The Deer And The Cauldron 1

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The Deer and the Cauldron

第一回 纵横钩党清流祸 峭茜风期月旦评

北风如刀,满地冰霜。

  江南近海滨的一条大路上,一队清兵手执刀枪,押着七辆囚车,冲风冒寒,向北而行。前面三辆囚车中分别监禁的是三个男子,都作书生打扮,一个是白发老者,两个是中年人。后面四辆中坐的是女子,最后一辆囚车中是个少妇,怀中抱着个女婴。女婴啼哭不休。她母亲温言相呵,女婴只是大哭。囚车旁一名清兵恼了,伸腿在车上踢了一脚,喝道:“再哭,再哭!老子踢死你!”那女婴一惊,哭得更加响了

Along a coastal road somewhere south of the Yangtze River, a detachment of soldiers, each of them armed with a halberd, was escorting a line of seven prison carts, trudging northwards in the teeth of a bitter wind. In each of the first three carts a single male prisoner was caged, identifiable by his dress as a member of the scholar class. One was a white-haired old man. The other two were men of middle years. The four rear carts were occupied by women, the last of them by a young mother holding a baby girl at her breast. The little girl was crying in a continuous wail which her mother’s gentle words of comfort were powerless to console. One of the soldiers marching alongside, irritated by the baby’s crying, aimed a mighty kick at the cart’ ‘Stop it! Shut up! Or I’ll really give you something to cry about!’ The baby, startled by this sudden violence, cried even louder.

离开道路数十丈处有座大屋,屋檐下站着一个中年文士,一个十一二岁的小孩。那文士见到这等情景,不禁长叹一声,眼眶也红了,说道:“可怜,可怜!”Under the eaves of a large house, some hundred yards from the road, a middle-aged scholar was standing with a ten- or eleven-year-old boy at his side. He was evidently affected by this little scene, for a groan escaped his lips and he appeared to be very close to tears. ‘Poor creatures!’ he murmured to himself.

那小孩子问道:“爹爹,他们犯了什么罪了?”那文士道:“又犯了什么罪?昨日和今朝,已逮去了三十几人,都是我们浙江有名的读书人,个个都是无辜株连。”他说到“无辜株连”四字,声音压得甚低,生怕给押送囚车的官兵听见了。’Papa,’ said the little boy, ‘what have they done wrong?’ ‘What indeed!’ said the man, bitterly. ‘During these last two days they must have made more than thirty arrests. All our best scholars. And all of them innocents, caught up in the net,’ he added in an undertone, for fear that the soldiers might hear him.

那小孩道:“那个小女孩还在吃奶,难道也犯了罪?真没道理。”那文士道:“你懂得官兵没道理,真是好孩子。唉,人为刀俎,我为鱼肉,人为鼎镬,我为糜鹿!”那小孩子道:“爹,你前几天教过我,‘人为刀俎,我为鱼肉’,就是给人家斩割屠杀的意思。人家是切菜刀,是砧板,我们就是鱼和肉。‘人为鼎镬,我为糜鹿’这两句话,意思也差不多么?”那文士道:“正是!”眼见官兵和囚车已经去远,拉着小孩的手道:“外面风大,我们回屋里去。”当下父子二人走进书房。That girl’s only a baby,’ said the boy. ‘What can she possibly be guilty of? It’s very wrong.’ ‘So you understand that what the Government soldiers do is wrong,’ said the man. ‘Good for you, my son!’ He sighed. They are the cleaver and we are the meat. They are the cauldron and we are the deer.’ ‘You explained “they are the cleaver and we are the meat” the other day, papa,’ said the boy. ‘It’s what they say when people are massacred or beheaded. Like meat or fish being sliced up on the chopping-board. Does “they are the cauldron and we are the deer” mean the same thing?’ ‘Yes, more or less,’ said the man; and since the train of soldiers and prison carts was now fast receding, he took the boy by the hand. ‘Let’s go indoors now,’ he said. ‘It’s too windy for standing outside.’ Indoors the two of them went, and into his study.

  那文士提笔蘸上了墨,在纸上写了个“鹿”字,说道:“鹿这种野兽,虽是庞然大物,性子却极为和平,只吃青草树叶,从来不伤害别的野兽。凶猛的野兽要伤它吃它,它只有逃跑,倘若逃不了,那只有给人家吃了。”The man-picked up a writing-brush and moistened it on the ink-slab, then, on -a sheet of paper, he wrote the character for a deer. The deer is a wild animal, but although it is comparatively large, it has a very peaceable nature. It eats only grass and leaves and never harms other animals. So when other animals want to hurt it or to eat it, all it can do is run away. If it can’t escape by running away, it gets eaten.’又写了“逐鹿”两字,说道:“因此古人常常拿鹿来比喻天下。世上百姓都温顺善良,只有给人欺压残害的份儿。《汉书》上说:‘秦失其鹿,天下共逐之。’那就是说,秦朝失了天下,群雄并起,大家争夺,最后汉高祖打败了楚霸王,就得了这只又肥又大的鹿。”He wrote the characters for ‘chasing the deer’ on the sheet of paper. That’s why in ancient times they often used the deer as a symbol of Empire. The common people, who are the subjects of Empire, are gentle and obedient. Like the deer’s, it is their lot to be cruelly treated and oppressed. In the History of the Han Dynasty it says “Qin lost the deer and the world went chasing after it”. That means that when the Qin Emperor lost control of the Empire, ambitious men rose up everywhere and fought each other to possess it. In the end it was the first Han Emperor who got this big, fat deer by defeating the Tyrant King of Chu.’

  那小孩点头道:“我明白了。小说书上说‘逐鹿中原’,就是大家争着要做皇帝的意思。”那文士甚是喜欢,点了点头,在纸上画了一只鼎的图形,道:“古人煮食,不用灶头锅子,用这样三只脚的鼎,下面烧柴,捉到了鹿,就在鼎里煮来吃。’I know,’ said the boy. ‘In my story-books it says “they chased the deer on the Central Plain”. That means they were all fighting each other to become Emperor.’ The scholar nodded, pleased with his young son’s astuteness. He drew a pictureof a cauldron on the sheet of paper. ‘In olden times they didn’t use a cooking-pot on the stove to cook their food in, they used a three-legged cauldron like this and lit a fire underneath it. When they caught a deer they put it in a cauldron to seethe it.

  皇帝和大官都很残忍,心里不喜欢谁,就说他犯了罪,把他放在鼎里活活煮熟。《史记》中记载蔺相如对秦王说:‘臣知欺大王之罪当诛也,臣请就鼎镬。’就是说:‘我该死,将我在鼎里烧死了罢!’”Those ancient Emperors and great ministers were very cruel. If they didn’t like somebody, they would pretend that they had committed some crime or other, and then they would put them in a cauldron and boil them. In the Records of an Historian Lin Xiangru says to the King of Qin, “Deceiving Your Majesty was a capital offence. I beg to approach the cauldron.” What he meant was, “I deserve to die. Put me in the cauldron and boil me.”‘

  那小孩道:“小说书上又常说‘问鼎中原’,这跟‘逐鹿中原’好像意思差不多。”’Often in my story-books I’ve seen the words “asking about the cauldrons in the Central Plain”,’ said the boy. ‘It seems to mean the same thing as “chasing the deer in the Central Plain”.

  那文士道:“不错。夏禹王收九州之金,铸了九口大鼎。 ‘It does,’ said the man,’King Yu of the Xia dynasty, the first dynasty that ever was collected metal from all the nine provinces of the Empire and used it to cast nine great cauldrons with.’

  当时的所谓‘金’其实是铜。每一口鼎上铸了九州的名字和山川图形,后世为天下之主的,便保有九鼎。”Metal” in those days meant bronze. Each of these bronze cauldrons had the name of one of the nine provinces on it and a map showing the mountains and rivers of that province. In later times whoever became master of the Empire automatically became the guardian of these cauldrons. 《左传》上:‘楚子观兵于周疆。定王使王孙满劳楚子。楚子问鼎之大小轻重焉。’只有天下之主,方能保有九鼎。楚王只是楚国的诸侯,他问鼎的轻重大小,便是心存不轨,想取周王之位而代之。”In The Chronicle of Zuo it says that when the Viscount of Chu was reviewing his troops on Zhou territory and the Zhou king sent Prince Man to him with his royal compliments, the Viscount questioned Prince Man about the size and weight of the cauldrons. Of course, as ruler of the whole Empire, only the Zhou king had the right to be guardian of the cauldrons. For a mere Viscount like the ruler of Chu to ask questions about them showed that he was planning to seize the Empire for himself.’

  那小孩道:“所以‘问鼎’、‘逐鹿’,便是想做皇帝。‘未知鹿死谁手’,就是不知哪一个做成了皇帝。” ‘So “asking about the cauldrons” and “chasing the deer” both mean wanting to be Emperor, ‘ said the boy. ‘And “not knowing who will kill the deer” means not knowing who is going to be Emperor.’

  那文士道:“正是。到得后来,‘问鼎’、‘逐鹿’这四个字,也可借用于别处,但原来的出典,是专指做皇帝而言。”’That’s right,’ said the man. ‘As time went by these expressions came to be applied to other situations as well, but originally they were only used in the sense of wanting to be Emperor.’

  说到这里,叹了口气,道:“咱们做老百姓的,总是死路一条。‘未知鹿死谁手’,只不过未知是谁来杀了这头鹿,这头鹿,却是死定了的。”He sighed. ‘For the common people though, the subjects of Empire, our role is to be the deer. It may be uncertain who will kill the deer, but the deer gets killed all right. There’s no uncertainty about that.’

  他说着走到窗边,向窗外望去,只见天色阴沉沉地,似要下雪,叹道:“老天爷何其不仁,数百个无辜之人,在这冰霜遍地的道上行走。下起雪来,可又多受一番折磨了。”He walked over to the window and gazed outside. The sky had now turned a leaden hue showing that snow was on its way. He sighed again.’He must be a cruel God up there. Those hundreds of poor, innocent souls on the roads in this freezing weather. The snow will only add to their sufferings.’

