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Chapter 6
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The following conversation, which took place between the two friends in the pump-room one morning, after an acquaintance of eight or nine days, is given as a specimen1 of their very warm attachment2, and of the delicacy3, discretion4, originality5 of thought, and literary taste which marked the reasonableness of that attachment.

They met by appointment; and as Isabella had arrived nearly five minutes before her friend, her first address naturally was, "My dearest creature, what can have made you so late? I have been waiting for you at least this age!"

"Have you, indeed! I am very sorry for it; but really I thought I was in very good time. It is but just one. I hope you have not been here long?"

"Oh! These ten ages at least. I am sure I have been here this half hour. But now, let us go and sit down at the other end of the room, and enjoy ourselves. I have an hundred things to say to you. In the first place, I was so afraid it would rain this morning, just as I wanted to set off; it looked very showery, and that would have thrown me into agonies! Do you know, I saw the prettiest hat you can imagine, in a shop window in Milsom Street just now -- very like yours, only with coquelicot ribbons instead of green; I quite longed for it. But, my dearest Catherine, what have you been doing with yourself all this morning? Have you gone on with Udolpho?"

"Yes, I have been reading it ever since I woke; and I am got to the black veil."

"Are you, indeed? How delightful6! Oh! I would not tell you what is behind the black veil for the world! Are not you wild to know?"

"Oh! Yes, quite; what can it be? But do not tell me -- I would not be told upon any account. I know it must be a skeleton, I am sure it is Laurentina's skeleton. Oh! I am delighted with the book! I should like to spend my whole life in reading it. I assure you, if it had not been to meet you, I would not have come away from it for all the world."

"Dear creature! How much I am obliged to you; and when you have finished Udolpho, we will read the Italian together; and I have made out a list of ten or twelve more of the same kind for you."

"Have you, indeed! How glad I am! What are they all?"

"I will read you their names directly; here they are, in my pocketbook. Castle of Wolfenbach, Clermont, Mysterious Warnings, Necromancer7 of the Black Forest, Midnight Bell, Orphan8 of the Rhine, and Horrid9 Mysteries. Those will last us some time."

"Yes, pretty well; but are they all horrid, are you sure they are all horrid?"

"Yes, quite sure; for a particular friend of mine, a Miss Andrews, a sweet girl, one of the sweetest creatures in the world, has read every one of them. I wish you knew Miss Andrews, you would be delighted with her. She is netting herself the sweetest cloak you can conceive. I think her as beautiful as an angel, and I am so vexed10 with the men for not admiring her! I scold them all amazingly about it."

"Scold them! Do you scold them for not admiring her?"

"Yes, that I do. There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves; it is not my nature. My attachments11 are always excessively strong. I told Captain Hunt at one of our assemblies this winter that if he was to tease me all night, I would not dance with him, unless he would allow Miss Andrews to be as beautiful as an angel. The men think us incapable12 of real friendship, you know, and I am determined13 to show them the difference. Now, if I were to hear anybody speak slightingly of you, I should fire up in a moment: but that is not at all likely, for you are just the kind of girl to be a great favourite with the men."

"Oh, dear!" cried Catherine, colouring. "How can you say so?"

"I know you very well; you have so much animation14, which is exactly what Miss Andrews wants, for I must confess there is something amazingly insipid15 about her. Oh! I must tell you, that just after we parted yesterday, I saw a young man looking at you so earnestly -- I am sure he is in love with you." Catherine coloured, and disclaimed16 again. Isabella laughed. "It is very true, upon my honour, but I see how it is; you are indifferent to everybody's admiration17, except that of one gentleman, who shall be nameless. Nay18, I cannot blame you" -- speaking more seriously -- "your feelings are easily understood. Where the heart is really attached, I know very well how little one can be pleased with the attention of anybody else. Everything is so insipid, so uninteresting, that does not relate to the beloved object! I can perfectly19 comprehend your feelings."

"But you should not persuade me that I think so very much about Mr. Tilney, for perhaps I may never see him again."

