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The autobiography of Benjamin Franklin 富兰克林传(英汉对照)

(2011-03-13 19:47:40)
标签:

美国文学

富兰克林传

英汉对照

杂谈

7月21日

The autobiography of Benjamin Franklin 富兰克林传(英汉对照)2


To William Franklin Esq.
Governor of New Jersey
Twyford, at the Bishop of St. Asaph's, *1771.
Dear Son, -- I have ever had pleasure in obtaining any little anecdotes of my ancestors. You may remember the inquiries I made among the remains of my relations when you were with me in England, and the journey I undertook for that purpose. Imagining it may be equally agreeable to you to learn the circumstances of my life, many of which you are unacquainted with, and expecting the enjoyment of a few weeks' uninterrupted leisure, I sit down to write them.

谨以此书致给
新泽西州总督
威廉.富兰克林先生
1771年写于桑福德.圣阿沙天主教之邸
亲爱的儿子:我一向就喜欢搜集我祖先的风雅轶事。你也许还记得,当你和我在英国时,我曾经去探访亲戚中的大家长,并为此目的而开始旅程。我想,你或许和我一样,很想知道我的生活状况,其中有许多事你到现在还不知道。而且,目前我在乡间过着隐居的生活,估计有一个星期的时间没有人会来打扰,所以我就坐下来,把这些事点滴纪录下来。
Besides, there are some other inducements that excite me to this undertaking. From the poverty and obscurity in which I was born, and in which I passed my earliest years, I have raised myself to a state of affluence and some degree of celebrity in the world. As constant good fortune has accompanied me even to an advanced period of life, my posterity will perhaps he desirous of learning the means which I employed, and which, thanks to Providence, so well succeeded with me. They may also deem them fit to be imitated, should any of them find themselves in similar circumstances.
除了这些原因外,我还其它的动机,我出身贫寒,在这世界上居然能够力争到些微的富裕和名声,一生又相当的幸运,我的子孙或许会有兴趣知道,我是运用什么处世方法,再加上上帝的恩惠,才能使我成功,因为他们或许会发现,有些东西对他们的处境很吻合,可以效法。
This good fortune, when I reflect on it, which is frequently the case, has induced me sometimes to say, that if it were left to my choice, I should have no objection to go over the same life from its beginning to the end: requesting only the advantage authors have, of correcting in a second edition the faults of the first. So would I also wish to change some incidents of it for others more favorable. Notwithstanding, if this condition was denied, I should still accept the offer of recommencing the same life. But as this repetition is not to be expected, that which resembles most living one's life over again, seems to be to recall all the circumstances of it; and, to render this remembrance more durable, to record them in writing.
当我回忆那种幸福的生活,我常常驱策自己,如果幸运再给我机会,让我自己选择,我不会反对把同样的生活从头再过一遍;不过,只能够像一个作家一样,在再版时改正初版的错误且能有进步而已。所以我必须除了改正错误外,变换一些不愉快的偶然错误,和突发的事件,使别人感到舒服。但是,即使这些被否定了,我仍旧乐意接受这个机会;不过不可冀望的是,这种重新再过一遍的生活,那么退而求其次,最后重温一生的该是回忆平生,把它写下来,使此回忆尽可能的经久长存。
In thus employing myself, I shall yield to the inclination so natural to old men, of taking of themselves and their own actions; and I shall indulge it without being tiresome to those who, from respect to my age, might conceive themselves obliged to listen to me, since they will be always free to read me or not. And, lastly (I may as well confess it, as the denial of it would be believed by nobody),
那么,于此我也是倚老卖老,来谈论自己和过去的行为举止。但我的倚老卖老可不愿让人家讨厌,而此书搁下愿不愿读,悉听尊便。他们为了敬老尊贤,想起来应该读一读此书。并且(我还是自己承认比较好,否则没有人会相信我了。)
I shall perhaps not a little gratify my own vanity. Indeed, I never heard or saw the introductory words "Without vanity I may say," & c., but some vain thing immediately followed. Most people dislike vanity in others, whatever share they have of it themselves; but I give it fair quarter, wherever I meet with it, being persuaded that it is often productive of good to the possessor, and to others who are within his sphere of action: and therefore, in many cases, it would not be altogether absurd if a man were to thank God for his vanity among the other comforts of life.
我好像要深深感谢自己的虚荣心,的确,我很少听人家在导言中说「我可以没有虚荣心地说」此类的话,他们那样说了以后,而下面立刻接着举例的事情,都是充满虚荣的意味。大部份的人尽管自己是多么虚荣自负,却不喜欢别人有虚荣心;不过,我遇到这样的情形,总是坦然处之,不以为意,人有虚荣心也是好的,而且在他所及的行动范围之内,对别人也是有好处的,所以,在众多的理由下,若是有人感激上帝在他种种生活的享受之外,还给了他虚荣心,那也是无可厚非。