  忽见南边大道上两个人戴着斗笠,并肩而来,走到近处,认出了面貌。那文士大喜,道:“是你黄伯伯、顾伯伯来啦!”快步迎将出去,叫道:“梨洲兄、亭林兄,哪一阵好风,吹得你二位光临?”Two figures caught his eye, moving along the highway from the south. They walked close together, side by side, each of them wearing a coolie hat and a rain-cape. As they drew nearer, he recognized them with a cry of pleasure. ‘It’s Uncle Huang and Uncle Gu,’ he said to the boy as he hurried out to greet them. ‘Zongxi, Yanwu, what good wind blows you hither?’ he called out to them.

  右首一人身形微胖,颏下一部黑须、姓黄名宗羲,字梨洲,浙江余姚人氏。左首一人又高又瘦,面目黝黑,姓顾名炎武,字亭林,江苏昆山人氏。黄顾二人都是当世大儒,明亡之后,心伤国变,隐居不仕,这日连袂来到崇德。顾炎武走上几步,说道:“晚村兄,有一件要紧事,特来和你商议。”The one he addressed as ‘Zongxi’ was a somewhat portly man with a plentiful beard covering me lower half of his face. His full name was Huang Zongxi and he, like his host, was a man of Zhe-jiang Province. The other one, a tall, thin man with a swarthy complexion, was Gu Yanwu, a native of Kunshan in Jiangsu Province. Huang Zongxi and Gu Yanwu were two of the foremost scholars of their day. Both of them, from patriotic motives, had gone into retirement when the Ming Empire collapsed, being unwilling to take office under a foreign power. Gu Yanwu drew a little closer before replying. ‘Liuliang, we have something serious to discuss with you. That’s what brings us here today.’

  这文士姓吕名留良,号晚村,世居浙江杭州府崇德县,也是明末、清初一位极有名的隐士。他眼见黄顾二人脸色凝重,又知顾炎武向来极富机变,临事镇定,既说是要紧事,自然非同小可,拱手道:“两位请进去先喝三杯,解解寒气。”当下请二人进屋,吩咐那小孩道:“葆中,去跟娘说,黄伯伯、顾伯伯到了,先切两盘羊膏来下酒。”Liuliang was the man’s name, then–Lu Liuliang. His family had lived for generations in Chongde, a prefecture in the Hangzhou district of Zhejiang Province. Like Huang Zongxi and Gu Yanwu, to whom you have just been introduced, he is an historical personage, famous among those Southern gentlemen who, during the last days of the Ming dynasty and the early days of the Manchu conquest, buried themselves away on their estates and refused to take part in public life. Lu Liuliang observed the grave expression on his visitors’ faces. Knowing of old how unfailingly Gu Yanwu’s political judgement was to be trusted, he realized that what the latter had referred to as ‘something serious’ must be very serious indeed. He clasped his hands and bowed to his guest politely. ‘Come inside, ‘ he said. ‘Drink a few cups of wine first, to warm yourselves up a bit.’ As he ushered them into the study, he gave an order to the boy. ‘Baozhong, tell your mother that Uncle Huang and Uncle Gu are here. Ask her to slice a couple of platefuls of that goat’s meat pate to go with our wine.’

  不多时,那小孩吕葆中和兄弟毅中搬出三副杯筷,布在书房桌上。一名老仆奉上酒菜。吕留良待三人退出,关上了书房门,说道:“黄兄,顾兄,先喝三杯!”黄宗羲神色惨然,摇了摇头。顾炎武却自斟自饮,一口气连干了六杯。In a minute or two the boy came in again, accompanied by his younger brother. They were carrying three sets of chopsticks and wine-cups which they laid on the study table. An old servant followed them carrying a wine-kettle and balancing some plates of cold meat. Lu Liuliang waited until the two boys and the servant were outside the room and closed the study door. ‘Come, my friends, ‘ he said. ‘Wine first.’ Huang Zongxi declined gloomily with a brief shake of the head; but Gu Yanwu, helping himself unceremoniously from the wine-kettle, downed half a dozen of the tiny cupfuls in quick succession.

  吕留良道:“二位此来,可是和‘明史’一案有关吗?”黄宗羲道:“正是!”顾炎武提起酒杯,高声吟道:“清风虽细难吹我,明月何尝不照人?’’I suppose your visit has something to do with this Ming History business, ‘ said Lu Liuliang. ‘Precisely, ‘ said Huang Zongxi. Gu Yanwu raised his wine-cup and, in ringing the following couplet: The cool wind sways not me, howe’er it blow; For me the bright moon still shines everywhere. ‘晚村兄,你这两句诗,真是绝唱!我每逢饮酒,必诵此诗,必浮大白。”That’s a splendid couplet of yours, Liuliang, ‘ he said. ‘Whenever I drink wine now, I have to recite it–and do it justice, too, ‘ he added, with a ceremonious flourish of his wine-cup.

  吕留良心怀故国,不肯在清朝做官。当地大吏仰慕他声名,保荐他为“山林隐逸”,应征赴朝为官,吕留良誓死相拒,大吏不敢再逼。In spite of Lu Liuliang’s patriotic unwillingness to serve, a local official, impressed by what he had heard of Lu’s reputation, had once sought to recommend him as a ‘hidden talent’ meriting a summons to the Manchu Court for suitable employment; but Lu had made it clear that he would die rather than accept such a tones, recited summons, and the matter had been dropped. 后来又有一名大官保荐他为“博学鸿儒”,吕留良眼见若再相拒,显是轻侮朝廷,不免有杀身之祸,Some time later, however, when another high-ranking official sent forward his name as a ‘distinguished scholar of exceptional merit’, Lu realized that his continued refusal would be construed by the Court as an open slight, with fatal consequences for himself and perhaps his family. Accordingly 于是削发为僧,做了假和尚。地方官员见他意坚,从此不再劝他出山。he had had himself tonsured (though not in fact with any intention of becoming a real monk), whereupon the Government officials were finally convinced of his determination and ceased urging him to come out of his retirement. “清风、明月”这两句诗,讥刺满清,怀念前明,虽然不敢刊行,但在志同道合的朋辈之间传诵已遍,此刻顾炎武又读了出来。黄宗羲道:“真是好诗!”举起酒杯,也喝了一杯。吕留良道:“两位谬赞了。”Gu Yanwu’s enthusiasm for Lu’s somewhat pedestrian couplet sprang from the fact that it contained a hidden message. In Chinese the word for ‘cool’ is qing (the word chosen by the Manchus for their new ‘Chinese’ dynasty) and the word for ‘bright’ is ming (the name of the old Chinese dynasty they had supplanted). So the couplet Gu had recited could be understood to mean: The Qing wind sways not me, how e’er it blow; For me the Ming moon still shines everywhere. In other words, ‘I will never bow to the Manchus, however they may threaten and cajole. For me the Empire is still the Ming Empire, whose loyal subject I remain.’ Although the poem in which these lines occurred could not be published, they were familiar to all the like-minded scholars of Lu’s wide acquaintance, and Huang, hearing them recited now by Gu, responded to the challenge by raising a wine-cup in homage. ‘Yes, it is a very good poem,’ he said, and drained it off at a gulp. Thank you both, but it doesn’t deserve your praise,’ said Lu Liuliang.

  顾炎武一抬头,见到壁上挂着一幅高约五尺、宽约丈许的大画,Chancing to glance upwards at that moment, Gu Yanwu found his attention caught by a large painting which was hanging on one of the walls. It must have measured near enough four feet from top to bottom and well over three yards horizontally. 绘的是一大片山水,笔势纵横,气象雄伟,不禁喝了声彩,画上只题了四个大字:“如此江山”,It was a landscape, so magnificently conceived and boldly executed that he could not forbear a cry of admiration. The sole inscription on this enormous painting was the phrase This Lovely Land’ written in very large characters at the top. 说道:“看这笔路,当是二瞻先生的丹青了。”吕留良道:“正是。”那“二瞻”姓查,名士标,是明末清初的一位大画家,也和顾黄吕诸人交好。’From the brushwork I should say this must be Erzhan’s work,’ he said. ‘You are absolutely right,’ said Lu. This Erzhan’s real name was Zha Shibiao. He was a wellknown painter in the late Ming, early Manchu period and a good friend of the three men present.

黄宗羲道:“这等好画,如何却无题跋?”吕留良叹道:“二瞻先生此画,颇有深意。只是他为人稳重谨慎,既不落款,亦无题跋。他上个月在舍间盘桓,一时兴到,画了送我,两位便题上几句如何?”’How is it that so fine a painting lacks a signature?’ said Huang. Lu sighed. The painting had a message, ‘ he said. ‘But you know what a stolid, careful person Erzhan is. He wouldn’t sign it and he wouldn’t write any inscription. He painted it for me on a sudden impulse when he was staying with me a month or so ago. Why don’t you two write a few lines on it?’ 顾黄二人站起身来,走到画前仔细观看,只见大江浩浩东流,两岸峰峦无数,点缀着奇树怪石,只是画中云气瀰漫,山川虽美,却令人一见之下,胸臆间顿生郁积之意。Gu and Huang got up and went over to examine the painting more closely. It was a picture of the Yangtze, the Great River, rolling majestically eastwards between innumerable peaks, with a suitable garnishing of gnarled pines and strange misshapen rocks: a very beautiful landscape were it not for the all-pervading mist and cloud which seemed calculated to create an oppressive feeling of gloom in anyone looking at it.

