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影子

双击单词可弹出解释框  时间:2010-07-16 23:40  作者:

THE SHADOW

It is in the hot lands that the sun burns, sure enough! there the people
become quite a mahogany brown, ay, and in the HOTTEST lands they are burnt to
Negroes. But now it was only to the HOT lands that a learned man had come from
the cold; there he thought that he could run about just as when at home, but
he soon found out his mistake.

He, and all sensible folks, were obliged to stay within doors--the
window-shutters and doors were closed the whole day; it looked as if the whole
house slept, or there was no one at home.

The narrow street with the high houses, was built so that the sunshine must
fall there from morning till evening--it was really not to be borne.

The learned man from the cold lands--he was a young man, and seemed to be a
clever man--sat in a glowing oven; it took effect on him, he became quite
meagre--even his shadow shrunk in, for the sun had also an effect on it. It
was first towards evening when the sun was down, that they began to freshen up
again.

In the warm lands every window has a balcony, and the people came out on all
the balconies in the street--for one must have air, even if one be accustomed
to be mahogany!* It was lively both up and down the street. Tailors, and
shoemakers, and all the folks, moved out into the street--chairs and tables
were brought forth--and candles burnt--yes, above a thousand lights were
burning--and the one talked and the other sung; and people walked and
church-bells rang, and asses went along with a dingle-dingle-dong! for they
too had bells on. The street boys were screaming and hooting, and shouting and
shooting, with devils and detonating balls--and there came corpse bearers and
hood wearers--for there were funerals with psalm and hymn--and then the din of
carriages driving and company arriving: yes, it was, in truth, lively enough
down in the street. Only in that single house, which stood opposite that in
which the learned foreigner lived, it was quite still; and yet some one lived
there, for there stood flowers in the balcony--they grew so well in the sun's
heat! and that they could not do unless they were watered--and some one must
water them--there must be somebody there. The door opposite was also opened
late in the evening, but it was dark within, at least in the front room;
further in there was heard the sound of music. The learned foreigner thought
it quite marvellous, but now--it might be that he only imagined it--for he
found everything marvellous out there, in the warm lands, if there had only
been no sun. The stranger's landlord said that he didn't know who had taken
the house opposite, one saw no person about, and as to the music, it appeared
to him to be extremely tiresome. "It is as if some one sat there, and
practised a piece that he could not master--always the same piece. 'I shall
master it!' says he; but yet he cannot master it, however long he plays."

* The word mahogany can be understood, in Danish, as having two meanings.
In general, it means the reddish-brown wood itself; but in jest, it signifies
"excessively fine," which arose from an anecdote of Nyboder, in Copenhagen,
(the seamen's quarter.) A sailor's wife, who was always proud and fine, in her
way, came to her neighbor, and complained that she had got a splinter in her
finger. "What of?" asked the neighbor's wife. "It is a mahogany splinter,"
said the other. "Mahogany! It cannot be less with you!" exclaimed the
woman--and thence the proverb, "It is so mahogany!"--(that is, so excessively
fine)--is derived.


One night the stranger awoke--he slept with the doors of the balcony open--the
curtain before it was raised by the wind, and he thought that a strange lustre
came from the opposite neighbor's house; all the flowers shone like flames, in
the most beautiful colors, and in the midst of the flowers stood a slender,
graceful maiden--it was as if she also shone; the light really hurt his eyes.
He now opened them quite wide--yes, he was quite awake; with one spring he was
on the floor; he crept gently behind the curtain, but the maiden was gone; the
flowers shone no longer, but there they stood, fresh and blooming as ever; the
door was ajar, and, far within, the music sounded so soft and delightful, one
could really melt away in sweet thoughts from it. Yet it was like a piece of
enchantment. And who lived there? Where was the actual entrance? The whole of
the ground-floor was a row of shops, and there people could not always be
running through.

One evening the stranger sat out on the balcony. The light burnt in the room
behind him; and thus it was quite natural that his shadow should fall on his
opposite neighbor's wall. Yes! there it sat, directly opposite, between the
flowers on the balcony; and when the stranger moved, the shadow also moved:
for that it always does.

"I think my shadow is the only living thing one sees over there," said the
learned man. "See, how nicely it sits between the flowers. The door stands
half-open: now the shadow should be cunning, and go into the room, look about,
and then come and tell me what it had seen. Come, now! Be useful, and do me a
service," said he, in jest. "Have the kindness to step in. Now! Art thou
going?" and then he nodded to the shadow, and the shadow nodded again. "Well
then, go! But don't stay away."

The stranger rose, and his shadow on the opposite neighbor's balcony rose
also; the stranger turned round and the shadow also turned round. Yes! if
anyone had paid particular attention to it, they would have seen, quite
distinctly, that the shadow went in through the half-open balcony-door of
their opposite neighbor, just as the stranger went into his own room, and let
the long curtain fall down after him.

Next morning, the learned man went out to drink coffee and read the
newspapers.

"What is that?" said he, as he came out into the sunshine. "I have no shadow!
So then, it has actually gone last night, and not come again. It is really
tiresome!"

This annoyed him: not so much because the shadow was gone, but because he knew
there was a story about a man without a shadow.* It was known to everybody at
home, in the cold lands; and if the learned man now came there and told his
story, they would say that he was imitating it, and that he had no need to do.
He would, therefore, not talk about it at all; and that was wisely thought.

*Peter Schlemihl, the shadowless man.


In the evening he went out again on the balcony. He had placed the light
directly behind him, for he knew that the shadow would always have its master
for a screen, but he could not entice it. He made himself little; he made
himself great: but no shadow came again. He said, "Hem! hem!" but it was of no
use.

It was vexatious; but in the warm lands everything grows so quickly; and after
the lapse of eight days he observed, to his great joy, that a new shadow came
in the sunshine. In the course of three weeks he had a very fair shadow,
which, when he set out for his home in the northern lands, grew more and more
in the journey, so that at last it was so long and so large, that it was more
than sufficient.