And now I speak of thanking God, I desire with all humility to acknowledge that I attribute the mentioned happiness of my past life to his divine providence, which led me to the means I used and gave the success. My belief of this induces me to hope, though I must not presume, that the same goodness will still be exercised toward me, in continuing that happiness, or enabling me to bear a fatal reverse, which I may experience as others have done; the complexion of my future fortune being known to him only in whose power it is to bless us, even in our afflictions.
现在,我一说到感激上帝,就想谦恭地承认,我过去的幸福生活,全归于上帝的庇荫,上帝教导我处世之道,并使这些方面无往不利。我的信仰诱使我希望同样的好处仍旧降临在我身上,继续过着幸福生活,或使能负担一种恶运,这也许我会和别人一样地经验着;我以后的命运如何,只有天晓得,就是苦难,也只有上帝才有能力赐给我们。
Some notes which one of my uncles (who had the same curiosity in collecting family anecdotes) once put into my hands, furnished me with several particulars relative to our ancestors. From these notes I learned that they lived in the same village, Ecton, in Northamptonshire, on a freehold of about thirty acres, for at least three hundred years, and how much longer could not be ascertained.
我有一位伯父,(他和我一样,有搜集家庭轶事的兴致。)有一次,他把札记交给我,供我几则关于我们祖先的典故。从这些典故中我才知道这个家族在英国诺坦成登夏的爱克腾村,一块大约有三十亩的世袭庄园,至少住了三百年,至于有多久,已经不可考了。
This small estate would not have sufficed for their maintenance without the business of a smith, which had continued in the family down to my uncle's time, the eldest son being always brought up to that employment; a custom which he and my father followed with regard to their eldest sons. When I searched the registers at Ecton, I found an account of their marriages and burials form the year 1555 only, as the registers kept did not commence previous thereto. I, however, learned from it that I was the youngest son of youngest son for five generations back.
这小家产若不是靠打铁业是不足维持的,直到我伯父的时候,家中的长子都要学这门技术,为了沿袭传统,所以我的伯父和我的父亲让他们的长子也遵循下去。当我查爱克腾的户籍纪录,我找到他们的出生、婚葬的记录,不过只从一五五五年时候,再溯及以往,那乡镇所保存的户籍资料就没有登记。据那本户籍册子我知道我是五世的小房幼子。
My grandfather Thomas, who was born in 1598, lived at Ecton till he was too old to continue his business, when he retired to Banbury, in Oxfordshire, to the house of his son John, with whom my father served an apprenticeship. There my uncle died and lies buried. We saw his gravestone in 1758. His eldest son Thomas lived in the house at Ecton, and left it with the land to his only daughter, who, with her husband, one Fisher, of Wellingborough, sold it to Mr. Isted, now lord of the manor there.
我的祖父汤麦斯生于一五九八年,他住在爱克腾,直到他老了而无法继续工作,那时他便和他的儿子约翰一起住在牛津的彭白雷村,而我的父亲跟着他做学徒,我的叔父死在那,也葬在那。我们曾看过他的一七五八年的碑志。他的长子汤麦斯所住的爱克腾房屋,后来由他的独生女继承,和她的丈夫威林勃勒人,名叫菲逊尔。她把田屋卖给依士戴先生,现在他是那的地主了。
My grandfather had four sons, who grew up: viz., Thomas, John, Benjamin, and Josiah. Being at a distance from my papers, I will give you what account I can of them from memory: and if my papers are not lost in my absence, you will find among them many more particulars. Thomas, my eldest uncle, was bred a smith under his father; but, being ingenious, and encouraged in learning (as all my brothers were) by an Esquire Palmer, then the principal inhabitant of that parish, he qualified himself for the bar, and became a considerable man in the county; was chief mover of all public-spirited enterprises for the county or town of Northampton, as well as of his own village, of which many instances were related of him; and he was much taken notice of and patronized by Lord Halifax.
我的祖父有四个长大成人的儿子:汤麦斯、约翰、拜雅明和耶赛埃。我的文件不是很齐全,但我将把我所记得的事情尽量的告诉你;要不是文件在我离家出外时遗失了,你还可以从这里面找到更多的详细数据。大叔父汤麦斯继承父业而做了铁匠;但是凭其聪明(我的弟兄们都如是),帕弥儿老爷鼓励他求学,引荐他做书记,于是这位乡镇上的真君子成为全乡所尊敬的人。他是诺坦成登夏乡镇和自己村上公益事业的发起人,关于这种事有许多事情讲得到,而当时哈利法克司爵士尤其注意他并礼遇他。

 