  顾炎武道:“如此江山,沦于夷狄。我辈忍气吞声,偷生其间,实令人悲愤填膺。晚村兄何不便题诗一首,将二瞻先生之意,表而出之?”’This lovely land under the heel of the barbarian!’ said Gu Yanwu. ‘And we have to swallow our humiliation and go on living in it. It makes my blood boil. Why don’t you do an inscription, Liuliang–a poem that will give voice to what Erzhan had in mind to say?’ 吕留良道:“好!”当即取下画来,平铺于桌。黄宗羲研起了墨。’Very well,’ said Lu Liuliang, and he took the huge scroll carefully down from the wall and spread it out on the desk, while Huang Zongxi set about grinding him some ink. 吕留良提笔沉吟半晌,便在画上振笔直书。顷刻诗成,诗云:He picked up a writing-brush and for some minutes could be observed muttering to himself in the throes of composition; then, writing straight on to the painting and with pauses only for moistening the brush, he quickly completed the following poem:

“其为宋之南渡耶?如此江山真可耻。其为崖山以后耶?如此江山不忍视。吾今始悟作画意,痛哭流涕有若是。以今视昔昔犹今,吞声不用枚衔嘴。画将桌羽西台泪,研入丹青提笔泚。所以有画无诗文,诗文尽在四字里。尝谓生逢洪武初,如瞽忽瞳跛可履。山川开霁故璧完,何处登临不狂喜?”

Is this the sane of Great Song’s south retreat, This lovely land that hides its face in shame? Or is it after Mount Yai’s fateful leap? This lovely land then scarce dared breathe its name. Now that I seem to read the painter’s mind, My bitter teardrops match his drizzling rain. Past woes I see reborn in present time: This draws the groans that no gag can restrain.Methinks the painter used poor Gaoyu’s tears To mix his colours and his brush to wet. ‘This Lovely Land’ was commentary enough; No need was there for other words to fret. The blind would see, the lame would walk again, Could we but bring, back Hong Wu’s glorious days. With what wild joy we’d look down from each height 书完,掷笔于地,不禁泪下。And see the landscape free of mist and haze,He threw the brush on the floor as he finished and burst into tears.

  顾炎武道:“痛快淋漓,真是绝妙好辞。”’It says all there is to say, ‘ said Gu Yanwu. ‘Masterly!’ 吕留良道:“这诗殊无含蓄,算不得好,也只是将二瞻先生之原意写了出来,好教观画之人得知。”’It lacks subtlety, ‘ said Lu. ‘In no way could you call it a good poem. I merely wanted to put Erzhan’s original idea into writing so that anyone looking at the picture in days to come will know what it is about.’ 黄宗羲道:“何日故国重光,那时‘山川开霁故璧完’,纵然是穷山恶水,也令人观之大畅胸怀,真所谓‘何处登临不狂喜’了!”’When China does eventually emerge from this time of darkness, ‘ said Huang, ‘we shall indeed “see the landscape free of mist and haze”. When that time comes, we shall gaze at even the poorest, meanest, most barren landscape with a feeling of joyful liberation. Then, indeed, we shall look down with “wild joy . . . from each height”!’ 顾炎武道:“此诗结得甚妙!终有一日驱除胡虏,还我大汉山河,比之徒抒悲愤,更加令人气壮。”’Your conclusion is excellent, ‘ said Gu. ‘When we do eventually rid our country of this foreign scum, the feeling of relief will be infinitely greater than the somewhat arid satisfaction we get from occasionally uncorking our feelings as we do now.’

  黄宗羲慢慢将画卷了起来,说道:“这画是挂不得了,晚村兄须得妥为收藏才是。倘若给吴之荣之类奸人见到,官府查究起来,晚村兄固然麻烦,还牵累了二瞻先生。”Huang carefully rolled up the painting. ‘You won’t be able to hang this up any more now, Liuliang, ‘ he said. ‘You’d better put it away somewhere safe. If some evil-intentioned person like Wu Zhirong were to set eyes on it, you’d soon have the authorities round asking questions and the consequences could be serious not only for you but probably for Erzhan as well.’   顾炎武拍桌骂道:“吴之荣这狗贼,我真恨不得生食其肉。”’That vermin Wu Zhirong!’ said Gu Yanwu, smiting the desk with his hand. ‘I could willingly tear his flesh with my teeth!’吕留良道:“二位枉顾,说道有件要紧事。我辈书生积习,作诗题画,却搁下了正事。不知究是如何?”’You said when you came that you had something serious to discuss with me, ‘ said Lu, ‘yet here we are, like typical scholars, frit* Note to Reader: Lu’s impromptu poem is full of politically dangerous allusions to the shame of occupation by the Tartars (both Mongol and Manchu). The first lines refer to the thirteenth century and the dying days of the Southern Song dynasty, when the last Emperor, carrying his infant son, was hounded southwards by the Mongols, and finally flung himself and his son into me sea from the cliffs of Mount Yai. Hong Wu (towards the end of the poem) was the reign tide of a period during the heyday of the Ming dynasty (when China was still ruled by Chinese),’to which these Loyalist scholars looked back with such nostalgia. taring our time away on poetry and painting instead of attending to business. What was it, exactly, that brought you here?’黄宗羲道:“我二人此来,乃是为了二瞻先生那位本家伊璜先生。小弟和顾兄前日得到讯息,原来这场‘明史’大案,竟将伊璜先生也牵连在内。”’It has to do with Erzhan’s kinsman Yihuang, ‘ said Huang. The day before yesterday Gu and I learned that he has now been named in connection with the Ming History affair.’吕留良惊道:“伊璜兄也受了牵连?”黄宗羲道:“是啊。我二人前日晚上匆匆赶到海宁袁花镇,伊璜先生并不在家,说是出外访友去了。炎武兄眼见事势紧急,忙嘱伊璜先生家人连夜躲避;想起伊璜先生和晚村兄交好,特来探访。”’Yihuang?’ said Lu. ‘You mean he’s been dragged into it too?’ ‘I’m afraid so, ‘ said Huang. ‘As soon as we heard, the two of us hurried as quickly as we could to his home in Yuanhua Town, but he wasn’t there. They said he’d gone off to visit a friend. In view of the urgency, Yanwu advised the family to make their getaway as soon as it was dark. Then, remembering that Yihuang was a good friend of yours, we thought we’d come and look for him here, ‘吕留良道:“他……他却没有来。不知到了何处。”顾炎武道:“他如在府上,这会儿自已出来相见。我已在他书房的墙壁上题诗一首,他若归家,自然明白,知所趋避,怕的是不知讯息,在外露面,给公人拿住,那可糟了。”’No, ‘ said Lu, ‘no, he’s not here. I don’t know where he can have gone.’ ‘If he had been here, he would have shown himself by now, ‘ said Gu. ‘I left a poem for him on his study wall. If he goes back home, he will understand when he reads the poem that he is to go and hide. What I’m afraid of, though, is that he may not have heard the news yet and may expose himself unnecessarily outside and get himself arrested. That would be terrible, ‘黄宗羲道:“这‘明史’一案,令我浙西名士几乎尽遭毒手。清廷之意甚恶,晚村兄名头太大,亭林兄与小弟之意,要劝晚村兄暂且离家远游,避一避风头。”’Practically every scholar in West Zhejiang has fallen victim to this wretched Ming History business, ‘ said Huang. The Manchu Court has obviously got it in for us. You are too well known. Gu and I both think that you ought to leave here–for the time being, at any rate. Find somewhere away from here where you can shelter from the storm, ‘吕留良气愤愤的道:“鞑子皇帝倘若将我捉到北京,拚着千刀万剐,好歹也要痛骂他一场,出了胸中这口恶气,才痛痛快快的就死。”Lu Liuliang looked angry. ‘Let the Tartar Emperor have me arrested and carried off to Peking!’ he said. ‘If I could curse him to his face and get rid of some of the anger that is pent up inside me, I think I should die happy, even though it meant having the flesh cut slice by slice from my bones!’

  顾炎武道:“晚村兄豪气干云,令人好生钦佩。怕的是见不到鞑子皇帝,却死于一般下贱的奴才手里。再说,鞑子皇帝只是个小孩子,什么也不懂,朝政大权,尽操于权臣鳌拜之手。兄弟和梨洲兄推想,这次‘明史’一案所以如此大张旗鼓,雷厉风行,当是鳌拜意欲挫折我江南士人之气。”’I admire your heroic spirit, ‘ said Gu, ‘but I don’t think there’s much likelihood of your meeting the Tartar Emperor face to face. You would the at the hands of miserable slaves. Besides, the Tartar Emperor is still a child who knows nothing about anything. The Government is in the hands of the all-powerful minister Oboi. Huang and I are both of the opinion that Oboi is at the back of this Ming History affair. The reason they are making such a song and dance about it and pursuing it with such ferocity is that he sees in it a means of breaking the spirit of the Southern gentry.’

  吕留良道:“两位所见甚是。清兵入关以来,在江北横行无阻,一到江南,却处处遇到反抗,尤其读书人知道华夷之防,不断跟他们捣蛋。鳌拜乘此机会,要对我江南士子大加镇压。哼,野火烧不尽,春风吹又生,除非他把咱们江南读书人杀得干干净净。”’I’m sure you are right,’ said Lu. ‘When the Manchu troops first came inside the Wall, they had pretty much of a free run in the whole of Northern China. It wasn’t till they came south that they found themselves running into resistance everywhere. The scholars in particular, as guardians of Chinese culture, have given them endless trouble. So Oboi is using this business to crush the Southern gentry, is he? Humph! What does the poet say? The bush fire cannot burn them out ,For next year’s spring will see them sprout. –Unless, that is, he plans to wipe out the lot of us!’

  黄宗羲道:“是啊。因此咱们要留得有用之身,和鞑子周旋到底,倘若逞了一时血气之勇,反是堕入鞑子的算中了。”’Quite,’ said Huang. ‘If we are to carry on the struggle against the Tartars, we need anyone who can be of use to stay alive. Indulging in heroics at this juncture might be satisfying, but would be merely falling into their trap.’ Lu suddenly understood.

