The Snow Queen / Снежная каралева — read online. Page 2

English-Belorussian bilingual book

Hans Christian Andersen

The Snow Queen

Ханс Крысціян Андэрсен

Снежная каралева

Then Gerda told her everything, while the old woman shook her head, and said, “Hem-hem;” and when she had finished, Gerda asked if she had not seen little Kay, and the old woman told her he had not passed by that way, but he very likely would come. So she told Gerda not to be sorrowful, but to taste the cherries and look at the flowers; they were better than any picture-book, for each of them could tell a story.

Герда пачала расказваць ёй пра ўсё, а бабуля ківала галавой і паўтарала: «Гм! Гм!» Калі дзяўчынка закончыла, то запыталася ў бабулі, ці не бачыла яна Кая. Тая адказала, што ён яшчэ не праходзіў тут, але, пэўна, пройдзе, таму бедаваць пакуль няма прычыны, няхай Герда лепш пакаштуе вішань, ды палюбуецца кветкамі, што растуць у садзе: яны прыгажэйшыя, чым у любой кніжцы з малюнкамі, і ўсе ўмеюць расказваць казкі.

Then she took Gerda by the hand and led her into the little house, and the old woman closed the door.

Тут бабуля ўзяла Герду за руку, павяла да сябе ў хатку і замкнула дзверы.

The windows were very high, and as the panes were red, blue, and yellow, the daylight shone through them in all sorts of singular colors. On the table stood beautiful cherries, and Gerda had permission to eat as many as she would.

Вокны былі высока ад падлогі і ўсе з рознакаляровых — чырвоных, сініх і жоўтых — шкельцаў; таму і сам пакой быў асветлены нейкім дзівосным вясёлкавым святлом. На стале стаяў кошык з цудоўнымі вішнямі, і Герда магла есці іх колькі хацела.

While she was eating them the old woman combed out her long flaxen ringlets with a golden comb, and the glossy curls hung down on each side of the little round pleasant face, which looked fresh and blooming as a rose.

А пакуль яна ела, бабуля расчэсвала ёй валасы залатым грабянцом. Валасы віліся кучарамі і залатым ззяннем атачалі пекны, ветлівы, круглы, быццам ружа, тварык дзяўчынкі.

“I have long been wishing for a dear little maiden like you,” said the old woman, “and now you must stay with me, and see how happily we shall live together.”

— Даўно мне хацелася мець такую міленькую дзяўчынку, — сказала бабуля. — Вось пабачыш, як добра мы з табою зажывём!

And while she went on combing little Gerda’s hair, she thought less and less about her adopted brother Kay, for the old woman could conjure, although she was not a wicked witch; she conjured only a little for her own amusement, and now, because she wanted to keep Gerda.

І яна працягвала расчэсваць кучары дзяўчынкі, і чым далей часала, тым больш забывала Герда свайго пабраціма Кая — бабуля ўмела чараваць. Ды яна была не злою чараўніцай і чаравала толькі зрэдку, для свайго здавальнення; цяпер жа ёй вельмі захацелася пакінуць у сябе Герду.

Therefore she went into the garden, and stretched out her crutch towards all the rose-trees, beautiful though they were; and they immediately sunk into the dark earth, so that no one could tell where they had once stood.

І вось яна пайшла ў сад, дакранулася кульбай да ўсіх ружавых кустоў, і тыя як стаялі ў пышнай квецені, так усе і пайшлі глыбока-глыбока ў зямлю, і следу ад іх не засталося.

The old woman was afraid that if little Gerda saw roses she would think of those at home, and then remember little Kay, and run away.

Бабуля баялася, што Герда, убачыўшы гэтыя ружы, успомніць пра свае, а там і пра Кая ды і ўцячэ ад яе.

Then she took Gerda into the flower-garden. How fragrant and beautiful it was! Every flower that could be thought of for every season of the year was here in full bloom; no picture-book could have more beautiful colors.

Потым бабуля павяла Герду ў кветнік. Ах, які водар тут быў, якая прыгажосць: самыя розныя кветкі, і на кожную часіну года! На ўсім свеце не знайшлося б кніжкі з малюнкамі больш стракатымі і больш прыгожымі за гэты кветнік.