"Not see him again! My dearest creature, do not talk of it. I am sure you would be miserable20 if you thought so!"

"No, indeed, I should not. I do not pretend to say that I was not very much pleased with him; but while I have Udolpho to read, I feel as if nobody could make me miserable. Oh! The dreadful black veil! My dear Isabella, I am sure there must be Laurentina's skeleton behind it."

"It is so odd to me, that you should never have read Udolpho before; but I suppose Mrs. Morland objects to novels."

"No, she does not. She very often reads Sir Charles Grandison herself; but new books do not fall in our way."

"Sir Charles Grandison! That is an amazing horrid book, is it not? I remember Miss Andrews could not get through the first volume."

"It is not like Udolpho at all; but yet I think it is very entertaining."

"Do you indeed! You surprise me; I thought it had not been readable. But, my dearest Catherine, have you settled what to wear on your head tonight? I am determined at all events to be dressed exactly like you. The men take notice of that sometimes, you know."

"But it does not signify if they do," said Catherine, very innocently.

"Signify! Oh, heavens! I make it a rule never to mind what they say. They are very often amazingly impertinent if you do not treat them with spirit, and make them keep their distance."

"Are they? Well, I never observed that. They always behave very well to me."

"Oh! They give themselves such airs. They are the most conceited21 creatures in the world, and think themselves of so much importance! By the by, though I have thought of it a hundred times, I have always forgot to ask you what is your favourite complexion22 in a man. Do you like them best dark or fair?"

"I hardly know. I never much thought about it. Something between both, I think. Brown -- not fair, and -- and not very dark."

"Very well, Catherine. That is exactly he. I have not forgot your description of Mr. Tilney -- 'a brown skin, with dark eyes, and rather dark hair.' Well, my taste is different. I prefer light eyes, and as to complexion -- do you know -- I like a sallow better than any other. You must not betray me, if you should ever meet with one of your acquaintance answering that description."

"Betray you! What do you mean?"

"Nay, do not distress23 me. I believe I have said too much. Let us drop the subject."

Catherine, in some amazement24, complied, and after remaining a few moments silent, was on the point of reverting25 to what interested her at that time rather more than anything else in the world, Laurentina's skeleton, when her friend prevented her, by saying, "For heaven's sake! Let us move away from this end of the room. Do you know, there are two odious26 young men who have been staring at me this half hour. They really put me quite out of countenance27. Let us go and look at the arrivals. They will hardly follow us there."

Away they walked to the book; and while Isabella examined the names, it was Catherine's employment to watch the proceedings28 of these alarming young men.

"They are not coming this way, are they? I hope they are not so impertinent as to follow us. Pray let me know if they are coming. I am determined I will not look up."

In a few moments Catherine, with unaffected pleasure, assured her that she need not be longer uneasy, as the gentlemen had just left the pump-room.

"And which way are they gone?" said Isabella, turning hastily round. "One was a very good-looking young man."

"They went towards the church-yard."

"Well, I am amazingly glad I have got rid of them! And now, what say you to going to Edgar's Buildings with me, and looking at my new hat? You said you should like to see it."

Catherine readily agreed. "Only," she added, "perhaps we may overtake the two young men."

"Oh! Never mind that. If we make haste, we shall pass by them presently, and I am dying to show you my hat."

"But if we only wait a few minutes, there will be no danger of our seeing them at all."

"I shall not pay them any such compliment, I assure you. I have no notion of treating men with such respect. That is the way to spoil them."

Catherine had nothing to oppose against such reasoning; and therefore, to show the independence of Miss Thorpe, and her resolution of humbling29 the sex, they set off immediately as fast as they could walk, in pursuit of the two young men.

两位女友之间的以下谈话,是她们相识八九天后的一个早晨,在矿泉厅进行的,可以充分显现出她们之间的热烈情感,显现出彼此的敏感、审慎和独出心裁,以及高雅的文学情趣。”这一切表明了她们的热烈情感是那样合乎情理。

她们是约好了来的。因为伊莎贝拉比她的朋友早到了将近五分钟,她的头一句话当然是这样说的:“我的宝贝,什么事把你耽搁得这么晚?我等了你老半天了!”

