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The Last Class--------相信大家都在课本上读过
I was very late for school that morning, and I was terribly afraid of being scolded[责骂], especially as Monsieur[法语:先生] Hamel had told us that he should examine us on participles[分词], and I did not know the first thing about them. For a moment I thought of staying away from school and wandering about the fields. It was such a warm, lovely day. I could hear the blackbirds whistling on the edge of the wood, and in the Rippert field, behind the sawmill[锯木厂], the Prussians going through their drill. All that was much more tempting to me than the rules concerning participles; but I had the strength to resist, and I ran as fast as I could to school.

那天早晨,我去上学,去得非常晚,我好害怕被责骂,特别是,阿麦尔先生跟我们说过,他要考一考分词规则,而我连头一个字都不会。这时,在我的头脑里冒出了逃学、去田野跑一跑的念头。天气是那么暖和,那么晴朗!我听见乌鸦在小树林边鸣叫,普鲁士人正在锯木厂后面的里贝尔草地上操练。所有这一切都比分词规则更吸引我,但我还是顶住了诱惑,加快脚步向学校方向跑去。

As I passed the mayor's office, I saw that there were people gathered about the little board on which notices were posted. For two years all our bad news had come from that board—battles lost, conscriptions[征兵], orders from headquarters; and I thought without stopping:

"What can it be now?"

从村政府门前经过的时候,我看见许多人站在小布告栏前。这两年来,所有的坏消息,诸如吃败仗啦,征兵征物啦,还有普鲁士占领军司令部发布的命令啦,都是从那里来的。我边跑边想:“又有什么事吗?”

Then, as I ran across the square, Wachter the blacksmith, who stood there with his apprentice[学徒], reading the placard[布告], called out to me:

"Don't hurry so, my boy; you'll get to your school soon enough!"

I thought that he was making fun of me, and I ran into Monsieur Hamel's little yard all out of breath.

当我跑着穿过广场的时候,正在布告栏前和徒弟一起看布告的瓦克特尔铁匠朝我高喊:“小家伙,不用赶得那么急;你去得再晚也不会迟到的!”我以为他在跟我开玩笑,便上气不接下气地跑进阿麦尔先生的小教室。

Usually, at the beginning of school, there was a great uproar[喧嚣] which could be heard in the street, desks opening and closing, lessons repeated aloud in unison[一致], with our ears stuffed in order to learn quicker, and the teacher's stout ruler beating on the desk:

"A little more quiet!"

往常,开始上课的时候,总是一片乱哄哄的嘈杂声,斜面课桌的开关声,同学们一起捂住耳朵高声背诵课文的声音,街上都听得见。先生的大戒尺敲打着课桌:“安静一点!”

I counted on all this noise to reach my bench unnoticed; but as it happened, that day everything was quiet, like a Sunday morning. Through the open window I saw my comrades already in their places, and Monsieur Hamel walking back and forth[向前] with the terrible iron ruler under his arm. I had no open the door and enter, in the midst of that perfect silence. You can imagine whether I blushed[羞愧] and whether I was afraid!

我打算趁这片嘈杂声,偷偷地溜到我的座位上去。可是,这一天不同于往常,一切都很安静,就像是星期天的早晨。透过敞开的窗户,我看见同学们已经整整齐齐地坐在他们的座上,阿麦尔先生腋下夹着那把可怕的铁戒尺,来回地踱着步子。必须推开教室门,在这一片静谧中走进教室。你们想一想,当时我是多么尴尬,多么害怕!

But no! Monsieur Hamel looked at me with no sign of anger and said very gently:

"Go at once to your seat, my little Frantz; we were going to begin without you."