  吕留良登时省悟,黄顾二人冒寒枉顾,一来固是寻觅查伊璜,二来是劝自己出避,生怕自己一时按捺不住,枉自送了性命,良友苦心,实深感激,说道:“二位金石良言,兄弟哪敢不遵?明日一早,兄弟全家便出去避一避。”It was not only to look for Zha Yihuang that his friends had made their journey to him in the bitter cold. They had come because they wanted to persuade him to escape. They knew how impetuous he was and were afraid that he might throw his life away to no purpose. This was true friendship and he felt grateful for it. ‘You give me such good advice, ‘ he said, ‘I can hardly refuse to follow it. All right, then. I’ll leave with the family first thing tomorrow.’黄顾二人大喜,齐声道:“自该如此。”Huang and Gu were visibly delighted and chorused their approval of his decision, but Lu looked uncertain.

  吕留良沉吟道:“却不知避向何处才好?”’But where can we go?’只觉天涯茫茫,到处是鞑子的天下,真无一片干净土地,沉吟道:“桃源何处,可避暴秦?桃源何处,可避暴秦?” The whole world belonged to the Tartars now, it seemed. Not a single patch of land was free of their hated presence. He thought of the poet Tao Yuanming’s story about the fisherman who, by following a stream that flowed between flowering peach trees, had stumbled on an earthly paradise–a place where refugees from ancient tyranny had found a haven. ‘Ah, Peach Tree Stream,’ he murmured, ‘if I could but find you!’顾炎武道:“当今之世,便真有桃源乐土,咱们也不能独善其身,去躲了起来……”’Come,’ said Gu, ‘even if there were such a place, we cannot, as individuals, opt out altogether. In times like these–‘吕留良不等他辞毕,拍案而起,大声道:“亭林兄此言责备得是。国家兴亡,匹夫有责,暂时避祸则可,但若去躲在桃花源里,逍遥自在,忍令亿万百姓在鞑子铁蹄下受苦,于心何安?兄弟失言了。”Before he could finish, Lu struck the desk with his hand and jumped to his feet, loudly disclaiming his own weakness. ‘You do right to rebuke me, Yanwu. The citizen of a conquered country still has his duty. It’s all very well to take temporary refuge, but to live a life of ease in some Peach Tree Haven while millions are suffering under the iron heel of the Tartars would be less than human. I spoke without thinking.’

  顾炎武微笑道:“兄弟近年浪迹江湖,着实结交了不少朋友。大江南北,见闻所及,不但读书人反对鞑子,而贩夫走卒、屠沽市井之中,也到处有热血满腔的豪杰。晚村兄要是有意,咱三人结伴同去扬州,兄弟给你引见几位同道中人如何?”吕留良大喜,道:“妙极,妙极!咱们明日便去扬州,二位少坐,兄弟去告知拙荆,让她收拾收拾。”说着匆匆入内。Gu Yanwu smiled. ‘I’ve knocked about a great deal during these last few years,’ he said, ‘and made friends with an extraordinary variety of people. And wherever I’ve been, north or south of the River, I’ve discovered that it isn’t only among educated people like ourselves that resistance to the Tartars is to be found. Many of our most ardent patriots are small tradesmen, Yamen runners, or market folk–people belonging to the very lowest ranks of society. If you’d care to join us, the three of us could travel to Yangzhou together. I have a number of contacts there I could introduce you to. What do you think?’ ‘But that would be wonderful,’ said Lu Liuliang delightedly. ‘We leave for Yangzhou tomorrow, then. If the two of you will just sit here for a moment, I’ll go and tell my wife to start getting things ready.’

  不多时吕留良回到书房,说道:“‘明史’一案,外间虽传说纷纷,但一来传闻未必确实,二来说话之人又顾忌甚多,不敢尽言。兄弟独处蜗居,未知其详,到底是何起因?”He hurried off to the inner quarters, but was back in the study again after only a few minutes,About this Ming History business,’ he said. ‘I’ve heard a good deal of talk about it outside, but you can’t believe everything people say; and in any case they conceal a lot of what they do know out of fear. I’m so isolated here, I have no means of finding out the truth. Tell me, how? did it all begin?’

  顾炎武叹了口气,道:“这部明史,咱们大家都是看过的了,其中对鞑子不大恭敬,那也是有的。此书本是出于我大明朱国桢相国之手,说到关外建州卫之事,又如何会对鞑子客气?”吕留良点头道:“听说湖州庄家花了几千两银子,从朱相国后人手中将明史原稿买了来,以己名刊行,不想竟然酿此大祸。”Gu Yanwu sighed. ‘We’ve all seen this Ming History. There are, inevitably, passages in it which are not very complimentary to the Tartars. It was written by Zhu Guozhen, who, as you know, was a former Chancellor at the Ming Court. When he came to write about the “antics of the Paramount Chief of the Jianzhou tribe”, which is how the Ming Court used to refer to the Tartars, it’s a bit hard to see how he could have been polite.’ Lu nodded: ‘I heard somewhere that a member of the Zhuang family of Huzhou paid one of Chancellor Zhu’s heirs a thousand taels of silver for the manuscript and published it under his own name– never dreaming, of course, that it would lead to such terrible consequences.’

  浙西杭州、嘉兴、湖州三府,处于太湖之滨,地势平坦,土质肥沃,盛产稻米蚕丝。湖州府的首县今日称为吴兴县,清时分为乌程、归安两县。Gu went on to tell him the whole story. The Ming History Hangzhou, Jiaxing, and Huzhou, the three prefectures of Zhejiang Province around the southern shores of Lake Taihu, are situated on flat, low-lying, and extremely fertile soil. It is an area which produces rice and silk in abundance.自来文风甚盛,历代才士辈出,梁时将中国字分为平上去入四声的沈约,元代书画皆臻极品的赵孟?,都是湖州人氏。Huzhou has always been a great cultural centre, the home of many artists and men of letters. The poet Shen Yue in the sixth century, who first gave names to the four tones of the Chinese language, and Zhao Mengfu in the thirteenth, equally famous for painting and for calligraphy, were both Huzhou men.当地又以产笔著名,湖州之笔,徽州之墨,宣城之纸,肇庆端溪之砚,文房四宝,天下驰名。Huzhou is also famous for its writing-brushes. The brushes of Huzhou, the ink-sticks of Huizhou, Xuancheng paper, and the inkstones of Zhaoqing and Duan are celebrated as the writer’s Four Most Precious Things.湖州府有一南浔镇,虽是一个镇,却比寻常州县还大,镇上富户极多,著名的富室大族之中有一家姓庄。其时庄家的富户名叫庄允城,Nanxun in the prefecture of Huzhou, though it has only the status of a market town, is actually larger than the average county town or district capital. Among the richest and most distinguished of its many wealthy families was the Zhuang family, whose most opulent representative at the time we are writing of was one Zhuang Yuncheng.生有数子,长子名叫廷鑨,自幼爱好诗书,和江南名士才子多所结交。This Zhuang Yuncheng had several sons. The eldest of them, Zhuang Tinglong, was devoted to literature from his early youth and had many friends and acquaintances among the Southern intelligentsia.到得顺治年间,庄廷鑨因读书过勤,忽然眼盲,寻遍名医,无法治愈,自是郁郁不欢。Some time during the reign of the first Manchu Emperor Shun Zhi, in sixteen forty something, Zhuang Tinglong, probably because of excessive reading, lost his sight. The best doctors to be had were called in to treat him, but their efforts proved unavailing, leaving him not only permanently blind but in a chronic state of depression.忽有一日,邻里有一姓朱的少年携来一部手稿,说是祖父朱相国的遗稿,向庄家抵押,求借数百两银子。Then one day a young man called Zhu suddenly turned up in the Zhuangs’ neighbourhood with a manuscript, written, he said, by his grandfather the Ming Chancellor, which he offered as security for a loan of several hundred taels.庄家素来慷慨,对朱相国的后人一直照顾,既来求借,当即允诺,也不要他用什么遗稿抵押。Zhuang Yuncheng was a generous man and in any case well-disposed towards anyone claiming relationship with the famous Chancellor. He agreed at once to the loan but waived the need for a security.但那姓朱少年说道借得银子之后,要出门远游,这部祖先的遗稿带在身边,恐有遗失,存在家里又不放心,要寄存在庄家。However, the young man insisted on depositing the manuscript. He said he was going on his travels as soon as he had the money and feared it might get lost if he took it with him. On the other hand he was nervous about leaving it at home.庄允城便答应了。那姓朱少年去后,庄允城为替儿子解闷,叫家中清客读给他听。So Zhuang fere took the manuscript and, after young Zhu had gone, gave it to his retainers–to read from it by way of a diversion to his blind son.朱国桢这部明史稿,大部分已经刊行,流传于世,这次他孙子携来向庄家抵押的,是最后的许多篇列传。The greater part of Zhu’s Ming History had by this time found its way into print and was already in circulation. This manuscript that his grandson had given the Zhuangs as security was the final, still unpublished, part consisting of individual biographies.庄廷鑨听清客读了数日,很感兴味,忽然想起:“昔时左丘明也是盲眼之人,却因一部史书《左传》,得享大名于千载之后。我今日眼盲,闲居无聊,何不也撰述一部史书出来,流传后世?”After listening for some days to the retainers’ readings from it with growing interest, Zhuang Tinglong suddenly had an idea. ‘Among the ancients Zuo Qiuming was blind like me, yet a book of history, The Chronicles of Zuo, has made him famous for all time. Because of my blindness I’ve got nothing to do and I’m bored. Why don’t I too write a history that will live on after I have gone?’大富之家,办事容易,他既兴了此念,当即聘请了好几位士人,将那部明史稿从头至尾的读给他听。他认为何处当增,何处当删,便口述出来,由宾客笔录。The very rich have few problems about getting things done. No sooner was the wish expressed than amanuenses were engaged to read through the manuscript, paragraph by paragraph, to the blind man, deleting or correcting whatever he thought should be suppressed and taking down at his dictation whatever he wanted to add.