He died in 1702, on the 6th of January, four years to a day before I was born. The recital which some elderly persons made to us of his character, I remember, struck you as something extraordinary, from its similarity with what you knew of me. "Had he died," said you, "four years later, on the same day, one might have supposed a transmigration."
他死于一七○二年正月六日,而四年以后的前一天正是我的生日。这个他的生平与个性的记载是受之于爱克腾的几位长者,我记得,好像有些非比寻常的事刺激你,就是他的生平很像你所知道的我的行为举止。「如果他死于同日,你说,有人可能会怀疑是他转世再生呢!」
John, my next uncle, was bred a dyer, I believe of wool. Benjamin was bred a silk dyer, serving an apprenticeship in London. He was an ingenious man. I remember, when I was a boy, he came to my father's in Boston, and resided in the house with us for several years. There was always a particular affection between my father and him, and I was his godson. He lived to a great age. He left behind him two quarto volumes of manuscript, of his own poetry, consisting of fugitive pieces addressed to his friends.
二叔父约翰是学染工,我相信是毛织品的染工。拜雅明是学染丝的,在伦敦当学徒。他是个聪明人。我记得他,因为当我还是孩子的时候,他从远方来到波士顿我父亲那里,并且和我们一起住在这屋子有好几年。他享年很高。他的孙子赛墨儿富兰克林现在住在波士顿,他赠送我两本四开本的手稿,是他自己的诗,包括偶然的几篇赠与他的亲友,这几篇给我的如下所能引为例子。
He had invented a short-hand of his own, which he taught me, but, not having practiced it. I have now forgotten it. He was very pious, and an assiduous attendant at the sermons of the best preachers, which he reduced to writing according to his method, and had thus collected several volumes of them. Our humble family early embraced the Reformed religion. Our forefathers continued Protestant through the reign of Mary, when they were sometimes in danger of persecution on account of their zeal against popery.
他曾创造一种速写法并且教导我,但是,久不练习,现在我已忘记了。我的名字是跟这位伯父而取的,他和我的父亲之间有特别的感情。信仰很虔诚,优秀牧师讲道时,他用心倾听且把它速写记下来,所以他有许多记录讲道的册子。我们这个名不见经传的家族很早就在改革宗教,而经过玛丽皇后统治时仍是新教徒,当时他们强烈地反对旧教,有时有受侮辱的危险。
They had an English Bible, and to conceal it, and place it in safety, it was fastened open with tapes under and within the cover of a joint-stool. When my great-grandfather wished to read it to his family, he placed the joint-stool on his knees, and then turned over the leaves under the tapes. One of the children stood at the door to give notice if he saw the apparitor coming, who was an officer of the spiritual court.
他们曾拥有一本英文圣经,要隐藏和保全它,便用绳子把它反绑在一张折凳的下面和套子里面。当我的祖先向他的家庭诵读时,他便将这折凳转到他的膝上,在绳下翻开书页。有一个孩子则站在门口,注意宗教裁判庭职员达利是否经过这里。
In that case the stool was turned down again upon its feet, when the Bible remained concealed under it as before. This anecdote I had from Uncle Benjamin. The family continued all of the Church of England till about the end of Charles the Second's reign, when some of the ministers that had been ousted for their non-conformity holding conventicles in Northamp-tonshire, my Uncle Benjamin and Father Josiah adhered to them, and so continued all their lives: the rest of the family remained with the Episcopal Church.
在这种情形下,这凳子又翻下它的凳脚,而这本圣经又像从前一样藏匿在凳下。这件事是从我的伯父拜雅明那儿听来的。我们全家继续信奉英国教直到却尔斯二世在位之末期,当时有些因为不信国教而被斥逐的教堂理事者在诺坦成登夏非国教派的宗教会议,拜雅明和耶赛埃加入他们,继续过着他们的一生,其余的家族自属于圣公会。