Gerda jumped for joy, and played till the sun went down behind the tall cherry-trees; then she slept in an elegant bed with red silk pillows, embroidered with colored violets; and then she dreamed as pleasantly as a queen on her wedding day.

Герда скакала ад радасці і гуляла сярод кветак, пакуль сонца не села за высокімі вішнёвымі дрэвамі. Тады яе паклалі ў дзівосную пасцель з чырвонымі шаўковымі пярынкамі, набітымі блакітнымі фіялкамі. Дзяўчынка заснула, і ёй сніліся сны, якія бачыць хіба толькі каралева ў дзень свайго вяселля.

The next day, and for many days after, Gerda played with the flowers in the warm sunshine.

Назаўтра Гердзе зноў дазволілі гуляць у дзівосным кветніку на сонцы. Так прайшло шмат дзён.

She knew every flower, and yet, although there were so many of them, it seemed as if one were missing, but which it was she could not tell.

Герда ведала цяпер кожную кветку ў садзе, але як ні многа іх было, ёй усё ж здавалася, што якогасьці не хапае, толькі якога?

One day, however, as she sat looking at the old woman’s hat with the painted flowers on it, she saw that the prettiest of them all was a rose.

І вось аднойчы яна сядзела і разглядвала бабульчын саламяны капялюш, размаляваны кветкамі, і самай прыгожай з іх была ружа —

The old woman had forgotten to take it from her hat when she made all the roses sink into the earth.

бабуля забылася яе сцерці, калі схавала жывыя ружы пад зямлю.

But it is difficult to keep the thoughts together in everything; one little mistake upsets all our arrangements.

Вось што значыць няўважлівасць!

“What, are there no roses here?” cried Gerda; and she ran out into the garden, and examined all the beds, and searched and searched. There was not one to be found. Then she sat down and wept, and her tears fell just on the place where one of the rose-trees had sunk down. The warm tears moistened the earth, and the rose-tree sprouted up at once, as blooming as when it had sunk. And Gerda embraced it and kissed the roses, and thought of the beautiful roses at home, and, with them, of little Kay.

— Як! Тут няма руж? — сказала Герда і адразу ж пабегла ў сад, шукала іх, шукала, ды так і не знайшла.
Тады дзяўчынка прысела на зямлю і заплакала. Цёплыя слёзы падалі якраз на тое месца, дзе стаяў раней адзін з ружавых кустоў, і як толькі яны змачылі зямлю, куст імгненна вырас з яе, такі ж квітнеючы, як і быў. Абвіла яго ручкамі Герда, пачала цалаваць кветкі і ўспомніла тыя цудоўныя ружы, што квітнелі ў яе дома, а разам з імі і Кая.

“Oh, how I have been detained!” said the little maiden, “I wanted to seek for little Kay. Do you know where he is?” she asked the roses; “do you think he is dead?”

— Як жа я затрымалася! — сказала дзяўчынка. — Мне ж трэба шукаць Кая!.. Вы не ведаеце, дзе ён? — запыталася яна ў руж. — Ці праўда, што ён памёр і не вернецца больш?

And the roses answered, “No, he is not dead. We have been in the ground where all the dead lie; but Kay is not there.”

— Ён не памёр! — адказалі ружы. — Мы ж былі пад зямлёй, дзе ляжаць усе памёршыя, але Кая між іх не было.

“Thank you,” said little Gerda, and then she went to the other flowers, and looked into their little cups, and asked, “Do you know where little Kay is?”

— Дзякуй вам! — сказала Герда і пайшла да іншых кветак, заглядвала ў іх чашачкі і пыталася: — Вы не бачылі, дзе Кай?

But each flower, as it stood in the sunshine, dreamed only of its own little fairy tale of history. Not one knew anything of Kay. Gerda heard many stories from the flowers, as she asked them one after another about him.

Але кожная кветка грэлася на сонейку і думала толькі пра сваю ўласную казку ці гісторыю. Шмат іх наслухалася Герда, але ніводная не сказала ні слова пра Кая.

And what, said the tiger-lily?


