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首页 » 经典英文小说 » 红与黑 The Red and the Black » Part 1 Chapter 17
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Part 1 Chapter 17

The Principal DeputyO! how this spring of love resembleth The uncertain glory of anApril day, Which now shows all the beauty of the sun, And byand by a cloud takes all away!

  The Two Gentlemen of VeronaOne evening as the sun set, sitting by his mistress, at the end of theorchard, safe from disturbance2, he was deep in thought. 'Will such delicious moments,' he was wondering, 'last for ever?' His thoughts were absorbed in the difficulty of adopting a profession, he was deploring3 thisgreat and distressing4 problem which puts an end to boyhood and spoilsthe opening years of manhood when one has no money.

  'Ah!' he cried, 'Napoleon was indeed the man sent by God to help theyouth of France! Who is to take his place? What will the poor wretchesdo without him, even those who are richer than I, who have just the fewcrowns needed to procure6 them a good education, and not enoughmoney to purchase a man at twenty and launch themselves in a career!

  Whatever happens,' he added with deep sigh, 'that fatal memory will forever prevent us from being happy!'

  He saw Madame de Renal frown suddenly; she assumed a cold, disdainful air; this line of thought seemed to her worthy7 of a servant.

  Brought up in the idea that she was extremely rich, it seemed to her athing to be taken for granted that Julien was also. She loved him a thousand times more than life itself, and money to her meant nothing.

  Julien was far from guessing what was in her mind. This frownbrought him back to earth. He had presence of mind enough to arrangehis sentence and to make it plain to the noble lady, seated so close besidehim on the bank of verdure, that the words he had just uttered weresome that he had heard during his expedition to his friend the timbermerchant. This was the reasoning of the impious.

   'Very well! Don't mix any more with such people,' said Madame deRenal, still preserving a trace of that glacial air which had suddenlytaken the place of an expression of the tenderest affection.

  This frown, or rather his remorse8 for his imprudence, was the firstcheck administered to the illusion that was bearing Julien away. He saidto himself: 'She is good and kind, her feeling for me is strong, but she hasbeen brought up in the enemy's camp. They are bound to be speciallyafraid of that class of men of spirit who, after a good education, have notenough money to enter upon a career. What would become of thesenobles, if it were granted us to fight them with equal weapons? Myself,for instance, as Mayor of Verrieres, well intentioned, honest as M. deRenal is at heart, how I should deal with the vicar, M. Valenod and alltheir rascalities! How justice should triumph in Verrieres. It is not theirtalents that would prove an obstacle. They are endlessly feeling theirway.'

  Julien's happiness was, that day, on the point of becoming permanent.

  What our hero lacked was the courage to be sincere. He needed the courage to give battle, but on the spot; Madame de Renal had been surprisedby his speech, because the men whom she was in the habit of meetingwere always saying that the return of Robespierre was made possible especially by these young men of the lower orders, who had been too welleducated. Madame de Renal's cold manner persisted for some time, andseemed to Julien to be marked. This was because the fear of having saidto him indirectly9 something unpleasant followed her repugnance10 at hisunfortunate speech. This distress5 was clearly shown on her pure countenance11; so simple when she was happy and away from bores.

  Julien no longer dared give himself up freely to his dreams. More calmand less amorous12, he decided13 that it was imprudent in him to go to Madame de Renal in her room. It would be better if she came to him; if aservant saw her moving about the house, there would be a score of possible reasons to account for her action.

  But this arrangement also had its drawbacks. Julien had received fromFouque certain books for which he, as a student of divinity, could neverhave asked a bookseller. He ventured to open them only at night. Oftenhe would have been just as well pleased not to be interrupted by an assignation, the tension of waiting for which, even before the little scene inthe orchard1, would have left him incapable14 of reading.

  He was indebted to Madame de Renal for an entirely15 new understanding of the books he read. He had ventured to ply16 her with questions as to all sorts of little things ignorance of which seriously handicaps the intelligence of a young man born outside the ranks of society, whatever natural genius one may choose to attribute to him.

  This education in love, given by an extremely ignorant woman, was ablessing. Julien was at once enabled to see society as it is today. His mindwas not perplexed17 by accounts of what it was in the past, two thousandyears ago, or sixty years ago merely, in the days of Voltaire and LouisXV. To his unspeakable joy a cloud passed from before his eyes; he understood at last the things that were happening at Verrieres.

  In the foreground appeared the highly complicated intrigues18 woven,for the last two years, round the Prefect at Besancon. They were supported by letters that came from Paris, and bore all the most illustrious signatures. It was a question of making M. de Moirod, the most bigotedman in the place, the Principal instead of the Second Deputy to the Mayor of Verrieres.

  His rival was an extremely rich manufacturer, whom it was absolutelyessential to confine to the post of Second Deputy.

  Julien at last understood the hints that he had overheard, when thecream of local society came to dine with M. de Renal. This privilegedclass was greatly taken up with this selection of a Principal Deputy, ofwhich the rest of the town and especially the Liberals did not even suspect the possibility. What gave it its importance was that, as everybodyknew, the eastern side of the main street of Verrieres must be movedback more than nine feet, for this street was now a royal highway.

