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意大利经典童话故事:有三个货舱的船

2017-09-20 11:12英语童话故事 浏览:
  The Ship with Three Decks
  Once there was a poor couple who lived way out in the country A baby boy was born to them, but there was no one anywhere around to be his godfather They went into town, but they didn't know a soul there and couldn't have the child baptized without a godfather They saw a man wrapped in a black cloak on the church doorstep and asked, "Kind sir, would you please be this boy's godfather?" The man agreed, and the child was baptized
  When they came out of the church, the stranger said, "I now must give my godson his present Take this purse, which is to be used to raise and educate him And give him this letter when he has learned to read" The father and mother were thunderstruck, but before they could find words of thanks and ask the man his name, he had disappeared
  The purse was full of gold crowns, which paid for the boy's education Once he could read, his parents gave him the letter, which said:
  Dear Godson,
  I am going back to repossess my throne after a long exile, and I need an heir As soon as you read this letter, set out on a journey to your dear godfather, the king of England
  PS Along the way, beware of a cross-eyed man, a cripple, and a mangy character
  The youth said, "Father, Mother, farewell I must go to my godfather" After a few days of walking, he met a traveler who asked, "Where are you going, my lad?"
  "To England"
  "So am I We shall travel together"
  The youth noticed the man's eyes: one of them looked east, and the other west, so the boy realized this was the cross-eyed man he must avoid He found a pretext for stopping, then took another road
  He met another traveler sitting on a stone "Are you going to England? We'll therefore travel together," said the stranger, who got up and limped along, leaning on a stick He's the cripple, thought the youth, and changed roads again
  He met a third traveler, whose eyes, like his legs, bespoke perfect health As for any scalp disease, this man had the thickest and cleanest head of black hair you ever saw As the stranger was also on his way to England, they traveled together They stopped for the night at an inn, where the youth, wary of his companion, handed over his purse and the letter for the king to the innkeeper for safekeeping During the night while everybody was sleeping, the stranger rose and went to the innkeeper for the purse, letter, and horse In the morning the young man found himself alone, penniless, on foot, and with no letter for the king
  "Your servant came to me in the night," explained the innkeeper, "for all your belongings Then he left"
  The youth set out on foot At a bend in the road he spied his horse tethered to a tree in a field He was about to untie it, when from behind the tree rushed last night's companion armed with a pistol "If your don't want to die on the spot," he said, "you must become my servant and pretend I'm the king of England's godson" As he spoke, he removed his black wig, revealing a scalp completely covered with mange
  They set out, the mangy one on horseback, the youth on foot, and at last reached England With open arms the king welcomed the mangy one, taking him for his godson, while the real godson was assigned to the stables as stable boy But the mangy one couldn't wait to get rid of his companion, and the opportunity soon presented itself The king one day said to the false godson, "If you could free my daughter from the spell that holds her prisoner on a certain island, I'd give her to you in marriage The only difficulty is that nobody who has attempted to free her has ever come back alive" The mangy one lost no time in replying "Try sending my servant, who is surely capable of setting her free"
  The king summoned the youth at once and asked, "Can you set my daughter free?"
  "Your daughter? Tell me where she is, Majesty!"
  The king would only say, "I warn you that you'll lose your head if you come back to me without her"
  The youth went to the pier and watched the ships sail away He had no idea how to reach the princess's island An old sailor with a beard down to his knees approached him and said, "Ask for a ship with three decks"
  The youth went to the king and had a ship with three decks rigged When it was in port and ready to weigh anchor, the old sailor reappeared "Now have one deck loaded with cheese rinds, another with bread crumbs, and the third with stinking carrion"
  The youth had the three decks loaded
  "Now," said the old man, "when the king says, 'Choose all the sailors you want,' you will reply, 'I need only one,' and select me" That he did, and the whole town turned out to watch the ship sail off with that strange cargo and a crew of one, who also happened to be on his last legs
  They sailed for three months straight, at the end of which time they spied a lighthouse in the night and entered a port All they could make out on shore were low, low houses and stealthy movement At last a voice asked, "What cargo do you carry?"