“Hark, do you hear the drum?— ‘turn, turn,’—there are only two notes, always, ‘turn, turn.’ Listen to the women’s song of mourning! Hear the cry of the priest! In her long red robe stands the Hindoo widow by the funeral pile. The flames rise around her as she places herself on the dead body of her husband; but the Hindoo woman is thinking of the living one in that circle; of him, her son, who lighted those flames. Those shining eyes trouble her heart more painfully than the flames which will soon consume her body to ashes. Can the fire of the heart be extinguished in the flames of the funeral pile?”


“I don’t understand that at all,” said little Gerda.


“That is my story,” said the tiger-lily.


What, says the convolvulus?


“Near yonder narrow road stands an old knight’s castle; thick ivy creeps over the old ruined walls, leaf over leaf, even to the balcony, in which stands a beautiful maiden. She bends over the balustrades, and looks up the road. No rose on its stem is fresher than she; no apple-blossom, wafted by the wind, floats more lightly than she moves. Her rich silk rustles as she bends over and exclaims, ‘Will he not come?’


“Is it Kay you mean?” asked Gerda.


“I am only speaking of a story of my dream,” replied the flower.


What, said the little snow-drop?


“Between two trees a rope is hanging; there is a piece of board upon it; it is a swing. Two pretty little girls, in dresses white as snow, and with long green ribbons fluttering from their hats, are sitting upon it swinging.


Their brother who is taller than they are, stands in the swing; he has one arm round the rope, to steady himself; in one hand he holds a little bowl, and in the other a clay pipe; he is blowing bubbles. As the swing goes on, the bubbles fly upward, reflecting the most beautiful varying colors.


The last still hangs from the bowl of the pipe, and sways in the wind. On goes the swing; and then a little black dog comes running up. He is almost as light as the bubble, and he raises himself on his hind legs, and wants to be taken into the swing; but it does not stop, and the dog falls; then he barks and gets angry. The children stoop towards him, and the bubble bursts. A swinging plank, a light sparkling foam picture,—that is my story.”


“It may be all very pretty what you are telling me,” said little Gerda, “but you speak so mournfully, and you do not mention little Kay at all.”
What do the hyacinths say?


“There were three beautiful sisters, fair and delicate. The dress of one was red, of the second blue, and of the third pure white. Hand in hand they danced in the bright moonlight, by the calm lake; but they were human beings, not fairy elves.


The sweet fragrance attracted them, and they disappeared in the wood; here the fragrance became stronger. Three coffins, in which lay the three beautiful maidens, glided from the thickest part of the forest across the lake. The fire-flies flew lightly over them, like little floating torches.


Do the dancing maidens sleep, or are they dead? The scent of the flower says that they are corpses. The evening bell tolls their knell.”


“You make me quite sorrowful,” said little Gerda; “your perfume is so strong, you make me think of the dead maidens. Ah! is little Kay really dead then? The roses have been in the earth, and they say no.”


“Cling, clang,” tolled the hyacinth bells. “We are not tolling for little Kay; we do not know him. We sing our song, the only one we know.”


Then Gerda went to the buttercups that were glittering amongst the bright green leaves.

Тады Герда пайшла да дзьмухаўца, які ззяў у зіхоткай зялёнай траве.

“You are little bright suns,” said Gerda; “tell me if you know where I can find my play-fellow.”

— Ты, маленькае яснае сонейка! — сказала яму Герда. — Скажы, ці не ведаеш, дзе мне шукаць майго пабрацімку?

And the buttercups sparkled gayly, and looked again at Gerda. What song could the buttercups sing? It was not about Kay.

Дзьмухавец заззяў яшчэ ярчэй і паглядзеў на дзяўчынку. Якую ж песеньку праспяваў ён ёй? На жаль, ў гэтай песеньцы ні слова не гаварылася пра Кая!

“The bright warm sun shone on a little court, on the first warm day of spring. His bright beams rested on the white walls of the neighboring house; and close by bloomed the first yellow flower of the season, glittering like gold in the sun’s warm ray.

