rest of the house was filled with non-participating scholars.

2到了预定的时间,晚上8点钟,那个有趣的时刻终于来临了。教室里灯火辉煌,挂着花环和彩带,彩带上扎着叶子和花朵。在高高的讲台上,老师像 皇帝一样坐在那把大椅子里,身后就是黑板。还好他看上去不像大醉的样子。他前面有六排 长凳,上面坐着镇上的要人。两边又各有三排长凳,坐的是学生家长。左前方,家长座位后 面临时搭起了一个大讲台,参加晚上考试的考生全都坐在这里。一排排的小男孩被家长打扮 得过了头,个个被洗得干干净净,穿得整整齐齐,让人觉得都有点不舒服。接着的是一排排 大男孩,显得有些腼腆和呆板。再瞧那些小女孩和大姑娘,她们一身素装,洁白耀眼,个个 穿着细麻软布做的衣服,头上插着许多装饰品,有鲜花,有粉红和蓝色相间的发带,还有老 祖母传下来的各种小装饰物。她们露着胳膊站在那里,尤其显得有些局促不安。那些没有考试任务的学生都散坐在教室里别的地方。

3 The exercises began. A very little boy stood up and sheepishly recited, "You'd scarce expect one of my age to speak in public on the stage," etc.—accompanying himself with the painfully exact and spasmodic gestures which a machine might have used—supposing the machine to be a trifle out of order. But he got through safely, though cruelly scared, and got a fine round of applause when he made his manufactured bow and retired.

3考试开始了。一个年龄小的男孩站起来按事先准备好的说:“大家可能没有想到,像我 这年龄的孩子会到讲台上来当众演讲。”等等诸如此类的话。他边说边十分吃力地比划着, 动作虽然准确,但却很生硬,生硬得像出了点故障的机器一般。他机械地鞠躬退场,获得了 全场一阵热烈的鼓掌。

4 A little shamefaced girl lisped, "Mary had a little lamb," etc., performed a compassion-inspiring curtsy, got her meed of applause, and sat down flushed and happy.

4一个小女孩脸通红口齿不清地背诵了“玛丽有只小羊羔”等,然后十分认真地行了个屈 膝礼。在博得了大家的一阵掌声后,她红着脸,高兴地坐了下来。

5 Tom Sawyer stepped forward with conceited confidence and soared into the unquenchable and indestructible "Give me liberty or give me death" speech, with fine fury and frantic gesticulation, and broke down in the middle of it. A ghastly stage-fright seized him, his legs quaked under him and he was like to choke. True, he had the manifest sympathy of the house but he had the house's silence, too, which was even worse than its sympathy. The master frowned, and this completed the disaster. Tom struggled awhile and then retired, utterly defeated. There was a weak attempt at applause, but it died early.

5汤姆·索亚十分自信地走上前去,背起了那千古名篇《不自由,毋宁死》。他慷慨陈 词,不时还大幅度地做着手势,可背着背着中途就接不上了。怯场症像魔鬼一样攫住了他,他两腿发颤,似乎有窒息之 感。所有在场的人确实替他捏了把汗,可没人吭一声,这让他觉得比同情他更难受。到后 来,老师皱起了眉头,汤姆这下全完了。他结结巴巴要往下背诵,可过了一会,便好像只斗 败的公鸡一样溜下场去。台下的人想鼓一两掌,可掌声刚起就消失了。

6 "The Boy Stood on the Burning Deck" followed; also "The Assyrian Came Down," and other declamatory gems. Then there were reading exercises, and a spelling fight. The meagre Latin class recited with honor. The prime feature of the evening was in order, now—original "compositions" by the young ladies. Each in her turn stepped forward to the edge of the platform, cleared her throat, held up her manuscript (tied with dainty ribbon), and proceeded to read, with labored attention to "expression" and punctuation. The themes were the same that had been illuminated upon similar occasions by their mothers before them, their grandmothers, and doubtless all their ancestors in the female line clear back to the Crusades. "Friendship" was one; "Memories of Other Days"; "Religion in History"; "Dream Land"; "The Advantages of Culture"; "Forms of Political Government Compared and Contrasted"; "Melancholy"; "Filial Love"; "Heart Longings," etc., etc.

