Дети капитана Гранта / The Children of Captain Grant

Жюль Верн, 2019

Команда яхты «Дункан», принадлежащей лорду Гленарвану, находит бутылку, содержащую полуразмытую записку о потерпевшем бедствие корабле «Британия» и о трех членах его команды, сумевших пережить кораблекрушение. На пострадавшей от воды бумаге можно разобрать только часть координат. Но ведь мировой океан огромен – где же искать выживших? Предназначается для продолжающих изучать английский язык средней ступени (уровень 3 – Intermediate).


Из серии: Легко читаем по-английски

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Адаптация текста, упражнения, словарь и комментарии С.А. Матвеева

© Матвеев С.А., адаптация текста, коммент., упражнения и словарь, 2019

© ООО «Издательство АСТ», 2019

Chapter I. The Shark

On the 26th of July, 1864, a magnificent yacht was steaming along the North Channel at full speed. The name of the yacht was the Duncan[1], and the owner was Lord Glenarvan[2], the most distinguished member of the Royal Thames Yacht Club, famous throughout the United Kingdom. Lord Edward Glenarvan was on board with his young wife, Lady Helena[3], and one of his cousins, Major McNabbs[4].

The Duncan was newly built, and had been making a trial trip. It was returning to Glasgow[5], when the sailor on watch caught sight of an enormous fish sporting in the wake of the ship. Lord Edward, who was immediately apprised of the fact, came up a few minutes after with his cousin, and asked John Mangles[6], the captain, what sort of an animal he thought it was.

“Well, since your Lordship asks my opinion,” said Mangles, “I think it is a shark, and a large one.”

“A shark at these shores!”

“There is nothing at all improbable in that,” returned the captain. “This fish belongs to a species that is found in all latitudes and in all seas. It is the hammer-headed shark[7], if I am not much mistaken. But if your Lordship has no objections, we’ll soon haul up the monster and find out what it really is.”

“What do you say, McNabbs? Shall we try to catch it?” asked Lord Glenarvan.

“If you like,” was his cousin’s cool reply.

“The more of those terrible creatures that are killed the better, at all events[8],” said John Mangles.

“Very well, set to work, then[9],” said Glenarvan.

Lady Helena soon joined her husband on deck. The sea was splendid, and every movement of the shark was distinctly visible. In obedience to the captain’s orders, the sailors threw a strong rope over the starboard side of the yacht, with a big hook at the end of it. The bait took at once, though the shark was full fifty yards distant. This was evidently a monster.

The passengers and sailors on the yacht were watching all the animal’s movements with the liveliest interest. It soon came within reach of the bait, turned over on its back. In a few minutes more the shark was thrown on the deck. A man came forward immediately, and approaching it cautiously, with one powerful stroke cut off its tail.

The sailors knew the contents of its stomach might be worth investigation. The fish was still breathing; it measured ten feet[10] in length, and weighed more than six hundred pounds[11].

The huge brute was soon ripped up in a very unceremonious fashion[12]. The hook had fixed right in the stomach, which was found to be absolutely empty, and the disappointed sailors were just going to throw the remains overboard, when the boatswain’s attention was attracted by some large object.

“What’s this?” he exclaimed.

“It’s just a rock that the shark has got in his inside and couldn’t digest,” said another of the crew.

“Hold your tongues, all of you!” said Tom Austin[13], the mate[14] of the Duncan. “Don’t you see the animal is a drunkard and has not only drunk the wine, but swallowed the bottle?”

“What!” said Lord Glenarvan. “Do you mean to say it is a bottle that the shark has got in his stomach?”

“Ay, it is a bottle, most certainly,” replied the boatswain, “but not just from the cellar.”

“Bring it to the cabin,” said Lord Glenarvan, “for bottles found in the sea often contain precious documents.”

Tom obeyed, and in a few minutes brought in the bottle and laid it on the table, at which Lord Glenarvan and the Major were sitting ready with the captain, and, of course, Lady Helena. For a moment they all sat silent, gazing at this frail relic, wondering if it told the tale of sad disaster, or brought some message from a sailor.

However, the only way to know was to examine the bottle, and Glenarvan set to work without further delay, carefully and minutely. He commenced by a close inspection of the outside. The neck was long and slender, the sides were very thick, and strong enough to bear great pressure.

“We may affirm it comes from a long way off. Look at those petrifactions all over it, these different substances almost turned to mineral, we might say, through the action of the salt water! This waif had been tossing about in the ocean a long time before the shark swallowed it.”

“I quite agree with you,” said McNabbs. “I dare say this bottle has made a long voyage.”

“But I want to know where from?” said Lady Glenarvan.

“Wait a little, dear Helena, wait; but if I am not much mistaken, this one will answer all our questions,” replied her husband, beginning to scrape away the hard substances round the neck. Soon the cork made its appearance, but much damaged by the water.

“That’s vexing,” said Lord Edward, “for if papers are inside, they’ll be in a pretty state!”

“If your Lordship would simply break off the neck, I think we might easily withdraw the papers,” suggested John Mangles.

“Try it, Edward, try it,” said Lady Helena.

The bottle was broken. There were pieces of paper inside.


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Duncan — «Дункан» (название яхты)


Glenarvan — Гленарван


Helena — Элена


McNabbs — МакНабс


Glasgow — Глазго


John Mangles — Джон Манглс


hammer-headed shark — рыба-молот


at all events — в любом случае


set to work, then — тогда приступайте


1 фут = около 30 сантиметров


1 фунт = около 409 граммов


in a very unceremonious fashion — без всяких церемоний


Tom Austin — Том Остин


the mate — помощник капитана

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