  Well, if M. de Moirod, who owned three houses that would have to bemoved back, succeeded in becoming Principal Deputy, and so Mayor inthe event of M. de Renal's being returned to Parliament, he would shuthis eyes, and it would be possible to make little, imperceptible repairs tothe houses that encroached on the public thoroughfare, as a result ofwhich they would be good for a hundred years. Despite the great pietyand admitted probity20 of M. de Moirod, it was certain that he could bemanaged, for he had a large family. Among the houses that would have tobe moved back, nine belonged to the very best people in Verrieres.

  In Julien's eyes, this intrigue19 was far more important than the historyof the battle of Fontenoy, a name which he saw for the first time in one ofthe books that Fouque had sent him. Many things had astonished Julienduring the five years since he had begun to spend his evenings with thecure. But discretion21 and a humble22 spirit being the chief qualities required in a divinity student, it had always been impossible for him to ask anyquestions.

  One day, Madame de Renal had given an order to her husband's valet,Julien's enemy.

  'But, Ma'am, today is the last Friday of the month,' the man answeredher with a curious expression.

  'Go,' said Madame de Renal.

  'Well,' said Julien, 'he is going to that hay store, which used to be achurch, and was recently restored to the faith; but why? That is one ofthe mysteries which I have never been able to penetrate23.'

  'It is a most beneficial, but a very strange institution,' replied Madamede Renal. 'Women are not admitted; all that I know of it is that they alladdress one another as tu. For instance, this servant will find M. Valenodthere, and that conceited24 fool will not be in the least annoyed at hearinghimself called tu by Saint-Jean, and will answer him in the same tone. Ifyou really want to know what they do there, I can ask M. de Maugironand M. Valenod for details. We pay twenty francs for each servant sothat they do not cut our throats.'

  The time flew. The memory of his mistress's charms distracted Julienfrom his black ambition. The necessity to refrain from speaking to her ofserious, reasonable matters, since they were on opposite sides, added,without his suspecting it, to the happiness that he owed to her and to thepower which she was acquiring over him.

  At those moments when the presence of quick-eared children confinedthem to the language of cold reason, it was with a perfect docility25 thatJulien, gazing at her with eyes that burned with love, listened to her explanations of the world as it really was. Often, in the middle of an account of some clever piece of roguery, in connection with the laying outof a road, or of some astounding26 contract, Madame de Renal's mindwould suddenly wander to the point of delirium27; Julien was obliged toscold her, she allowed herself to caress28 him in the same way as shecaressed her children. This was because there were days on which sheimagined that she loved him like a child of her own. Had she not to replyincessantly to his artless questions about a thousand simple matters ofwhich a child of good family is not ignorant at fifteen? A moment later,she was admiring him as her master. His intelligence positivelyfrightened her; she thought she could perceive more clearly every daythe future great man in this young cleric. She saw him as Pope, she sawhim as First Minister, like Richelieu.

   'Shall I live long enough to see you in your glory?' she said to Julien;'there is a place waiting for a great man; the Monarchy29, the Church needone; these gentlemen say so every day. If some Richelieu does not stemthe torrent30 of private judgment31, all is lost.'


