Домашнее чтение на английском языке «The Murder of Roger Ackroyd»

Agatha Christie. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (продолжение)

В этой главе вы узнаете, с кем разговаривал Роджер Экройд перед смертью и кто встречался в летнем домике в ночь убийства.

Chapter 22. Poirot’s Conference

1. Words to remember:

  1. to attend — посещать
  2. to get clear — выясниться
  3. to get blacker — стать более запутанной
  4. notes of the case — записи этого дела
  5. to exclaim — воскликнуть
  6. modest — скромный
  7. wise — мудрый
  8. an announcement — объявление
  9. to make an announcement — сделать объявление
  10. absurd — абсурдный, нелепый
  11. to pay attention to — обратить внимание на
  12. to keep a secret — хранить секрет
  13. to behave badly — вести себя плохо
  14. a way out — выход
  15. to reply — ответить
  16. except — за исключением
  17. to whistle — свистеть
  18. to guess — догадаться
  19. a list — список
  20. an opportunity — возможность
  21. to investigate the case — расследовать дело
  22. to go on — продолжить
  23. to suppose — предположить
  24. instead of — вместо
  25. probably — вероятно
  26. separate — отдельный, раздельный
  27. as soon as — как только
  28. possibility — вероятность
  29. prove to be — оказывается
  30. by the way — try to remember!

——— Translate, please!

  1. It is absurd. It is nonsense.
  2. Do you mean to say…?
  3. Let us suppose.

Закрытый контент сайта. Chapter 22. Poirot’s Conference

«And now,» said Caroline, rising, «this child will go upstairs and lie down. Don’t worry, my dear. M. Poirot will do everything he can — be sure of that.

«I must go back to Fernly,» said Ursula.

«Nonsense,» said Caroline. «You are in my hands now. And you will stay here for some time — eh, M. Poirot?»

«It will be the best plan,» agreed Poipot. «I want mademoiselle — pardon, madam — to attend my lit­tle conference. Nine o’clock at my house. It is very important.»

Caroline nodded and went with Ursula out of the room. «Well,» said Poirot, «things are getting clearer now.»

«They are getting blacker and blacker against Ralph Paton,» I said.

Poirot nodded. «Yes, that is so. But it was to be expected1, wasn’t it?»

I looked at him, surprised. He was sitting in the armchair, with his eyes half closed. Suddenly he sighed and shook his head.

«What is it?» I asked.

«I often remember my friend Hastings,» he said. «He sometimes worked with me. He greatly helped me by keeping notes2 of our cases with all the details.»

«As it happens,» I said, «I am also keeping notes of this case.» I don’t know why I said it, but he was very interested. «Really?» he exclaimed. «Let me see your notes, please. They will be very useful.»

1it was to be expected — этого следовало ожидать
2by keeping notes — тем, что вел записи

I brought him my notes. It was a thick note-book. I left him reading them and went out because I had to visit one of my patients. When I came back, it was past eight, and he had finished reading. I asked him what he thought of my notes.

«Very good work,» he said. «You have described all the facts carefully and exactly. But you were too modest in describing your own role in them.»

«Has it helped you?»

«Yes, I must say that it has helped me. But now it is time for us to go to my house for my little conference.»

Caroline was in the hall. It was clear that she wanted to go with us. Poirot was very tactful. «I would like you to be present, mademoiselle,» he said, «but it will not be wise at this moment. You see, all these people who are at my house tonight, are suspects. Among them I shall find the person who killed Mr. Ackroyd.»

«Do you really believe that?» I said.

«I see that you don’t believe,» said Poirot. «So you have not yet understood what kind of man Hercule Poirot is.»

At that moment Ursula came down the stairs.

«Are you ready, my child?» asked Poirot. «That is good. We will go to my house together. Good evening, Mademoiselle Caroline.»

The little drawing-room in Poirot’s house was ready. On the table there were drinks and glasses. Several chairs had been brought from other rooms.

