双语小说连载:《董贝父子》第9章 Part 7

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'Wal'r, my lad!'said Captain Cuttle. 'Stand by and knock again. Hard! It's washing day.'
Walter, in his impatience, gave a prodigious thump with the knocker.
'Hard it is!' said Captain Cuttle, and immediately drew in his head, as if he expected a squall.
Nor was he mistaken: for a widow lady, with her sleeves rolled up to her shoulders, and her arms frothy with soap-suds and smoking with hot water, replied to the summons with startling rapidity. Before she looked at Walter she looked at the knocker, and then, measuring him with her eyes from head to foot, said she wondered he had left any of it.
'Captain Cuttle's at home, I know,' said Walter with a conciliatory smile.
'Is he?' replied the widow lady. 'In-deed!'
'He has just been speaking to me,' said Walter, in breathless explanation.
'Has he?' replied the widow lady. 'Then p'raps you'll give him Mrs MacStinger's respects, and say that the next time he lowers himself and his lodgings by talking out of the winder she'll thank him to come down and open the door too.' Mrs MacStinger spoke loud, and listened for any observations that might be offered from the first floor.
'I'll mention it,' said Walter, 'if you'll have the goodness to let me in, Ma'am.'
For he was repelled by a wooden fortification extending across the doorway, and put there to prevent the little MacStingers in their moments of recreation from tumbling down the steps.
'A boy that can knock my door down,' said Mrs MacStinger, contemptuously, 'can get over that, I should hope!' But Walter, taking this as a permission to enter, and getting over it, Mrs MacStinger immediately demanded whether an Englishwoman's house was her castle or not; and whether she was to be broke in upon by 'raff.' On these subjects her thirst for information was still very importunate, when Walter, having made his way up the little staircase through an artificial fog occasioned by the washing, which covered the banisters with a clammy perspiration, entered Captain Cuttle's room, and found that gentleman in ambush behind the door.
'Never owed her a penny, Wal'r,' said Captain Cuttle, in a low voice, and with visible marks of trepidation on his countenance. 'Done her a world of good turns, and the children too. Vixen at times, though. Whew!'
“我从来不欠她一个便士,沃尔,”船长轻声说道,脸上仍明显地流露出恐怖的神色。“我对她和她的小孩子们做了许许多多的好事。可是有时她还是蛮不讲理。嘘!” -------- ①“一位英国男子的家是他的堡垒”(AnEnglishman′shouseishiscastle.)是英国法学家爱德华·科克爵士(SirEdwardCoke,1552—1634年,曾任民事法院的首席法官)在他的著作《英国法总论》(InstitutesoftheLawsofEngland)中所说的一句话,意为一位英国男子在他家中就处于法律威力所及的范围之外。麦克斯廷杰太太的问话就是从这句话引伸出来的。

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