The Adventure of the Speckled Band花斑帶之謎 (二)
文章來源:未知 文章作者:enread 發布時間:2020-04-26 05:43 字體: [ ]  進入論壇
"When Dr. Roylott was in India he married my mother, Mrs. Stoner,
the young widow of Major-General Stoner, of the Bengal Artillery1.
My sister Julia and I were twins, and we were only two years old
at the time of my mother's re-marriage. She had a considerable
sum of money--not less than 1000 pounds a year--and this she
bequeathed to Dr. Roylott entirely2 while we resided with him,
with a provision that a certain annual sum should be allowed to
each of us in the event of our marriage. Shortly after our return
to England my mother died--she was killed eight years ago in a
railway accident near Crewe. Dr. Roylott then abandoned his
attempts to establish himself in practice in London and took us
to live with him in the old ancestral house at Stoke Moran. The
money which my mother had left was enough for all our wants, and
there seemed to be no obstacle to our happiness.
"But a terrible change came over our stepfather about this time.
Instead of making friends and exchanging visits with our
neighbors, who had at first been overjoyed to see a Roylott of
Stoke Moran back in the old family seat, he shut himself up in
his house and seldom came out save to indulge in ferocious3
quarrels with whoever might cross his path. Violence of temper
approaching to mania4 has been hereditary5 in the men of the
family, and in my stepfather's case it had, I believe, been
intensified6 by his long residence in the tropics. A series of
disgraceful brawls7 took place, two of which ended in the
police-court, until at last he became the terror of the village,
and the folks would fly at his approach, for he is a man of
immense strength, and absolutely uncontrollable in his anger.
"Last week he hurled8 the local blacksmith over a parapet into a
stream, and it was only by paying over all the money which I
could gather together that I was able to avert9 another public
exposure. He had no friends at all save the wandering gypsies,
and he would give these vagabonds leave to encamp upon the few
acres of bramble-covered land which represent the family estate,
and would accept in return the hospitality of their tents,
wandering away with them sometimes for weeks on end. He has a
passion also for Indian animals, which are sent over to him by a
correspondent, and he has at this moment a cheetah10 and a baboon11,
which wander freely over his grounds and are feared by the
villagers almost as much as their master.
"You can imagine from what I say that my poor sister Julia and I
had no great pleasure in our lives. No servant would stay with
us, and for a long time we did all the work of the house. She was
but thirty at the time of her death, and yet her hair had already
begun to whiten, even as mine has."
"Your sister is dead, then?"
"She died just two years ago, and it is of her death that I wish
to speak to you. You can understand that, living the life which I
have described, we were little likely to see anyone of our own
age and position. We had, however, an aunt, my mother's maiden12
sister, Miss Honoria Westphail, who lives near Harrow, and we
were occasionally allowed to pay short visits at this lady's
house. Julia went there at Christmas two years ago, and met there
a half-pay major of marines, to whom she became engaged. My
stepfather learned of the engagement when my sister returned and
offered no objection to the marriage; but wlthin a fortnight of
the day which had been fixed13 for the wedding, the terrible event
occurred which has deprived me of my only companion."
Sherlock Holmes had been leaning back in his chair with his eyes
closed and his head sunk in a cushion, but he half opened hls
lids now and glanced across at his visitor.
"Pray be precise as to details," said he.
"It is easy for me to be so, for every event of that dreadful
time is seared into my memory. The manor-house is, as I have
already said, very old, and only one wing is now inhabited. The
bedrooms in this wing are on the ground floor, the sitting-rooms
being in the central block of the buildings. Of these bedrooms
the first is Dr. Roylott's, the second my sister's, and the third
my own. There is no communication between them, but they all open
out into the same corridor. Do I make myself plain?"
"The windows of the three rooms open out upon the lawn. That
fatal night Dr. Roylott had gone to his room early, though we
knew that he had not retired15 to rest, for my sister was troubled
by the smell of the strong Indian cigars which it was his custom
to smoke. She left her room, therefore, and came into mine, where
she sat for some time, chatting about her approaching wedding. At
eleven o'clock she rose to leave me, but she paused at the door
and looked back.