My father married young, and carried his wife with three children to New England, about 1685. The conventicles being at that time forbidden by law, and frequently disturbed in their meetings, some considerable men of his acquaintance determined to go to that country, and he was prevailed with to accompany them thither, where they expected to enjoy the exercise of their religion with freedom. By the same wife my father had four children more born there, and by a second wife ten others, in all seventeen; of whom I remember to have seen thirteen sitting together at his table, who all grew up to years of maturity, and were married; I was the youngest son, and the youngest of all the children except two daughters.
我的父亲,早年结婚,大约在一六八二年他带着他的妻子和三个孩子到新英格兰。这个非国教派的宗教会是法律所禁的,常常被捣乱,因此他所认识的许多人都移民到那个地方去,而他也被劝导和他们结伴到那边,在那里他们希望能有信仰的自由。这一位妻子为他生下四个孩子,而其继室生下十个之多,共有十七个;关于这情形我记得十三个同时坐在一桌。孩子们都长大成人,各自嫁娶,而我是最小的男孩,而比我更小的只有两个。
I was born in Boston, in New England. My mother, the second wife of my father, was Abiah Folger, daughter of Peter Folger, one of the first settlers of New England, of whom honorable mention is made by Cotton Mather, in his ecclesiastical history of that country, entitled Magnalia Christi Americana, as "a godly and learned Englishman," if I remember the words rightly. I was informed he wrote several small occasional works, but only one of them was printed, which I remember to have seen several years since.
我生于新英格兰波士顿。我的母亲是位继室,名阿拜亚福格尔,彼得福格尔的女儿,他是新英格兰的第一批移民。可顿马坦尔在他的本地的宗教史上曾光荣地提及他,称他为敬神而饱学的英国人,如果我没有记错的话。我曾听说他写过各种的随笔,但是其中祇有一种是付印的,这我在好几年前才看到。
It was written in 1675. It was in familiar verse, according to the taste of the times and people, and addressed to the government there. It asserts the liberty of conscience in behalf of the Anabaptists, the Quakers, and other sectaries that had been persecuted. He attributes to this persecution the Indian wars, and other calamities that had befallen the country, regarding them as so many judgments of God to punish so heinous an offense, and exhorting the repeal of those laws, so contrary to charity.
这是写于一六七五年,是一首当时在民间普通体制的诗,并论及在那里的政府。本着良心的自由意识,代表浸礼会、兄弟会和其它曾被迫害的分派,以红人之乱和因灾害降临于此人者归罪的那种迫害,以此种种而上帝惩罚这样可憎的一个反抗,劝告废止那些不仁的法律,
This piece appeared to me as written with manly freedom and a pleasing simplicity.
My elder brothers were all put apprentices to different trades. I was put to the grammar-school at eight years of age, my fatehr intending to devote me, as the tithe of his sons, to the service of the Church. My early readiness in learning to read (which must have been very early, as I do not remember when I could not read), and the opinion of all my friends, that I should certainly make a good scholar, encouraged him in this purpose of his.
据我看来全篇所写,是何等光明磊落啊!我的哥哥,做过各种行业的学徒,我在八岁时进入文法学校,我的父亲想以十分之一的儿子,把我奉献服务于教堂。我很早就预备念书,(这必定是很早,早到我不记得不能念书是什么时候了。)而他的朋友认为我必定能成为一位好的学者,这些更鼓舞了他的意念。
My Uncle Benjamin, too, approved of it, and proposed to give me his short-hand volumes of sermons to set up with, if I would learn his short-hand. I continued, however, at the grammar school rather less than a year, though in that time I had risen gradually from the middle of the class of that year to be at the head of the same class, and was removed into the next class, whence I was to be placed in the third at the end of the year. But my father, burdened with a numerous family, was unable, without inconvenience, to support the expense of a college education; considering, moreover, as he said to one of his friends in my presence, the little encouragement that line of life afforded to those educated for it, he gave up his first intentions, took me from the grammar-school, and sent me to a school for writing and arithmetic, kept by a then famous man, Mr. George Brownwell. He was a skillful master, and successful in his profession, employing the mildest and most encouraging methods.
我的伯父,拜雅明也赞成这话,如果我要学他的字,便答应把他所书写的全部速写册子给我,这似乎是给我做基础的。即使我留在这文法学校中不到一年,虽在那个时候,我已渐渐从那一级的中等升为一级之冠,并且还要更上一级,预定在年底可以升三年级了。但是我的父亲在此时从大学教育的学费计算起来,如此这样一个大家庭也不能供得起;并且许多受教育的人后来也多半贫穷潦倒,而此动摇他原先的心意,于是叫我自文法学校休学,让我进入商业学校,主事者是在那时很有名的乔治白朗威尔先生,他的事业颇有成就,并且用的是温和与鼓励的方法。