  "Cheese rinds," replied the old sailor
  "Fine," they said on shore "That's what we need"
  It was the Island of Rats, where all the inhabitants were rats, who said, "We'll buy the entire cargo, but we have no money with which to pay you But any time you need us, you have only to say, 'Rats, fine rats, help us!' and we'll be right there to help you"
  The youth and the sailor dropped the gangplank, and the rats came aboard and unloaded the cheese rinds in a flash
  From there the men sailed to another island It was also night and they could make out nothing at all in port It was worse than the other place, with not a house or a tree anywhere in sight "What cargo do you bring?" asked voices in the dark
  "Bread crumbs," replied the sailor
  "Fine! That's just what we need!"
  It was the Island of Ants, where all the inhabitants were ants Nor did they have any money either, but they said, "Whenever you need us, you have only to say, 'Ants, fine ants, help us!' and we'll be right there, no matter where you are"
  The ants carried all the bread crumbs down the fore and aft moorings, and the ship cast off again
  It came to an island of rocky cliffs that dropped straight down to port "What cargo do you bring?" cried voices from above
  "Stinking carrion!"
  "Excellent! That's just what we need," and huge shadows swooped down on the ship
  It was the Island of Vultures, inhabited entirely by those greedy birds They flew off with every ounce of carrion, promising in return to help the men whenever they called, "Vultures, fine vultures, help us!"
  After several more months of sailing, they landed on the island where the king of England's daughter was a prisoner They disembarked, walked through a long cave, and emerged before a palace in a garden A dwarf walked out to meet them "Is the king of England's daughter here?" asked the youth
  "Come in and ask Fairy Sibiana," replied the dwarf, showing them into the palace, which had gold floors and crystal walls Fairy Sibiana sat on a throne of crystal and gold
  "Kings and princes have brought entire armies to free the princess," said the fairy, "and every last one of them died"
  "All I have are my will and my courage," said the youth
  "Well, then, you must undergo three trials If you fail, you'll not get away from here alive Do you see that mountain shutting out the sun from my view? You must level it by tomorrow morning When I wake up I want the sunlight streaming into my room"
  The dwarf came out with a pickax and led the youth to the foot of the mountain The young man brought the pickax down once, and the blade snapped in two "Now how am I going to dig?" he wondered, then remembered the rats on the other island "Rats, fine rats, help me!"
  He'd not got the words out of his mouth before the mountain was swarming with rats from top to bottom They dug and gnawed and clawed, while the mountain dwindled and dwindled and dwindled
  Next morning Fairy Sibiana was awakened by the first rays of sun streaming into her room "congratulations!" she said to the youth, "but you're not done yet" She led him to the palace's underground vaults, in the center of which was a room with a ceiling as high as a church's and containing one big heap of peas and lentils that reached the ceiling "You have this whole night to separate the peas from the lentils into two distinct piles Heaven help you if you leave one single lentil in the pea pile, or one single pea in the lentil pile"
  The dwarf left him a candle wick and went off with the fairy As the wick burned down to nothing, the youth continued to stare at the huge pile, wondering how any human could ever accomplish so intricate a task Then he remembered the ants on the other island "Ants, fine ants," he called, "help me!"
  No sooner had he said those words than the entire cellar teemed with those tiny insects They converged on the heap and, with order and patience, made two separate piles, one team of ants carrying peas and the other lentils
  "I'm still not defeated," said the fairy when she saw the task completed "A far more difficult trial now awaits you You have from now till dawn to fetch me a barrel of the water of long life"
  The spring of long life was at the top of a steep mountain infested with savage beasts Scaling the mountain was out of the question, much less while carrying a barrel But the youth called, "Vultures, fine vultures, help me!" and the sky darkened with vultures circling down to earth The youth attached a phial to the neck of each, and the vultures soared in a grand formation straight to the spring on the mountaintop, filled their phials, and flew back with them to the youth, who poured the water into the barrel he had waiting
  When the barrel was full, hoofbeats were heard retreating Fairy Sibiana was fleeing for dear life, followed by her dwarfs, while out of the palace ran the king of England's daughter, cheering: "I'm safe at last! You set me free!"