— Быў першы вясновы дзень, сонца грэла і так прыветна свяціла на маленькі дварок. Промні яго слізгацелі па белай сцяне суседняй хаты, і каля самай сцяны паказалася першая жоўценькая кветачка, яна ззяла на сонцы, нібы залатая.

An old woman sat in her arm chair at the house door, and her granddaughter, a poor and pretty servant-maid came to see her for a short visit. When she kissed her grandmother there was gold everywhere: the gold of the heart in that holy kiss; it was a golden morning; there was gold in the beaming sunlight, gold in the leaves of the lowly flower, and on the lips of the maiden.

На двор выйшла пасядзець старая бабуля. Вось вярнулася з гасцей яе ўнучка, бедная служанка, і пацалавала бабулю. Пацалунак дзяўчыны даражэйшы за золата — ён ідзе проста ад сэрца. Золата на яе вуснах, золата ў сэрцы, золата і на небе ў ранішні час!

There, that is my story,” said the buttercup.

Вось і ўсё! — сказаў дзьмухавец.

“My poor old grandmother!” sighed Gerda; “she is longing to see me, and grieving for me as she did for little Kay; but I shall soon go home now, and take little Kay with me. It is no use asking the flowers; they know only their own songs, and can give me no information.”

— Няшчасная мая бабуля! — уздыхнула Герда. — Напэўна, яна сумуе па мне і бядуе, як бедавала па Каю. Але я хутка вярнуся і яго прывяду з сабой. Няма чаго больш і распытваць кветкі — толку ад іх не даб’ешся, яны толькі і расказваюць сваё! —

And then she tucked up her little dress, that she might run faster, but the narcissus caught her by the leg as she was jumping over it; so she stopped and looked at the tall yellow flower, and said, “Perhaps you may know something.” Then she stooped down quite close to the flower, and listened; and what did he say?


“I can see myself, I can see myself,” said the narcissus. “Oh, how sweet is my perfume! Up in a little room with a bow window, stands a little dancing girl, half undressed; she stands sometimes on one leg, and sometimes on both, and looks as if she would tread the whole world under her feet. She is nothing but a delusion.


She is pouring water out of a tea-pot on a piece of stuff which she holds in her hand; it is her bodice. ‘Cleanliness is a good thing,’ she says. Her white dress hangs on a peg; it has also been washed in the tea-pot, and dried on the roof.


She puts it on, and ties a saffron-colored handkerchief round her neck, which makes the dress look whiter. See how she stretches out her legs, as if she were showing off on a stem. I can see myself, I can see myself.”


“What do I care for all that,” said Gerda, “you need not tell me such stuff.” And then she ran to the other end of the garden.

І яна пабегла ў канец саду.

The door was fastened, but she pressed against the rusty latch, and it gave way. The door sprang open, and little Gerda ran out with bare feet into the wide world.

Дзверы былі зачынены, але Герда так доўга хістала іржавую засаўку, што яна паддалася, дзверы адчыніліся, і дзяўчынка так, басаножкай, пабегла па дарозе.

She looked back three times, but no one seemed to be following her. At last she could run no longer, so she sat down to rest on a great stone, and when she looked round she saw that the summer was over, and autumn very far advanced. She had known nothing of this in the beautiful garden, where the sun shone and the flowers grew all the year round.

Разы тры азірнулася назад, але ніхто не гнаўся за ёю. Нарэшце яна стамілася, прысела на камень і агледзелася: лета прайшло, на дварэ была позняя восень. Толькі ў дзівосным бабульчыным садзе, дзе вечна ззяла сонейка і цвілі кветкі ўсіх часін года, гэтага не заўважалася.

“Oh, how I have wasted my time?” said little Gerda; “it is autumn. I must not rest any longer,” and she rose up to go on.

— Божа! Як жа я забавілася! Бо ўжо восень на дварэ! Тут не да адпачынку! — сказала Герда і зноў рушыла ў дарогу.

But her little feet were wounded and sore, and everything around her looked so cold and bleak. The long willow-leaves were quite yellow. The dew-drops fell like water, leaf after leaf dropped from the trees, the sloe-thorn alone still bore fruit, but the sloes were sour, and set the teeth on edge.

