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当前位置:主页 > 英国小说 > 德伯家的苔丝 > 第7章 团圆 The Fulfilment
第7节 第五十九章 【
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温顿塞斯特是一座美丽的古城,威塞克斯的首府;在七月的早晨,威塞克斯起伏不平的匠陵充满了光明和温暖,温顿塞斯特城就位于这片丘陵的中部。那些带有用砖砌的山墙和盖有屋瓦的石头房子,外面的一层苔藓已经因为干燥的季节差不多晒干脱落了;草场上沟渠里的水变浅了,在那条斜坡大街上,从西大门到中古十字路,从中古十字路到大桥,有人正在不慌不忙地清扫大街,通常这都是为了迎接旧式的集市日子。
从前面提到的西大门开始,所有的温顿塞斯特人都熟悉的那条大道,向上延伸到一个长达一英里的长方形斜坡,渐渐地把那些房屋抛在后面。就在这条道路上,有两个人正在迅速从城区里走出来,仿佛并没有意识到走上坡路要费力似的——他们没有意识到费力不是因为他们心情愉快,而是因为他们心事重重。在下面那块小小的开阔高地上,建有一堵高墙,高墙中间有一道栅栏便门,他们就是从那儿出来走上这条大路的。他们似乎要急于避开挡住他们视线的那些房屋和诸如此类的建筑,而从这条大路走似乎为他们提供了一条最快的捷径。虽然他们都是年轻人,但是他们走路的时候都把头低着,太阳微笑着把光芒洒在他们悲伤的步伐上,一点儿也不可怜他们。
那两个人中间有一个是安琪儿·克莱尔,另外一个是克莱尔的小姨子丽莎·露;她的身材颀长,像一朵正在开放的蓓蕾;一半是少女,一半是妇人,完全是苔丝的化身;她比苔丝瘦一些,但是长着同样美丽的大眼睛。他们灰白的面孔瘦了,似乎瘦得只有原来的一半大小了,他们手牵着手向前走着,一句话也不说,只是低着头走路,就像吉奥托在《两圣徒》①中画的人物一样。
 
①吉奥托(Giotto,1266-1337),意大利画家,其名画《两圣徒》(Two Apostles)现藏于伦敦国家美术馆。

当他们快要走到西山顶上的时候,城里的时钟敲响了八点。听到钟声,他们两个人都吃了一惊,但还是又往前走了几步,走到了第一块里程碑那儿;那块白色的里程碑竖在绿色草地的边上,背后是草原,跟大路连接在一起。他们走进草地,好像被某种控制了他们意志的力量逼着似的,突然在里程碑旁边站住了;他们转过身去,好像瘫痪了似的在里程碑旁等着。
从这个山顶上望去,周围的景色一览无余。下面的谷里就是他们刚才离开的那座城市;城中最突出的建筑好像一张等角图那样显眼——在那些建筑中,有高大的大教堂的塔楼,有教堂的罗曼式窗户和漫长的走道;有圣托玛斯的尖塔,还有学院的带有尖塔的塔楼,再往右边,便是古老医院的塔楼和山墙,直到今天,来这儿朝圣的人都能获赠一份面包和麦酒。在城市的后面,是圣凯瑟琳山的圆形高地;再往远处,便是越来越远的景物,一直延伸到地平线在天上太阳的照耀下消失的地方。
在连绵不断的乡村原野的衬托下,在那些高楼大厦的正面,有一栋用红砖盖的大楼房,楼房上盖的是水平的灰色屋顶,窗户上有一排排短铁栏杆,这表明那儿是囚禁犯人的地方;整栋楼房的样式既呆板又教条,和歌特式建筑错落有致的奇特风格形成鲜明对照。从路上经过这栋楼房,紫杉和长青的橡树多少把它遮挡住了,但是从山顶上看去却一览无余。不久前那两个人走出来的那道便门,就在那栋建筑的高墙下。在楼房的正中,有一个丑陋难看的八角形平顶塔楼矗立在东方的天空里;从山顶上看去,只能看到它背太阳的阴暗一面,让人觉得塔楼似乎是这座城市美景中的一个污点。可是那两个人所关心的正是那个污点,而不是城市的美景。
塔楼的上楣竖着一根长旗杆。他们的眼睛就紧紧盯着它。钟声响后又过了几分钟,有一样东西缓慢地从旗杆上升起来,微风一吹,那件东西就展开了。原来是一面黑旗。
“死刑”执行了,用埃斯库罗斯的话说,那个众神之王①对苔丝的戏弄也就结束了。德贝维尔家的骑士和夫人们在坟墓里躺着,对这件事一无所知。那两个一言不发的观看的人,把身体躬到了地上,仿佛正在祈祷,他们就那样躬着,过了好久好久,一动也不动。黑旗继续不声不响地在风中飘着。他们等到有了力气,就站起来,又手拉着手往前走。
 
