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《简爱》故事情节简介(中英对照)

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  Brief Plot Summary of Jane Eyre (excerpt)

  One night Jane is awakened by the same shrill scream she had heard before. Opening her door, she sees smoke billowing from Rochester s room. His bed on fire, Rochester is awakened just in time by Jane. He refuses to allow her to awaken the household, telling her the fire may have been set by Grace Poole, who has periodic fits of insanity. The rest of the servants are told the fire was accidentally caused by a candle falling.

  Jane, sensing that her employer is suffering from the consequences of some mysterious sin of the past, gives him all her sympathy and gradually finds herself falling in love with him. But her hopes are thwarted when Rochester begins going to parties in the neighborhood where he is courting the beautiful, frivolous Blanche Ingram. At a party Rochester gives in Thornfield Manor, the aristocratic Blanche and her friends treat Jane with haughty condescension. Jane feels she can never compete with these snobbish, elegant people.

  While the house guests are staying at Thornfield, Rochester receives a mysterious caller―a Mr. Mason from the West Indies. That night Jane hears a scuffle and a cry for help in the room just above hers. Rochester quiets the household s alarm but asks Jane privately to help nurse Mr. Mason who is bleeding and unconscious. Before dawn the wounded man is spirited away from the house.

  One day soon after, Jane is enjoying the lovely midsummer evening in an orchard when Rochester comes upon her and informs her he-is shortly to be married. Jane, miserable, assumes he intends Co marry Blanche Ingram. She asks him tearfully how he can expect her to remain on at Thornfield under the circumstances. Rochester kisses her and tells her it is she whom he wishes to marry.

  Jane s happy excitement before the wedding is interrupted one night when she awakens in horror to see a strange, ugly woman trying on her bridal veil and then tearing it to pieces. Rochester assures her it is only a bad dream, but in the morning Jane finds the ripped fragments of the veil.

  On the wedding day service is interrupted by Mr. Mason who has slipped into the church to announce that the marriage is illegal because Rochester still has a living wife. Forced to reveal the truth at last, Rochester takes Jane to the forbidden chamber on the third floor where Jane sees a hideous creature, crawling on all fours in her madness. It was she who had attacked Mason and torn Jane s wedding veil. Rochester explains that the creature is Mason s sister Bertha whom he had been tricked into marrying fifteen years before in Jamaica and who comes from a family of lunatics and degenerates. His married life has been an unmitigated hell,with the insane Mrs. Rochester kept under lock and key in the care of Grace Poole.

  Jane is filled with sympathy for the misanthropic Rochester. Nevertheless, she realizes she must now depart. Taking just a little money with her, she wanders about the Midland moors, vainly seeking employment. Close to starvation, she is finally befriended and nursed back to health by a clergyman named St. John Rivers and his two sisters, Mary and Diana. Under the new name of Jane Elliott, she finds a job as village schoolmistress and tries to forget her seemingly hopeless love for Rochester.

  One day Rivers learns that an uncle of Jane s, John Eyre, has recently died in Madeira and has left Jane 20, 000 pounds. Jane insists on sharing this legacy with Rivers and his sisters who. a lawyer discovers, are really her cousins. St. John River asks Jane to be his wife and to go with him to India where he plans to become a missionary. Although he is not in love with her, he feels she would make an admirable assistant in his mission.

  While Jane is considering the offer, she has a dream that Rochester is calling for her. Failing to find him in the neighborhood the next morning, she journeys back to Thornfield where she is shocked to find the great manor house gutted by fire and completely in ruins. Making inquiries at the local inn, she discovers that Mrs. Rochester one night succeeded in setting the house on fire. Rochester manages to lead the servants to safety and then went back into the burning mansion to rescue his wife. She eluded him, was able to climb to the roof, and was then killed in a plunge to the ground.

  Rochester barely managed to get out of the burning house himself. A flaming staircase had fallen, blinding him and crushing one arm so badly it had to be amputated. Rochester is now living in morose solitude at the lonely nearby manor of Ferndean. Jane hurries to see him.