The learned man then came home, and he wrote books about what was true in the
world, and about what was good and what was beautiful; and there passed days
and years--yes! many years passed away.

One evening, as he was sitting in his room, there was a gentle knocking at the
door.

"Come in!" said he; but no one came in; so he opened the door, and there stood
before him such an extremely lean man, that he felt quite strange. As to the
rest, the man was very finely dressed--he must be a gentleman.

"Whom have I the honor of speaking?" asked the learned man.

"Yes! I thought as much," said the fine man. "I thought you would not know
me. I have got so much body. I have even got flesh and clothes. You certainly
never thought of seeing me so well off. Do you not know your old shadow? You
certainly thought I should never more return. Things have gone on well with me
since I was last with you. I have, in all respects, become very well off.
Shall I purchase my freedom from service? If so, I can do it"; and then he
rattled a whole bunch of valuable seals that hung to his watch, and he stuck
his hand in the thick gold chain he wore around his neck--nay! how all his
fingers glittered with diamond rings; and then all were pure gems.

"Nay; I cannot recover from my surprise!" said the learned man. "What is the
meaning of all this?"

"Something common, is it not," said the shadow. "But you yourself do not
belong to the common order; and I, as you know well, have from a child
followed in your footsteps. As soon as you found I was capable to go out alone
in the world, I went my own way. I am in the most brilliant circumstances, but
there came a sort of desire over me to see you once more before you die; you
will die, I suppose? I also wished to see this land again--for you know we
always love our native land. I know you have got another shadow again; have I
anything to pay to it or you? If so, you will oblige me by saying what it is."

"Nay, is it really thou?" said the learned man. "It is most remarkable: I
never imagined that one's old shadow could come again as a man."

"Tell me what I have to pay," said the shadow; "for I don't like to be in any
sort of debt."

"How canst thou talk so?" said the learned man. "What debt is there to talk
about? Make thyself as free as anyone else. I am extremely glad to hear of thy
good fortune: sit down, old friend, and tell me a little how it has gone with
thee, and what thou hast seen at our opposite neighbor's there--in the warm
lands."

"Yes, I will tell you all about it," said the shadow, and sat down: "but then
you must also promise me, that, wherever you may meet me, you will never say
to anyone here in the town that I have been your shadow. I intend to get
betrothed, for I can provide for more than one family."

"Be quite at thy ease about that," said the learned man; "I shall not say to
anyone who thou actually art: here is my hand--I promise it, and a man's bond
is his word."

"A word is a shadow," said the shadow, "and as such it must speak."

It was really quite astonishing how much of a man it was. It was dressed
entirely in black, and of the very finest cloth; it had patent leather boots,
and a hat that could be folded together, so that it was bare crown and brim;
not to speak of what we already know it had--seals, gold neck-chain, and
diamond rings; yes, the shadow was well-dressed, and it was just that which
made it quite a man.

"Now I shall tell you my adventures," said the shadow; and then he sat, with
the polished boots, as heavily as he could, on the arm of the learned man's
new shadow, which lay like a poodle-dog at his feet. Now this was perhaps from
arrogance; and the shadow on the ground kept itself so still and quiet, that
it might hear all that passed: it wished to know how it could get free, and
work its way up, so as to become its own master.

"Do you know who lived in our opposite neighbor's house?" said the shadow. "It
was the most charming of all beings, it was Poesy! I was there for three
weeks, and that has as much effect as if one had lived three thousand years,
and read all that was composed and written; that is what I say, and it is
right. I have seen everything and I know everything!"

"Poesy!" cried the learned man. "Yes, yes, she often dwells a recluse in
large cities! Poesy! Yes, I have seen her--a single short moment, but sleep
came into my eyes! She stood on the balcony and shone as the Aurora Borealis
shines. Go on, go on--thou wert on the balcony, and went through the doorway,
and then--"

"Then I was in the antechamber," said the shadow. "You always sat and looked
over to the antechamber. There was no light; there was a sort of twilight, but
the one door stood open directly opposite the other through a long row of
rooms and saloons, and there it was lighted up. I should have been completely
killed if I had gone over to the maiden; but I was circumspect, I took time to
think, and that one must always do."

"And what didst thou then see?" asked the learned man.

"I saw everything, and I shall tell all to you: but--it is no pride on my
part--as a free man, and with the knowledge I have, not to speak of my
position in life, my excellent circumstances--I certainly wish that you would
say YOU* to me!"

* It is the custom in Denmark for intimate acquaintances to use the
second person singular, "Du," (thou) when speaking to each other. When a
friendship is formed between men, they generally affirm it, when occasion
offers, either in public or private, by drinking to each other and exclaiming,
"thy health," at the same time striking their glasses together. This is called
drinking "Duus": they are then, "Duus Brodre," (thou brothers) and ever
afterwards use the pronoun "thou," to each other, it being regarded as more
familiar than "De," (you). Father and mother, sister and brother say thou to
one another--without regard to age or rank. Master and mistress say thou to
their servants the superior to the inferior. But servants and inferiors do not
use the same term to their masters, or superiors--nor is it ever used when
speaking to a stranger, or anyone with whom they are but slightly acquainted
--they then say as in English--you.


"I beg your pardon," said the learned man; "it is an old habit with me. YOU
are perfectly right, and I shall remember it; but now you must tell me all YOU
saw!"

"Everything!" said the shadow. "For I saw everything, and I know everything!"

"How did it look in the furthest saloon?" asked the learned man. "Was it there
as in the fresh woods? Was it there as in a holy
church? Were the saloons like the starlit firmament when we stand on the high
mountains?"

"Everything was there!" said the shadow. "I did not go quite in, I remained in
the foremost room, in the twilight, but I stood there quite well; I saw
everything, and I know everything! I have been in the antechamber at the court
of Poesy."