Under him I learned to write a good hand pretty soon, but failed entirely in arithmetic. At ten years old I was taken to help my father in his business, which was that of a tallow-chandler and soap-boiler; a business to which he was not bred, but had assumed on his arrival in New England, because he found that his dyeing trade, being in little request, would not maintain his family. Accordingly, I was employed in cutting wicks for the candles, filling the molds for cast candles, attending the shop, going of errands, & c.
在他指导之下,我很快地把字写得很好,但是算术却毫无进步,我失败了。十岁时,父亲叫我回来帮忙他的事业--牛油烛和肥皂业,这个事业他也没有学习过,但是在他刚到新英格兰时,觉得他的刷染业需求不多,不能够维持他的家庭,于是就改行了。而我被指派为翦烛心、擦烛印的模、看守店堂、杂事差遣等等。
I disliked the trade, and had a strong inclination to go to sea, but my father declared against it; but, residing near the water, I was much in it and on it. I learned to swim well, and to manage boats; and when embarked with other boys, I was commonly allowed to govern, especially in any case of difficulty; and upon other occasions I was generally the leader among the boys, and sometimes led them into scrapes, of which I will mention one instance, as it shows an early projecting public spirit, though not then justly conducted.
我不喜欢这个行业,却对海颇有强烈的喜爱,但是我的父亲坚决反对此事;无论如何,我居住靠近水,很早就学会游泳了,泅水潜水都专精,并且还能驶船。当和别的孩子在小船上时,通常我都是当指挥的,特别是遇到了困难的时候。就是在别的事情上,我几乎也都是许多孩子中的领袖,有时教他们做坏事,关于此事,我将指出一件事来说明早年力图公共事业的精神,虽然有点违反规矩。
There was a salt-marsh which bounded part of the millpond, on the edge of which, at high water, We used to stand to fish for minnows. By much trampling, we had made it a mere quagmire. My proposal was to build a wharf there for us to stand upon, and I showed my comrades a large heap of stones, which were intended for a new house near the marsh, and which would very well suit our purpose. Accordingly, in the evening, when the workmen were gone home, I assembled a number of my play-fellows, and we worked diligently like so many emmets, sometimes two or three to a stone, till we had brought them all to make our little wharf.
靠近水磨那儿有一个咸水池,当水位高时,我们常站在池的一隅钓鲦鱼,因为久经践踏,我们把它做成一个低洼处。我的计划是建筑一个钓矶,以方便我们驻足。于是我指示我的同伴,那边有一大堆石子,这是用来在池边造房屋用的。这石子很适合我们所需要。在黄昏的时候,当搬运工人们都回去了,我便集合了许多我的玩伴,和他们像蚂蚁般勤劳地工作着,有时两人或三人搬一块石子,我们把它全运走,筑了一个我们的小钓矶。
The next morning the workmen were surprised at missing the stones which formed our wharf. Inquiry was made after the authors of this transfer; we were discovered, complained of, and corrected by our fathers; and, though I demonstrated the utility of our work, mine convinced me that that which was not honest could not be truly useful.
第二天那些工人很惊讶石子的失踪,却在我们的钓矶上找到,查探之后我们被发现了,并且被控诉了,有些同伴被他们的父亲谴责,如果我争辩说这件工作是有益的,但我的父亲教训我说不义之物没有一件是有意义的。

I suppose you may like to know what kind of a man my father was. He had an excellent constitution, was of a middle stature, well set, and very strong: he could draw prettily, and was skillled a little in music; his voice was sonorous and agreeable, so that when he played on his violin and sung withal, as he was accustomed to do after the business of the day was over, it was extremely agreeable to hear. He had some knowledge of mechanics, and, on occasion, was very handy with other tradesmen's tools; but his great excellence was his sound understanding and solid judgment in prudential matters, both in private and public affairs. It is true, he was never employed in the latter, the numerous family he had to educate and the straitness of his Circumstances keeping him close to his trade: but I remember well his being frequently visited by leading men, who consulted him for his opinion in public affairs, and those of the church he belonged to, and who showed a great respect for his judgment and advice: he was also much consulted by private persons about their affairs when any difficulty occurred, and frequently chosen an arbitrator between contending parties.
我想你或许愿意知道他的人品,他有一个很强壮的体格,中等身材;他是个很灵巧的人,能够画很好的画,略精通音乐,他有一个清脆悦耳的嗓子,所以当他在一天的事务过了之后,有时他用小提琴拉圣诗,并且唱着歌,让听者赏心悦目。他还有一点机械天份,偶而他也会用别行的工具;然而同样的大智,却用在人情世故的明了与对事的审判果决,私事和公事都一样。公共事务,他从未服务过,负担这个人口众多的家庭,这种窘迫的环境把他束缚在商业上;但我很清楚的记得常有领袖人物来拜访,他们征询他对于镇上事务的意见,或是关于他所进的教会内,他们对于他的审判和忠告甚为佩服,他也常和外人筹划他们的事务,若遇有困难时,便被推选为双方争吵的调解人。
At his table he liked to have, as often as he could, some sensible friend or neighbor to converse with, and always took care to start some ingenious or useful topic for discourse, which might tend to improve the minds of his children. By this means he turned our attention to what was good, just, and prudent in the conduct of life; and little or no notice was ever taken of what related to the victuals on the table, whether it was well or ill dressed, in or out of season, of good or bad flavor, preferable or inferior to this or that other thing of the kind, so that I was brought up in such a perfect inattention to those matters as to be quite indifferent what kind of food was set before me. Indeed, I am so unobservant of it, that to this day I can scarce tell a few hours after dinner of what dishes it consisted.
他也喜欢约几个明理的朋友或邻居谈话,并且常常赋予智慧或有用的题目来讨论,这会诱使他们改进他孩子的思想。因为这用意,他把我们的注意力移转于什么良好、公正和人生处世之道;而绝不是只在意桌上的食物,不论烹调的美恶、过时和当令、滋味的优劣、比较别种菜肴如何,所以养成我绝不注意放置我面前是什么东西之类的这些事,至今如果在饭后几小时问我吃些什么食物,我会难以回答。
This has been a great convenience to me in traveling, where my companions have been sometimes very unhappy for want of a suitable gratification of their more delicate, because better instructed, tastes and appetites. My mother had likewise an excellent constitution: she suckled all her ten children. I never knew either my father or mother to have any sickness but that of which they died, he at 89, and she at 85 years of age. They lie buried together at Boston.
这件事在旅行时很方便,在那时候我的同伴有时却为了没有适合他们精致的味觉而食欲不振,但我都能处之泰然。我的母亲一样有很好的体格;她尽心抚养她的十个儿子,除了他们死时所生的病之外,我从不知道我的父亲或母亲生过一点病。父亲活了八十九岁,母亲八十五岁。他们合葬于波士顿。