1 orchard UJzxu     
  • My orchard is bearing well this year.今年我的果园果实累累。
  • Each bamboo house was surrounded by a thriving orchard.每座竹楼周围都是茂密的果园。
2 disturbance BsNxk     
  • He is suffering an emotional disturbance.他的情绪受到了困扰。
  • You can work in here without any disturbance.在这儿你可不受任何干扰地工作。
3 deploring 626edc75f67b2310ef3eee7694915839     
v.悲叹,痛惜,强烈反对( deplore的现在分词 )
4 distressing cuTz30     
  • All who saw the distressing scene revolted against it. 所有看到这种悲惨景象的人都对此感到难过。
  • It is distressing to see food being wasted like this. 这样浪费粮食令人痛心。
5 distress 3llzX     
  • Nothing could alleviate his distress.什么都不能减轻他的痛苦。
  • Please don't distress yourself.请你不要忧愁了。
6 procure A1GzN     
  • Can you procure some specimens for me?你能替我弄到一些标本吗?
  • I'll try my best to procure you that original French novel.我将尽全力给你搞到那本原版法国小说。
7 worthy vftwB     
  • I did not esteem him to be worthy of trust.我认为他不值得信赖。
  • There occurred nothing that was worthy to be mentioned.没有值得一提的事发生。
8 remorse lBrzo     
  • She had no remorse about what she had said.她对所说的话不后悔。
  • He has shown no remorse for his actions.他对自己的行为没有任何悔恨之意。
9 indirectly a8UxR     
  • I heard the news indirectly.这消息我是间接听来的。
  • They were approached indirectly through an intermediary.通过一位中间人,他们进行了间接接触。
10 repugnance oBWz5     
  • He fought down a feelings of repugnance.他抑制住了厌恶感。
  • She had a repugnance to the person with whom she spoke.她看不惯这个和她谈话的人。
11 countenance iztxc     
  • At the sight of this photograph he changed his countenance.他一看见这张照片脸色就变了。
  • I made a fierce countenance as if I would eat him alive.我脸色恶狠狠地,仿佛要把他活生生地吞下去。
12 amorous Menys     
  • They exchanged amorous glances and clearly made known their passions.二人眉来眼去,以目传情。
  • She gave him an amorous look.她脉脉含情的看他一眼。
13 decided lvqzZd     
  • This gave them a decided advantage over their opponents.这使他们比对手具有明显的优势。
  • There is a decided difference between British and Chinese way of greeting.英国人和中国人打招呼的方式有很明显的区别。
14 incapable w9ZxK     
  • He would be incapable of committing such a cruel deed.他不会做出这么残忍的事。
  • Computers are incapable of creative thought.计算机不会创造性地思维。
15 entirely entirely     
  • The fire was entirely caused by their neglect of duty. 那场火灾完全是由于他们失职而引起的。
  • His life was entirely given up to the educational work. 他的一生统统献给了教育工作。
16 ply DOqxa     
  • Taxis licensed to ply for hire at the railway station.许可计程车在火车站候客。
  • Ferryboats ply across the English Channel.渡船定期往返于英吉利海峡。
17 perplexed A3Rz0     
  • The farmer felt the cow,went away,returned,sorely perplexed,always afraid of being cheated.那农民摸摸那头牛,走了又回来,犹豫不决,总怕上当受骗。
  • The child was perplexed by the intricate plot of the story.这孩子被那头绪纷繁的故事弄得迷惑不解。
18 intrigues 48ab0f2aaba243694d1c9733fa06cfd7     
n.密谋策划( intrigue的名词复数 );神秘气氛;引人入胜的复杂情节v.搞阴谋诡计( intrigue的第三人称单数 );激起…的好奇心
  • He was made king as a result of various intrigues. 由于搞了各种各样的阴谋,他当上了国王。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Those who go in for intrigues and conspiracy are doomed to failure. 搞阴谋诡计的人注定要失败。 来自《现代汉英综合大词典》
19 intrigue Gaqzy     
  • Court officials will intrigue against the royal family.法院官员将密谋反对皇室。
  • The royal palace was filled with intrigue.皇宫中充满了勾心斗角。
20 probity xBGyD     
  • Probity and purity will command respect everywhere.为人正派到处受人尊敬。
  • Her probity and integrity are beyond question.她的诚实和正直是无可争辩的。
21 discretion FZQzm     
  • You must show discretion in choosing your friend.你择友时必须慎重。
  • Please use your best discretion to handle the matter.请慎重处理此事。
22 humble ddjzU     
  • In my humble opinion,he will win the election.依我拙见,他将在选举中获胜。
  • Defeat and failure make people humble.挫折与失败会使人谦卑。
23 penetrate juSyv     
  • Western ideas penetrate slowly through the East.西方观念逐渐传入东方。
  • The sunshine could not penetrate where the trees were thickest.阳光不能透入树木最浓密的地方。
24 conceited Cv0zxi     
  • He could not bear that they should be so conceited.他们这样自高自大他受不了。
  • I'm not as conceited as so many people seem to think.我不像很多人认为的那么自负。
25 docility fa2bc100be92db9a613af5832f9b75b9     
  • He was trying to plant the seed of revolt, arouse that placid peasant docility. 他想撒下反叛的种子,唤醒这个安分驯良的农民的觉悟。 来自辞典例句
  • With unusual docility, Nancy stood up and followed him as he left the newsroom. 南希以难得的顺从站起身来,尾随着他离开了新闻编辑室。 来自辞典例句
26 astounding QyKzns     
  • There was an astounding 20% increase in sales. 销售量惊人地增加了20%。
  • The Chairman's remarks were so astounding that the audience listened to him with bated breath. 主席说的话令人吃惊,所以听众都屏息听他说。 来自《简明英汉词典》
27 delirium 99jyh     
n. 神智昏迷,说胡话;极度兴奋
  • In her delirium, she had fallen to the floor several times. 她在神志不清的状态下几次摔倒在地上。
  • For the next nine months, Job was in constant delirium.接下来的九个月,约伯处于持续精神错乱的状态。
28 caress crczs     
  • She gave the child a loving caress.她疼爱地抚摸着孩子。
  • She feasted on the caress of the hot spring.她尽情享受着温泉的抚爱。
29 monarchy e6Azi     
  • The monarchy in England plays an important role in British culture.英格兰的君主政体在英国文化中起重要作用。
  • The power of the monarchy in Britain today is more symbolical than real.今日英国君主的权力多为象徵性的,无甚实际意义。
30 torrent 7GCyH     
  • The torrent scoured a channel down the hillside. 急流沿着山坡冲出了一条沟。
  • Her pent-up anger was released in a torrent of words.她压抑的愤怒以滔滔不绝的话爆发了出来。
31 judgment e3xxC     
  • The chairman flatters himself on his judgment of people.主席自认为他审视人比别人高明。
  • He's a man of excellent judgment.他眼力过人。


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