  但想自己眼盲,无法博览群籍,这部明史修撰出来,如内容谬误甚多,不但大名难享,反而被人讥笑,于是又花了大批银两,延请许多通士鸿儒,再加修订,务求尽善尽美。But because of his blindness he had no means of checking references or doing any wide-ranging research. He reflected, with dismay, that if the work he had just completed should prove full of errors, he would not only fail to win the fame he coveted, but would become an object of derision. And so, in order that the book might be as perfect as possible, more large sums of money were spent on engaging the services of distinguished specialists to revise and edit it.有些大有学问之人非钱财所能请到,庄廷鑨便辗转托人,卑辞相邀。In the case of those very learned scholars whose services were not to be had for money, Zhuang Tinglong used whatever connections he had to woo them with humbly worded invitations.太湖之滨向来文士甚多,受到庄家邀请的,一来怜其眼盲,感其意诚;二来又觉修撰明史乃是一件美事,大都到庄家来作客十天半月,对稿本或正其误,或加润饰,或撰写一两篇文字。The area round Lake Taihu has always been a great place for scholars. Partly because they pitied Tinglong for his blindness and admired his singleness of purpose, and partly because they felt the editing of a Ming history to be an intrinsically worthwhile thing to do, nearly all of those who received invitations made their way to the Zhuang residence and spent a week or two as guests of the family, correcting mistakes, making improvements, or even adding a chapter or two to the text.因此这部明史确是集不少大手笔之力。书成不久,庄廷鑨便即去世。The new Ming History in its completed form was now a collective work by a number of very distinguished hands. Then shortly after its completion Zhuang Tinglong died.

  庄允城心伤爱子之逝,即行刊书。清代刊印一部书,着实不易,Grief for the death of his beloved son prompted Zhuang Yuncheng to undertake the printing of the book without delay. In the Manchu period getting a book printed was no simple matter.要招请工匠,雕成一块块木版,这才印刷成书。这部明史卷帙浩繁,雕工印工,费用甚巨。Before the actual printing could begin, engravers had to be found to cut the many, many wooden blocks each representing a double page of the text. And since this Ming History was a large work in many chapters, the cost of engraving and printing it would be vast.好在庄家有的是钱,拨出几间大屋作为工场,多请工匠,数年间便将书刊成了,Fortunately the Zhuangs had a seemingly inexhaustible supply of money. They set aside several spacious rooms to serve as workshops, engaged large numbers of printers and engravers, and in the course of several years succeeded in getting the whole work into print.书名叫作《明书辑略》,撰书人列名为庄廷鑨,请名士李令晰作序。所有曾经襄助其事的学者也都列名其上,有茅元锡、吴之铭、吴之熔、李祈涛、茅次莱、吴楚、唐元楼、严云起、蒋麟徵、韦金祐、韦一园、张隽、董二酉、吴炎、潘柽章、陆圻、查继佐、范骧等,共一十八人。书中又提到此书是根据朱氏的原稿增删而成,It was entitled An Epitome of Ming History. Zhuang Tinglong was named on the title page as the book’s author, and a distinguished scholar, Li Lingxi, was invited to write a preface. In it the names of the scholars who had helped in the production of the book were listed, eighteen of them in all. There was also a statement to the effect that the book had been based on an original manuscript by a Mr Zhu.不过朱国桢是明朝相国,名头太大,不便直书其名,因此含含糊糊的只说是“朱氏原稿”。 As a former Chancellor at the Ming Court, Zhu Guozhen’s name was too well-known to be mentioned in full. ‘Mr Zhu’s manuscript’ was deemed the least dangerous way in which the book’s origin could be referred to.

  《明书辑略》经过这许多文人学士撰改修订,是以体例精备,叙述详明,文字又华瞻雅致,书出后大获士林赞誉。庄家又是志在扬名,书价取得极廉。After undergoing the improvements of so many gifted scholars, this Epitome of Ming History was, needless to say, immaculate in the organization and presentation of its material; its historical narratives, though rich in detail, were of commendable clarity; and the whole of it was written in the most elegantly beautiful prose. Its publication was greeted with acclaim by the learned world.。It should be added that the Zhuangs, being more interested in fame than in profit, had, to encourage circulation, released the book for sale at a very reasonable price.原稿中涉及满洲之时,本有不少攻讦指摘的言语,修史诸人早已一一删去,但赞扬明朝的文字却也在所不免。In its treatment of the period when the Manchus play a part in the story, the original manuscript had frequently had occasion to make critical or damaging allegations. These had all been carefully removed by the scholarly editors. Inevitably, though, some passages in which the Ming Court was presented in a favourable light remained untouched.当时明亡未久,读书人心怀故国,书一刊行,立刻就大大畅销。庄廷鑨之名噪于江北江南。庄允城虽有丧子之痛,但见儿子成名于身后,自是老怀弥慰。This was not long after the fall of the Ming, and educated readers still felt a patriotic nostalgia for the old regime. The book therefore had an enormous circulation as soon as it was published and Zhuang Tinglong’s name was on everyone’s lips, both north and south of the River. Grieved though he was for the loss of his eldest son, Zhuang fere could take some comfort from the fact that the young man had become famous after his death.

  也是乱世之时,该当小人得志,君子遭祸。But these were bad times when bad men came into their own and the good were often persecuted.湖州归安县的知县姓吴名之荣,在任内贪赃枉法,百姓恨之切齿,终于为人告发,朝廷下令革职。In the Gui’an district of Huzhou prefecture the District Magistrate, one Wu Zhirong by name, had earned the fierce hatred of all the local people by his corrupt and oppressive practices. In the end someone denounced him to the higher authorities and an order arrived from Court commanding his instant dismissal.吴之荣做了一任归安县知县,虽然搜刮了上万两银子,但革职的廷令一下,他东贿西赂,到处打点,才免得抄家查办的处分,这上万两赃款却也已荡然无存,连随身家人也走得不知去向。During his tenure of the Gui’an magistracy this Wu Zhirong had, by his nefarious extortions, accumulated a sum of more than ten thousand taels; but in order to avert the dreaded Search and Confiscation Order which might otherwise have followed his dismissal, he found it necessary to spend a great deal of money on bribes–so much, indeed, that by the time he had finished, not a tael of the ill-gotten ten thousand remained. The circle of dependants who had accompanied him on his tour of duty had by this time melted away.他官财两失,只得向各家富室一处处去打秋风,说道为官清苦,此番丢官,连回家也没有盘缠,无法成行。Alone, jobless, and penniless, he was reduced to knocking on rich men’s doors and soliciting ‘subscriptions’ to pay his way back home. He presented himself as a poor but honest official who had lost his job through misfortune and lacked the money even to return to his hometown.有些富人为免麻烦,便送他十两八两银子。待得来到富室朱家,主人朱佑明却是个嫉恶如仇的正直君子,非但不送仪程,反而狠狠讥刺,At some of the houses he visited they fobbed him off with small sums of eight or ten taels to save themselves further trouble, but when he came to the residence of the Zhu family, the master of the house, Mr Zhu Youming, a rich and very upright gentleman and a great stickler for morality, not only refused to make any contribution but gave him a dressing-down into the bargain.说道阁下在湖州做官,百姓给你害得好苦,我朱某就算有钱,也宁可去周济给阁下害苦了的贫民。吴之荣虽然恼怒,却也无法可施,’During your period of office you did a great deal of harm to the people in this area,’ he said. ‘If I had any money to give away, I would sooner give it to the poor people you despoiled.’ Wu was furious, but there was nothing he could do about it.他既已被革职,无权无势,又怎能再奈何得了富家巨室?当下又来拜访庄允城。Now that he had been cashiered, he no longer had the power or authority to try consequences with wealthy local magnates. Instead, he decided to go and visit Zhuang Yuncheng.

  庄允城平素结交清流名士,对这赃官很瞧不起,见他到来求索,冷笑一声,封了一两银子给他,As an assiduous patron and cultivator of impoverished men of learning, Zhuang had the profoundest contempt for venal officials like Wu. When the latter arrived with his request, he laughed disdainfully and handed him a packet containing a single tael of silver.说道:“依阁下的为人,这两银子本是不该送的,只是湖州百姓盼望阁下早去一刻好一刻,多一两银子,能早去片刻,也是好的。”’When I consider the sort of person you are,’ he said, ‘I’m not sure I ought to be giving you this. However, the people of Huzhou are longing to see the back of you, so, insofar as this single tael may slightly hasten your departure, I suppose it will do some good.’