6随后有人背诵了“那个男孩子站在燃烧的甲板上”,“亚述人走来了”等一些名篇。接 下来的是朗读表演和拼写比赛。寥寥数人的拉丁语班背诵时显得无比自豪。最后晚上的黄金 节目终于到了——姑娘们自己的“独创大作”。大家一个接一个走上前站在讲台边,等清完 嗓子就拿出稿子(用鲜艳的缎带扎着)念起来。她们个个念得有声有色,十分卖力让人都觉 得有点不自然。文章的主题都是她们的母亲和祖母们在同样场合下早已发挥过的。毫无疑 问,由此可以追溯到十字军时代她们家族的母系祖先们,人人都用过这类主题,《友情论》 就是其中之一。另外还有《昔日重来》、《历史上的宗教》、《梦境》、《文化的优点》、 《政体比照论》、《伤感》、《孝道》、《心愿》等等。

7 A prevalent feature in these compositions was a nursed and petted melancholy; another was a wasteful and opulent gush of "fine language"; another was a tendency to lug in by the ears particularly prized words and phrases until they were worn entirely out; and a peculiarity that conspicuously marked and marred them was the inveterate and intolerable sermon that wagged its crippled tail at the end of each and every one of them. No matter what the subject might be, a brainracking effort was made to squirm it into some aspect or other that the moral and religious mind could contemplate with edification. The glaring insincerity of these sermons was not sufficient to compass the banishment of the fashion from the schools, and it is not sufficient today; it never will be sufficient while the world stands, perhaps. There is no school in all our land where the young ladies do not feel obliged to close their compositions with a sermon; and you will find that the sermon of the most frivolous and the least religious girl in the school is always the longest and the most relentlessly pious. But enough of this. Homely truth is unpalatable.

7这类文章的共同特点有三个:一是 无病呻吟,故作悲伤;二是堆砌词语,滥用华丽词藻;三是特别偏爱一些陈词滥调。此外, 这些文章有个显著特点,也是它们的败笔之处:就是每篇文章的结尾都有一段根深蒂固的说 教词,好像断尾巴的狗一样,令人难受。她们的“独创大作”不管涉及到什么内容,她们都 绞尽脑汁,千方百计让人思索以便获得道德或宗教上的启示。在众目睽睽之下,这种说教虽 然给人以假话的感觉,但这种风气还是消除不了,时至今日依然如故。也许只要世界存在一 天,这种毫无诚意的说教就永远消灭不了。在这个国度里,有哪所学校的女生不觉得非在文 章的结尾加上一段说教词不可呢?更有意思的是你会发现越是不守规矩、不太信仰宗教的那 些女孩,她们的文章写的就越长、越虔诚。

8 Let us return to the "Examination." The first composition that was read was one entitled "Is this, then, Life?" Perhaps the reader can endure an extract from it:

8得了,忠言逆耳,不说这些了。我们再接着讲“大考”的情况。朗读的第一篇文章的题 目是《难道这就是生活吗?》。下面摘录一段“以飨”读者。

9 "In the common walks of life, with what delightful emotions does the youthful mind look forward to some anticipated scene of festivity! Imagination is busy sketching rose-tinted pictures of joy. In fancy, the voluptuous votary of fashion sees herself amid the festive throng, 'the observed of all observers.' Her graceful form, arrayed in snowy robes, is whirling through the mazes of the joyous dance; her eye is brightest, her step is lightest in the gay assembly.

9飞舞驰骋的想象描绘出一幅幅玫瑰色欢乐的场景。时尚的弄潮儿沉溺于纸醉金迷,梦幻中发现自己置身于欢乐的人群,成了众人眼里的明 星。她举止优雅,身穿素装长袍,翩翩起舞于欢乐的迷宫。她的眼睛最明亮,她的步伐最轻 盈。

10 "In such delicious fancies time quickly glides by, and the welcome hour arrives for her entrance into the Elysian world, of which she has had such bright dreams. How fairy-like does everything appear to her enchanted vision! Each new scene is more charming than the last. But after a while she finds that beneath this goodly exterior, all is vanity, the flattery which once charmed her soul, now grates harshly upon her ear; the ballroom has lost its charms; and with wasted health and imbittered heart, she turns away with the conviction that earthly pleasures cannot satisfy the longings of the soul!"

10梦幻美妙,时光如梭,等待她进入天堂的时刻来临了。她的所见犹如被点化一般,似仙 女下凡!每到一处,物变景更美。可时隔不久,她发现漂亮的外表徒有虚名:曾经令她心花怒放的甜言蜜语,现在铮铮刺耳;舞厅变得平淡无奇;她身心憔悴地退 出,笃信世俗之乐何以能够慰藉心灵的企求!

11 And so forth and so on. There was a buzz of gratification from time to time during the reading, accompanied by whispered ejaculations of "How sweet!" "How eloquent!" "So true!" etc., and after the thing had closed with a peculiarly afflicting sermon the applause was enthusiastic.