  With the king's daughter and the water of long life, the youth returned to his ship, where the old sailor was all ready to weigh anchor
  The king of England scanned the sea every day through his telescope Seeing a ship approach that was flying the English flag, he ran to port overjoyed When the mangy one beheld the youth safe and sound and escorting the king's daughter, he was fit to be tied and resolved to have him killed
  While the king was celebrating his daughter's return with a grand banquet, two grim-looking fellows came to get the youth, saying it was a matter of life and death Puzzled, he followed them When they got to the woods, the two fellows, who were assassins hired by the mangy one, drew their knives and cut the youth's throat
  Meanwhile at the banquet, the king's daughter was more and more worried, since the youth had gone off with that sinister pair and not returned She went out looking for him and, reaching the woods, found his body covered with wounds But the old sailor had brought along the barrel containing the water of long life, in which he immersed the youth's body, only to see him jump right back out as sound as ever and so handsome that the king's daughter threw her arms around his neck
  The mangy one was livid with rage "What's in that barrel?" he asked
  "Boiling oil," replied the sailor
  So the mangy one had a barrel of oil heated to boiling and announced to the princess: "If you don't love me I'll kill myself" He stabbed himself with his dagger and leaped into the boiling oil He was instantly scalded to death Also his black wig had flown off when he leaped, revealing his mangy head
  "Ah, the mangy one!" exclaimed the king of England "The cruelest of all my enemies He finally got what was coming to him So you, valiant youth, are my godson! You shall marry my daughter and inherit my kingdom!" And so it was
  (Riviera ligure di ponente)
  NOTES:
  "The Ship with Three Decks" (Il bastimento a tre piani) from Andrews, 2 and 27, Menton, told by Giuanina Piombo dite La Mova, and by Angelina Moretti
  Prosperous sea trading, with unusual cargos coming into ports where the merchandise is highly prized, is a metaphor of luck in the popular mind It recurs in diverse folktales and is woven into various plots (cf my no173, from Sicily) In this tale from the Italian Riviera border, the curious motifs of the ship with three decks and of the isles inhabited by animals are incorporated into the widespread type featuring the enchanted filly (in one of Andrews's versions, advice is given by the horse) and grateful animals (cf my nos 24 and 79) I have freely rendered the two versions summarized in French by Andrews
  Copyright: Italian Folktales Selected and Retold by Italo Calvino,
  translated by George Martin,
  Pantheon Books, New York 1980
  有个货舱的船
  从前,在一个偏僻的乡下住着一对贫穷的夫妻。他们生了个儿子,可是附近找不到人来当孩子的教父。他们想进城去找,在那儿又没有熟人;没有教父,就不能给孩子洗礼。在教堂门口的台阶上,他们看见一个披黑斗篷的男人,便问道:“好心的先生,您愿意当这个孩子的教父吗?”那人同意了,这样就给孩子施了洗礼。
  他们走出了教堂,那个陌生人说:“现在,我要送一件礼物给我的教子。请收下这个钱包,就用这些钱来抚养他,供他上学。等他识字以后,把这封信交给他。”孩子的父母大吃一惊,还没来得及问他姓甚名谁,也没来得及感谢他,他已经不见了。
  钱包里装满了金克郎,孩子后来读书就用的是这笔钱。当孩子能写会念以后,父母便把那封信交给了他,信上写着:
  亲爱的教子:
  经长期流放以后,我现在回去重新执掌朝政了。我需要一个继承人。你读完此信,马上动身来找你亲爱的教父——英格兰国王。
  又及,旅途中,你务必提防个人:一个斗鸡眼,一个跛子和一个瘌痢头。
  年轻人读完信说:“爸爸,妈妈,再见啦,我得去找我的教父。”走了几天以后,他在路上遇到一个行人。这个人问道:“小伙子,你上哪儿去呀?”