Ах, як нылі яе бедныя стомленыя ножкі! Як холадна, сыра было навокал! Доўгае лісце на вербах зусім пажаўцела, туман асядаў на яго буйнымі кроплямі і сцякаў на зямлю; лісце так і сыпалася. Адзін толькі цярноўнік стаяў увесь пакрыты даўкімі, аскомістымі ягадамі.

Oh, how dark and weary the whole world appeared!

Якім шэрым, панурым здаваўся ўвесь свет!

Fourth Story: The Prince and Princess

Гісторыя чацвертая. Прынц і прынцэса

“Gerda was obliged to rest again, and just opposite the place where she sat, she saw a great crow come hopping across the snow toward her. He stood looking at her for some time, and then he wagged his head and said, “Caw, caw; good-day, good-day.”

Давялося Гердзе зноў прысесці адпачыць. На снезе проста перад ёю скакаў вялікі крумкач. Доўга глядзеў ён на дзяўчынку, ківаючы ёй галавой, і нарэшце прамовіў:
— Кар-кар! Добры дзень!

He pronounced the words as plainly as he could, because he meant to be kind to the little girl; and then he asked her where she was going all alone in the wide world.

Выгаворваць па-чалавечы чысцей ён не мог, але жадаў дзяўчынцы дабра і запытаўся ў яе, куды гэта яна брыдзе па белым свеце адзінюткая.

The word alone Gerda understood very well, and knew how much it expressed. So then she told the crow the whole story of her life and adventures, and asked him if he had seen little Kay.

Што такое «адзінюткая», Герда ведала вельмі добра, сама на сабе зведала. Расказаўшы крумкачу пра ўсё сваё жыццё, дзяўчынка пацікавілася, ці не бачыў ён Кая.

The crow nodded his head very gravely, and said, “Perhaps I have—it may be.”

Крумкач задумліва пакруціў галавой і сказаў:
— Магчыма! Магчыма!

“No! Do you think you have?” cried little Gerda, and she kissed the crow, and hugged him almost to death with joy.

— Як! Праўда? — усклікнула дзяўчынка і ледзь не задушыла крумкача — так моцна яна яго пацалавала.

“Gently, gently,” said the crow. “I believe I know. I think it may be little Kay; but he has certainly forgotten you by this time for the princess.”

— Цішэй, цішэй! — сказаў крумкач. — Думаю, гэта быў твой Кай. Але цяпер ён, пэўна, забыўся пра цябе са сваёю прынцэсай!

“Does he live with a princess?” asked Gerda.

— Хіба ён жыве ў прынцэсы? — спытала Герда.

“Yes, listen,” replied the crow, “but it is so difficult to speak your language. If you understand the crows’ language1 then I can explain it better. Do you?”

— А вось паслухай, — сказаў крумкач. — Толькі мне вельмі цяжка гаварыць па-вашаму. Калі б ты разумела па-крумкачынаму, я б паведаў табе пра ўсё значна лепш.

“No, I have never learnt it,” said Gerda, “but my grandmother understands it, and used to speak it to me. I wish I had learnt it.”

— Не, гэтаму мяне не вучылі, — сказала Герда. — Як шкада!

“It does not matter,” answered the crow; “I will explain as well as I can, although it will be very badly done;” and he told her what he had heard.

— Але нічога, — сказаў крумкач. — Раскажу, як здолею, хоць і дрэнна.
І ён расказаў усё, што ведаў.

“In this kingdom where we now are,” said he, “there lives a princess, who is so wonderfully clever that she has read all the newspapers in the world, and forgotten them too, although she is so clever.

— У каралеўстве, дзе мы з табой знаходзімся, ёсць прынцэса, такая разумніца, што і перадаць нельга! Прачытала ўсе газеты на свеце і забыла ўсё, што ў іх прачытала, — вось якая разумніца!

A short time ago, as she was sitting on her throne, which people say is not such an agreeable seat as is often supposed, she began to sing a song which commences in these words:
‘Why should I not be married?’

Аднаго разу неяк сядзіць яна на троне — а радасці ў гэтым не надта шмат, як людзі кажуць, — і напявае песеньку: «Чаму б мне не выйсці замуж?»

