« 上一页继续 »
So one said one thing, and another said the contrary. One questioned if it was lawful to go out of their way for any purpose; another said they might, provided their end was good. Then said Mr. Greatheart, "I have a commandment to resist sin, to overcome evil, to fight the good fight of faith; and pray, with whom should I fight this good fight if not with Giant Despair? I will therefore attempt the taking away of his life, and the destruction of Doubting Castle." Then said he, "Who will go with me?" Then said old Honest, "I will." "And so will we, too," said Christiana's four sons, Matthew, Samuel, James, and Joseph; for they were young men and strong.
So Mr. Greatheart, old Honest, and the four young men went to go up to Doubting Castle to look for Giant Despair. When they were come at the castle gate, they knocked for entrance with an unusual noise. At that the old giant comes to the gate, and Diffidence, his wife, follows. Then said he, "Who and what is he that is so hardy as after this manner to molest the Giant Despair?"
Mr. Greatheart, replied "It is I, Greatheart, one of the heavenly king's conductors of pilgrims to the celestial country; and I demand of thee that thou open thy gates for my entrance. Prepare thyself also to fight, for I am come to take away thy head, and to demolish Doubting Castle."
Now Giant Despair, because he was a giant, thought no man could overcome him, and again, thought he, "Since before I have made a conquest of angels, shall Greatheart make me afraid?" So
he armed himself, and went out.
He had a cap
of steel upon his head, a breast-plate of fire girded to him, and he came out in iron shoes, with a great club in his hand.
Then these six men made up to him, and beset him behind and before. Also when Diffidence, the giantess, came up to help her husband, old Mr. Honest cut her down with one blow. Then they fought for their lives, and Giant Despair was brought down to the ground, but was very loath to die. He struggled hard, and had, as they say, as many lives as a cat; but Greatheart was his death, for he left him not till he had severed his head from his shoulders.
Then they fell to destroying Doubting Castle, that you know might with ease be done, since Giant Despair was dead. They were seven days in destroying it, and in it they found one pilgrim, Mr. Despondency, almost starved to death, and Much-afraid, his daughter. But it would have made you wonder to see the dead bodies that lay here and there in the castle-yard, and how full of dead men's bones the dungeon was.
When Mr. Greatheart and his companions had performed this exploit, they took Mr. Despondency and his daughter Much-afraid under their protection; for they were honest people, though they were prisoners in Doubting Castle, to that tyrant Giant Despair. They, therefore, I say, took with them the head of the giant (for his body they had buried under a heap of stones) and took it to their companions, and showed them what they had
done. Then were they merry and joyful, and danced for joy at the great victory God had given them, and that Giant Despair was really dead, and could trouble pilgrims no more.
THE CHILD'S FIRST GRIEF.
my brother back to me!
I cannot play alone;
The summer comes with flower and bee-
The butterfly is glancing bright
The flowers run wild-the flowers we sowed
Our vine is drooping with its load
Oh! call him back to me!
He could not hear thy voice, fair child,
The face that once like spring-time smiled,
A rose's brief bright life of joy,
Go-thou must play alone, my boy!
(From Hans Christian Anderson's Tales for Children.)
There were once twenty-five tin soldiers, who were all brothers, for they were born of the same old tin-spoon. They looked straight before them, putting their muskets to their shoulders in military style, and their uniforms were blue and red of the most splendid description.
"Tin soldiers," was the very first word they heard in this world, when the lid was taken off the box in which they lay. That was spoken by a little boy, who had received them as a birthday present; he clapped his hands, and set them upon the table. One soldier was exactly like another; there was only one different from his fellows, for he had been cast last, when there was not tin enough left to make him complete, so he had but one leg. But he stood as firmly on his one leg as the others on their two, and as he had strange adventures, we are going to relate them in this chapter.
On the table, where they were placed, there were several other playthings; but that which was most pleasing was a pretty castle made of cardboard. One could see through the windows into the rooms, and in front there were several small trees, standing round a piece of looking-glass, which stood for a lake, and showed the swans which swam on it. It was all pretty, but the prettiest thing in it was a little girl made of cardboard, who stood in the middle of the open door.
She had a dress of the thinnest muslin, and a piece of blue ribbon across her shoulders for a scarf, fastened at the neck with a brooch quite as big as her whole face.
"That would be just the wife for me," thought the tin soldier, "but she is rather grand, living in a castle, whereas I have only a box, and that I have to share with twenty-four others. She would not be comfortable there I know, but still I will try to become acquainted with her. So he laid himself down flat on the table behind a snuffbox that was near, where he could see the pretty little lady made of card-board.
At night all the other tin soldiers were put in their box, and the people of the house went to bed. Now the playthings began to play on their own account all manner of games, and the tin soldiers made a great noise in their box, for they wanted to share the fun, and they could not open the lid. The nut-crackers turned themselves over, and the pencil had fine sport with the slate, so that there was such a noise that the canary woke up, and began to join in. The only two that did not move from their places were the tin soldier and the little girl made of card-board. She stood still in the door of the castle, and he did not turn his eyes from her for one instant.
It now struck twelve, and all of a sudden the lid flew off the snuff-box. It was not snuff that was in the box; no, it was a little black imp, such as children call a Jack in the box."
"Tin soldier,” the imp said, "keep your eyes to