« 上一頁繼續 »
the dungeon again, to see if his prisoners had taken his counsel; but when he came there he found them alive; and truly, alive was all; for now, what for want of bread and water, and by reason of the wounds they received when he beat them, they could do little but breathe. But, I say, he found them alive; at which he fell into a grievous rage, and told them, that seeing they had disobeyed his counsel, it should be worse with them than if they had never been born.
At this they trembled greatly, and I think that Christian fell into a swoon; but coming a little to himself again, they renewed their discourse about the giant's counsel, and whether yet they had best take it or no. Now, Christian again seemed to be for doing it; but Hopeful made his second reply as followeth :
Hopeful. My, brother said he, rememberest thou not how valiant thou hast been heretofore? Apollyon could not crush thee, nor could all that thou didst hear, or see, or feel, in the Valley of the Shadow of Death : what hardships, terror, and amazement, hast thou already gone through, and art thou now nothing but fear? Thou seest that I am in the dungeon with thee, a far weaker man by nature than thou art; also this giant has wounded me as well as thee, and hath also cut off the bread and water from my mouth, and with thee I mourn without the light. But let us exercise a little more patience: remember how thou playedst the man at Vanity Fair, and wast neither afraid of the chain nor the cage, nor yet of bloody death; wherefore let us (at least to avoid the shame that becomes not a Christian to be found in) bear up with patience
as well as we can.
Now, night being come again, and the giant and his
wife being a-bed, she asked concerning the prisoners, and if they had taken his counsel; to which he replied, They are sturdy rogues; they choose rather to bear all hardships than to make away with themselves.Then said she, Take them into the castle yard to-morrow, and show them the bones and skulls of those thou hast already despatched, and make them believe, ere a week comes to an end, thou wilt also tear them in pieces, as thou hast done their fellows before them.
So when the morning was come, the giant goes to them again, and takes them into the castle yard, and shows them as his wife had bidden him. These, said he, were pilgrims, as you are, once; and they trespassed in my grounds, as you have done; and, when I thought fit, I tore them in pieces, and so within ten days I will do you; go, get ye down to your den again; and with that he beat them all the way thither.
They lay, therefore, all day on Saturday in a lamentable case, as before. Now, when night was come, and when Mrs. Diffidence and her husband the giant were got to bed, they began to renew their discourse of their prisoners; and, withal, the old giant wondered that he could neither by his blows nor counsel bring them to an end. And with that his wife replied, I fear, said she, that they live in hope that some will come to relieve them, or that they have picklocks about them, by the means of which they hope to escape. And sayest thou so, my dear? said the giant; I will therefore search them in the morning.
Well, on Saturday about midnight, they began to pray, and continued in prayer till almost break of day.
Now, a little before it was day, good Christian, as one half amazed, brake out in this passionate speech:
What a fool (quoth he) am I thus to lie in a stinking dungeon, when I may as well walk at liberty? I have a key in my bosom, called Promise, that will, I am persuaded, open any lock in Doubting Castle. Then said Hopeful, That's good news, good brother; pluck it out of thy bosom and try.
Then Christian pulled it out of his bosom, and began to try at the dungeon door, whose bolt (as he turned the key) gave back, and the door flew open with ease, and Christian and Hopeful both came out. Then he went to the outer door that leads into the castle yard, and with his key opened that door also. After, he went to the iron gate, for that must be opened too but that lock went very hard, yet the key did open it. Then they thrust open the door to make their escape with speed, but that gate, as it opened, made such a cracking that it waked Giant Despair, who, hastily rising to pursue his prisoners, felt his limbs to fail; for his fits took him again, so that he could by no means go after them. Then they went on, and came to the king's highway, and so were safe, because they were out of his jurisdiction.
Now, when they were gone over the stile, they began to contrive with themselves what they should do at that stile to prevent those that should come after from falling into the hands of Giant Despair. So they consented to erect there a pillar, and to engrave upon the stile thereof this sentence :-" Over this stile is the way to Doubting Castle, which is kept by Giant Despair, who despiseth the King of the Celestial Country, and seeks to destroy his holy pilgrims." Many, therefore, that followed after, read what was written, and escaped the danger.
[LORD CLARENDON was one of the leading statesmen who supported the cause of Charles I. His principal literary performance is the History of the Rebellion, usually published in 6 vols. 8 vo. The following character of one of the loyalist noblemen who fell in the civil wars, is from that work.]
Character of Lord Falkland.
In this unhappy battle [of Newbury] was slain the Lord Viscount Falkland, a person of such prodigious parts of learning and knowledge, of that inimitable sweetness and delight in conversation, of so flowing and obliging a humanity and goodness to mankind, and of that primitive simplicity and integrity of life, that if there were no other brand upon this odious and accursed civil war than that single loss, it must be most infamous and execrable to all posterity.
Before this parliament, his condition of life was so happy, that it was hardly capable of improvement. Before he came to be twenty years of age, he was master of a noble fortune, which descended to him by the gift of a grandfather, without passing through his father or mother, who were then both alive, and not well enough contented to find themselves passed by in the descent. His education for some years had been in Ireland, where his father was lord deputy; so that, when he returned into England to the possession of his
fortune, he was unentangled with any acquaintance or friends, which usually grow up by the custom of conversation, and therefore was to make a pure election of his company, which he chose by other rules than were prescribed to the young nobility of that time.— And it cannot be denied, though he admitted some few to his friendship for the agreeableness of their natures, and their undoubted affection to him, that his familiarity and friendship for the most part was with men of the most eminent and sublime parts, and of untouched reputation in point of integrity; and such men had a title to his bosom.
He was a great cherisher of wit and fancy, and good parts in any man; and if he found thern clouded with poverty or want, a most liberal and bountiful patron towards them, even above his fortune; of which, in those administrations, he was such a dispenser, as, if he had been trusted with it to such uses, and if there had been the least of vice in his expense, he might have been thought too prodigal. He was constant and pertinacious in whatsoever he resolved to do, and not to be wearied by any pains that were necessary to that end. And, therefore, having once resolved not to see London, which he loved above all places, till he had perfectly learned the Greek tongue, he went to his own house in the country, and pursued it with that indefatigable industry, that it will not be believed in how short a time he was master of it, and accurately read all the Greek historians.
In this time, his house being within little more than ten miles of Oxford, he contracted a familiarity and friendship with the most polite and accurate men of that university, who found such an immenseness of