"'Tell me, Helen,' said she, 'have you ever heard anyone whistle
in the dead of the night?'
"'Never,' said I.
"'I suppose that you could not possibly whistle, yourself, in
your sleep?'
"'Certainly not. But why?'
"'Because during the last few nights I have always, about three
in the morning, heard a low, clear whistle. I am a light sleeper16,
and it has awakened17 me. I cannot tell where it came from perhaps
from the next room, perhaps from the lawn. I thought that I would
just ask you whether you had heard it.'
"'No, I have not. It must be those wretched gypsies in the
"'Very likely. And yet if it were on the lawn, I wonder that you
did not hear it also.'
"'Ah, but I sleep more heavily than you.'
"'Well, it is of no great consequence, at any rate.' She smiled
back at me, closed my door, and a few moments later I heard her
key turn in the lock."
"Indeed," said Holmes. "Was it your custom always to lock
yourselves in at night?"
"And why?"
"I think that I mentioned to you that the doctor kept a cheetah
and a baboon. We had no feeling of security unless our doors were
"Quite so. Pray proceed with your statement."
"I could not sleep that night. A vague feeling of impending19
misfortune impressed me. My sister and I, you will recollect20,
were twins, and you know how subtle are the links which bind21 two
souls which are so closely allied22. It was a wild night. The wind
was howling outside, and the rain was beating and splashing
against the windows. Suddenly, amid all the hubbub23 of the gale24,
there burst forth25 the wild scream of a terrified woman. I knew
that it was my sister's voice. I sprang from my bed, wrapped a
shawl round me, and rushed into the corridor. As I opened my door
I seemed to hear a low whistle, such as my sister described, and
a few moments later a clanging sound, as if a mass of metal had
fallen. As I ran down the passage, my sister's door was unlocked,
and revolved26 slowly upon its hinges. I stared at it
horror-stricken, not knowing what was about to issue from it. By
the light of the corridor-lamp I saw my sister appear at the
opening, her face blanched27 with terror, her hands groping for
help, her whole figure swaying to and fro like that of a
drunkard. I ran to her and threw my arms round her, but at that
moment her knees seemed to give way and she fell to the ground.
She writhed28 as one who is in terrible pain, and her limbs were
dreadfully convulsed. At first I thought that she had not
recognized me, but as I bent29 over her she suddenly shrieked30 out
in a voice which I shall never forget, 'Oh, my God! Helen! It was
the band! The speckled band!' There was something else which she
would fain have said, and she stabbed with her finger into the
air in the direction of the doctor's room, but a fresh convulsion
seized her and choked her words. I rushed out, calling loudly for
my stepfather, and I met him hastening from his room in his
dressing-gown. When he reached my sister's side she was
unconscious, and though he poured brandy down her throat and sent
for medical aid from the village, all efforts were in vain, for
she slowly sank and died without having recovered her
consciousness. Such was the dreadful end of my beloved sister."
"One moment," said Holmes, "are you sure about this whistle and
metallic31 sound? Could you swear to it?"
"That was what the county coroner asked me at the inquiry32. It is
my strong impression that I heard it, and yet, among the crash of
the gale and the creaking of an old house, I may possibly have
been deceived."
"Was your sister dressed?"
"No, she was in her night-dress. In her right hand was found the
charred33 stump34 of a match, and in her left a match-box."
"Showing that she had struck a light and looked about her when
the alarm took place. That is important. And what conclusions did
the coroner come to?"
"He investigated the case with great care, for Dr. Roylott's
conduct had long been notorious in the county, but he was unable
to find any satisfactory cause of death. My evidence showed that
the door had been fastened upon the inner side, and the windows
were blocked by old-fashioned shutters35 with broad iron bars,
which were secured every night. The walls were carefully sounded,
and were shown to be quite solid all round, and the flooring was
also thoroughly36 examined, with the same result. The chimney is
wide, but is barred up by four large staples37. It is certain,
therefore, that my sister was quite alone when she met her end.