  “去英格兰。”
  “正好跟我同路,咱们一起走吧。”
  年轻人见那人的眼睛一只眼珠向左,一只眼珠向右,发觉正是他要提防的那个斗鸡眼。于是他找了个借口,停了下来,后来朝另一条路走了。
  他又遇到一个坐在石头上休息的行人。“你去英格兰吗?我们一起走吧,”陌生人说。他站起身来,拄著拐棍一瘸一拐地朝前走。年轻人想:他是个跛子,我必须避开他,于是朝另一条路走了。
  他遇到的第三个行人的眼睛和腿脚都正常,还长著一头乌黑发亮的头发。也是去英格兰,所以他们就结伴同行。他们在一家旅店过夜。为了预防意外,年轻人将他的钱包和国王的信交给旅店老板保管。夜间,趁大家都睡熟了,陌生人爬起来,向老板要了年轻人的钱包、信和马便逃走了。第二天早晨,年轻人发现只剩下自己一个人,身上一分钱也没有,信也丢了,马也丢了。
  “夜里,你的仆人来找我,”老板解释说,“他要了你你的财物,就走了……”
  年轻人只好步行赶路,走到一个岔路口时,蓦地发现他的马拴在田里的一棵树上。他正要解缰绳,突然,他那个同伴拿著手枪从树后奔了出来。“如果你想活,”他说,“你就得给我当仆人,就说我是英格兰国王的教子。”说著,他脱下头上的黑色假发,露出了秃顶,头上满是瘌疤。
  瘌痢头骑著马,年轻人步行跟在后头,最后到了英格兰。国王伸开双臂欢迎瘌痢头,把他当作自己的教子,而真教子却被派到马厩里当马倌去了。可是,瘌痢头急不可耐地还想把真教子除掉。不久,机会来了。一天,国王对瘌痢头说:“我的女儿被符咒镇住了,被囚禁在某个岛上,假如你能救她出来,我就将她许配给你做妻子。不过,这事不容易做到,以前去救她的人没有一个能活著回来的。”瘌痢头一听,连忙回话说:“派我的仆人去试试吧,他肯定能行。”
  国王马上把年轻人叫来,问他:“你能救我的女儿吗?”
  “您的女儿?陛下,请告诉我她在什么地方!”
  国王只是说:“我警告你,假如你救不回来,我可要砍你的脑袋。”
  年轻人到了码头,望着一艘艘扬帆出航的船。他不知道怎样才能到达公主居住的岛上。一位胡须拖到膝盖的老水手走到他面前说:“去要一艘有三个货舱的船吧。”
  年轻人去见国王,要了一艘有三个货舱的船。当这艘船停在港口准备起航时,老水手又出现了。他说:“你在一个货舱里装干酪皮,另一个货舱里装面包屑,第三个货舱里装臭肉。”
  年轻人就叫人把三个货舱都装满了这些货。
  “现在,”老年人说,“当国王说‘去选你所需要的水手’时,你就回答说‘我只需要一个水手’,就挑选我。”年轻就照这样做了。这艘船扬帆出海的时候,全城的市民都出来看稀奇:船上装着稀奇古怪的货物;只有一个水手,还是个快要死的老头子。
  他们连接航行了三个月。一天夜里,他们发现一座灯塔,便驶进了港口。他们模模糊糊地只看到岸上有一些非常低矮的房子,还有些小东西在鬼鬼祟祟地来回走动。后来,他们听到一个声音问道:“船上装的什么货啊?”