“真的吗?太对不起了,我还以为我很及时呢。才刚刚一点,但愿没让你久等。”

“哦!至少等了老半天了!肯定有半个钟头了。好了,先到大厅那边坐下来松快松快。我有一肚子话要跟你说。“首先,今天早晨出门的时候,我生怕要下雨。真像是要下阵雨的样子,差一点把我急死了!你知道吧,我刚才在米尔萨姆街一家商店的橱窗里见到一顶帽子。你想象不到有多漂亮。跟你的那顶很相仿,只是绸带是橙红色的,不是绿色的。我当时真想买呀。不过,亲爱的凯瑟琳,今天这一早你都在干什么?是不是又看《尤多尔弗》了?”

“是的,早上一醒来就在看。已经看到黑纱幔那儿了。”

“真的吗?多有意思啊!哦!我说什么也不告诉你那黑纱幔后面罩着什么!难道你不急于想知道吗?”

“噢!是的,很想知道。到底是什么呢?不过,请别告诉我,无论如何也别告诉我。我知道准是具骷髅。我想准是劳伦蒂纳的骷髅。噢!我真喜爱这本书!实话对你说吧,我真想读它一辈子。若不是要来会你,我说什么也丢不开它。”

“亲宝贝,你真好。等你看完《尤多尔弗》,我们就一道看《意大利人》。我给你列了个单子,十来本都是这一类的。”

“真的!那可太好了!都是些什么书?”

“我这就念给你听听。全记在我的笔记本里。《乌尔芬巴赫城堡》,《克莱蒙》,《神秘的警告》,《黑树林的巫师》,《夜半钟声》,《莱茵河的孤儿》,以及《恐怖的奥秘》。这些书够我们看些日子啦。”

“是的,真是太好了。不过,这些书都很恐怖吗?你肯定它们都很恐怖吗?”

“是的,保险没问题。我的好朋友安德鲁斯小姐把这些书全看过了,她真是个甜姐儿,一个天下顶讨人爱的姑娘。你要是认识安德鲁斯小姐就好了,你会喜欢她的。她正在给自己织一件要多漂亮有多漂亮的斗篷。我觉得她像天使一样美丽,使我感到恼火的是,男人们居然不爱慕她!为此,我要狠狠地责骂他们。”

“责骂他们?你能因为他们不爱慕她,就大加责骂?”

“是的,我就是要责骂。我为了自己的真正朋友,什么事情都做得出来。我爱起人来不会半心半意,我不是那种人。我的感情总是十分热烈。今年冬天,在一次舞会上,我就对亨特上尉说:他要是整个晚上老是跟我开玩笑,我就不同他跳舞,除非他承认安德鲁斯小姐像天使一样美丽。你知道,男人总以为我们女人之间没有真正的友谊,我决心要让他们看看事实并非如此。我要是听见有人说你的坏话,我马上就会冒火。不过,那压根儿不可能,因为男人们最喜欢你这样的小姐。”

“噢,天哪!”凯瑟琳红着脸嚷道,“你怎么能这么说呢?”

“我很了解你。你性情十分活泼,这正是安德鲁斯小姐所缺少的。坦白地说,她这个人没意思极了。噢!我得告诉你,我们昨天刚一分手,我就见到一个小伙子在使劲地看你。我敢断定,他爱上你了。”凯瑟琳脸上绯红,再次否认。“那是千真万确的。我明白是怎么回事:你是除了一位先生以外,对谁的爱慕都无动于衷,那位先生我就不点名道姓啦。得了,我不能责怪你了。”(语气更加严肃)“你的心情很容易理解。我很清楚,你要是真正爱上一个人,就不喜欢别人来献殷勤。凡是与心上人无关的事情,全都是那样索然寡味!我完全可以理解你的心情。”