Besides, there were no marks of any violence upon her."
"How about poison?"
"The doctors examined her for it, but without success."
"What do you think that this unfortunate lady died of, then?"
"It is my belief that she died of pure fear and nervous shock,
though what it was that frightened her I cannot imagine."
"Were there gypsies in the plantation at the time?"
"Yes, there are nearly always some there."
"Ah, and what did you gather from this allusion38 to a band--a
speckled band?"
"Sometimes I have thought that it was merely the wild talk of
delirium39, sometimes that it may have referred to some band of
people, perhaps to these very gypsies in the plantation. I do not
know whether the spotted40 handkerchiefs which so many of them wear
over their heads might have suggested the strange adjective which
she used."
Holmes shook his head like a man who is far from being satisfied.
"These are very deep waters," said he; "pray go on with your


1 artillery 5vmzA     
  • This is a heavy artillery piece.這是一門重炮。
  • The artillery has more firepower than the infantry.炮兵火力比步兵大。
2 entirely entirely     
  • The fire was entirely caused by their neglect of duty. 那場火災完全是由于他們失職而引起的。
  • His life was entirely given up to the educational work. 他的一生統統獻給了教育工作。
3 ferocious ZkNxc     
  • The ferocious winds seemed about to tear the ship to pieces.狂風仿佛要把船撕成碎片似的。
  • The ferocious panther is chasing a rabbit.那只兇猛的豹子正追趕一只兔子。
4 mania 9BWxu     
  • Football mania is sweeping the country.足球熱正風靡全國。
  • Collecting small items can easily become a mania.收藏零星物品往往容易變成一種癖好。
5 hereditary fQJzF     
  • The Queen of England is a hereditary ruler.英國女王是世襲的統治者。
  • In men,hair loss is hereditary.男性脫發屬于遺傳。
6 intensified 4b3b31dab91d010ec3f02bff8b189d1a     
v.(使)增強, (使)加劇( intensify的過去式和過去分詞 )
  • Violence intensified during the night. 在夜間暴力活動加劇了。
  • The drought has intensified. 旱情加劇了。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
7 brawls 8e504d56fe58f40de679f058c14d0107     
吵架,打架( brawl的名詞復數 )
  • Whatever brawls disturb the street, there should be peace at home. 街上無論多么喧鬧,家中應有寧靜。
  • I got into brawls in the country saloons near my farm. 我在離我農場不遠的鄉下沙龍里和別人大吵大鬧。
8 hurled 16e3a6ba35b6465e1376a4335ae25cd2     
v.猛投,用力擲( hurl的過去式和過去分詞 );大聲叫罵
  • He hurled a brick through the window. 他往窗戶里扔了塊磚。
  • The strong wind hurled down bits of the roof. 大風把屋頂的瓦片刮了下來。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
9 avert 7u4zj     
  • He managed to avert suspicion.他設法避嫌。
  • I would do what I could to avert it.我會盡力去避免發生這種情況。
10 cheetah 0U0yS     
  • The cheetah is generally credited as the world's fastest animal.獵豹被公認是世界上跑得最快的動物。
  • The distribution of the cheetah ranges from Africa to Central Asia.印度豹的足跡遍及從非洲到中亞的廣大地區。
11 baboon NuNzc     
  • A baboon is a large monkey that lives in Africa.狒狒是一種生活在非洲的大猴子。
  • As long as the baboon holds on to what it wants,it's trapped.只要狒狒緊抓住想要的東西不放手,它就會被牢牢困住。
12 maiden yRpz7     
  • The prince fell in love with a fair young maiden.王子愛上了一位年輕美麗的少女。
  • The aircraft makes its maiden flight tomorrow.這架飛機明天首航。
13 fixed JsKzzj     
  • Have you two fixed on a date for the wedding yet?你們倆選定婚期了嗎?