  吴之荣心下怒极,一瞥眼见到大厅桌上放得有一部《明书辑略》,心想:“这姓庄的爱听奉承,人家只要一赞这部明史修得如何如何好,白花花的银子双手捧给人家,再也不皱一皱眉头。”While he struggled to conceal his fury, Wu’s eye chanced to light on a copy of the Epitome of Ming History lying on the sitting-room table. This Zhuang fellow likes to be flattered,’ he thought. ‘You’ve only got to say what a wonderful job they’ve made of this Ming History, and he’ll be handing out the white and shiny without so much as batting an eyelid.’便笑道:“庄翁厚赐,却之不恭。兄弟今日离别湖州,最遗憾的便是无法将‘湖州之宝’带一部回家,好让敝乡孤陋寡闻之辈大开眼界。”He smiled ingratiatingly. ‘It would be discourteous of me to refuse your contribution, Mr Zhuang,’ he said, ‘but actually my big regret in leaving Huzhou now is that I can’t take a copy of the Treasure of Huzhou with me. It would have been an eye-opener to the provincial folk back home.’庄允城问道:“什么叫做‘湖州之宝’?” ‘What do you mean by the Treasure of Huzhou?’ asked Zhuang.吴之荣笑道:“庄翁这可太谦了。士林之中,纷纷都说,令郎廷鑨龙公子亲笔所撰的那部《明书辑略》,史才、史识、史笔,无一不是旷古罕有,左马班庄,乃是古今良史四大家。这‘湖州之宝’,自然便是令郎亲笔所撰的明史了。”Wu smiled. ‘You are being modest, Mr Zhuang. In educated company one is constantly hearing that the Epitome of Ming History from the brush of your late son, whether from the point of view of historical genius, command of material, or style, is an achievement rarely paralleled in any age. Already they speak of the Four Great Historians, Zuo, Ma, Ban, and Zhuang. The Treasure of Huzhou is, of course, the Ming History from the brush of your late son.’吴之荣前一句“令郎亲笔所撰”,后一句“令郎亲笔所撰”,把庄允城听得心花怒放。他明知此书并非儿子亲作,内心不免遗憾,These repeated references to ‘the brush of your late son’ brought a glow of pleasure to the parental bosom of Zhuang Yuncheng. He knew that his son had not literally written the whole History himself and the knowledge was a source of some regret.吴之荣如此说,正是大投所好,心想:“人家都说此人贪赃,是个龌龊小人,但他毕竟是个读书人,眼光倒是有的。The words used by Wu had therefore struck a responsive chord, prompting the following favourable reflection: This man is certainly corrupt, and, as they all say, a sordid money-grubber; but he is, after all, educated and can be credited with some discernment.原来外间说鑨儿此书是‘湖州之宝’,这话倒是第一次听见。”不由得笑容满脸,So they are calling Longie’s book the Treasure of Huzhou now, are they? I must admit, it’s the first I’ve heard of it.’ In spite of his wish to be severe, a broad smile suffused his face.说道:“荣翁说什么左马班庄,古今四大良史,兄弟可不大明白,还请指教。”吴之荣见他脸色顿和,知道马屁已经拍上,心下暗暗喜欢。This expression you just referred to, the Four Great Historians, Zuo, Ma, Ban, and Zhuang,’ he said: ‘I don’t quite understand it, Mr Wu. You will have to elucidate.’ The sudden change of expression on the old man’s face from sternness to one of affability showed that his vanity had been tickled. Wu observed it and rejoiced.说道:“庄翁未免太谦了。左丘明作《左传》,司马迁作《史记》,班固作《汉书》,都是传诵千载的名作,自班固而后,大史家就没有了。’You really are too modest, Mr Zhuang,’ he said. The Chronicle of Zuo by Zuo Qiuming, the Annals of an Historian by Sima Qian, and Ban Gu’s History of the Han Dynasty are universally recognized to be the greatest histories ever written. From Ban Gu’s time until recently there hasn’t been any really great historian.欧阳修作《五代史》,司马光作《资治通鉴》,文章虽佳,才识终究差了。直到我大清盛世,令郎亲笔所撰这部煌煌巨作《明书辑略》出来,方始有人能和左丘明、司马迁、班固三位前辈并驾齐驱,‘四大良史,左马班庄’,这句话便是由此而生。”Ouyang Xiu’s History of the Five Dynasties and Sima Guang’s Mirror of History, though stylistically very fine, lack the touch of genius. Not until our great Qing era, with the appearance of this magnificent Epitome of Ming History from the brush of your late son, has there been anything to bear comparison with those great works of the past. Hence the coining of this new expression–the Four Great Historians, Zuo, Ma, Ban, and Zhuang.’ By now Zhuang was beaming. Too kind, too kind,’ he said, pumping his clasped hands in courteous deprecation.

  庄允城笑容满面,连连拱手,说道:“谬赞,谬赞!不过“湖州之宝’这句话,毕竟当不起。”吴之荣正色道:“怎么当不起?外间大家都说:‘湖州之宝史丝笔,还是庄史居第一’!” ‘But the Treasure of Huzhou, you know– that I cannot allow.’ ‘Why ever not?’ Wu replied with a perfectly straight face. There’s even a rhyme going the rounds now which says so: Brushes, silk, and a book Are Huzhou’s treasures three. And the greatest one among them Is Zhuang’s History.’

  蚕丝和毛笔是湖州两大名产,吴之荣品格卑下,却有三分才情,出口成章,将“庄史”和湖丝、湖笔并称。庄允城听得更是喜欢。Silk and writing-brushes were in fact the two products for which Huzhou was famous. For all that he was a vulgar philistine, Wu was gifted with a certain verbal dexterity and his neat coupling of ‘Zhuang’s History’ with ‘Hu brushes’ and ‘Hu silk’, as they were called, had the desired effect of making Zhuang even more delighted.

  吴之荣又道:“兄弟来到贵处做官,两袖清风,一无所得。今日老着脸皮,要向庄翁求一部明史,作为我家传家之宝。日后我吴家子孙日夕诵读,自必才思大进,光宗耀祖,全仗庄翁之厚赐了。”Wu pressed on. ‘I arrived here to take up the magistracy in this area with a clean slate, Mr Zhuang, and I am leaving it no richer than I came. Let me be bold. My real reason for visiting you today was to beg a copy of the Ming History. It would become an heirloom in our family. My sons and grandsons would read and study it day and night. It would improve their minds. It would enable them to get the sort of jobs that would make them a credit to their ancestors. And all that would be thanks to your generous gift.’庄允城笑道:“自当奉赠。”吴之荣又谈了几句,不见庄允城有何举动,当下又将这部明史大大恭维了一阵,其实这部书他一页也未读过,只是史才如何如何了得,史识又如何如何超卓,不着边际的瞎说。庄允城道:“荣翁且请宽坐。”’You shall have a copy, of course,’ said Zhuang graciously. Wu added a few politenesses, but since his host showed no sign of wanting to move, he was obliged to fall back on further eulogies of the Ming History. In point of fact he hadn’t read a single page of it and his eloquent comments on the book’s amazing historical genius, superb command of material, et cetera, et cetera, were a farrago of wholly irrelevant babble. Zhuang at last got up. ‘Make yourself comfortable, will you, Mr Wu, while I leave you for a moment,’ he said, and retreated to an inner room.

  回进内堂。

  过了良久,一名家丁捧了一个包裹出来,放在桌上。吴之荣见庄允城尚未出来,忙将包裹掂了一掂,那包裹虽大,却是轻飘飘地,内中显然并无银两,好生失望。After a long wait, a servant came in with a large cloth-wrapped bundle, set it down on the table and went out again. Since there was no sign of Zhuang returning, Wu quickly lifted the bundle from the table and tested it for weight. In spite of its bulk, it was light as a feather and could not, he concluded with dismay, contain any silver.心下过得片刻,庄允城回到厅上,捧起包裹,笑道:“荣翁瞧得起敝处的土产,谨以相赠。”After he had waited a little longer, Zhuang came in again, ceremoniously picked up the bundle from the table with both hands and smilingly presented it to his guest. ‘Since you have shown your appreciation of our Huzhou products, Mr Wu, allow me to present you with this sample.’

  吴之荣谢了,告辞出来,没回到客店,便伸手到包裹中一阵掏摸,摸到的竟是一部书,一束蚕丝,几十管毛笔。Wu thanked him and took his leave,On his way back to the inn where he was staying he slipped his hand inside the bundle and felt around. The contents turned out to be a book, a hank of raw silk, and a few dozen writing-brushes.他费了许多唇舌,本想庄允城在一部明史之外,另有几百两银子相赠,可是赠送的竟是他信口胡诌的“湖州三宝”, So all that ingenious talk which he had hoped would bring him not only the book but several hundred taels to go with it had been wasted! That brilliant bit about ‘Huzhou’s treasures three’ which he had invented on the spur of the moment had been taken literally and Zhuang had, though not in the sense he intended, given him what he asked for.心下暗骂:“他妈的,南浔这些财主,都如此小气!也是我说错了话,倘若我说湖州三宝乃是金子银子和明史,岂不是大有所获?”’Damnation!’ he thought. ‘Whatever possessed me to say that? They’re all so mean, these Nanxun millionaires. If only I’d told him that the three treasures of Huzhou were gold, silver, and the Ming History, I might have made quite a haul.’

  气愤愤的回到客店,将包裹往桌上一丢,倒头便睡,一觉醒来,天已大黑,客店中吃饭的时候已过,他又舍不得另叫饭菜,愁肠饥火,两相煎熬,再也睡不着觉,He reached the inn in a thoroughly bad temper, dumped the bundle on the table, threw himself down on the bed, and was soon asleep. When he woke up it was already dark. The inn had long since ceased serving supper, but he didn’t feel he could afford to order a separate meal. What with the pangs of hunger and anxiety about his predicament, there seemed little prospect of his getting to sleep again.当下解开包裹,翻开那部《明书辑略》阅看。看得几页,眼前金光一闪,赫然出现一张金叶。吴之荣一颗心怦怦乱跳,揉了揉眼细看,却不是金叶是什么?To pass the time he took the Epitome from the bundle, opened it up, and began to read. After he had read a few pages, he thought he could see the glint of gold. He turned over the page and there, shining before him, was a whole sheet of gold leaf. His heart pounded with excitement. Could it be? He rubbed his eyes and looked again.当下一阵乱抖,从书中抖了十张金叶出来,每一张少说也有五钱,十张金叶便有五两黄金。其时金贵,五两黄金抵得四百两银子。Yes, it was gold all right. He picked up each volume in turn and shook it wildly. From each of them sheets of gold leaf dropped out, ten in all. Each sheet, he calculated, must weigh at least five pennyweights. That meant a total of five taels of gold. The relative value of gold to silver at that time was eighty to one, so five taels of gold represented four hundred taels of silver.吴之荣喜不自胜,寻思:“这姓庄的果然狡狯,他怕我讨得这部书去,随手抛弃,翻也不翻,因此将金叶子夹在书中,看是谁读他儿子这部书,谁便有福气得此金叶。Wu’s joy knew no bounds. That Zhuang’s a crafty old devil, ‘ he thought. ‘He was afraid that once I’d got him to give me a copy of the book, I might throw it aside and forget it without even looking at the contents. He put these sheets of gold leaf inside this copy of his son’s book to make sure that only the first person who actually read it should have them.是了,我便多读几篇,明天再上门去,一面谢他赠金之惠,一面将书中文章背诵几段,大赞而特赞。他心中一喜,说不定另有几两黄金相送。”All right, then. I’ll read two or three more chapters, and when I call round tomorrow to thank him for the gold, I’ll recite a few passages from memory and tell him how wonderful they are. Then–who knows?–he might cough up a whole lot more.’