Soon we heard the door bell.

«They are coming,» said Poirot.

Poirot went to the door and greeted Mrs. Ackroyd and Flora. «It is very good of you to come,» he said. «And Major Blunt and Mr. Raymond.»

When everybody was sitting, Poirot said, «First of all I want to make an announcement.» He took Ursula’s hand. «This lady is Mrs. Ralph Paton. She was married to Captain Paton last March.»

«Ralph! Married!» exclaimed Mrs. Ackroyd. «Oh! It’s absurd. How can it be? Married to Ursula Bourne? Really, M. Poirot, I don’t believe you.»

Ursula wanted to speak, but Flora quickly came up to her and put her hand through her arm. «Don’t pay attention to our surprise,» she said. «You see, we had no idea of it. You and Ralph kept your secret very well. I am — very glad.»

«You are very kind, Miss Ackroyd,» said Ursula, «and you have every right to be angry. Ralph be­haved very badly, and especially to you.»

«Don’t worry about that,» said Flora. «Ralph was in a terribly difficult situation and took the only way out. But tell me one thing. Where is Ralph? You must know it.»

«But I don’t,» cried Ursula.

«Isn’t he arrested in Liverpool?» asked Raymond. «The newspaper says it.»

«He is not in Liverpool,» said Poirot.

«In fact,» I said, «no one knows where he is.»

«Except Hercule Poirot, eh?» said Raymond.

Poirot replied seriously to Raymond’s joke. «I know everything,» he said. «Remember that.»

«Everything?» said Raymond. He whistled.

«Do you mean to say that you can really guess where Ralph Paton is hiding?» I asked.

«I don’t guess. I know, my friend,» said Poirot.

The door opened once more and two other people came in and sat down near the door. They were Parker and the housekeeper.

«We can begin now,» said Poirot. «Everyone is here,» he took a list and read: «Mrs. Ackroyd, Miss Flora Ackroyd, Major Blunt, Mr. Geoffrey Raymond, Mrs. Ralph Paton, John Parker, Elizabeth Russell.»

«What is the meaning of all this?» began Raymond.

«The list which I have just read,» said Poirot, «is a list of suspected persons. Everyone of you who are present here had the opportunity to kill Mr. Ackroyd — »

With a cry Mrs. Ackroyd jumped to her feet. «I don’t like it,» she said. «I don’t like it. I would like to go home.»

«You cannot go home, madam,» said Poirot, «until you have heard what I have to say.»

He was silent a moment, then went on. «I will start at the beginning. When Miss Ackroyd asked me to investigate the case, I went to Fernly Park with Dr. Sheppard. I walked with him along the terrace, and he showed me the footmarks on the window-sill. From there Inspector Raglan took me along the path which leads to the gate. I noticed a little summer-house and searched it. I found two things: a piece of cambric and a goose quill. When I saw the piece of cambric, I immediately thought of a maid’s apron. When In­spector Raglan showed me his list of the people in the house, I noticed at once that one of the maids — Ursula Bourne — had no real alibi. According to her own story, she was in her bedroom from nine-thirty until ten. But let’s suppose that instead of it she was in the summer-house. If so, probably she went there to meet someone. Now we know from Dr. Sheppard that someone from outside really came to the house that night — the stranger whom he met by the gate. We may think that our problem is solved and that the stranger went to the summer-house to meet Ursula Bourne. It was clear that he went to the summer-house because of the goose quill. I thought at once that the man took drugs and that he had come from America: in America people who take drugs, often do it with the help of a quill. And Dr. Sheppard said that the man had spoken with an American accent.