"But WHAT DID you see? Did all the gods of the olden times pass through the
large saloons? Did the old heroes combat there? Did sweet children play there,
and relate their dreams?"

"I tell you I was there, and you can conceive that I saw everything there was
to be seen. Had you come over there, you would not have been a man; but I
became so! And besides, I learned to know my inward nature, my innate
qualities, the relationship I had with Poesy. At the time I was with you, I
thought not of that, but always--you know it well--when the sun rose, and when
the sun went down, I became so strangely great; in the moonlight I was very
near being more distinct than yourself; at that time I did not understand my
nature; it was revealed to me in the antechamber! I became a man! I came out
matured; but you were no longer in the warm lands; as a man I was ashamed to
go as I did. I was in want of boots, of clothes, of the whole human varnish
that makes a man perceptible. I took my way--I tell it to you, but you will
not put it in any book--I took my way to the cake woman--I hid myself behind
her; the woman didn't think how much she concealed. I went out first in the
evening; I ran about the streets in the moonlight; I made myself long up the
walls--it tickles the back so delightfully! I ran up, and ran down, peeped
into the highest windows, into the saloons, and on the roofs, I peeped in
where no one could peep, and I saw what no one else saw, what no one else
should see! This is, in fact, a base world! I would not be a man if it were
not now once accepted and regarded as something to be so! I saw the most
unimaginable things with the women, with the men, with parents, and with the
sweet, matchless children; I saw," said the shadow, "what no human being must
know, but what they would all so willingly know--what is bad in their
neighbor. Had I written a newspaper, it would have been read! But I wrote
direct to the persons themselves, and there was consternation in all the
towns where I came. They were so afraid of me, and yet they were so
excessively fond of me. The professors made a professor of me; the tailors
gave me new clothes--I am well furnished; the master of the mint struck new
coin for me, and the women said I was so handsome! And so I became the man I
am. And I now bid you farewell. Here is my card--I live on the sunny side of
the street, and am always at home in rainy weather!" And so away went the
shadow. "That was most extraordinary!" said the learned man. Years and days
passed away, then the shadow came again. "How goes it?" said the shadow.

"Alas!" said the learned man. "I write about the true, and the good, and the
beautiful, but no one cares to hear such things; I am quite desperate, for I
take it so much to heart!"

"But I don't!" said the shadow. "I become fat, and it is that one wants to
become! You do not understand the world. You will become ill by it. You must
travel! I shall make a tour this summer; will you go with me? I should like to
have a travelling companion! Will you go with me, as shadow? It will be a
great pleasure for me to have you with me; I shall pay the travelling
expenses!"

"Nay, this is too much!" said the learned man.

"It is just as one takes it!" said the shadow. "It will do you much good to
travel! Will you be my shadow? You shall have everything free on the journey!"

"Nay, that is too bad!" said the learned man.

"But it is just so with the world!" said the shadow, "and so it will be!" and
away it went again.

The learned man was not at all in the most enviable state; grief and torment
followed him, and what he said about the true, and the good, and the
beautiful, was, to most persons, like roses for a cow! He was quite ill at
last.

"You really look like a shadow!" said his friends to him; and the learned man
trembled, for he thought of it.

"You must go to a watering-place!" said the shadow, who came and visited him.
"There is nothing else for it! I will take you with me for old acquaintance'
sake; I will pay the travelling expenses, and you write the descriptions--and
if they are a little amusing for me on the way! I will go to a
watering-place--my beard does not grow out as it ought--that is also a
sickness--and one must have a beard! Now you be wise and accept the offer; we
shall travel as comrades!"

And so they travelled; the shadow was master, and the master was the shadow;
they drove with each other, they rode and walked together, side by side,
before and behind, just as the sun was; the shadow always took care to keep
itself in the master's place. Now the learned man didn't think much about
that; he was a very kind-hearted man, and particularly mild and friendly, and
so he said one day to the shadow: "As we have now become companions, and in
this way have grown up together from childhood, shall we not drink 'thou'
together, it is more familiar?"

"You are right," said the shadow, who was now the proper master. "It is said
in a very straight-forward and well-meant manner. You, as a learned man,
certainly know how strange nature is. Some persons cannot bear to touch grey
paper, or they become ill; others shiver in every limb if one rub a pane of
glass with a nail: I have just such a feeling on hearing you say thou to me; I
feel myself as if pressed to the earth in my first situation with you. You see
that it is a feeling; that it is not pride: I cannot allow you to say THOU to
me, but I will willingly say THOU to you, so it is half done!"

So the shadow said THOU to its former master.

"This is rather too bad," thought he, "that I must say YOU and he say THOU,"
but he was now obliged to put up with it.

So they came to a watering-place where there were many strangers, and amongst
them was a princess, who was troubled with seeing too well; and that was so
alarming!

She directly observed that the stranger who had just come was quite a
different sort of person to all the others; "He has come here in order to get
his beard to grow, they say, but I see the real cause, he cannot cast a
shadow."

She had become inquisitive; and so she entered into conversation directly with
the strange gentleman, on their promenades. As the daughter of a king, she
needed not to stand upon trifles, so she said, "Your complaint is, that you
cannot cast a shadow?"

"Your Royal Highness must be improving considerably," said the shadow, "I know
your complaint is, that you see too clearly, but it has decreased, you are
cured. I just happen to have a very unusual shadow! Do you not see that person
who always goes with me? Other persons have a common shadow, but I do not like
what is common to all. We give our servants finer cloth for their livery than
we ourselves use, and so I had my shadow trimmed up into a man: yes, you see I
have even given him a shadow. It is somewhat expensive, but I like to have
something for myself!"

"What!" thought the princess. "Should I really be cured! These baths are the
first in the world! In our time water has wonderful powers. But I shall not
leave the place, for it now begins to be amusing here. I am extremely fond of
that stranger: would that his beard should not grow, for in that case he will
leave us!"