  当下剔亮油灯,翻书诵读,读到明万历四十四年,后金太祖努儿哈赤即位,国号金,建元“天命”,突然间心中一凛:“At once he trimmed the lamp, opened the book again and began reading aloud to himself from the text. On and on he droned until suddenly–he had just reached the year 1616–his heart missed a beat.我太祖于丙辰建元,从这一年起,就不该再用明朝万历年号,该当用大金天命元年才是。”It was the year in which the Manchu Nurhachi proclaimed himself First Emperor of the Later Jin dynasty, but here in the book it was referred to as ‘the forty-fourth year of the Ming Emperor Wan Li’.

  一路翻阅下去,只见丁卯年后金太宗即位,书中仍书“明天启七年”,不作“大金天聪元年”。 He read swiftly on. Here it was again: the year 1627 when Abahai succeeded Nurhachi as Emperor of Later Jin was referred to as ‘the seventh year of the Ming Emperor Tian Qi’;丙子年后金改国号为清,改元崇德,这部书中仍作“崇祯九年”,不书“大清崇德元年”; 1636, when Abahai changed the name of the Manchu dynasty from ‘Later Jin’ to ‘Qing’, was given as ‘the ninth year of the Ming Emperor Chong Zhen’;甲申年书作“崇祯十七年”,不书“大清顺治元年”。又看清兵入关之后,书中于乙酉年书作“隆武元年”、丁亥年书作“永历元年”,那隆武、永历,乃明朝唐王、桂王的年号,1645 was called ‘the firstyear of Long Wu’, and 1647 ‘the first year of Yong Li’. (‘Long Wu’ and ‘Yong Li’ were the reign-titles of Prince Tang and Prince Gui, Ming Princes who set up shortlived regimes in the South after the Manchus had established themselves in Peking.)作书之人明明白白是仍奉明朝正朔,不将清朝放在眼里。他看到这里,不由得拍案大叫:“It was patently obvious that the author of the book had followed Ming Court practice throughout for his dates, totally disregarding the existence of the Manchus. Wu hit the table with a mighty thump and involuntarily let out a shout.反了,反了,这还了得!”一拍之下,桌子震动,油灯登时跌翻,溅得他手上襟上都是灯油。’But this is treason! This is outrageous!’ The table was shaken so much by his blow that the lamp fell over, splashing his hands and the front of his gown with oil.黑暗之中,突然间灵机一动,不由得大喜若狂:“这不是老天爷赐给我的一注横财?升官发财,皆由于此。”想到开心处,不由得大声叫唤起来。忽听得店伴拍门叫道:“客官,客官,什么事?”As he sat there in the dark he had a sudden inspiration that made him fairly crow with delight. ‘Dear God, ‘ he thought, ‘I thank you for this windfall! This could make me rich. I could be promoted.’ His heart so warmed at the prospect that he let out a great whoop of joy. It was shortly followed by an urgent knocking at the door. ‘Hello, sir. Hello. Are you all right?’

  吴之荣笑道:“没什么!”点燃油灯,重新翻阅。这一晚直看到雄鸡啼叫,这才和衣上床,却又在书中找了七八十处忌讳犯禁的文字出来,便在睡梦之中,也是不住的嘻笑。’It’s nothing,’ he said, laughing. ‘I’m all right.’ He re-lit the lamp and went back to his reading. The neighbourhood cocks were crowing when he finally broke off and threw himself, fully clothed, on to his bed. From time to time he chuckled in his sleep. He had discovered between seventy and eighty violations of taboo.

  换朝改代之际,当政者于这年号正朔,最是着意。最犯忌者,莫过于文字言语之中,引人思念前朝。Whenever there is a change of dynasty, the incoming regime is always extremely sensitive about dates. There is insistence that the new forms should be used correctly. Lapses, whether in speech or writing, of a kind likely to awaken nostalgic memories of the previous dynasty are regarded as particularly heinous.《明书辑略》记叙的是明代之事,以明朝年号纪年,原无不合,但当文字禁网极密之际,却是极大的祸端。As a narrative of Ming events, the Epitome of Ming History had throughout followed the Ming system of dating; but though this had seemed perfectly natural to the original author, it was likely to have disastrous consequences at a time when new regulations about these matters were being applied with ever-increasing stringency.参与修史的学者文士,大都只助修数卷,未能通阅全书,而修撰最后数卷之人,偏是对清朝痛恨入骨,决不肯在书中用大清年号。Most of the scholarly specialists who had taken part in the editing had worked on only one or two sections of the book and never read it through, whilst those who worked on the last few sections were precisely the ones with the most inveterate hatred of the new Court, men for whom the use of the ‘Great Qing’ formula in a book like this would have been unthinkable.庄廷鑨是富室公子,双眼又盲,未免粗疏,终予小人以可乘之隙。As for Zhuang Tinglong himself: it was hardly surprising that a wealthy young amateur who was moreover blind should have overlooked loopholes that a mean-spirited reader might exploit.次日中午,吴之荣便即乘船东行,到了杭州,在客店中写了一张禀帖,连同这部明史,送入将军松魁府中。他料想松魁收到禀帖后,便会召见。At noon next day Wu took an east-going boat to Hangzhou. There, as soon as he had found lodgings, he wrote out a letter of denunciation and delivered it, together with his copy of the History, to the headquarters of General Songkui, the Military Governor, confident that as soon as the General saw it, he would be summoned for an interview.其时满清于检举叛逆,赏赐极厚,自己立此大功,开复原官固是意料中事,说不定还会连升三级。This was a period in which anyone who gave the Manchu authorities information leading to the apprehension of a rebel could expect a very generous reward. In return for so important a service Wu could be sure at the very least of getting back his old post and perhaps of being promoted two or three grades as well.不料在客店中左等右等,一连等上大半年,日日到将军府去打探消息,却如石沉大海一般,后来那门房竟厉声斥责,不许他再上门啰唣。Yet though he waited and waited in his lodgings until he had been staying in the same inn for more than half a year, and though he went every single day to the General’s headquarters to make inquiries, there was no response. It was as if he had dropped a pebble into the sea. Eventually the people on the reception desk lost patience with him and forbade him, with much angry shouting, to come troubling them any more.

  吴之荣心焦已极,庄允城所赠金叶兑换的银子即将用尽,这场告发却没半点结果,又是烦恼,又是诧异。Wu was by now extremely worried. The money he had got from selling the gold leaf given him by Zhuang Yuncheng had now all been spent, yet the project on which he had invested it all had come to nothing. Not only was he vexed and worried; he was also puzzled.这日在杭州城中闲逛,走过文通堂书局门口,踱进去想看看白书,以消永日,只见书架上陈列着三部《明书辑略》,Then one day while he was out strolling in the city he chanced to find himself outside the Wen Tong Tang bookshop. He had no intention of buying anything, but he diought he would step inside and browse for a bit to help while away the long day. As he did so he noticed, among the other books on the shelves, three copies of the Epitome of Ming History.心想:“难道我所找出的岔子,还不足以告倒庄允城?且再找几处大逆不道的文字出来,明日再写一张禀帖,递进将军府去。”’Surely,’ he thought, ‘those things I found wrong with the book ought to have been enough to get Zhuang Yuncheng arrested? I’ll just have another look and see if I can find some really seditious bits. Then tomorrow I’ll write another letter and take it to the General’s headquarters.’浙江巡抚是汉人,将军则是满洲人,他生怕巡抚不肯兴此文字大狱,是以定要向满洲将军告发。The Provincial Governor of Zhejiang at this time was a Chinese civilian; the Military Governor was a Manchu. Wu was afraid that, as a Chinese, the Provincial Governor might be unwilling to start a literary witch-hunt in his area. That is why he was determined that the Military Governor should again be the one to receive his denunciation.

  他打开书来,只看得几页,不由得吓了一跳,全身犹如堕入冰窖,一时宛如丈二和尚,摸不着头脑,He took a copy down from the shelf, opened it up and began to read. He hadn’t read more than a few pages when he experienced the sort of shock you might get from accidentally stepping into an ice-pit.只见书中各处犯忌的文字竟已全然无影无踪,自大清太祖开国以后,也都改用了大金大清的年号纪年,All those bits he had listed as likely to give offence to the new regime had disappeared without trace. From 1615 onwards, the year in which Nurhachi proclaimed himself Emperor, every single date was expressed in terms of Jin or Qing reign-titles.至于攻讦建州卫都督(满清皇帝祖宗的亲戚),以及大书隆武、永历等年号的文字,更是一字不见。The disparaging references to the ‘antics of the Paramount Chief of the Jianzhou tribe’ had vanished. So had all references to the Southern Courts of the Ming Princes as those of legitimate rulers.但文字前后贯串,书页上干干净净,更无丝毫涂改痕迹,这戏法如何变来,实是奇哉怪也。And yet there were no breaks in the text, no signs of erasure or alteration. Every page was as immaculate as if it had never been other than it was now. What conjurer’s magic could have produced so extraordinary a transformation?他双手捧书,在书铺中只呆呆出神,过得半晌,大叫一声:“是了!”眼见此书书页封函,洁白崭新,向店倌一问之下,果然是湖州贩书客人新近送来,到货还不过七八天。For some time he stood there in the bookshop, holding the book in both his hands and gawping foolishly. Then the solution he was puzzling for came to him. ‘Of course!’ he said to himself out loud. The cover of the book was brand-new, the pages were dazzling white, and when he made a few inquiries of the bookseller’s assistant, the latter confirmed that the Huzhou agent had only recently delivered it. The copies had in fact only been in stock for seven or eight days.他心道:“这庄允城好厉害!当真是钱可通伸。他收回旧书,重行镌版,另刊新书,将原书中所有干犯禁忌之处,尽行删削干净。哼,难道就此罢了不成?”That Zhuang’s a cunning devil,’ he thought. ‘No wonder they say money can work miracles. He’s withdrawn the book, had new blocks cut and brought out a new edition in which all the offensive bits have been removed. Humph, you won’t get away with it that easily, my friend!’