  “干酪皮。”老水手回答。
  “妙极啦,”岸上的声音说,“这正是我们需要的。”
  这是一座鼠岛,上面住的全是老鼠。它们说:“我们要买下全部货物,但我们没有钱付给你们。不过,无论你们什么时候需要我们,你们只要说,‘老鼠啊,可爱的老鼠,来帮助我们!’我们马上就会去帮助你们的。”
  年轻人和老水手放下跳板,老鼠上了船,转眼间就把干酪皮全卸光了。
  从鼠岛启航后,两人又到了另一个岛上。这时夜已经深了,港口里什么也没有;这儿比上次那个地方更糟糕,连一所房子或一棵树也看不到。“你们带来什么货啊?”黑夜中,有几个声音同时问道。
  “面包屑,”老水手回答。
  “妙极啦,这正是我们需要的。”
  这是一座蚂蚁岛,岛上住的全是蚂蚁。它们也付不出钱,不过它们说:“无论什么时候需要我们,你们只要说,‘蚂蚁啊,可爱的蚂蚁,来帮助我们!’不管你们在什么地方,我们马上会出现在那儿的。”
  蚂蚁在船上到处爬著,把全部面包屑都卸下船去。接著,船又启航出发了。
  船又来到一座悬崖峭壁的海岛,海港就在悬崖下面。“你们带来的什么货啊?”声音从悬崖上面传来。
  “臭肉!”
  “妙极啦,这正是我们需要的。”几个巨大的影子在船的上空掠过。
  这是一座秃鹫岛,岛上全栖息著这种贪婪的巨鸟。它们叼走了船上的所有臭肉;它们答应在老水手和年轻人需要帮助时,只要喊一声“秃鹫啊,可爱的秃鹫,来帮助我们”时,它们就会立刻赶到。
  又航行了几个月,他们抵达了囚禁英格兰国王女儿的那个岛上。他们上了岸,步行穿过一个长长的山洞,突然来到花园里的一座宫殿前。一个侏儒从宫殿里出来招呼他们。“英格兰国王的女儿在这儿吗?”年轻人问道。
  “进来去问仙女赛比安娜吧!”侏儒回答。他把年轻人和老水手带进宫殿,宫殿里面铺著金地板,砌著水晶墙。仙女赛比安娜端坐在用黄金和水晶做成的御座上。
  “不少国王和王子带了大队人马来搭公主,”仙女说,“但他们都在这儿送了命。”
  “我所带来的是我的意志和勇气,”年轻人说。
  “那么,好吧,你必须经受三次考验。如果失败了,你就甭想活著从这儿出去。你看见我前面那座挡住阳光的大山了吗?明天早晨以前,你必须把它铲平。等我醒来,就要让阳光照进我的房间。”
  侏儒拿著把鹤嘴锄走出来,带著年轻人走到山脚下。年轻人用力一锄,锄刃断裂成两半。“这叫我怎么挖呢?”他不知怎么办才好。突然,他想起另一个岛上的老鼠来。“老鼠啊,可爱的老鼠,来帮助我!”
  他的话还没说完,从山顶到山脚到处是一群群的老鼠在蠕动。它们挖啊,咬啊,刨啊,山被它们越挖越小,越咬越小,越刨越小了。
  第二天早晨,阳光一照进房间里,仙女赛比安娜醒过来了。“祝贺你!”她对年轻人说:“但是,事情还没完呢。”她领著年轻人走进了地窖;这个大地窖的中央是一间房间,房内的天花板跟教堂里的一样高。里面堆满了豌豆和小扁豆,一直堆到天花板。“今天夜里,你要把这堆混和在一起的豆子,清清楚楚地分成两堆:一堆碗豆,一堆小扁豆。要是你将一粒小扁豆留在豌豆里,或者把一粒豌豆留在小扁豆里,你就会遭殃的。”
  那个侏儒留给他一支蜡烛,便跟仙女一起走了。蜡烛燃完时,年轻人还望著那一大堆豆在发呆,心想谁也干不了这样繁难的活呀!这时,他想起了另一个岛上的蚂蚁。“蚂蚁啊,可爱的蚂蚁!快来帮助我!”
