« السابقةمتابعة »
Sometimes, during the harvest, my mother went into the fields to glean. I accompanied her, and we went, like Ruth in the Bible to glean in the rich fields of Boaz. One day we went to a place the bailiff of which was a man of rude and savage disposition. We saw him coming with a huge whip in his hand, and my mother and all the others ran away. I had wooden shoes on my bare feet, and in my haste I lost these, and the thorns pricked me so that I could not run. Thus I was left behind and alone. The man came up and lifted his whip to strike me, when I looked him in the face and exclaimed,
“How dare you strike me, when God can see it ?”
The strong, stern man looked at me, and at once became mild. He patted me on my cheeks, asked me my name, and gave me money.
When I brought the 'money to my mother and showed it to her, she said to the others, “He is a strange child, my Hans Christian; everybody is kind to him.”
My father died while I was still a small boy. When I wept, my mother said, “He is dead, thou needst not call him. The ice maiden has taken him away.”
I understood what she meant. I recollected that, in the winter before, when our window panes were frozen, my father had pointed to them and showed us a figure like that of a maiden with outstretched arms. “She has come to fetch me,” said he, in jest. And now,
when he lay dead, my mother remembered this, and it was in my thoughts also.
I grew rapidly, and was a tall lad. My mother said that I must not go any longer without an object in life. I was sent, therefore, to the charity school, where I learned religion, writing, and arithmetic.
I had saved a little sum of money, and when I counted it over I found it to be about thirty shillings. I was quite overjoyed at the possession of so much wealth, and I besought my mother that I might make a journey to Copenhagen, to see the greatest city in the world.
“ What wilt thou do there?” asked my mother.
“I will be famous,” returned I; and then I told her all that I had read about great men. “People have,” said I, “ at first an immense amount of adversity to go through, and then they will be famous.”
At last my mother consented. She packed my clothes in a small bundle, and made a bargain with the driver of a post carriage to take me back with him to Copenhagen. The afternoon on which I was to set out came, and my mother accompanied me to the city gate. Here stood my old grandmother. In the last few years her beautiful hair had become gray. She fell upon my neck and wept, without being able to speak a word. I was myself deeply affected. And thus we parted. I saw her no more, for she died in the following year.
The postilion blew his horn. It was a glorious afternoon, and the sunshine soon entered into my gay, child-like mind.
- HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN. From “ The Story of my life.”
DOUGLAS AND MARMION
THE train from out the castle drew
“ Though something I might plain,” he said,
While in Tantallon's towers I stayed,
And, noble earl, receive my hand.”
But Douglas round him drew his cloak,
And never shall, in friendly grasp,
Burned Marmion's swarthy cheek like fire,
And “This to me?” he said ;
To cleave the Douglas' head.
“And, Douglas, more I tell thee here,
Even in thy pitch of pride,
I tell thee thou'rt defied !
Lord Angus, thou hast lied.”
On the earl's cheek the flush of
rage O’ercame the ashen hue of
age : Fierce he broke forth : 6 And dar'st thou then To beard the lion in his den,
The Douglas in his hall ?
And hop'st thou hence unscathed to go ?
Let the portcullis fall.”
there was such scanty room,