‘Why not indeed?’ said she, and so she determined to marry if she could find a husband who knew what to say when he was spoken to, and not one who could only look grand, for that was so tiresome.

«А то і на самай справе!» — падумала яна, і ёй захацелася замуж. Ды мужам яна хацела выбраць такога чалавека, які б умеў адказваць, калі з ім размаўляюць, а не такога, які ўмеў бы толькі важнічаць, — гэта ж так сумна!

Then she assembled all her court ladies together at the beat of the drum, and when they heard of her intentions they were very much pleased. ‘We are so glad to hear it,’ said they, ‘we were talking about it ourselves the other day.’ You may believe that every word I tell you is true,” said the crow, “for I have a tame sweetheart who goes freely about the palace, and she told me all this.”

І вось барабанным боем склікаюць усіх прыдворных дам, аб’яўляюць ім волю прынцэсы. Як яны ўсе ўзрадаваліся! «Вось гэта нам падабаецца! — кажуць. — Мы і самі нядаўна аб гэтым думалі!» Усё гэта шчырая праўда! — дадаў крумкач. — У мяне пры двары ёсць нявеста — ручная варона, ад яе якраз я і ведаю ўсё гэта.

Of course his sweetheart was a crow, for “birds of a feather flock together,” and one crow always chooses another crow.


“Newspapers were published immediately, with a border of hearts, and the initials of the princess among them. They gave notice that every young man who was handsome was free to visit the castle and speak with the princess; and those who could reply loud enough to be heard when spoken to, were to make themselves quite at home at the palace; but the one who spoke best would be chosen as a husband for the princess.

На другі дзень усе газеты выйшлі з паласой з сэрцаў і з вензелямі прынцэсы. У газетах было абвешчана, што кожны малады чалавек прыемнага выгляду можа прыйсці ў палац і паразмаўляць з прынцэсай; таго ж, хто будзе трымацца проста, як дома, і акажацца найбольш красамоўным, прынцэса выбера за мужа.

Yes, yes, you may believe me, it is all as true as I sit here,” said the crow. “The people came in crowds. There was a great deal of crushing and running about, but no one succeeded either on the first or second day.

Так, так! — паўтарыў крумкач. — Усё гэта такая ж праўда, як тое, што я сяджу тут перад табою. Народ валам паваліў у палац, пачалася цісканіна і таўкатня, але ўсё без карысці ні ў першы, ні на другі дзень.

They could all speak very well while they were outside in the streets, but when they entered the palace gates, and saw the guards in silver uniforms, and the footmen in their golden livery on the staircase, and the great halls lighted up, they became quite confused. And when they stood before the throne on which the princess sat, they could do nothing but repeat the last words she had said; and she had no particular wish to hear her own words over again.

На вуліцы ўсе жаніхі размаўляюць выдатна, а варта ім пераступіць парог палаца, убачыць гвардыю ў срэбры ды лакеяў у золаце і ўвайсці ў вялізныя, залітыя святлом залы — і бянтэжацца. Падыдуць да трона, дзе сядзіць прынцэса, ды і паўтараюць за ёю яе ж словы, а ёй зусім не гэта было патрэбна.

It was just as if they had all taken something to make them sleepy while they were in the palace, for they did not recover themselves nor speak till they got back again into the street.

Ну, быццам на іх чары напускалі, апойвалі дурманам! А выйдуць за вароты — зноў вяртаецца да іх дар слова.

There was quite a long line of them reaching from the town-gate to the palace. I went myself to see them,” said the crow. “They were hungry and thirsty, for at the palace they did not get even a glass of water.

Ад самых варот да дзвярэй цягнуўся доўгі-доўгі хвост жаніхоў. Я сам там быў і бачыў.

Some of the wisest had taken a few slices of bread and butter with them, but they did not share it with their neighbors; they thought if they went in to the princess looking hungry, there would be a better chance for themselves.”


“But Kay! tell me about little Kay!” said Gerda, “was he amongst the crowd?”

— Ну, а Кай жа, Кай? — спытала Герда. — Калі ж ён з’явіўся? І ён прыйшоў сватацца?