«But one thing was wrong. The times were differ­ent. Ursula Bourne went to the summer-house at nine-thirty — not before. And the man came there a few minutes after nine. Then I supposed that there had been two separate meetings in the summer-house that night. All right, as soon as I thought of that possibil­ity, I found out some important facts. I found out that Miss Russell, the housekeeper, had visited Dr. Sheppard that morning and asked him questions about poisons and drugs. I connected this fact with the goose quill and decided that the man had come to Fernly to meet the housekeeper and not Ursula Bourne. If so — whom did Ursula Bourne meet in the summer-house? It was not difficult for me to understand. First I found a ring — a wedding ring with the date and the inscription: «From R». Then I learnt that at twenty-five minutes past nine somebody saw Ralph Paton, who came in through the gate and went along the path in the direction of the summer-house. I also heard about a conversation which had taken place in the wood near the village that very afternoon — a «conversation between Ralph Paton and some girl. So I had my facts in a good order. A secret marriage, an engagement which was announced on the day of the tragedy, the stormy conversation in the wood and the meeting in the summer-house that night.

«By the way, this proved to me one thing, that both Ralph Paton and Ursula Bourne (or Paton) had the strongest motives for murdering Mr. Ackroyd. And one more thing was quite clear: the man who was with Mr. Ackroyd in the study at nine-thirty was not Ralph Paton.

«Now we come to another, and very interesting, aspect of the crime. Who was in the study with Mr. Ackroyd at nine-thirty? Not Ralph Paton, who was in the summer-house with his wife. Not Charles Kent, who had already left — you remember that he was in the bar a mile’s distance at a quarter to ten. Then who? And I asked my cleverest question: Was anyone with him?»

Everybody was silent. But Raymond spoke. «Maybe you are trying to say that I am a liar, M. Poirot, when I say that I heard Mr. Ackroyd’s voice. But it is not only my evidence. Major Blunt who was on the terrace also heard that Mr. Ackroyd was talking to someone.»

Poirot nodded. «I have not forgotten,» lie said qui­etly. «You all have forgotten one thing: the stranger who had come to the house and spoken to Mr. Ackroyd some days before.»

Everybody looked at him in surprise.

«But yes,» continued Poirot, «The young man him­self was not important. But the firm that had sent him interested me very much.»

«The Dictaphone Company,» exclaimed Raymond. » Now I see. A dictaphone. Is that what you think?»

Poirot nodded. «You remember that Mr. Ackroyd was thinking of buying a dictaphone. You said he had not bought it. But I asked the company. And they told me that Mr. Ackroyd had bought a dictaphone. Why he did not tell you about it — I don’t know.»

Raymond shrugged his shoulders. «Maybe he wanted to surprise me with it,» he said. «He liked to surprise people — just like a child. Still I don’t un­derstand,» he went on. «Now we know that Mr. Ackroyd was speaking into the dictaphone at nine-thirty. It means that he was alive at that time. It, is also clear to us that Charles Kent had already gone by that time. As to Ralph Paton — ?» He looked at Ursula.

«Ralph and I parted just before a quarter to ten,» said Ursula. «He never went near the house, I am sure of that. He did not want to see his stepfather.»

«I am sure you are telling the truth,» said Raymond. «I have always been sure that Captain Paton is inno­cent. But his position is very — unsafe. It will be so good if he comes — »

Poirot interrupted him. «This is your advice? Do you think that he must come?»

«Certainly. If you know where he is — «.

«I see you still don’t believe me that I know. And I have just told you that I know everything. I know the truth of the telephone call, the truth of the foot-marks on the window-sill, the hiding-place of Ralph Paton — »

«Where is he?» said Blunt.

«Not very far away,» said Poirot, smiling. «He is — there!» He pointed to the door. Everybody turned their heads. Ralph Paton was standing in the doorway.