“不过,你别让我觉得自己就这么想念蒂尔尼先生,我兴许再也见不到他了。”

“再也见不到他了!我的宝贝,别这么说啦。你要是这么想,肯定要垂头丧气了。”

“不会的,决不会。我也不装模作样,说什么我并不喜欢他。不过,当我有《尤多尔弗》可看的时候,我觉得谁也不能让我垂头丧气的。噢!那条可怕的黑纱幔!亲爱的伊莎贝拉,我敢肯定,它后面准是劳伦蒂纳的骷髅。”

“我觉得真怪.你以前居然没看过《尤多尔弗》。不过我想,莫兰太太反对看小说。”

“不,她不反对。她自已就常看《查尔斯·格兰迪森爵士》。不过,新书落不到我们手里。”

“《查尔斯·格兰迪森爵》!那是一部十分无聊的书,对不?我记得安德鲁斯小姐连第一卷都无法看完。”

“它和《尤多尔弗》完全不同,不过我还是觉得很有趣。”

“是吗?真让我吃惊。我还以为不堪卒读呢。不过,亲爱的凯瑟琳,你有没有定下今晚头上戴什么?无论如何,我决定跟你打扮得一模一样。你知道,男人有时对这种事还挺注意呢。”

“他们注意有什么关系?”凯瑟琳十分天真地说。

“有什么关系!哦,天哪!我向来不在乎他们说什么。你若是不给他们点厉害瞧瞧,让他们识相点,他们往住会胡来的。”

“是吗?这我可从没注意到。他们对我总是规规矩矩的。”

“啊!他们就会装腔作势,自以为了不起,天下人数他们最自负。噢,对了,有件事我都想到上百次了,可总是忘记问问你:你觉得男人什么脸色的最好看?你喜欢黑的还是白的?”

“我也说不上。我没怎么想过这个问题。我想还是介乎两者之间的棕色最好,不白也不很黑。”

“好极啦,凯瑟琳。那正是他嘛。我还没忘记你是怎么形容蒂尔尼先生的:‘棕色的皮肤,黝黑的眼珠,乌黑的头发。’唔,我的爱好可不一样。我喜欢淡色的眼睛。至于肤色,你知道我最喜欢淡黄色的。你要是在你的熟人里见到这种特征的,可千万别泄露我的天机。”

“泄露你的天机!你这是什么意思?”

“得了,你别难为我啦。我看我说得太多了。我们别再谈这件事吧。”

凯瑟琳有些诧异地依从了。沉默了一阵之后,她刚想再提起她当时最感兴趣的劳伦蒂纳的骷髅,不料她的朋友打断了她的话头,只听她说:“看在老天爷的份上,我们离开这边吧。你知道,有两个讨厌的年轻人盯着我瞅了半个钟头了,看得我真难为情。我们去看看来了些什么人吧。他们不会跟到那边去的。”

她们走到来宾簿那儿。伊莎贝拉查看来宾登记的时候,凯瑟琳就负责监视那两个可怕的年轻人的行踪。

“他们没朝这边来吧?但愿他们别死皮赖脸地跟着我们。要是他们来了,你可要告诉我一声。我决不抬头。”

过了不久,凯瑟琳带着真挚的喜悦告诉伊莎贝拉,说她不必再感到不安了,因为那两个男的刚刚离开了矿泉厅。

“他们往哪边去了?”伊莎贝拉急忙转过身,问道,“有个小伙子长得还真漂亮。”

“他们往教堂大院那边去了。”

“哦,我终于把他们甩掉了。真是太好了?现在吗,就陪我到埃德加大楼,去看看我的新帽子,好吗?你说过你想看看。”

凯瑟琳欣然同意了。“只是,”她补充说,“我们或许会赶上那两个年轻人的。”

“哎!别管那个。我们要是赶得快,马上就能超过他们。我一心急着让你看帽子呢。”

“不过,我们只要再等几分钟,压根儿就不会再碰见他们。”

