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名著精读:《小妇人》第四章:负担 第5节

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Jo happened to suit Aunt March, who was lame and needed an active person to wait upon her. The childless old lady had offered to adopt one of the girls when the troubles came, and was much offended because her offer was declined. Other friends told the Marches that they had lost all chance of being remembered in the rich old lady's will, but the unworldly Marches only said . . .

乔刚好被马奇婶婶看中了。马奇婶婶跛了腿,需要找一个勤快的人来侍候。刚跛腿时这位无儿无女的老太太曾向马奇夫妇提出要收一个姑娘为养女,却被婉言拒绝了,心里老大不高兴。一些朋友告诉马奇夫妇说他们错失了被列入这位阔太太遗嘱继承人的机会,但超尘脱俗的马奇夫妇只是说--"

"We can't give up our girls for a dozen fortunes. Rich or poor, we will keep together and be happy in one another."

我们不能为钱财而放弃女儿。不论贫富,我们都要厮守一起,共享天伦之乐。”

The old lady wouldn't speak to them for a time, but happening to meet Jo at a friend's, something in her comical face and blunt manners struck the old lady's fancy, and she proposed to take her for a companion. This did not suit Jo at all, but she accepted the place since nothing better appeared and, to every one's surprise, got on remarkably well with her irascible relative. There was an occasional tempest, and once Jo marched home, declaring she couldn't bear it longer, but Aunt March always cleared up quickly, and sent for her to come back again with such urgency that she could not refuse, for in her heart she rather liked the peppery old lady.

老太太有一段时间都不愿跟他们说话,但一次在朋友家里偶然见到了乔。乔言谈风趣,举止直率,十分合老太太的心意,她便提出让乔跟她作个伴。乔并不乐意,但她找不到更好的差事,便答应下来。出人意料的是,她跟这位性情暴躁的亲戚相处得非常好。但偶尔也会遇到狂风骤雨,一次乔便气得跑回了家,宣布自己忍无可忍;但马奇婶婶总是很快收拾残局,急匆匆地派人请她回去,令她不便拒绝。其实,她内心对这位火辣辣的老太太也颇有好感。

I suspect that the real attraction was a large library of fine books, which was left to dust and spiders since Uncle March died. Jo remembered the kind old gentleman, who used to let her build railroads and bridges with his big dictionaries, tell her stories about queer pictures in his Latin books, and buy her cards of gingerbread whenever he met her in the street. The dim, dusty room, with the busts staring down from the tall bookcases, the cozy chairs, the globes, and best of all, the wilderness of books in which she could wander where she liked, made the library a region of bliss to her.

我猜想真正吸引乔的是一个装满了漂亮图书的大藏书室,这个房间自马奇叔叔去世后便积满了灰尘和蜘蛛网。乔记得那位和蔼的老绅士常常让她用大字典堆起铁道桥梁,跟她讲拉丁语书中那些古怪插图的故事,在街上碰到她时给她买姜饼。藏书室光线暗淡,灰尘满布,还有舒适的椅子、精致的地球仪,最妙的是,几个半身人像从书架上俯视地下,书籍凌乱地堆放着,乔可以毫无顾忌地随处走动翻阅,这一切使藏书室成了乔的天堂。

The moment Aunt March took her nap, or was busy with company, Jo hurried to this quiet place, and curling herself up in the easy chair, devoured poetry, romance, history, travels, and pictures like a regular bookworm. But, like all happiness, it did not last long, for as sure as she had just reached the heart of the story, the sweetest verse of a song, or the most perilous adventure of her traveler, a shrill voice called, "Josy-phine! Josy-phine!" and she had to leave her paradise to wind yarn, wash the poodle, or read Belsham's Essays by the hour together.

每当马奇婶婶打盹儿或顾着跟人闲聊时,乔便匆匆走进这个平静之处,像名符其实的蛀书虫一样大嚼诗歌、浪漫故事、游记、漫画书等等。不过这种令人陶醉的享受却总是不能持久;每当她看得入神,读到精彩之处,必定会传来一声尖叫:“约瑟--芬!约瑟--芬!”这时她便不得不离开自己的天堂,出去绕纱线,给卷毛狗洗澡,或者朗读波尔沙的《随笔》,忙个不停。

重点单词   查看全部解释    
unworldly [.ʌn'wə:ldli]

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adj. 精神的,超脱世俗的,天真的

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companion [kəm'pænjən]

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n. 同伴,同事,成对物品之一,(船的)甲板间扶梯(或扶

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peppery ['pepəri]

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adj. 胡椒味的,暴躁的

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irascible [i'ræsibl]

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adj. 易怒的,暴躁的

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bliss [blis]

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n. 福佑,天赐的福

 
refuse [ri'fju:z]

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v. 拒绝
n. 垃圾,废物

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wander ['wɔndə]

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vi. 徘徊,漫步,闲逛,迷路,蜿蜒
vt.

 
shrill [ʃril]

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n. 尖锐的声音 adj. 尖锐的,刺耳的 v. 用尖锐

 
rouse [rauz]

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v. 唤醒,鼓舞,激起
n. 觉醒,奋起

 
adventure [əd'ventʃə]

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n. 冒险,奇遇
vt. 冒险,尝试

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