  他的话音刚落,整个地窖里密密麻麻地爬满了蚂蚁。它们聚集在豆子堆上,有条不紊地、仔细地将豆子分成两堆;一队蚂蚁专门运豌豆,另一队蚂蚁专门运小扁豆。
  “我还不认输呢,”仙女看到这事也办成了,就对年轻人说,“在你面前还有一次更大的考验。天亮以前,你必须给我送一桶长命水来。”
  长命泉在陡峭的高山顶上,山上到处是凶猛的野兽。连爬都爬不上去,更不用说还要带著一只桶了。但年轻人喊道:“秃鹫啊,可爱的秃鹫!快来帮助我!”这时许许多秃鹫遮天蔽日地盘旋著飞到地上。年轻人在每只鸟的脖子上拴一个小瓶子,于是,这些秃鹫排成浩浩荡荡的队伍径直向山顶飞去。小瓶子里灌满泉水,以后它们又回到年轻人身边;他在地上等著,将长命水倒进他随身带来的桶里。
  当桶里灌满水时,远处传来哒哒的马蹄声。原来,仙女赛比安娜仓惶逃命去了,后面跟著那个侏儒。这时候,英格兰国王的女儿从宫殿里跑出来,高兴地喊著:“我解脱符咒啦!你把我救出来啦!”
  年轻人带著国王的女儿和长命水回到自己的船上,老水手己做好了启航的准备。
  英格兰国王每天用望远镜细心地眺望大海。当他看到一艘飘扬著英国国旗的船驶来,便兴高采烈地奔向港口。瘌痢头看到年轻人带著国王的女儿胜利返航,简直气坏了。他下狠心要把年轻人弄死。
  国王举行盛大宴会,欢庆女儿得救。席间,有两个面露凶相的家伙把年轻人叫了出去,说有件生死攸关的大事要同他商量。年轻人不知是怎么回事,便跟著他们走了。他们走到树林里时,这两个家伙拔出刀来,刺死了年轻人。原来,他们是瘌痢头雇用的凶手。
  这时,宴会上国王的女儿心里十分焦急,年轻人跟那两个凶狠的家伙出去了,怎么一直不见他回来。她便到外面去找他,找到树林时,发现年轻人躺在那儿,身上有许多刀伤。好在老水手随身带来了装著长命水的水桶,他便将年轻人的身体浸到水桶里去。一会儿工夫,她便看到年轻人腾地站了起来,又健康又英俊,国王的女儿伸开双臂搂住了他的脖子。
  瘌痢头气得脸色铁青,问道:“桶里装的是什么玩意儿?”
  “滚烫的油,”老水手回答。
  于是,瘌痢头弄来一桶滚沸的油,对公主说:“如果你不爱我,我就跳进去。”说罢,他用匕首对自己刺去,然后跳进沸滚的油里,立刻被烫死了。他往油里跳时,黑色假发脱落下来,露出了光秃秃的脑袋瓜儿。
  “呃,原来是那个瘌痢头!”国王惊叫起来,“他是我最凶恶的敌人。他自杀了,真是罪有应得。勇敢的年轻人,你才是我的教子!你将跟我的女儿结婚,继承我的王位!”后来,年轻人就跟公主结婚,当了国王。
  (利古里亚海岸)
  注释:
  材料来源:詹姆士·安德鲁斯编《利古里亚故事集》(巴黎,1892年版)第二和第二十七篇;搜集地区:曼敦;讲述者:乔安尼娜·皮奥姆勃和安格利娜·莫瑞蒂。
  源源不断地将稀有货物运往能卖高价的港口去出售——多数人都把这种繁荣的海上贸易比作财运亨通。描写海上贸易在各地的民间故事中都有,而且被编排在不同的情节之中(比较本书第一七三篇《货船》)。这篇故事来自意大利的边境地区里维埃拉。它将有三个货舱的船以及居住著动物的岛这两个奇特的题材融为一体。这类故事广为流传,它的特点是描写著魔的雌马(在安德鲁斯所选的一篇故事中,小马给人出主意)和感恩图报的动物(比较本书第二十四篇《三间小屋》和第七十九篇《菲奥雷凡特和美女艾索琳娜》)。在编写这篇故事时,我将安德鲁斯用法语写的两篇故事梗概结合在一起了。

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