In the evening, the princess and the shadow danced together in the large
ball-room. She was light, but he was still lighter; she had never had such a
partner in the dance. She told him from what land she came, and he knew that
land; he had been there, but then she was not at home; he had peeped in at the
window, above and below--he had seen both the one and the other, and so he
could answer the princess, and make insinuations, so that she was quite
astonished; he must be the wisest man in the whole world! She felt such
respect for what he knew! So that when they again danced together she fell in
love with him; and that the shadow could remark, for she almost pierced him
through with her eyes. So they danced once more together; and she was about to
declare herself, but she was discreet; she thought of her country and kingdom,
and of the many persons she would have to reign over.

"He is a wise man," said she to herself--"It is well; and he dances
delightfully--that is also good; but has he solid knowledge? That is just as
important! He must be examined."

So she began, by degrees, to question him about the most difficult things she
could think of, and which she herself could not have answered; so that the
shadow made a strange face.

"You cannot answer these questions?" said the princess.

"They belong to my childhood's learning," said the shadow. "I really believe
my shadow, by the door there, can answer them!"

"Your shadow!" said the princess. "That would indeed be marvellous!"

"I will not say for a certainty that he can," said the shadow, "but I think
so; he has now followed me for so many years, and listened to my
conversation--I should think it possible. But your royal highness will permit
me to observe, that he is so proud of passing himself off for a man, that when
he is to be in a proper humor--and he must be so to answer well--he must be
treated quite like a man."

"Oh! I like that!" said the princess.

So she went to the learned man by the door, and she spoke to him about the sun
and the moon, and about persons out of and in the world, and he answered with
wisdom and prudence.

"What a man that must be who has so wise a shadow!" thought she. "It will be a
real blessing to my people and kingdom if I choose him for my consort--I will
do it!"

They were soon agreed, both the princess and the shadow; but no one was to
know about it before she arrived in her own kingdom.

"No one--not even my shadow!" said the shadow, and he had his own thoughts
about it!

Now they were in the country where the princess reigned when she was at home.

"Listen, my good friend," said the shadow to the learned man. "I have now
become as happy and mighty as anyone can be; I will, therefore, do something
particular for thee! Thou shalt always live with me in the palace, drive with
me in my royal carriage, and have ten thousand pounds a year; but then thou
must submit to be called SHADOW by all and everyone; thou must not say that
thou hast ever been a man; and once a year, when I sit on the balcony in the
sunshine, thou must lie at my feet, as a shadow shall do! I must tell thee: I
am going to marry the king's daughter, and the nuptials are to take place this
evening!"

"Nay, this is going too far!" said the learned man. "I will not have it; I
will not do it! It is to deceive the whole country and the princess too! I
will tell everything! That I am a man, and that thou art a shadow--thou art
only dressed up!"

"There is no one who will believe it!" said the shadow. "Be reasonable, or I
will call the guard!"

"I will go directly to the princess!" said the learned man.

"But I will go first!" said the shadow. "And thou wilt go to prison!" and
that he was obliged to do--for the sentinels obeyed him whom they knew the
king's daughter was to marry.

"You tremble!" said the princess, as the shadow came into her chamber. "Has
anything happened? You must not be unwell this evening, now that we are to
have our nuptials celebrated."

"I have lived to see the most cruel thing that anyone can live to see!" said
the shadow. "Only imagine--yes, it is true, such a poor shadow-skull cannot
bear much--only think, my shadow has become mad; he thinks that he is a man,
and that I--now only think--that I am his shadow!"

"It is terrible!" said the princess; "but he is confined, is he not?"

"That he is. I am afraid that he will never recover."

"Poor shadow!" said the princess. "He is very unfortunate; it would be a real
work of charity to deliver him from the little life he has, and, when I think
properly over the matter, I am of opinion that it will be necessary to do away
with him in all stillness!"

"It is certainly hard," said the shadow, "for he was a faithful servant!" and
then he gave a sort of sigh.

"You are a noble character!" said the princess.

The whole city was illuminated in the evening, and the cannons went off with a
bum! bum! and the soldiers presented arms. That was a marriage! The princess
and the shadow went out on the balcony to show themselves, and get another
hurrah!

The learned man heard nothing of all this--for they had deprived him of life.

影子
在热带的国度里,太阳晒得非常厉害。人们都给晒成棕色,像桃花心木一样;在最热的国度里,人们就给晒成了黑人。不过现在有一位住在寒带的学者偏偏要到这些热的国家里来。他以为自己可以在这些国家里面漫游一番,像在本国一样,不过不多久他就改变了看法。像一切有理智的人一样,他得待在家里,把百叶窗和门整天都关起来,这看起来好像整屋子的人都在睡觉或者家里没有一个人似的。他所住的那条有许多高房子的狭小街道,建筑得恰恰使太阳从早到晚都照在它上面。这真叫人吃不消!

  这位从寒带国家来的学者是一个聪明的年轻人。他觉得好像是坐在一个白热的炉子里面。这弄得他筋疲力尽。他变得非常瘦,连他的影子也萎缩起来,比在家时小了不知多少。太阳也把它烤得没精打采。只有太阳落了以后,他和影子在晚间才恢复过来。这种情形看起来倒真是一桩很有趣味的事儿。蜡烛一拿进房间里来,影子就在墙上伸长起来。它把自己伸得很高,甚至伸到天花板上面去了。为了要重新获得气力,它不得不伸长。

  这位学者走到阳台上去,也伸了伸身体。星星在那美丽的晴空一出现,他觉得自己又有了生气。在这些街上所有的阳台上面——在热带的国家里,每个窗子上都有一个阳台——现在都有人走出来了,因为人们到底要呼吸些新鲜空气,即使要变成桃花心木的颜色也管不了。这时上上下下都显得生气勃勃起来。鞋匠啦,裁缝啦,在家都搬到街上来。桌子和椅子也被搬出来了;蜡烛也点起来了——是的,不止一千根蜡烛。这个人聊天,那个人唱歌;人们散步,马车奔驰,驴子走路——丁当——丁当——丁当!因为它们身上都戴着铃铛。死人在圣诗声中入了土;野孩子在放焰火;教堂的钟声在响。的确,街上充满了活跃的空气。