11等等、等等诸如此类的话,朗读中,人群里爆发出一阵满意的嗡嗡声,还不时地突然低 声说道:“多么美好!”“真能服人!”“朴实无华!”最后一段布道词特别令人难受,大 家都巴不得早点结束。朗读刚完,全场就报以热烈的掌声。

12 Then arose a slim, melancholy girl, whose face had the "interesting" paleness that comes of pills and indigestion, and read a "poem." Two stanzas of it will do:

12下一个站起来的是一位身材瘦弱、性格忧郁的女孩,她脸色苍白得引人注目,那是经常 服药和消化不良留下的后遗症。她朗颂了一首“诗歌”。这里节选其中两节就可以了:

13 "A MISSOURI MAIDEN'S FAREWELL TO ALABAMA

13密苏里少女告别阿拉巴马

14 "Alabama, goodbye! I love thee well!
But yet for a while do I leave thee now!
Sad, yes, sad thoughts of thee my heart doth swell,
And burning recollections throng my brow!
For I have wandered through thy flowery woods;
Have roamed and read near Tallapoosa's stream;
Have listened to Tallassee's warring floods,
And wooed on Coosa's side Aurora's beam.

14再见,阿拉巴马!我爱你笃深,
离别虽短暂,难舍又难分!
想到你,往事历历燃胸间,
爱怜又悲伤。
曾记否,万花丛中留下我的足迹,
德拉波斯溪旁有我朗朗的读书声;
我听过德达西的流水犹如万马奔腾,
我见过库萨山巅晨曦的分娩。

15 "Yet shame I not to bear an o'erfull heart,
Nor blush to turn behind my tearful eyes;
'Tis from no stranger land I now must part,
'Tis to no strangers left I yield these sighs.
Welcome and home were mine within this State,
Whose vales I leave—whose spires fade fast from me
And cold must be mine eyes, and heart, and tete,
When, dear Alabama! they turn cold on thee!"

15我心系百事,无悔无怨,
含泪回首,心平气缓。
我告别的是我熟悉的地方,
见我叹息的也不是异乡他客;
来到该州,我宾至如归,
可如今我将远离高山大谷。
亲爱的阿拉巴马,一旦我心灰意冷,
那时,我真的告别人寰。

16 There were very few there who knew what "tete" meant, but the poem was very satisfactory, nevertheless.

16在场的人没有几个理解她“真的告别人寰”的含义,不过这首诗还是令人满意的。

17 Next appeared a dark-complexioned, black-eyed, black-haired young lady, who paused an impressive moment, assumed a tragic expression, and began to read in a measured, solemn tone:

17接着又上来一位姑娘。她黑眼睛、黑头发连皮肤也黝黑。上来后,她稍作停顿,这一停 顿令人难忘。随后她一副痛苦不堪的样子,用庄严而又有节奏的语调开始念起来。

18 "A VISION

18一个梦想

19 "Dark and tempestuous was night. Around the throne on high not a single star quivered; but the deep intonations of the heavy thunder constantly vibrated upon the ear; whilst the terrific lightning revelled in angry mood through the cloudy chambers of heaven, seeming to scorn the power exerted over its terror by the illustrious Franklin! Even the boisterous winds unanimously came forth from their mystic homes, and blustered about as if to enhance by their aid the wildness of the scene.

19夜色深沉,狂风肆虐,暴雨倾盆。老天爷高高在上,四周无半点星辰闪烁;炸雷滚滚, 满天轰鸣,震耳欲聋。愤怒的闪电穿过乌云,划破夜空,大有吞噬富兰克林之感。这位杰出的科学家在闪电交 织的时候勇敢地放飞风筝以测电能。大风也平地而起,以助雷电群起而攻之,场面更加荒凉 无比。

20 "At such a time, so dark,so dreary, for human sympathy my very spirit sighed; but instead thereof,

20如此时刻,如此黑暗阴沉,我心生慈悲为众生哀叹。

21 "'My dearest friend, my counsellor, my comforter and guide—My joy in grief, my second bliss in joy,' came to my side. She moved like one of those bright beings pictured in the sunny walks of fancy's Eden by the romantic and young, a queen of beauty unadorned save by her own transcendent loveliness. So soft was her step, it failed to make even a sound, and but for the magical thrill imparted by her genial touch, as other unobtrusive beauties, she would have glided away unperceived—unsought. A strange sadness rested upon her features, like icy tears upon the robe of December, as she pointed to the contending elements without, and bade me contemplate the two beings presented."

