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2021-04-24 12:40:01外语类访问手机版481



  The shops of London are as well furnished as thoese of Pekin. Those of London have a picture hung at their door, informing the passengers what they have to sell, as those at Pekin have a board to assure the buyer that they have no intention to cheat him.

  I was this morning to buy silk for a nightcap: immediately upon entering the mercer's shop, the master and his two men, with wigs plastered with powder, appeared to ask my commands. They were certainly the civilest people alive; if I but looked, they flew to the place where I cast my eye; every motion of mine sent them running round the whole shop for my satisfaction. I informed them that I wanted what was good, and they showed me not less than forty pieces, and each was better than the former the prettiest patern in nature, and the fitterst in the world for nightcaps. "My very good friend," said I to the mercer. "You must not pretend to instruct me in silks; I know these in particular to be no better than your mere flimsy Bungees.----"That may be," cired the mercer, who, I afterwards found, had never contradicted a man in his life; " I cannot pretend to say but they may; but I can assure you, my Lady Trail has had a sack from this piece this very morning."-"But, friend," said I, "though my lady has chosen a sack from it, I see no necessity that I should chosen a sack from it, I see no necessity that I should wear it for a nightcap.----"That may be," returned he again, "Yet what becomes a pretty lady, will at any time look well on a handsome gentleman." This short compliment was thrown in so very seasonably upon my ugly face, that even though I disliked the silk, I desired him to cut me off the pattern of a nightcap.

  While this business was consigned to his journeymen, the master himself took down some pieces of silk still finer than any I had yet seen, and spreading them before me. "There, " cries he, "there's beauty; my Loard Snakeskin has bespoke the fellow to this for the birthnight this very morning; it would look charmingly in waistcoats." ---"But I don't want a waistcoat." replied I. "Not want a waistcoat!" returned the mercer, "then I would advise you to buy one; when waistcoats are wanted, you may depend upon it they will come dear. Always buy before you want and you ae sure to be welll used, as they say in Chpeapside." There was so much justice in his advice, that I could not refuse taking it; besides, the silk, which was really a good one, increased the temptation; so I gave orders for that too.

  As I was waiting to have my bargains measured and cut, which, I know not how, they executed but slowly , during the interval the mercer entertained me with ther modern manner of some of the nobility receiving company in their morning gowns; "Perhaps, Sir," adds he, "you have a mind to see what kind of silk is universally worn." Without waiting for my reply, he spreads a piece before me, which might be rechoned beautiful even in China. "If the nobility," continues he, "were to know I sold this to any under a Right Honourable, I should certainly lose their custom; you see, my lord, it is at once rich, tasty, and quite the thing."---" I am no lord," interrupted I.--"I beg pardon." cried he, "but be pleased to remember, when you intend buying a morning gown, that you had an offer from me of something worth money. Conscience, sir,conscience is my way of dealing; you may buy a morning gown now, or you may stay till they become dearer and less fashionable; but it is not my business to advise." In short, most reverened Fum, he persuaded me to buy a morning gown also, and would probably have persuaded me to buy a morning gown also, and would probably have persuaded me to have bought half the goods in his shop, if I had stayed long enough, or was furnished with sufficient money.

  Upon returning home, I could not help reflectiong, with some astonishment, how this very man, with such a confined education and capacity, was yet capable of turning me as he thought proper, and moulding me to his inclinations! I know he was only answering his own purpose, even while he attempted to appear solicitous about mine; yet, by a voluntary infatuation, a sort of passion, compounded of vanity and good-nature, I walked into the snare wtih my open eyes open, and put myself to future pain in order to give him immediate pleasure. The wisdom of the ignorant somewhat resembles the instinct of animals; it is diffused in but a very narrow sphere, but within that circle it acts with vigor, uniformity and success.




  今天头午我去买做睡帽的丝绸。一踏进店门,头戴敷粉假发的店主和两个伙计赶忙迎上来,询问我的需求。他们一定是世界上最文明最礼貌的人了;只要我稍看一眼,他们便飞奔到目光所落之处;我的一举一动让他们在店里团团转,去探寻我想要之物。我说我要上等料子,他们马上拿来不下四十种。每一种都比前一种要好,都是天底下最漂亮的图案,世界上最适合做睡帽的材料。"我说朋友,"我对店主说," 不必向我兜您的售丝绸知识了,这些明明连你那些不结实的本吉丝都不如。"---"这有可能,"店主叫道,据我后来所知,这个人一生都没顶过谁,"我也不能硬说这不可能;但我可以告诉您,就今天上午,翠莱夫人还买了一袋这种料子。""但是朋友,"我说,"翠莱夫人买了不见得我就非得买它来做睡帽吧?" "那倒是,但一位夫人穿起来漂亮的东西,在一位英俊的先生身上也总会不错的吧!"这简短的恭维适时地向我不雅的面孔扑来,尽管不喜欢那丝绸,我还是让他为我剪下睡帽所需的料子。

  把这活计交给伙计之后,店主拿出比刚才所看的都要好的一匹丝绸,在我面前展开来。"瞧,多漂亮; 今早斯耐克斯金爵爷刚为自己的生日晚会预定了这种材料。这做件背心可太妙了。" "但我不需要背心。"我答到。"不需要? 那我可要劝您买一件了;等到人人都想要背心时,价格保险就涨上去了。套用吉普赛那地方的一句话,不要等到用到了再去买。" 他的话听起来蛮有道理的,我都不好意思拒绝。而且那丝绸也的确不错,这也增加了不少诱惑。于是我就订了一块。

  我等着他们为我裁量丝绸,但不知为何,他们的动作总是慢腾腾的。就在这工夫,店主又与我谈起如今一些贵族喜爱穿睡袍见客的风尚。"或许,您也想看看现在人们都在穿的绸缎" 不等我回答,他早已把面料摊在我面前。这料子就是在中国也算得上考究了。 " 如果贵族们知道我把这料子卖给身份不符的人,"他继续道,"我会失去这些老主顾的。爵爷,您瞧,这料子真是非常华丽非常有品味,货真价实呀!"---"我不是什么爵爷,"我打断他的话。"真不好意思,"他喊道,"但如果您打算做一件睡袍的话,一定要记得我这里的货物可是的物有所值的。良心啊,先生,良心就是我的.生意经。您可以现在买一件睡袍,也可以等它贵了再来买,这都由您,我也不能劝您。" 总之,敬爱的福沫先生,他说得我又买了一件睡衣的料子。如果我再呆下去或者口袋里的钱再多一些,他可能会让我把半个店都买下来。

  回家之后,我不禁思索起来,吃惊地发现,一个缺乏教育,能力有限的人居然使我任由他摆布,玩弄于股掌。 我知道,即使他对我百般殷勤,也只是想满足自己的私欲;然而,由于自己的糊涂,由于虚荣与善良渗杂的性情,我眼睁睁地走进他们的圈套,用我未来之痛博得他们一时之乐。无知者的智慧有点像动物的本能;它只存在于狭小的领域,但是只要在那个范围之内,它又猛又准,所向披靡。