  • Once the aim is fixed,we should not change it arbitrarily.目標一旦確定,我們就不應該隨意改變。
14 perfectly 8Mzxb     
  • The witnesses were each perfectly certain of what they said.證人們個個對自己所說的話十分肯定。
  • Everything that we're doing is all perfectly above board.我們做的每件事情都是光明正大的。
15 retired Njhzyv     
  • The old man retired to the country for rest.這位老人下鄉休息去了。
  • Many retired people take up gardening as a hobby.許多退休的人都以從事園藝為嗜好。
16 sleeper gETyT     
  • I usually go up to London on the sleeper. 我一般都乘臥車去倫敦。
  • But first he explained that he was a very heavy sleeper. 但首先他解釋說自己睡覺很沉。
17 awakened de71059d0b3cd8a1de21151c9166f9f0     
v.(使)醒( awaken的過去式和過去分詞 );(使)覺醒;弄醒;(使)意識到
  • She awakened to the sound of birds singing. 她醒來聽到鳥的叫聲。
  • The public has been awakened to the full horror of the situation. 公眾完全意識到了這一狀況的可怕程度。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
18 plantation oOWxz     
  • His father-in-law is a plantation manager.他岳父是個種植園經營者。
  • The plantation owner has possessed himself of a vast piece of land.這個種植園主把大片土地占為己有。
19 impending 3qHzdb     
a.imminent, about to come or happen
  • Against a background of impending famine, heavy fighting took place. 即將發生饑荒之時,嚴重的戰亂爆發了。
  • The king convoke parliament to cope with the impending danger. 國王召開國會以應付迫近眉睫的危險。
20 recollect eUOxl     
  • He tried to recollect things and drown himself in them.他極力回想過去的事情而沉浸于回憶之中。
  • She could not recollect being there.她回想不起曾經到過那兒。
21 bind Vt8zi     
  • I will let the waiter bind up the parcel for you.我讓服務生幫你把包裹包起來。
  • He wants a shirt that does not bind him.他要一件不使他覺得過緊的襯衫。
22 allied iLtys     
  • Britain was allied with the United States many times in history.歷史上英國曾多次與美國結盟。
  • Allied forces sustained heavy losses in the first few weeks of the campaign.同盟國在最初幾周內遭受了巨大的損失。
23 hubbub uQizN     
  • The hubbub of voices drowned out the host's voice.嘈雜的聲音淹沒了主人的聲音。
  • He concentrated on the work in hand,and the hubbub outside the room simply flowed over him.他埋頭于手頭的工作,室外的吵鬧聲他簡直象沒有聽見一般。
24 gale Xf3zD     
  • We got our roof blown off in the gale last night.昨夜的大風把我們的房頂給掀掉了。
  • According to the weather forecast,there will be a gale tomorrow.據氣象臺預報,明天有大風。
25 forth Hzdz2     
  • The wind moved the trees gently back and forth.風吹得樹輕輕地來回搖晃。
  • He gave forth a series of works in rapid succession.他很快連續發表了一系列的作品。
26 revolved b63ebb9b9e407e169395c5fc58399fe6     
v.(使)旋轉( revolve的過去式和過去分詞 );細想
  • The fan revolved slowly. 電扇緩慢地轉動著。
  • The wheel revolved on its centre. 輪子繞中心轉動。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
27 blanched 86df425770f6f770efe32857bbb4db42     
v.使變白( blanch的過去式 );使(植物)不見陽光而變白;酸洗(金屬)使有光澤;用沸水燙(杏仁等)以便去皮
  • The girl blanched with fear when she saw the bear coming. 那女孩見熊(向她)走來,嚇得臉都白了。 來自《現代英漢綜合大詞典》