To return: I continued thus employed in my father's business for two years, that is, till I was twelve years old; and my brother John, who was bred to that business, having left my father, married, and set up for himself at Rhode Island, there was every appearance that I was destined to supply his place, and become a tallow-chandler. But my dislike to the trade continuing, my father had apprehensions that if he did not put me to one more agreeable, I should break loose and go to sea, as my brother Josiah had done, to his great vexation.
话又说回来!我就这样在我父亲店中工作两年,也就是说,直到我十二岁;而我的哥哥约翰,他一直从事此业的,现在却离开父亲结婚了,并且定居于罗特岛,于是我是铁定要顶他的缺,做一个蜡烛贩卖商。但是我仍旧不喜欢这个行业,我的父亲心想如果他不能为我找一个更适合的行业,我将和他的儿子耶赛埃一样,逃到海外去,而使他更加烦恼。
In consequence, he took me to walk with him, and see joiners, bricklayers, turners, braziers, & c., at their work that he might observe my inclination, and endeavor to fix it on some trade or profession that would keep me on land. It has ever since been a pleasure to me to see good workmen handle their tools; and it has been often useful to me to have learned so much by it as to be able to do some trifling jobs in the house when a workman was not at hand, and to construct little machines for my experiments, at the moment when the intention of making them was warm in my mind.
有时他带着我散步,观摩小木匠、泥水匠、轮盘匠、铜匠等等的工作,以此他可以观察我的性向,而企图在这些当中选定一个行业。我向来喜欢有优良的工人善用他们的器具,而这件事有益于我,当不能雇到工人时,依赖我学会了这一点本事,能够为家中做点琐碎的东西,当这个工作起先还是新鲜温热时,我制作一些小机械作实验。
My father determined at last for the cutlery's trade, and placed me for some days on trial with Samuel, son to my Uncle Benjamin, who was bred to that trade in London, and had just established himself in Boston. But the sum he exacted as a fee for my apprenticeship displeased my father, and I was taken home again. Form my infancy I was passionately fond of reading, and all the money that came into my hands was laid out in the purchasing of books I was very fond of voyages. My first acquisition was Bunyan's works in separate little volumes.
最后我的父亲决意叫我跟我的伯父拜雅明的儿子山姆学制刀业,他在伦敦一直就学这门技术的,此时大概在波士顿开业。我去了一阵子,但他学徒费用太高,使我父亲不高兴,于是我又被带回家了。自孩提时我就非常喜欢读书,手中有一点点钱全花在买书上。喜爱读航海小说,我的第一部收藏的书是分做小册子的约翰班扬集。
I afterward sold them to enable me to buy R. Burton's Historical Collections; they were small chapmen's books, and cheap, 40 volumes in all. My father's little library consisted chiefly of books in polemic divinity, most of which I read. I have often regretted that, at a time when I had such a thirst for knowledge, more proper books had not fallen in my way, since it was resolved I should not be bred to divinity. There was among them Plutarch's Lives, which I read abundantly, and I still think that time spent to great advantage.
后来我卖掉它,用来买伯顿的历史集录,这是小贩所卖的书,很便宜,全书有四五十册。我父亲的小图书馆大都是神学宗教的书,大部分我都读过。在某时期当我这样地求知若渴时,至今懊悔有许多应该读的书而不能多得,因为我早已决定绝不做一个牧师。在其中有一部波罗塔克的名人列传,这部书我读得滚瓜烂熟,但我觉得这些时间花得颇有意义。
There was also a book of De Foe's, called an Essay on Projects, and another of Dr. Mather's, Call an Essay to do Good, which perhaps gave me a turn of thinking that had an influence on some of the principal future events of my life. In 1717 my brother James returned from England with a press and letters to set up his business in Boston. I liked it much better than that of my father, but still had a hankering for the sea. To prevent the apprehended effect of such an inclination, my father was impatient to have me bound to my brother.
还有提福所著的计划论,和另一本马太博士的为善论,这两本书也许是改变我的思想,影响我未来的几件大事的书。在一七一七年我的哥哥詹姆斯从英国带着一架印刷机和字母,在波士顿开业,我对这个行业比我父亲的行业还有兴趣,但是仍旧热爱航海。为了避免这样的顾虑,父亲就急忙把我束缚在哥哥那里。