  只有在那位外国学者住所对面的一间房子里,一切是沉寂的。但是那里面却住着一个人,因为阳台上有好几棵花。这些花儿在太阳光中长得非常美丽。如果没有人浇水,它们决不会长得这样好的;所以一定有什么人在那儿为它们浇水,因此一定有人住在那儿。天黑的时候,那儿的门也打开了,但是里面却很黑暗,最低限度前房是如此。更朝里一点有音乐飘出来。这位外国学者认为这音乐很美妙,不过这可能只是他的幻想,因为他发现在这些热带的国家里面,什么东西都是顶美丽的——如果没有太阳的话。这位外国人的房东说,他不知道谁租了对面的房子——那里从来没有任何人出现过;至于那音乐,他觉得单调之至。

  他说:“好像有某个人坐在那儿,老是练习他弹不好的一个调子——一个不变的调子。他似乎在说:‘我终究要学会它。’但是不管他弹多久,他老是学不会。”

  这个外国人有天晚上醒来了。他是睡在敞开的阳台门口的。风把它前面的帘子掀开,于是他就幻想自己看见一道奇异的光从对面的阳台上射来。所有的花都亮起来了,很像色彩鲜艳的火焰。在这些花儿中间立着一位美丽苗条的姑娘。她也似乎射出一道光来。这的确刺伤他的眼睛。不过这是因为他从睡梦中惊醒时把眼睛睁得太大了的缘故。他一翻身就跳到地上来了。他轻轻地走到帘子后面去,但是那个姑娘却不见了,光也没有了,花儿也不再闪亮,只是立在那儿,像平时一样地好看。那扇门还是半掩着,从里面飘出一阵音乐声——那么柔和,那么美妙,使人一听到它就沉浸到甜美的幻想中去。这真妤像是一个幻境。但是谁住在那儿呢?真正的入口是在什么地方呢?因为最下面一层全是店铺,人们不能老是随便从这些铺子进出的。

  有一天晚上,这位外国人坐在他的阳台上。在他后边的那个房间里点着灯,因此他的影子很自然地就射到对面屋子的墙上去了。它的确正坐在那个阳台上的花丛中间。当这外国人动一下的时候,他的影子也就动一下。

  “我相信,我们在这儿所能看到的唯一活着的东西,就是我的影子。”这位学者说。“你看,它坐在花丛中间的一副样儿多么可爱。门是半开着的,但是这影子应该放聪明些,走进里面去瞧瞧,然后再回来把它所看到的东西告诉我。”

  “是的,你应该变得有用一点才对啊!”他开玩笑地说。“请你走进去吧。嗯,你进去吗?”于是他对影子点点头;影子也对他点点头。“那么就请你进去吧,但是不要一去就不回来啦。”

  这位外国人站起来,对面阳台上的影子也站了起来。这位外国人掉转身;影子也同时掉转身。如果有人仔细注意一下的话,就可以清楚地看出,当这位外国人走进自己的房间、放下那长帘子的时候,影子也走进对面阳台上那扇半掩着的门里去。

  第二天早晨,这位学者出去喝咖啡,还要去看看报纸。

  “这是怎么一回事儿?”当他走到太阳光里的时候,他忽然问。“我的影子不见了!它昨天晚上真的走开了,没有再回来。这真是一件怪讨厌的事儿!”

  这使他烦恼起来,并不完全是因为他的影子不见了,而是因为他知道一个关于没有影子的人的故事。住在寒带国度里的家乡人都知道这个故事。如果这位学者回到家里、把自己的故事讲出来的话,大家将会说这是他模仿那个故事编出来的。他不愿意人们这样议论他。因此他就打算完全不提这事情——这是一个合理的想法。

  晚上他又走到他的阳台上来,他已经把烛灯仔细地在他后面放好,因为他知道影子总是需要它的主人作为掩护的,但是他没有办法把它引出来。他把自己变小,把自己扩大,但是影子却没有产生,因此也没有影子走出来。他说:“出来!出来!”但是这一点用也没有。

  这真使人苦恼。不过在热带的国度里,一切东西都长得非常快。过了一个星期以后,有一件事使他非常高兴:他发现当他走到太阳光里去的时候,一个新的影子从他的腿上生出来了。他身上一定有一个影子的根。三个星期以后,他已经有了一个相当可观的影子了。当他动身回到他的北国去的时候,影子在路上更长了许多;到后来它长得又高又大,就是去掉它半截也没有关系。

  这位学者回到家里来了。他写了许多书,研究这世界上什么是真,什么是善,什么是美。于是日子一天一天地过去了,许多岁月也过去了,许多许多年也过去了。

  有一天晚上,他正坐在房间里,有人在门上轻轻地敲了几下。“请进来!”他说;可是没有什么人进来。于是他把门打开;他看到自己面前站着一个瘦得出奇的人。这使他感到非常惊奇。但是这个人的衣服却穿得非常入时;他一定是一个有地位的人。

  “请问尊姓大名?”这位教授问。

  “咳!”这位有绅士风度的客人说,“我早就想到,您是不会认识我的!我现在成了一个具体的人,有了真正的血肉和衣服。您从来也没有想到会看到我是这个样子。您不认识您的老影子了吗?您决没有想到我会再来。自从我上次跟您在一起以后,我的一切情况进展得非常顺利。无论在哪方面说起来,我现在算得是很富有了;如果我想摆脱奴役,赎回自由,我也可以办得到!”

  于是他把挂在表上的一串护身符①摇了一下,然后把手伸到颈项上戴着的一个很粗的金项链上去。这时钻石戒指在他的手指上发出多么亮的闪光呵!而且每件东西都是真的!