  • Their faces blanched in terror. 他們的臉因恐懼而嚇得發白。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
28 writhed 7985cffe92f87216940f2d01877abcf6     
(因極度痛苦而)扭動或翻滾( writhe的過去式和過去分詞 )
  • He writhed at the memory, revolted with himself for that temporary weakness. 他一想起來就痛悔不已,只恨自己當一時糊涂。
  • The insect, writhed, and lay prostrate again. 昆蟲折騰了幾下,重又直挺挺地倒了下去。
29 bent QQ8yD     
  • He was fully bent upon the project.他一心撲在這項計劃上。
  • We bent over backward to help them.我們盡了最大努力幫助他們。
30 shrieked dc12d0d25b0f5d980f524cd70c1de8fe     
v.尖叫( shriek的過去式和過去分詞 )
  • She shrieked in fright. 她嚇得尖叫起來。
  • Li Mei-t'ing gave a shout, and Lu Tzu-hsiao shrieked, "Tell what? 李梅亭大聲叫,陸子瀟尖聲叫:“告訴什么? 來自漢英文學 - 圍城
31 metallic LCuxO     
  • A sharp metallic note coming from the outside frightened me.外面傳來尖銳鏗鏘的聲音嚇了我一跳。
  • He picked up a metallic ring last night.昨夜他撿了一個金屬戒指。
32 inquiry nbgzF     
  • Many parents have been pressing for an inquiry into the problem.許多家長迫切要求調查這個問題。
  • The field of inquiry has narrowed down to five persons.調查的范圍已經縮小到只剩5個人了。
33 charred 2d03ad55412d225c25ff6ea41516c90b     
v.把…燒成炭( char的過去式);燒焦
  • the charred remains of a burnt-out car 被燒焦的轎車殘骸
  • The intensity of the explosion is recorded on the charred tree trunks. 那些燒焦的樹干表明爆炸的強烈。 來自《簡明英漢詞典》
34 stump hGbzY     
  • He went on the stump in his home state.他到故鄉所在的州去發表演說。
  • He used the stump as a table.他把樹樁用作桌子。
35 shutters 74d48a88b636ca064333022eb3458e1f     
百葉窗( shutter的名詞復數 ); (照相機的)快門
  • The shop-front is fitted with rolling shutters. 那商店的店門裝有卷門。
  • The shutters thumped the wall in the wind. 在風中百葉窗砰砰地碰在墻上。
36 thoroughly sgmz0J     
  • The soil must be thoroughly turned over before planting.一定要先把土地深翻一遍再下種。
  • The soldiers have been thoroughly instructed in the care of their weapons.士兵們都系統地接受過保護武器的訓練。
37 staples a4d18fc84a927940d1294e253001ce3d     
n.(某國的)主要產品( staple的名詞復數 );釘書釘;U 形釘;主要部份v.用釘書釘釘住( staple的第三人稱單數 )
  • The anvil onto which the staples are pressed was not assemble correctly. 訂書機上的鐵砧安裝錯位。 來自辭典例句
  • I'm trying to make an analysis of the staples of his talk. 我在試行分析他的談話的要旨。 來自辭典例句
38 allusion CfnyW     
  • He made an allusion to a secret plan in his speech.在講話中他暗示有一項秘密計劃。
  • She made no allusion to the incident.她沒有提及那個事件。
39 delirium 99jyh     
n. 神智昏迷,說胡話;極度興奮
  • In her delirium, she had fallen to the floor several times. 她在神志不清的狀態下幾次摔倒在地上。
  • For the next nine months, Job was in constant delirium.接下來的九個月,約伯處于持續精神錯亂的狀態。
40 spotted 7FEyj     
  • The milkman selected the spotted cows,from among a herd of two hundred.牛奶商從一群200頭牛中選出有斑點的牛。
  • Sam's shop stocks short spotted socks.山姆的商店屯積了有斑點的短襪。
41 narrative CFmxS     
  • He was a writer of great narrative power.他是一位頗有記述能力的作家。
  • Neither author was very strong on narrative.兩個作者都不是很善于講故事。