I stood out some time, but at last was persuaded, and signed the indentures when I was yet but twelve years old. I was to serve as an apprentice till I was twenty-one years of age, only I was to be allowed journeymen's wages during the last year. In a little time I made a great progress in the business, and became a useful hand to my brother. I had now access to better books. An acquaintance with the apprentices of booksellers enabled me sometimes to borrow a small one, which I was careful to return soon and clean.
我起先反抗,但是终于被劝服,签订了合约,当时我才只有十二岁,我要像一个学徒般地工作着,直到二十一岁,也是到最后一年才答应给最低的工资。不久我颇有进展,并且成为我哥哥的得力帮手。现在我能得到一点好书了。我认识几个书商的学徒使我方便借到一些书,这些书我保持清洁,小心地奉还。
Often I sat up in my chamber the greatest part of the night, when the book was borrowed in the evening to be returned in the morning, lest it should be found missing. About this time I met with an odd volume of the Spectator. I had never before seen any of them. I bought it, read it over and over, and was much delighted with it. I thought the writing excellent, and wished, if possible, to imitate it. With that view I took some of the papers, and, making short hints of the sentiments in each sentence, laid them by a few days, and then, without looking at the book, tried to complete the papers again, by expressing each hinted sentiment at length, and as fully as it had been expressed before, in any suitable words that should occur to me.
当这书在黄昏时借到而必须在隔天早上归还时,我常常在晚上坐在房间尽力读完,否则也许会当作是遗失了。正在此时我得到一本旁观报的奇怪册子。这是第三册,以前我从未看过任何一本。我买了它,读了又读,我以为书中的文章极佳,如果可以的话,甚至想模仿它。以这个观点,我把这份报的每一句的大意节录出来,放了几天,并不看这本书,尝试再完成这报纸,自己用适合的字来引伸大意,要和以前所表示的一样。
Then I compared my Spectator with the original, discovered some of my faults, and corrected them. But I found I wanted a stock of words, or a readiness in recollecting and using them, which I thought I should have acquired before that time if I had gone on making verses; since the continual search for words of the same import, but of different length, to suit the measure, or of different sound for the rhyme, would have laid me under a constant necessity of searching for variety, and also have tended to fix that variety in my mind, and make me master of it.
于是我把我的旁观报和原文相较,找出我的错误处而加以更正。但是我觉得我缺乏单字的累积,或实时忆起与引用,我想在以前我如果继续作诗便能够办得到,因为常常要用同义且长短不同、和声韵各异的字以合量与押韵,那么我则必须经常搜寻许多字汇,也可使这许多字萦留脑中,以便能运用它。
Therefore I took some of the tales in the Spectator, and turned them into verse; and, after a time, when I had pretty well forgotten the prose, turned them back again. I also sometimes jumbled my collection of hints into confusion, and after some weeks endeavored to reduce them into the best order, before I began to form the full sentences and complete the subject.
于是我把有些故事转为诗歌;隔了一阵子,等我把这散文全忘了时,重新再把它们转为散文,有时更将我所集合的大意打乱,隔了几星期,再努力使它成为极佳的顺序,在我最初所造成完全的句子与完成这张纸以前。
This was to teach me method in the arrangement of the thoughts. By comparing my work with the original, I discovered many faults and corrected them; but I sometimes had the pleasure to fancy that, in particulars of small consequence, I had been fortunate enough to improve the method or the language, and this encouraged me to think that I might in time come to be a tolerable English writher, of which I was extremely ambitious. The time I allotted for writing exercises and for reading was at night, or before work began in the morning, or on Sundays, when I contrived to be in the printing-house, avoiding as much as I could the constant attendance at public worship which my father used to exact from me when I was under his care, and which I still continued to consider as a duty, though I could not afford time to practice it.
这便是教会我思想排列法。后来把我的工作和原文比较,发现了许多错误而改正之;但是我有时引以为乐,想象在小小的某几点,我非常幸运地在方法与言语上有进步,而这个想象鼓励我想到以后也许我可能成为一位不错的英文作家,关于这点我极有野心。我的那种练习和读书时间是在夜间工作之后,或是在早上工作开始之前,或星期日,当我设法独处于印刷的时候,我极力逃避这遵行的公共祈祷,这件事在父亲管束时是非常严格地要我履行的,而据我看来确实只是一种责任,虽然我不能给予时间来履行。