  “不成,这把我弄得有点糊涂!”学者说。“这究竟是怎么一回事情?”

  “决不是普通的事情!”影子说。“不过您自己也不是一个普通的人呀。您知道得很清楚,从我小时候起,我就寸步不离开您。只有当您觉得我成熟了、可以单独在这个世界上生活,我才自找出路。找现在的境遇是再美好电没有,不过我对您起了一种怀念的心情,想在您死去以前来看您一次。您总会死去的!同时我也想再看看这些地方,因为一个人总是喜爱自己的祖国的。我知道您现在已经有了另一个影子;要不要我对您——或者对它——付出一点什么代价呢?您只须告诉我好了。”

  “嗨,原来是你呀!”学者说。“这真奇怪极了!我从来没有想到,一个人的旧影子会像人一样又回转来!”

  “请告诉我,我应该付出些什么,”影子说,“因为我讨厌老欠别人的债。”

  “你怎能讲这类的话呢?”学者说。“现在谈什么债呢?你跟任何人一样,是自由的!你有这样的好运气,我感到非常快乐。请坐吧,老朋友,请告诉我一点你过去的生活情况,和你在那个热带国家,在我们对面那所房子里所看到的事情。”

  “是的,我可以告诉您,”影子说。于是他就坐下来。“不过请您答应我:随便您在什么地方遇见我,请不要告诉这城里的任何人,说我曾经是您的影子!我现在有意订婚,因为我现在的能力供养一个家庭还绰绰有余。”

  “请放心,”学者说,“我决不把你的本来面目告诉任何人。请握我的手吧。我答应你。一个男子汉——说话算话。”

  “一个影子——说话算话!”影子说,因为他不得不这样讲。

  说来也真够了不起,他现在成了一个多么完整的人。他全身是黑色的打扮:他穿着最好的黑衣服,漆皮鞋,戴着一顶可以叠得只剩下一个顶和边的帽子。除此以外,他还有我们已经知道的护身符、金项链和钻石戒指。影子真是穿得异乎寻常地漂亮。正是这种打扮使他看起来像一个人。

  “现在我对您讲吧,”影子说。于是他把他穿着漆皮鞋的脚使劲地踩在学者新影子的手臂上——它躺在他的脚下像一只小狮子狗。这种作法可能是由于骄傲而起,也可能是因为他想要把这新影子粘在他的脚上。不过这个伏着的影子是非常安静的,因为它想静听他们讲话。它也想知道,一个影子怎样可以获得自由,成为自己的主人。

  “您知道住在那对面房间里的人是谁吗?”影子问。“那是一切生物中最可爱的一个人;那是诗神!我在那儿住了三个星期。这使人好像在那儿住了一千年、读了世界上所有的诗和文章似的。我敢说这句话,而且这是真话,我看到了一切,我知道了一切!”

  “诗神!”学者大叫一声。“是的,是的!她常常作为一个隐士,住在大城市里面。诗神!是的,我亲眼看到过她一刹那,不过我的眼皮那时被睡虫压得沉重;她站在阳台上,发出—道很像北极光的光。请告诉我吧!请告诉我吧!你那时是立在阳台上的。你走进那个门里去,于是——”

  “于是我就走进了前房,”影子说,“那时您坐在对面,老是朝着这个前房里瞧。那儿没有点灯,只有一种模糊的光。不过里面却有一整排厅堂和房间,门都是一个接着一个地开着的;房里都点着灯。要不是我直接走进去,到那个姑娘的身旁,我简直要被这强烈的光照死了。不过我是很冷静的,我静静地等着——这正是一个人所应取的态度。”

  “你看到了什么呢?”这位学者问。

  “我看到了一切,我将全部告诉您。不过——这并不是我的自高自大——作为一个自由人,加上我所有的学问,且不说我高尚的地位和优越的条件,——我希望您把我称做‘您’。”

  “请原谅!”学者说,“这是一个老习惯,很不容易去掉。——您是绝对正确的,我一定记住。不过现在请您把您所看到的一切都告诉我吧。”

  “一切!”影子说,“因为我看到了一切,同时我知道一切。”

  “那个内房里的一切是个什么样儿的呢?”学者问。“是像在一个空气新鲜的山林里吗?是像在一个神庙里吗?那些房间是像一个人站在高山上看到的满天星斗的高空吗?”

  “那儿一切都有,”影子说,“我没有完全走进里面去,只是站在阴暗的前房里,不过我在那儿的地位站得非常好。我看到一切,我知道一切。我曾经到前房诗之宫里去过。”

  “不过您到底看到了什么呢?在那些大厅里面是不是有远古的神祗走过?是不是有古代的英雄在那儿比武?是不是有美丽的孩子们在那儿嬉戏,在那儿讲他们所做过的梦?”

  “我告诉您,我到那儿去过,因此您懂得我在那儿看到了我所能看到的一切!如果您到那儿去过,您不会成为另外一个人;但是我却成了一个人了,同时我还学到了理解我内在的天性,我的本质和我与诗的关系。是的,当我以前和您在一起的时候,我不曾想到过这些东西。不过您知道,在太阳上升或落下去的时候,我就变得分外地高大。在月光里面,我看起来比您更真实。那时我不认识我内在的本质;我只有到了那个前房里才认出来。我变成一个人了!