“老实对你说吧,我才不这样抬举他们呢。我对男人就不这么敬重。那只会把他们宠坏。”

凯瑟琳无法抗拒这番理论。于是,为了显显索普小姐的倔强性格,显显她要煞煞男人威风的决心,她们当即拔腿就走,以最快的速度向两个年轻人追去。


点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 specimen Xvtwm     
n.样本,标本
参考例句:
  • You'll need tweezers to hold up the specimen.你要用镊子来夹这标本。
  • This specimen is richly variegated in colour.这件标本上有很多颜色。
2 attachment POpy1     
n.附属物,附件;依恋;依附
参考例句:
  • She has a great attachment to her sister.她十分依恋她的姐姐。
  • She's on attachment to the Ministry of Defense.她现在隶属于国防部。
3 delicacy mxuxS     
n.精致,细微,微妙,精良;美味,佳肴
参考例句:
  • We admired the delicacy of the craftsmanship.我们佩服工艺师精巧的手艺。
  • He sensed the delicacy of the situation.他感觉到了形势的微妙。
4 discretion FZQzm     
n.谨慎;随意处理
参考例句:
  • 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。
5 originality JJJxm     
n.创造力,独创性;新颖
参考例句:
  • The name of the game in pop music is originality.流行音乐的本质是独创性。
  • He displayed an originality amounting almost to genius.他显示出近乎天才的创造性。
6 delightful 6xzxT     
adj.令人高兴的,使人快乐的
参考例句:
  • We had a delightful time by the seashore last Sunday.上星期天我们在海滨玩得真痛快。
  • Peter played a delightful melody on his flute.彼得用笛子吹奏了一支欢快的曲子。
7 necromancer necromancer     
n. 巫师
参考例句:
  • The necromancer hurls a bolt of dark energies against his enemies. 亡灵法师向对手射出一道带着黑暗能量的影束。
  • The necromancer tried to keep the anticipation out of her voice. 死灵法师尽量让自己的声音不带期待。
8 orphan QJExg     
n.孤儿;adj.无父母的
参考例句:
  • He brought up the orphan and passed onto him his knowledge of medicine.他把一个孤儿养大,并且把自己的医术传给了他。
  • The orphan had been reared in a convent by some good sisters.这个孤儿在一所修道院里被几个好心的修女带大。
9 horrid arozZj     
adj.可怕的;令人惊恐的;恐怖的;极讨厌的
参考例句:
  • I'm not going to the horrid dinner party.我不打算去参加这次讨厌的宴会。
  • The medicine is horrid and she couldn't get it down.这种药很难吃,她咽不下去。
10 vexed fd1a5654154eed3c0a0820ab54fb90a7     
adj.争论不休的;(指问题等)棘手的;争论不休的问题;烦恼的v.使烦恼( vex的过去式和过去分词 );使苦恼;使生气;详细讨论
参考例句:
  • The conference spent days discussing the vexed question of border controls. 会议花了几天的时间讨论边境关卡这个难题。
  • He was vexed at his failure. 他因失败而懊恼。 来自《现代汉英综合大词典》
11 attachments da2fd5324f611f2b1d8b4fef9ae3179e     
n.(用电子邮件发送的)附件( attachment的名词复数 );附着;连接;附属物
参考例句:
  • The vacuum cleaner has four different attachments. 吸尘器有四个不同的附件。
  • It's an electric drill with a range of different attachments. 这是一个带有各种配件的电钻。
12 incapable w9ZxK     
adj.无能力的,不能做某事的
参考例句:
  • 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。
13 determined duszmP     
adj.坚定的;有决心的
参考例句:
  • I have determined on going to Tibet after graduation.我已决定毕业后去西藏。
  • He determined to view the rooms behind the office.他决定查看一下办公室后面的房间。
14 animation UMdyv     
n.活泼,兴奋,卡通片/动画片的制作
参考例句:
  • They are full of animation as they talked about their childhood.当他们谈及童年的往事时都非常兴奋。
  • The animation of China made a great progress.中国的卡通片制作取得很大发展。
15 insipid TxZyh     
adj.无味的,枯燥乏味的,单调的