While I was intent on improving my language, I met with an English grammar (I think it was Greenwood's) having at the end of it two little sketches on the arts of rhetoric and logic, the latter finishing with a dispute in the Socratic method; and soon after I procured Xenophon's Memorable Things of Socrates, wherein there are many examples of the same method.
当我力求文字上的精进时,我找到一本英文文法(我想这是格黑特所著的),在这本书的后面有两小章的修词学和论理学的概略,后者用苏格拉底的辩论法式做结语;以后我立即得到杰诺丰的苏格拉底回忆录,在这书中有许多这样法式的例证。我很喜欢这本书所采用的法式。
I was charmed with it, adopted it, dropped my abrupt contradiction and positive argumentation, and put on the humble inquirer; and being then, from reading Shaftesbury and Collins, made a Joubter, as I already was in may points of our religious doctrines, I found this method the safest for myself and very embarrassing to those against whom I used it; therefore I took delight in it, practiced it continually, and grew very artful and expert in drawing people, even of superior knowledge, into concessions, the consequences of which they did not foresee, entangling them in difficulties out of which they could not extricate themselves, and so obtaining victories that neither myself nor my cause always deserved.
我抛弃激烈的辩驳和固执的理论,代以谦恭的询问和质疑。自读沙甫特斯白雪和柯林斯的书后,于是就成为一个我们的教育中几点的怀疑者,我觉得这种方法对于我很安全,于是用此法来反驳和我辩驳的人;我偏好这个方法,继续实验,慢慢地赋予艺术化的敏捷,遂以取胜于人。即使学识比我高,在让步之中,这争辩的推论他们不能先知,以致陷他们于困惑而不能自拔,所以得到胜利并不属于我的自身理由所应得的。
I continued this method some few years, but gradually left it, retaining only the habit of expressing myself in terms of modest diffidence; never using, when I advanced any thing that might possibly be disputed, the words certainly, undoubtedly, or any others that gave the air of positiveness to an opinion; but rather said, I conceive or apprehend a thing to be so and so; it appears to me, or I should not think it so or so, for such and such reasons; or I imagine it to be so; or it is so, if I am not mistaken. This habit, I believe, has been of great advantage to me when I have had occasion to inculcate my opinions, and persuade men into measures that I have been from time to time engaged in promoting; and, as the chief ends of conversation are to inform or to be informed, to please or to persuade, I wish well-meaning and sensible men would not lessen their power of doing good by a positive, assuming manner, that seldom fails to disgust, tends to create opposition, and to defeat most of those purposes for which speech was given to us. In fact, if you wish to instruct others, a positive and dogmatical manner in advancing your sentiments may occasion opposition and prevent a candid attention.
我用这种方法已有好几年,但是慢慢地抛弃了,只保留有礼谦逊的语气和习惯;当我进行一件须辩驳的事情时,如「确实」「无疑」和其它字而产生一种意见执拗的神态者,这字我是绝不用的;只好说「我猜想,」或「恐怕这事是这样,」「我似乎以为,」或「因为这样的理由我想也许是如此的;」或者「我猜想这该是如此,」或「这是如此,如果不是我错误。」这种习惯,我相信,对我曾有很大的用处,当有时把我的意见讲给他人听,使人易于顺从;并且谈话的主要目的是对别人说或听别人说,顺从人或说服别人,我愿意用知识,懂得的人不要以固执和强硬的态度来减少他们做好事的能力,那样也许不会陷于厌恶而引起反应,此乃因为要授受说词和娱乐目的的人们失败,因为这种演说是给予他们的,给予智者的。其实你要说给人家听,不论你固执的想法和不可动摇的态度会引起反感而制止人家去注意。

If you desire instruction and improvement from others, you should not, at the same time, express yourself fixed in your present opinions. Modest and sensible men, who do not love disputation, will leave you undisturbed in the possession of your errors. In adopting such a manner, you can seldom expect to please your hearers, or obtain the concurrence you desire. Pope judiciously observes, "Men must be taught as if you taught them not, And things unknown proposed as things forget." He also recommends it to us, "To speak, though sure, with seeming diffidence."
你愿意征求别人的意见时,同时你看起来如果仍是坚持你现在的意见,有礼和明白的人,他们不喜欢辩驳,或许会离开你,不扰乱你所有的错误。若以这样的态度,你多少希望你自己能得到听众的欢心,或诱使赞同你的愿望。可以明断地说道:「教人以非教,人将从汝教,谓之曰偶忘,使彼有不知。」更进而劝告我们,「虽确实,言之要谦逊。
And he might have joined with this line that which he has coupled with another, I think, less properly, "For want of modesty is want of sense." If you ask, Why less properly? I must repeat the lines, "Immodest words admit of no defense, For want of modesty is want of sense." Now is not the want of sense (where a man is so unfortunate as to want it) some apology for his want of modesty? And would not the lines stand more justly thus? "Immodest words admit but this defense, That want of modesty is want of sense." This, however, I should submit to better judgments.
虽这一联已另外配上一句,我想,更适当是:「因无谦逊心,便成无意识。」如果你问,要怎样才适当?我便会反复念诵下面的话:「若是不谦逊,不能掩其失,因无谦逊心,便感无意识。」现在有些人辩驳他的无谦逊心是否无意识呢?那么下面的句子不是更确切吗?「若是不逊辞,辩护此一说,因无谦逊心,便成无意识。」这两句,无论如何,我将寻求高明的判断。

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