可是,没有。阿麦尔先生看着我,没有生气,而是非常温和地对我说:“快点回到座位上,我的小弗朗茨;我们就要开始上课了。”

I stepped over the bench and sat down at once at my desk. Not until then, when I had partly recovered from my fright, did I notice that our teacher had on his handsome blue coat, his plaited ruff, and the black silk embroidered breeches, which he wore only on days of inspection or of distribution of prizes. Moreover, there was something extraordinary, something solemn about the whole class. But what surprised me most was to see at the back of the room, on the benches which were usually empty, some people from the village sitting, as silent as we were: old Hauser with his three-cornered hat, the ex-mayor, the ex-postman, and others besides. They all seemed depressed; and Hauser had brought an old spelling-book with gnawed edges, which he held wide-open on his knee, with his great spectacles askew.

我跨过凳子,马上坐到座位上。我从惊慌中稍稍定下神来,这才注意到,我们的老师穿着他那件漂亮的绿色常礼服,领口系着折迭得很精致的领结,头上戴着那顶刺绣的黑绸小圆帽,这套装束,只有在上头派人来学校视察或学校发奖时他才穿戴的。此外,整个教室也有一种不同寻常的庄严的气氛。但是,最使我吃惊的是,看到教室面,那些平常空着的凳子上,坐着一些跟我们一样默不作声的村里的人,有头戴三角帽的奥泽尔老人,有前任镇长,有以前的邮递员,另外还有其他人。所有这些人都显得很忧伤;奥泽尔老人还带了一本边角都已破损的旧识字课本,摊放在膝头上,课本上横放着他那副大眼镜。

While I was wondering at all this, Monsieur Hamel had mounted his platform, and in the same gentle and serious voice with which he had welcomed me, he said to us:

"My children, this is the last time that I shall teach you. Orders have come from Berlin to teach nothing but German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. The new teacher arrives to-morrow. This is the last class in French, so I beg you to be very attentive."

正当我对这一切感到惊诧莫名时,阿麦尔先生在椅子上坐下,用刚才对我说话的那种既温和又庄重的声音,对我们说道:“孩子们,我这是最后一次给你们上课了。柏林来了命令,阿尔萨斯和洛林两省的学校只准教德语……新的老师明天就到。今天是你们最后一堂法语课,所以我请你们一定专心听讲。”

Those few words overwhelmed me. Ah! the villains! that was what they had posted at the mayor's office.

这几句话使我惊呆了。啊!这些坏蛋,他们贴在村政府布告栏上的就是这个消息。

My last class in French!

And I barely knew how to write! So I should never learn! I must stop short where I was! How angry I was with myself because of the time I had wasted, the lessons I had missed, running about after nests, or sliding on the Saar! My books, which only a moment before I thought so tiresome, so heavy to carry—my grammar, my sacred history—seemed to me now like old friends, from whom I should be terribly grieved to part. And it was the same about Monsieur Hamel. The thought that he was going away, that I should never see him again, made me forget the punishments, the blows with the ruler.

我的最后一堂法语课!……我只是刚刚学会写字!今后永远也学不到法语!法语就到此为止了!我现在是多么悔恨自己蹉跎光阴啊!悔恨自己从前逃课去掏鸟窝,去萨尔河溜冰!我的那些书,我的语法课本,我的神圣的历史书,刚才背在身上还觉得那么讨厌,那么沉重,现在却像老朋友一样,让我难舍难分。还有阿麦尔先生。一想到他就要走了,再也见不到了,我就忘记了以前的处惩和挨打。

Poor man! It was in honour of that last lesson that he had put on his fine Sunday clothes; and I understood now why those old fellows from the village were sitting at the end of the room. It seemed to mean that they regretted not having come oftener to the school. It was also a way of thanking our teacher for his forty years of faithful service, and of paying their respects to the fatherland which was vanishing.

可怜的人!他身着漂亮的节日盛装,为的是庆贺这最后的一堂课。现在,我明白了为什么村里的老人都坐在教室后面。这好像在说,他们后悔从前不常来学校。这也像是对我们的老师四十年的优秀教学,对今后不属于他们的国土表示他们的敬意的一种方式……”

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