①众神之王(the President of th Imortals),语出于希腊悲剧家埃斯库罗斯的悲剧《被囚的普罗米修斯》。
 

The city of Wintoncester, that fine old city, aforetime capital of Wessex, lay amidst its convex and concave downlands in all the brightness and warmth of a July morning. The gabled brick, tile, and freestone houses had almost dried off for the season their integument of lichen, the streams in the meadows were low, and in the sloping High Street, from the West Gateway to the medieval cross, and from the medieval cross to the bridge, that leisurely dusting and sweeping was in progress which usually ushers in an old-fashioned market-day.

From the western gate aforesaid the highway, as every Wintoncestrian knows, ascends a long and regular incline of the exact length of a measured mile, leaving the houses gradually behind. Up this road from the precincts of the city two persons were walking rapidly, as if unconscious of the trying ascent - unconscious through preoccupation and not through buoyancy. They had emerged upon this road through a narrow barred wicket in a high wall a little lower down. They seemed anxious to get out of the sight of the houses and of their kind, and this road appeared to offer the quickest means of doing so. Though they were young they walked with bowed heads, which gait of grief the sun's rays smiled on pitilessly.

One of the pair was Angel Clare, the other a tall budding creature - half girl, half woman - a spiritualized image of Tess, slighter than she, but with the same beautiful eyes - Clare's sister-in-law, 'Liza-Lu. Their pale faces seemed to have shrunk to half their natural size. They moved on hand in hand, and never spoke a word, the drooping of their heads being that of Giotto's `Two Apostles'.

When they had nearly reached the top of the great West Hill the clocks in the town struck eight. Each gave a start at the notes, and, walking onward yet a few steps, they reached the first milestone, standing whitely on the green margin of the grass, and backed by the down, which here was open to the road. They entered upon the turf, and, impelled by a force that seemed to overrule their will, suddenly stood still, turned, and waited in paralyzed suspense beside the stone.

The prospect from this summit was almost unlimited. In the valley beneath lay the city they had just left, its more prominent buildings showing as in an isometric drawing - among them the broad cathedral tower, with its Norman windows and immense length of aisle and nave, the spires of St Thomas's, the pinnacled tower of the College, and, more to the right, the tower and gables of the ancient hospice, where to this day the pilgrim may receive his dole of bread and ale. Behind the city swept the rotund upland of St Catherine's Hill; further off, landscape beyond landscape, till the horizon was lost in the radiance of the sun hanging above it.

Against these far stretches of country rose, in front of the other city edifices, a large red-brick building, with level gray roofs, and rows of short barred windows bespeaking captivity, the whole contrasting greatly by its formalism with the quaint irregularities of the Gothic erections. It was somewhat disguised from the road in passing it by yews and evergreen oaks, but it was visible enough up here. The wicket from which the pair had lately emerged was in the wall of this structure. From the middle of the building an ugly flat-topped octagonal tower ascended against the east horizon, and viewed from this spot, on its shady side and against the light, it seemed the one blot on the city's beauty. Yet it was with this blot, and not with the beauty, that the two gazers were concerned.

Upon the cornice of the tower a tall staff was fixed. Their eves were riveted on it. A few minutes after the hour had struck something moved slowly up the staff, and extended itself upon the breeze. It was a black flag.

`Justice' was done, and the President of the Immortals, in AEschylean phrase, had ended his sport with Tess. And the d'Urberville knights and dames slept on in their tombs unknowing. The two speechless gazers bent themselves down to the earth, as if in prayer, and remained thus a long time, absolutely motionless: the flag continued to wave silently. As soon as they had strength they arose, joined hands again, and went on.