“Stop a bit, we are just coming to him. It was on the third day, there came marching cheerfully along to the palace a little personage, without horses or carriage, his eyes sparkling like yours; he had beautiful long hair, but his clothes were very poor.”

— Пачакай! Пачакай! Вось мы якраз дайшлі і да яго!На трэці дзень з’явіўся невялічкі чалавечак, не ў карэце, не вярхом, а проста пяшком, і напрасткі ў палац. Вочы ззяюць, як твае, валасы доўгія, вось толькі апрануты бедна.

“That was Kay!” said Gerda joyfully. “Oh, then I have found him;” and she clapped her hands.

— Гэта Кай! — узрадавалася Герда. — Я знайшла яго! — І яна запляскала ў ладкі.

“He had a little knapsack on his back,” added the crow.

— За плячыма ў яго была торба, — працягваў крумкач.

“No, it must have been his sledge,” said Gerda; “for he went away with it.”

— Не, гэта, пэўна, былі яго санкі! — сказала Герда. — Ён пайшоў з дому з санкамі.

“It may have been so,” said the crow; “I did not look at it very closely. But I know from my tame sweetheart that he passed through the palace gates, saw the guards in their silver uniform, and the servants in their liveries of gold on the stairs, but he was not in the least embarrassed.

— Магчыма і так! — сказаў крумкач. — Я не асабліва прыглядваўся. Дык вось, мая нявеста расказвала, як увайшоў ён у вароты палаца і ўбачыў гвардыю ў срэбры, а па ўсёй лесвіцы лакеяў у золаце, то ніколькі не разгубіўся, толькі галавой кіўнуў і сказаў:

‘It must be very tiresome to stand on the stairs,’ he said. ‘I prefer to go in.’

«Сумненька, відаць, стаяць тут на лесвіцы, увайду ж я лепш у пакоі!»

The rooms were blazing with light. Councillors and ambassadors walked about with bare feet, carrying golden vessels; it was enough to make any one feel serious. His boots creaked loudly as he walked, and yet he was not at all uneasy.”

А ўсе залы заліты святлом. Тайныя саветнікі і іх правасхадзіцельствы пахаджваюць без ботаў, залатыя талеркі са стравамі разносяць, — больш урачыста і немагчыма. Боты яго жахліва рыпяць, а яму хоць бы што.

“It must be Kay,” said Gerda, “I know he had new boots on, I have heard them creak in grandmother’s room.”

— Гэта, напэўна, Кай! — усклікнула Герда. — Я ведаю, ён быў у новых ботах. Я сама чула, як яны рыпелі, калі ён прыходзіў да бабулі.

“They really did creak,” said the crow, “yet he went boldly up to the princess herself, who was sitting on a pearl as large as a spinning wheel, and all the ladies of the court were present with their maids, and all the cavaliers with their servants; and each of the maids had another maid to wait upon her, and the cavaliers’ servants had their own servants, as well as a page each. They all stood in circles round the princess, and the nearer they stood to the door, the prouder they looked.

— Так, яны вельмі рыпелі, — працягваў крумкач. — Але ён смела падышоў да прынцэсы. Яна сядзела на жамчужыне памерам з кола калаўрота, а вакол стаялі прыдворныя дамы са сваімі служанкамі і служанкамі служанак і кавалеры са слугамі і слугамі слуг, а ў тых зноў прыслужнікі. Чым бліжэй хтосьці стаяў да дзвярэй, тым вышэй задзіраў нос.

The servants’ pages, who always wore slippers, could hardly be looked at, they held themselves up so proudly by the door.”

На прыслужніка слугі, які прыслужваў слузе і стаяў каля самых дзвярэй, нельга было і зірнуць без дрыжыкаў — такі ён быў важны!

“It must be quite awful,” said little Gerda, “but did Kay win the princess?”

— Ну і страхоцце ж! — сказала Герда. — А Кай усё ж такі ажаніўся з прынцэсай?

“If I had not been a crow,” said he, “I would have married her myself, although I am engaged. He spoke just as well as I do, when I speak the crows’ language, so I heard from my tame sweetheart.

