Oscar Wilde. The Fisherman and his Soul (in English, audio with text)

Part 3. The Priest’s Advice (a story in English with text)

Part 3. The Priest’s advice in English). Совет священника

  • the span of a man’s hand above the hill — на высоту человеческой руки над холмом
  • novice- послушник
  • rushes of the floor —тростник, покрывавший пол
  • one of the Sea-folk — Дева морская
  • hinder — мешать
  • Alack, alack — увы
  • the Fauns- Фавны
  • the Mermen —Тритон
  • beseech —заклинать, молить (синоним beg)
  • to lure me from my beads — прельстить меня, оторвав от молитвенных четок
  • perilous — погибельный
  • there is no heaven nor hell, and in neither — для них нет ни ада, ни рая; и ни в аду, ни в раю
  • surrender heaven — откажусь от рая

Now early on the next morning, before the sun was the spanof a man’s handabove the hill, the young Fisherman went to the house of the Priest and knocked three times at the door. The novice looked out through the wicket, and when he saw who it was, he drew back the latch and said to him, ‘Enter.’

And the young Fisherman passed in, and knelt down on the sweet- smelling rushes of the floor, and cried to the Priest who was reading out of the Holy Book and said to him, ‘Father, I am in love with one of the Sea-folk, and my soul hindered me from having my desire. Tell me how I can send my soul away from me, for in truth I have no need of it. Of what value is my soul to me? I cannot see it. I may not touch it. I do not know it.’

And the Priest beat his breast, and answered, ‘Alack, alack, thou are mad, or have eaten of some poisonous herb, for the soul is the noblest part of man, and was given to us by God that we should nobly use it. There is no thing more precious than a human soul, nor any earthly thing that can be weighed with it. It is worth all the gold that is in the world, and is more precious than the rubies of the kings. Therefore, my son, think not any more of this matter, for it is a sin that may not be forgiven. And as for the Sea-folk, they are lost, and they who would traffic with them are lost also. They are as the beasts of the field that know not good from evil, and for them the Lord has not died.’ (1)

The young Fisherman’s eyes filled with tears when he heard the bitter words of the Priest, and he rose up from his knees and said to him, ‘Father, the Fauns live in the forest and are glad, and on the rocks sit the Mermen with their harps of red gold. Let me be as they are, I beseech thee, for their days are as the days of flowers. And as for my soul, what do my soul profit me, if it stand between me and the thing that I love?’

‘The love of the body is vile,’ cried the Priest, knitting his brows, ‘and vile and evil are the pagan things God suffers to wander through His world. Accursed be the Fauns of the woodland, and accursed be the singers of the sea! (2) I have heard them at night-time, and they have sought to lure me from my beads. They tap at the window, and laugh. They whisper into my ears the tale of their perilous joys. They tempt me with temptations, and when I would pray they make mouths at me. They are lost, I tell thee, they are lost. For them there is no heaven nor hell, and in neither shall they praise God’s name.’

‘Father,’ cried the young Fisherman, ‘thou know not what thou say. Once in my net I snared the daughter of a King. She is fairer than the morning star, and whiter than the moon. For her body I would give my soul, and for her love I would surrender heaven. Tell me what I ask of thee, and let me go in peace.’

‘Away! Away!’ cried the Priest: ‘thy leman is lost, and thou shall be lost with her.’ (3)

And he gave him no blessing, but drove him from his door.

(1) — А Обитатели моря прокляты, и прокляты все, кто вздумает с ними знаться. Они, как дикие звери, не знают, где добро и где зло, и не за них умирал Искупитель.

(2) — Мерзостна плотская любовь! — нахмурив брови, воскликнул Священник.— И мерзостны и пагубны те твари языческие, которым господь попустил блуждать по своей .земле. Да будут прокляты Фавны лесные, и да будут прокляты эти морские певцы!

(3) — Прочь! — закричал Священник.— Та, кого ты любишь, отвергнута богом, и ты будешь вместе с нею отвергнут.

* * *

  • It is not worth a clipped piece of silver. —Не стоит и ломаного гроша.
  • minion- любимый раб
  • nought- ничто
  • telleth — устар. told

And the young Fisherman went down into the market-place, and he walked slowly, and with bowed head, as one who is in sorrow. And when the merchants saw him coming, they began to whisper to each other, and one of them came forth to meet him, and called him by name, and said to him, ‘What has thou to sell?’

‘I will sell thee my soul,’ he answered. ‘I pray thee buy it of me, for I am weary of it. Of what use is my soul to me? I cannot see it. I may not touch it. I do not know it.’

But the merchants mocked at him, and said, ‘Of what use is a man’s soul to us? It is not worth a clipped piece of silver. Sell us thy body for a slave, and we will clothe thee in sea-purple, and put a ring upon thy finger, and make thee the minion of the great Queen. But talk not of the soul, for to us it is nought, nor has it any value for our service.’

And the young Fisherman said to himself: ‘How strange a thing this is! The Priest telleth me that the soul is worth all the gold in the world, and the merchants say that it is not worth a clipped piece of silver.’ And he passed out of the market-place, and went down to the shore of the sea, and began to ponder on what he should do.

The End of Part 3

Читать продолжение истории Оскара Уайльда «Рыбак и его душа» на странице 4

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