21“我最亲爱的朋友、老师、我的安慰者和向导——我的悲伤中的快乐,我随着欢乐而来的福,”来到我身边。 她像浪漫的年轻画家画的伊甸园里的仙女一般,漫步在阳光下,一个朴实无华巧夺天工 的绝代佳人。她步履轻盈来去无声无息。要不是她也和别的仙女一样轻抚人间,令人神奇为 之震颤,她会像浮云一般让人不知不觉,消失得无影无踪。她指着外面酣战的狂风暴雨要人 们想想它们各象征着什么,这时她脸上莫名其妙地顿生愁云,犹如寒冬腊月里的天气令人颤 栗。

22 This nightmare occupied some ten pages of manuscript and wound up with a sermon so destructive of all hope to non-Presbyterians that it took the first prize. This composition was considered to be the very finest effort of the evening. The mayor of the village, in delivering the prize to the author of it, made a warm speech in which he said that it was by far the most "eloquent" thing he had ever listened to, and that Daniel Webster himself might well be proud of it.

22令人可怕的描述差不多用了十页稿纸,结尾仍是一段说教词,把非长老会的教徒说得一 点希望都没有,这篇文章因此而获得了头奖,被认为是当天晚上最优秀的作文。镇长在颁奖 时,发表了一番热情洋溢的讲话。他说这篇文章是他平生以来听到的“最美”的文章,连大 演说家丹尼尔·韦伯斯特听了也会感到骄傲的。

23 It may be remarked, in passing, that the number of compositions in which the word "beauteous" was over-fondled, and human experience referred to as "life's page," was up to the usual average.

23顺便说一下,有些人过多使用“美好”两个字,爱把人生的经历比喻成“人生的一 页”,这样的文章像平常一样出现了很多。

24 Now the master, mellow almost to the verge of geniality, put his chair aside, turned his back to the audience, and began to draw a map of America on the blackboard, to exercise the geography class upon. But he made a sad business of it with his unsteady hand, and a smothered titter rippled over the house. He knew what the matter was, and set himself to right it. He sponged out lines and remade them; but he only distorted them more than ever, and the tittering was more pronounced. He threw his entire attention upon his work, now, as if determined not to be put down by the mirth. He felt that all eyes were fastened upon him; he imagined he was succeeding, and yet the tittering continued; it even manifestly increased. And well it might. There was a garret above, pierced with a scuttle over his head; and down through this scuttle came a cat, suspended around the haunches by a string; she had a rag tied about her head and jaws to keep her from mewing; as she slowly descended she curved upward and clawed at the string, she swung downward and clawed at the intangible air. The tittering rose higher and higher—the cat was within six inches of the absorbed teacher's head—down, down, a little lower, and she grabbed his wig with her desperate claws, clung to it, and was snatched up into the garret in an instant with her trophy still in her possession! And how the light did blaze abroad from the master's bald pate—for the signpainter's boy had GILDED it!

24那位老师这时醉得几乎是一副和蔼可亲的样子。他推开椅子,背对着观众,开始在黑板 上画美国地图,为考地理课作准备。可他的手不听使唤,结果把图画得不象样,引得大家暗 地里忍俊不禁。他心里清楚大家在笑他画得不好,于是就着手修改。他擦去一些线,然后又 画上,结果画得比原来的还差,大家更加肆无忌惮地笑话他。他孤注一掷,大有泰山压顶不 弯腰之势,全身心地投入,准备把地图画好。他觉得大家全都盯着他看,想象着自己终于画 成了一幅像样的美国图,可是下面的笑声还是不断传来,并且明显地越来越大。原来他头顶 上是个阁楼,阁楼的天窗正对着老师的头顶。一只腰部系着绳子的猫从上面悬空而下,它的 头和嘴被破布扎上了,出不了声。在下降的过程中,猫向上翘起身子用爪抓住绳子,然后在 空中乱舞一通后向下悠来。大家的笑声越来越大。猫离那个专心作画的老师头部只有六英寸 远。越来越近,越来越低,猫终于在绝望中一下子抓住了老师的假发。随即那猫连同假发一 下子又窜回阁楼。老师的秃头光彩四射,因为那个做招牌人的孩子已经给他头上上了一层 光。

25 That broke up the meeting. The boys were avenged. Vacation had come.

25考试就此结束,孩子们报了仇,假期来临了。

26 NOTE:—The pretended "compositions" quoted in this chapter are taken without alteration from a volume entitled "Prose and Poetry, by a Western Lady"—but they are exactly and precisely after the schoolgirl pattern, and hence are much happier than any mere imitations could be.

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