* * *

Задания к главе 22

1. Make sure that you know the words:


  1. notes of the cases
  2. announcement
  3. way out
  4. list
  5. opportunity
  6. possibility


  1. modest
  2. wise
  3. absurd
  4. separate


  1. attend
  2. get clear VS make clear
  3. get blacker
  4. exclaim
  5. pay attention to
  6. make an announcement
  7. keep a secret
  8. behave badly
  9. reply
  10. whistle
  11. guess
  12. investigate the case
  13. go on VS go
  14. suppose VS suggest
  15. proved to be VS prove


  1. together (e.g. gather together)
  2. except
  3. instead of
  4. probably
  5. as soon as VS soon
  6. by the way VS on the way VS a way out

2. Find and look through Poirot’s story:

He was silent for a moment, then went on. «I will start at the beginning. When Miss Ackroyd asked me to investigate the case, I went to Fernly Park with Dr. Sheppard. <…>»

Pay attention that go is not the same as go on. 

3. Read the chapter again up to Poirot’s words: «And I ask my cleverest question: Was anyone with him?»

Then answer the questions.

How many meetings were in the summer house on the night of the murder?

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3.2. According to Ursula Bourne, she was in her bedroom from nine-thirty until ten. Is that true? If not where was she at that time?
3.3. According to Dr. Sheppard, the stranger who he had met near the gate came to the summer house a few minutes after nine. Where did he go?

Who came to Fernly Park secretly on the night of the murder?

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5. Use the method of deduction and make two logic chains.

Use the words:
  • the American stranger (Charles Kent)
  • a goose quill
  • drugs
  • Ursula Bourne
  • Miss Russel
  • questions about poisons and drugs
  • a wedding ring in the pond with the inscription «From R.»
  • the announcement of the engagement between Ralph and Flora Ackroyd
  • a conversation in the wood
  • a quarrel in the summer house
  • Flora Ackroyd
  • a secret marriage
  • Ralph Paton

5.1. Let us remember the conversation in the wood, which was on the day when Roger Ackroyd had announced the engagement between Flora and Ralph.

Caroline says:

Отрывок из книги Агаты Кристи Убийство Роджера Экройда

  1. to cut off with a shilling — оставить без наследства
  2. to make sense — иметь смысл

Do you remeber who threw the wedding ring in the pond?

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Logic chain 1: the American stranger =>

Logic chain 2: the announcement of the engagement between Ralph and Flora Acroyd =>


6. Let us make everything clear.

Уроки английского языка

6.1. The first meeting was at the summer house at about nine o’clock. It was the meeting between… and… (Say who met at the summer house at about 9 o’clock.)

6.2. The second meeting was at the summer house from 9.30 until 10.00 It was the meeting between… and… (Say who met at the summer house at 9.30.)

Агата Кристи Убийство Роджера Экройда6.3. But we know (according to Geofrey Raymond) that Roger Ackroyd was talking to someone at 9.30. Let us follow Poirot’s logic:

Now we come to another, and very interesting, aspect of the crime. Who was at the study with Roger Ackroyd at 9.30?

Not Ralph Paton, who was in the summer-house with his wife, Ursula Bourne.

Not Charles Kent, who had already left — you remember, he was in the bar a mile’s distance at 9.45.

Then who? And I ask my cleverest question: Was anyone with him?

To his words Geofrey Raymond said:

Maybe you are trying to say that I am a liar, M. Poirot, when I say that I heard Mr. Acroyd’s voice. But is is not only my evidence. Major Blunt who was on the terrace also heard that Mr. Ackroyd was talking to someone.

You see that there are two witnesses who say that Roger Ackroyd was talking to someone in the study. So, it is proved.

6.4. Who have we forgotten? —  Study the list. Who talked to Roger Ackroyd at 9.30? — Your answer.

  1. Dr. James Sheppard
  2. Caroline Sheppard
  3. Mrs. Cecil Ackroyd
  4. Flora Ackroyd
  5. Ralph Paton
  6. Miss Russell
  7. Parker
  8. Geoffrey Raymond
  9. Major Blunt
  10. Hercule Poirot
  11. Charles Kent
  12. Ursula Bourne
  13. Someone else
  14. Nobody

Evidently that that person was the murderer. If you have named the person, you have your own version. Tell us your ideas.

7. Ответы к заданиям для самопроверки — style=»color: #008080;»>ПОЛУЧИТЬ

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