  “我完全成形了。您已经不再在那些温暖的国度里。作为一个人,我就觉得以原来的形态出现是羞耻的:我需要皮鞋、衣服和一个具体的人所应当有的各种修饰,——我自己藏起来;是的,我把这都告诉您了——请您不要把它写进任何书里去。我跑到卖糕饼女人的裙子下面去,在那里面藏起来。这个女人一点也不知道她藏着一件多么大的东西。起初我只有在晚上才走出来,我在街上的月光下面走来走去。我在墙上伸得很长,这使得我背上发痒,怪舒服的啦!我跑上跑下,我通过最高的窗子向客厅里面望去;我通过屋顶向谁也望不见的地方望去;我看到谁也没有见过和谁也不应该见到的东西。整个地说来,这是一个卑鄙肮脏的世界!要不是大家认为做一个人是件了不起的事情,我决不愿意做一个人。

  “我看到一些在男人、女人、父母和‘亲爱无比的’孩子们中间发生的最不可思议的事情。我看到谁也不知道、但是大家却非常想知道的事情——他们的邻居做的坏事。如果我把这些事情写出来在报纸上发表的话,那么看的人可就多了!但是我只直接写给一些有关的人看,因此我到哪个城市,哪个城市就起了一阵恐怖。人们那么害怕我,结果他们都变得非常喜欢我。教授推选我为教授;裁缝送给我新衣服穿,我什么也不缺少。造币厂长为我造钱;女人们说我长得漂亮!——这么一来,我就成为现在这样的一个人了。咳,现在我要告别了。这是我的名片;我住在有太阳的那一边。下雨的时候我总在家里。”

  影子告别了。

  “这真是稀奇,”学者说。

  许多岁月过去了。影子又来拜访。

  “您好吗?”他问。

  “哎呀!”学者说,“我正在写关于真、关于善、关于美的文章。但是谁也不愿意听这类的事儿;我简直有些失望,因为这使我难过。”

  “但是我却不这样,”影子说。“我正长得心宽体胖——一个人应该这样才成。你不了解这个世界,因此你快要病了。你应该去旅行一下。这个夏天我将要到外面去跑跑;你也来吗?我倒很希望有一位旅伴呢。您愿不愿作为我的影子,跟我一道来?有您在一起,对我说来将是一桩很大的愉快。我愿意担负您的一切旅行费用。”

  “这未免有点太过分了,”学者说。

  “这要看您对这个问题取一种什么态度,”影子回答说,“旅行一次会对您有很大的好处。如果您愿意做我的影子,那么您将得到一切旅行的利益,而却没有旅行的负担。”

  “这未免有点太那个了!”学者说。

  “世事就是如此呀!”影子说,“而且将来也会是如此!”

  于是影子就走了。

  这位学者并不完全是很舒服的。忧愁和顾虑紧跟着他。他所谈的真、善、美对于大多数的人说来,正如玫瑰花之对于一头母牛一样,引不起兴趣。——最后他病了。

  “你看起来真像一个影子,”大家对他说。他想到这句话时,身上就冷了半截。

  “您应该到一个温泉去疗养!”影子来拜访他的时候说。“再没有别的办法。看在我们老交情的分上,我可以把您带去。我来付出一切旅行的费用,您可以把这次旅行描写一番,同时也可以使我在路上消消遣。我要到一个温泉去住住。我的胡子长得不正常,而这是一种病态。但是我必须有胡子,现在请您放聪明一些,接受我的提议吧:我们可以作为好朋友去旅行一番。”

  这么着,他们就去旅行了。影子现在成为主人了,而主人却成了影子。他们一起坐着车子,一起骑着马,一起并肩走着路;他们彼此有时在前,有时在后,完全依太阳的位置而定。影子总是很当心地要显出主人的身份。这位学者却没有想到这一点,因为他有一颗很善良的心,而且是一个特别温和和友爱的人。因此有一天主人对影子说:

  “我们现在成为旅伴了——这一点也不用怀疑;同时我们也是从小在一起长大的,我们结拜为兄弟好不好?这样我们就可以变得更亲密些。”

  “您说得对!”影子说——他现在事实上是主人,“您这句话非常直率,而且用意很好。我现在也要以诚相见,想什么就说什么。您是一个有学问的人;我想您知道得很清楚,人性是多么古怪。有些人不能摸一下灰纸——他们一看到灰纸就讨厌。有些人看到一个人用钉子在玻璃窗上划一下就全身发抖。我听到您把我称为‘你’,也有同样的感觉。像我跟您当初的关系一样,我觉得好像我是被睬到地上。您要知道,这是一种感觉,并不是自高自大的问题。我不能让您对我说‘你’,但是我倒很愿意把您称为‘你’呢。这样我们就两不吃亏了。”

  从这时起,影子就把他从前的主人称为“你”。

  “这未免有点太过火了,”后者想,“我得喊‘您’,而他却把我称为‘你’。”但是他也只好忍受了。

  他们来到一个温泉。这儿住着许多外国人;他们之中有一位美丽的公主。她得了一种病,那就是她的眼睛看东西非常锐利——这可以使人感到极端地不安。

  她马上就注意到,新来的这位人物跟其他的人不同。

  “大家都说他到这儿来为的是要使他的胡子生长。不过我却能看出真正的原由——他不能投射出一个影子来。” 她有些好奇,因此她马上就在散步场上跟这位陌生的绅士聊起天来。作为一个公主,她没有什么客气的必要,因此她就直截了当地对他说:

  “你的毛病就是不能投射出影子。”

  “公主殿下的身体现在好多了,”影子说,“我知道您的毛病是:您看事情过于尖锐。不过这毛病已经没有了,您已经治好了。我恰恰有一个相当不平常的影子!您没有看到老跟我在一起的这个人么?别的人都有一个普通的影子,但是我却不喜欢普通的东西。有人喜欢把比自己衣服质料还要好的料子给仆人做制服穿;同样,我要让我的影子打扮得像一个独立的人。您看我还让他有一个自己的影子。这笔费用可是不小,但是我喜欢与众不同一点。”

  “怎么!”公主想。“我的病已经真正治好了吗?这是世界上一个最好的温泉。它的水现在有一种奇异的力量。不过我现在还不打算离开这里,因为这地方开始使我很感兴趣。这个陌生人非常逗我的喜爱。我只希望他的胡须不要长起来,因为如果他长好了的话,那么他就要走了。”