— Калі б я не быў крумкачом, я б сам ажаніўся з ёю, хоць я і заручаны. Ён завёў з прынцэсай размову і размаўляў не горш, чым я па-крумкачынаму, — так, прынамсі, сказала мне мая нарачоная.

He was quite free and agreeable and said he had not come to woo the princess, but to hear her wisdom; and he was as pleased with her as she was with him.”

Трымаўся ён свабодна і міла і заявіў, што прыйшоў не сватацца, а толькі паслухаць разумную прынцэсу. Ну і вось, яна яму спадабалася, ён ёй таксама.

“Oh, certainly that was Kay,” said Gerda, “he was so clever; he could work mental arithmetic and fractions. Oh, will you take me to the palace?”

— Так-так, гэта Кай! — сказала Герда. — Ён жа такі разумны! Ён ведаў усе чатыры дзеянні арыфметыкі, ды яшчэ з дробамі! Ах, правядзі ж мяне ў палац!

“It is very easy to ask that,” replied the crow, “but how are we to manage it? However, I will speak about it to my tame sweetheart, and ask her advice; for I must tell you it will be very difficult to gain permission for a little girl like you to enter the palace.”

— Лёгка сказаць, — адказаў крумкач, — цяжка зрабіць. Пачакай, я пагавару з маёй нявестай, яна што-небудзь прыдумае і параіць нам. Ты думаеш, што цябе вось так прама і пусцяць у палац? Не, не вельмі і пускаюць такіх дзяўчынак!

“Oh, yes; but I shall gain permission easily,” said Gerda, “for when Kay hears that I am here, he will come out and fetch me in immediately.”

— Мяне пусцяць! — сказала Гёрда. — Калі Кай пачуе, што я тут, ён адразу ж прыбяжыць па мяне.

“Wait for me here by the palings,” said the crow, wagging his head as he flew away.

— Пачакай мяне тут каля агароджы, — сказаў крумкач, страсянуў галавой і паляцеў.

It was late in the evening before the crow returned. “Caw, caw,” he said, “she sends you greeting, and here is a little roll which she took from the kitchen for you; there is plenty of bread there, and she thinks you must be hungry.

Вярнуўся ён ужо зусім пад вечар і закаркаў:
— Кар! Кар! Мая нявеста шле табе тысячу паклонаў і вось гэту булачку. Яна ўкрала яе на кухні — там іх многа, а ты, пэўна, галодная!..

It is not possible for you to enter the palace by the front entrance. The guards in silver uniform and the servants in gold livery would not allow it. But do not cry, we will manage to get you in; my sweetheart knows a little back-staircase that leads to the sleeping apartments, and she knows where to find the key.”

Ну, у палац табе не трапіць: ты ж босая — гвардыя ў срэбры і лакеі ў золаце нізашто не прапусцяць цябе. Але не плач, ты ўсё ж такі будзеш там. Нявеста мая ведае, як прайсці ў спальню прынцэсы з чорнага ходу і дзе дастаць ключ.

Then they went into the garden through the great avenue, where the leaves were falling one after another, and they could see the light in the palace being put out in the same manner. And the crow led little Gerda to the back door, which stood ajar.

І вось яны ўвайшлі ў сад, пайшлі па доўгіх алеях, дзе адно за адным падала асенняе лісце, і калі агні ў палацы патухлі, крумкач правёў дзяўчынку ў прачыненыя дзверы.

Oh! how little Gerda’s heart beat with anxiety and longing; it was just as if she were going to do something wrong, and yet she only wanted to know where little Kay was.

О, як білася сэрцайка Герды ад страху і нецярплівасці! Нібы яна збіралася зрабіць штосьці дрэннае, а яна ж толькі хацела даведацца, ці не тут яе Кай!

“It must be he,” she thought, “with those clear eyes, and that long hair.” She could fancy she saw him smiling at her, as he used to at home, when they sat among the roses.

Так, так, ён, пэўна, тут! Герда так выразна ўяўляла сабе яго разумныя вочы, доўгія валасы, і як ён усміхаўся ёй, калі яны, бывала, сядзелі побач пад кустамі ружаў.