  Overjoyed that she has come to him, Rochester asks her to become his wife. She happily accepts and they are married. They soon have a child. Two years later, Rochester regains the sight of one eye.(www.kxzw8.cn

 

(中文对照)
一天深夜,简•爱被她以前听见过的那种尖叫声惊醒。她打开房门,发现浓烟正从罗切斯特的房间滚滚涌出。他的床已经着火,罗切斯特被简•爱及时唤醒。他阻止她叫醒家里人,并告诉她这火可能是格雷斯•普尔放的,此人患有阵发性的疯病。其余仆人则被告知,火因一根蜡烛倒下而偶然引起。

简•爱感觉到,由于过去某种不可思议的罪孽所产生的恶果,她的雇主正在遭受折磨。她深表同情,并逐渐发现自己爱上了他。然而她的希望遇到挫折,因为罗切斯特开始去邻里参加舞会,并向漂亮但轻浮的布兰奇•英格兰姆献殷勤。在罗切斯特举行于桑菲尔德庄园的一个晚会上,贵族味十足的布兰奇及其朋友以傲慢不逊的态度对待简。简•爱感到她永远无法同那些高雅却势利的人们竞争。 客人们在桑菲尔德庄园逗留期间,罗切斯特接待了一个神秘的来访者――来自西印度群岛的梅森先生。那天晚上,简•爱听见从她上层的那个房间里传来扭打声和呼救声。庄园里的人惊慌失措,罗切斯特使他们镇静下来。但他私下里要求简•爱帮助照料正在流血、失去了知觉的梅森先生。天亮之前,那个负伤的男人被悄悄地带出了庄园宅邸。

此后不久的一天,简正在果园里欣赏仲夏黄昏美景,罗切斯特突然前来找她,向她透露他不久即将结婚。简心里很难过,以为他要娶布兰奇•英格兰姆。她含泪问他怎能指望她在此情形下继续留在桑菲尔德。罗切斯特吻了她,对她说他想娶的就是她。

简婚前充满激动喜悦之情,但在一天晚上受到了惊扰,因为她醒来时十分惶恐地看见,一个陌生的丑女人正在试戴她的婚纱,然后又将它撕成了碎片。罗切斯特安慰她说那只是一个恶梦,但清晨简却发现了被撕破的婚纱碎片。

举行婚礼的那一天,仪式被梅森先生打断。他溜进教堂宣布这桩婚姻不合法,因为罗切斯特还有个活着的妻子。罗切斯特最终被迫吐露真情,他把简带到三楼的那间禁室,简看见一个丑陋可怕的女人,正疯疯癫癫地用四肢在地上爬行。正是她袭击了梅森先生,撕毁了简的婚纱。罗切斯特解释说,这个女人是梅森的姐蛆伯莎,15年前他在牙买加被骗娶了她。她出身于一个尽是疯子和弱智者的家族。精神失常的罗切斯特太太被锁了起来,由格雷斯•普尔看管着,而罗切斯特的婚后生活则不折不扣地犹如在地狱一般痛苦不堪。

简对愤世嫉俗的罗切斯特满怀同情,但意识到此时她必须离开。她身上仅带了少许的钱,在英格兰中部荒原上四处漂泊求职,然而却是徒劳。在即将饿死之际,简终于得到一个名叫圣约翰•里弗斯的牧师及其两个妹妹――玛丽和黛安娜的友善帮助,在他们的照料下恢复了健康。她改名为简•艾略特,并找到一份工作,担任乡村小学女救师。她竭力想忘掉她对罗切斯特的看来毫无希望的爱情。

一天,里弗斯获悉简的一个叔叔约翰•爱最近在马德岛去世,给简留下了两万英镑的遗产。简执意要与里弗斯及其妹妹分享这笔遗产,一个律师发现他们其实是她的表兄妹。圣约翰•里弗斯请求简做他的妻子,与他同去印度,他打算在那里当个传教士。尽管他并不爱她,但他感到她会在他的传教生涯中成为理想的助手。

正当简在考虑这一请求时,她梦见罗切斯特在呼唤她。次日上午,她在附近未能找到他,便回到桑菲尔德庄园。在那儿,她万分震惊地发现,那幢宏大白的庄园宅邸巳被大火焚毁,成了一片废墟。她在当地客店询问了解,得知罗切斯特太太在一天夜里点火烧着了房子。罗切斯特设法把仆人带到安全的地方,然后又冲入熊熊燃烧的屋子抢救他的妻子。但她却躲避他,竟然爬上了屋顶,跳下摔死了。

罗切斯特自己险些没能活着跑出这幢燃烧的房屋。一段楼梯着火倒塌下来,烧瞎了他的双眼,还把他的一只胳膊严重砸伤,不得不被截去。罗切斯特此时郁闷而又孤独地住在附近的芬丁庄园。简急忙赶去看望他。

简回到了罗切斯特身边,他万分欣喜,便恳求她做他的妻子。她愉快地接受了,于是他俩结为伉俪,不久便有了孩子。两年以后,罗切斯特恢复了一只眼睛的视力。

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