  这天晚上公主和影子在一个宽广的大厅里跳舞。她的体态轻盈,但是他的身体更轻。她从来没有遇见过这样一个跳舞的人。她告诉他,她是从哪一个国家来的,而他恰恰知道这个国家——他到那儿去过,但是那时她已经离开了。他曾经从窗口向她宫殿的内部看过——上上下下地看过。他看到了这,也看到了那。因此他可以回答公主的问题,同时暗示一些事情——这使得她非常惊奇。他一定是世界上最聪明的人了!因此她对于他的知识的渊博起了无限的敬意。当她再次和他跳舞的时候,她不禁对他发生了爱情。影子特别注意到了这一点,因为她的眼睛一直在盯着他。

  她跟他又跳了一次舞。她几乎把心中的话说出来了,不过她是一个很懂得分寸的人:她想到了她的国家。她的王国和她将要统治的那些人民。

  “他是一个聪明人,”她对自己说。“这是很好的;而且他跳舞也很出色——这也是很好的。但是我不知道他的学问是不是根底很深?这也是一个重要的问题:必须把他考察一下才是。”

  于是她马上问了他一个非常困难、连她自己也回答不出来的问题。影子做了一个鬼脸。

  “你回答不了,”公主说。

  “我小时候就知道了,”影子说,“而且我相信,连站在门那儿的我的影子都能回答得出来。”

  “你的影子!”公主叫了一声,“那倒真是了不起。”

  “我并不是肯定地说他能回答,”影子说,“不过我相信他能够回答。这许多年来,他一直跟着我,听我谈话。不过请殿下原谅,我要提醒您注意,他认为自己是一个人,而且以此自豪;所以如果您要使他的心情好、使他能正确地回答问题,那末您得把他当做一个真正的人来看待。”

  “我可以这样办,”公主说。

  于是她走到那位站在门旁的学者身边去。她跟他谈到太阳和月亮,谈到人类的内心和外表;这位学者回答得既聪明,又正确。

  “有这样一个聪明的影子的人,一定不是普通人,”她想。“如果我把他选做我的丈夫的话,那对于我的国家和人民一定是一桩莫大的幸事。——我要这样办!”

  于是他们——公主和影子——马上就达到了一个谅解。不过在她没有回到自己的王国去以前,谁也不能知道这件事情。

  “谁也不会知道——即使我的影子也不会知道的,”影子说。他说这句话有他自己的理由。

  他们一起回到公主在家时所统治的那个国家里去。

  “请听着,我的好朋友,”影子对学者说。“现在一个人所能希望得到的幸运和权力,我都有了。我现在也要为你做点特别的事情。你将永远跟我一起住在我的宫殿里,跟我一起乘坐我的皇家御车,而且每年还能领十万块钱的俸禄。不过你得让大家把你叫做影子,同时永远不准你说你曾经是一个人。一年一度,当我坐在阳台上太阳光里让大家看我的时候②,你得像一个影子的样儿,乖乖地躺在我的脚下。我可以告诉你,我快要跟公主结婚了;婚礼就在今天晚上举行。”

  “哎,这未免做得太过火了!”学者说。“我不能接受,我决不干这类的事儿。这简直是欺骗公主和全国的人民。我要把一切事情讲出来——我是人,你是影子,你不过打扮得像一个人一样罢了!”

  “决没有人会相信你的话!”影子说。“请你放聪明一点吧,否则我就要喊警卫来了!”

  “我将直接去告诉公主!”学者说。

  “但是我会比你先去,”影子说;“你将走进监牢。”

  事实上,结果也就是如此,因为警卫知道他要跟公主结婚,所以就服从了他的指挥。

  “你在发抖,”当影子走进房里去的时候,公主说。“出了什么事情吗?我们快要结婚,你今晚不能生病呀!”

  “我遇见世上一件最骇人听闻的事情!”影子说。“请想想吧!——当然,一个可怜的影子的头脑是经不起抬举的——请想想吧!我的影子疯了:他幻想他变成了一个人;他以为——请想想吧——他以为我是他的影子!”

  “这真可怕!”公主说。“我想他已经被关起来了吧?”

  “当然啦。我恐怕他永远也恢复不了理智了。”

  “可怜的影子!”公主说,“他真是不幸。把他从他渺小的生命中解脱出来,我想也算是一桩善行吧。当我把这事情仔细思量一番以后,我觉得把他不声不响处置掉是必要的。”

   “这当然未免有点过火,因为他一直是一个很忠实的仆人,”影子说,同时假装叹了一口气。

  “你真是一个品质高贵的人,”公主说,在他面前深深地鞠了一躬。

  这天晚上,整个城市大放光明;礼炮在一齐放射——轰轰!兵士们都在举枪致敬。这是举行婚礼!公主和影子在阳台上向百姓露面,再次接受群众的欢呼。

  那位学者对于这个盛大的庆祝一点也没有听到,因为他已经被处决了。

  ①在欧洲,特别是在民间,人门常常在身边带些小玩意儿,迷信地认为它们可以带来好运。

  ②在欧洲,根据封建时代遗留下来的惯例,国王和王后,或者公主和驸马,在每年国庆节日的时候,走到阳台上来,向外面欢呼的民众答礼。

(1847)

  这篇寓言性的故事首先发表在《新的童话》里。这是作者1846年夏天在意大利南部海滨城市那不勒斯写成的。那里的气候炎热,特别是在夏天。这种“炎热”可能是促使作者写成这篇故事的“灵感”。但这个故事本身却是“冷酷”的,冷酷得使人感到毛骨悚然,可是这也并非是现实人生中不可能发生的事。那位学者,即所谓知识分子,有时免不了会被自己的影子所淹覆而成为无辜的牺牲品,只不过他本人意识不到罢了。这也说明善良、天真、仁爱的安徒生观察生活是多么锐利——不愧是一个伟大的作家!

 

 

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