参考例句:
  • The food was rather insipid and needed gingering up.这食物缺少味道,需要加点作料。
  • She said she was a good cook,but the food she cooked is insipid.她说她是个好厨师,但她做的食物却是无味道的。
16 disclaimed 7031e3db75a1841cb1ae9b6493c87661     
v.否认( disclaim的过去式和过去分词 )
参考例句:
  • She disclaimed any knowledge of her husband's whereabouts. 她否认知道丈夫的下落。
  • He disclaimed any interest in the plan. 他否认对该计划有任何兴趣。 来自《简明英汉词典》
17 admiration afpyA     
n.钦佩,赞美,羡慕
参考例句:
  • He was lost in admiration of the beauty of the scene.他对风景之美赞不绝口。
  • We have a great admiration for the gold medalists.我们对金牌获得者极为敬佩。
18 nay unjzAQ     
adv.不;n.反对票,投反对票者
参考例句:
  • He was grateful for and proud of his son's remarkable,nay,unique performance.他为儿子出色的,不,应该是独一无二的表演心怀感激和骄傲。
  • Long essays,nay,whole books have been written on this.许多长篇大论的文章,不,应该说是整部整部的书都是关于这件事的。
19 perfectly 8Mzxb     
adv.完美地,无可非议地,彻底地
参考例句:
  • The witnesses were each perfectly certain of what they said.证人们个个对自己所说的话十分肯定。
  • Everything that we're doing is all perfectly above board.我们做的每件事情都是光明正大的。
20 miserable g18yk     
adj.悲惨的,痛苦的;可怜的,糟糕的
参考例句:
  • It was miserable of you to make fun of him.你取笑他,这是可耻的。
  • Her past life was miserable.她过去的生活很苦。
21 conceited Cv0zxi     
adj.自负的,骄傲自满的
参考例句:
  • 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。
22 complexion IOsz4     
n.肤色;情况,局面;气质,性格
参考例句:
  • Red does not suit with her complexion.红色与她的肤色不协调。
  • Her resignation puts a different complexion on things.她一辞职局面就全变了。
23 distress 3llzX     
n.苦恼,痛苦,不舒适;不幸;vt.使悲痛
参考例句:
  • 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。
24 amazement 7zlzBK     
n.惊奇,惊讶
参考例句:
  • All those around him looked at him with amazement.周围的人都对他投射出惊异的眼光。
  • He looked at me in blank amazement.他带着迷茫惊诧的神情望着我。
25 reverting f5366d3e7a0be69d0213079d037ba63e     
恢复( revert的现在分词 ); 重提; 回到…上; 归还
参考例句:
  • The boss came back from holiday all relaxed and smiling, but now he's reverting to type. 老板刚度假回来时十分随和,满面笑容,现在又恢复原样了。
  • The conversation kept reverting to the subject of money. 谈话的内容总是离不开钱的事。
26 odious l0zy2     
adj.可憎的,讨厌的
参考例句:
  • The judge described the crime as odious.法官称这一罪行令人发指。
  • His character could best be described as odious.他的人格用可憎来形容最贴切。
27 countenance iztxc     
n.脸色,面容;面部表情;vt.支持,赞同
参考例句:
  • 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。
28 proceedings Wk2zvX     
n.进程,过程,议程;诉讼(程序);公报
参考例句:
  • He was released on bail pending committal proceedings. 他交保获释正在候审。
  • to initiate legal proceedings against sb 对某人提起诉讼
29 humbling 643ebf3f558f4dfa49252dce8143a9c8     
adj.令人羞辱的v.使谦恭( humble的现在分词 );轻松打败(尤指强大的对手);低声下气
参考例句:
  • A certain humbling from time to time is good. 不时受点儿屈辱是有好处的。 来自辞典例句
  • It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-buildingexperience. 据说天文学是一种令人产生自卑、塑造人格的科学。 来自互联网


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