  吴之荣所料果然不错。原来杭州将军松魁不识汉字,幕府师爷见到吴之荣的禀帖,登时全身吓出了一身冷汗,Wu’s surmise was correct. General Songkui, the Military Governor in Hangzhou, was unable to read Chinese. Wu’s letter had gone straight to his Chinese secretary, who had broken out in a cold sweat when he saw its contents.知道此事牵连重大之极,拿着禀帖的双手竟不由自主的颤抖不已。He knew what serious repercussions a letter like this would have and his hands, as they held it, shook uncontrollably.

  这幕客姓程,名维藩,浙江绍兴人氏。明清两朝,官府的幕僚十之八九是绍兴人,所以“师爷”二字之上,往往冠以“绍兴”,称为“绍兴师爷”。 The name of this secretary was Cheng Weifan, a Shaoxing man, like a great many other Yamen secretaries of the Ming and Qing periods–so many, indeed, that ‘Shaoxing secretary’ and ‘Yamen secretary’ had become almost synonyms.这些师爷先跟同乡先辈学到一套秘诀,此后办理刑名钱谷,处事便十分老到。These Shaoxing secretaries were trained by their older countrymen in the mysteries of their profession before they entered employment, so that when they did so they were able to discharge their duties, whether legal or financial, with complete assurance.官府中所有公文,均由师爷手拟,大家既是同乡,下级官员的公文呈到上级衙门去,也就不易遇到挑剔批驳。All official correspondence passed through their hands; and since they were all fellow-countrymen, it was very unusual for documents sent for approval from a lower to a higher Yamen to meet with criticism or refusal.因此大小新官上任,最要紧的便是重金礼聘一位绍兴师爷。For this reason the first thing any candidate for office would do on receiving his posting would be to acquire, at whatever cost, the services of a Shaoxing secretary.明清两朝,绍兴人做大官的并不多,却操纵了中国庶政达数百年之久,也是中国政治史上的一项奇迹。During the Ming and Qing dynasties very few Shaoxing men reached positions of authority, yet for several centuries they virtually controlled the administration. This is one of the great paradoxes of Chinese history.那程维藩宅心忠厚,信奉“公门之中好修行”这句名言。This Cheng Weifan was a good-hearted man. He subscribed PKULL’W” to the precept that ‘good works may be done in a Yamen’,那是说官府手操百姓生杀大权,师爷拟稿之际几字略重,便能令百姓家破人亡,稍加开脱,即可使之死里逃生,因之在公门中救人,比之在寺庙中修行效力更大。by which it is meant that, since a Government official has powers of life and death over the people under his jurisdiction, and since, as a consequence, the secretary who takes down his commands can, by a mere shift of emphasis, either utterly ruin a man or save him from certain death, it follows that merit may more effectively be acquired in a Yamen, by saving lives, than by prayer and fasting in a monastery.他见这明史一案倘若酿成大狱,苏南浙西不知将有多少人丧身破家,当即向将军告了几天假,星夜坐船,来到湖州南浔镇上,将此事告知庄允城。Aware as he was that if this Ming History business was allowed to get out of hand it could threaten the lives and fortunes of countless people in the whole of West Zhejiang, he knew he must act swiftly. He asked the General for a few days’ leave, hired a boat to take him to Nanxun in Huzhou prefecture, travelling through the night for greater speed, and went straight to see Zhuang Yuncheng on his arrival.庄允城陡然大祸临头,自是魂飞天外,登时吓得全身瘫软,口涎直流,不知如何是好,过了良久,这才站起身来,双膝跪地,向程维藩叩谢大恩,然后向他问计。The effect of suddenly being made aware of the calamity that hung over him was to deprive old Zhuang temporarily of his faculties. His whole body became paralysed, a dribble of saliva ran from his mouth, and for some time he was incapable of making any response. Eventually he rose from his chair, plumped down on both his knees and, knocking his head several times on the floor, thanked Cheng Weifan for his kindness. Then he asked him what he should do.程维藩从杭州坐船到南浔之时,反复推考,已思得良策,Cheng Weifan had had plenty of time to think things over on the long boat journey from Hangzhou to Nanxun and had come up with what seemed like a good plan.心想这部《明书辑略》流传已久,隐瞒是瞒不了的,唯有施一个釜底抽薪之计,The Epitome of Ming History had already been in circulation for some time. It was therefore too late for concealment. The only expedient left was to reduce the damage already done — by pulling the burning brands from under the pot, as it were, in order to reduce the heat.一面派人前赴各地书铺,将这部书尽数收购回来销毁,一面赶开夜工,另镌新版,删除所有讳忌之处,重印新书,行销于外。Let Zhuang send people to the bookshops to buy back all copies of the book they could lay their hands on and destroy them; and meanwhile let him set the engravers to work day and night on a new edition from which all the offensive bits had been removed. Then let him release this new edition.官府追究之时,将新版明史拿来一查,发觉吴之荣所告不实,便可消弭一场横祸了。当下便将此计说了出来。When the authorities started investigating, they would submit the new edition for their inspection. Wu’s charges would be dismissed as groundless and a hideous disaster would have been averted.庄允城惊喜交集,连连叩头道谢。程维藩又教了他不少关节,某某官府处应送礼若干,某某衙门处应如何疏通,庄允城一一受教。Old Zhuang listened with a mixture of surprise and delight as Cheng Weifan unfolded his plan and kowtowed many times in gratitude when he had finished. The latter added a number of tips handling the authorities — which officials to bribe and how much, which secretaries in which Yamens to contact, and so on– all of which were gratefully received.

  程维藩回到杭州,隔了半个多月,才将原书及吴之荣的禀帖移送浙江巡抚朱昌祚,轻描淡写的批了几个字,说道投禀者是因赃已革知县,似有挟怨吹求之嫌,请抚台大人详查。After his return to Hangzhou, Cheng Weifan allowed more than two weeks to go by before forwarding Wu’s letter and copy of the book to the civilian Governor of Zhejiang. He added a brief covering note in which he played the affair down as much as possible, pointing out that the writer of the letter was an ex-magistrate who had been cashiered for dishonesty and who appeared to be motivated by some grudge. He ended by praying His Excellency to kindly look into the matter and deal with it as he thought fit.

  吴之荣在杭州客店中苦候消息之时,庄允城的银子却如流水价使将出去。其时庄允城的重赂,已经送到将军衙门、巡抚衙门和学政衙门。While Wu sat in his Hangzhou lodgings anxiously waiting for news, a regular flood of silver from Zhuang Yuncheng was busy doing its work. The Provincial Governor’s Yamen and the Literary Chancellor’s Yamen were already in receipt of very substantial bribes.朱昌祚接到公事,这等刊书之事,属学政该管,压了十多天后,才移牒学政胡尚衡。学政衙门的师爷先搁上大半个月,又告一个月病假,这才慢吞吞的拟稿发文,将公事送到湖州府去。Matters of publication fell within the domain of the Literary Chancellor, the Governor decided, so after holding on to the file for a fortnight or so, he passed it on with another covering note to the Literary Chancellor. Following its arrival in the Literary Chancellor’s office, the secretary managed to put off opening it for about three weeks. He then took a month’s sick leave, and only after his return set about, albeit very slowly, drawing up a directive to be sent in due course, along with the book and the rest of the file, to the Chief Education Officer in Huzhou prefecture.湖州府学官又耽搁了二十几天,才移文归安县和乌程县的学官,要他二人申复。那两个学官也早得到庄允城的大笔贿赂,其时新版明史也已印就,二人将两部新版书缴了上去,This individual managed a delay of some three weeks or more before issuing directives to the Education Officers of Gui’an district and Wucheng district requiring them to furnish him with a report. Long in advance of this, both Education Officers had received hefty bribes from Zhuang Yuncheng; and by this time the printing of the revised Epitome of Ming History had been completed, so they were able to send in copies of the new edition along with their reports.回说道:“该书平庸粗疏,无裨世道人心,然细查全书,尚无讳禁犯例之处。”层层申复,就此不了了之。In these they stated–the words of one more or less echoing the words of the other–that they had read the whole book carefully, that they had found it indifferently and somewhat carelessly written, with little in its contents conducive to moral uplift, but that they had failed to find any instances in which taboos, regulations concerning the correct wording of dates, and so on, had been infringed.,.And so, in hugger-mugger fashion, the affair was laid to rest.

  吴之荣直到在书铺中发现了新版明史,方知就里,心想唯有弄到一部原版明史,才能重揭此案。Wu had realized what he was up against as soon as he had come across the new edition of the Epitome in the Hangzhou bookshop. He now saw that he would only get the case reopened if he could find another copy of the original edition.杭州各家书铺之中,原版书早给庄家买清,当下前赴浙东偏僻州县搜购,岂知仍是一部也觅不到。In all the Hangzhou bookshops every copy of it appeared to have been bought up by the Zhuangs. He therefore set about hunting for one in the remoter towns and cities of East Zhejiang; but there, too, not a single copy was to be had.他穷愁潦倒,只好废然还乡。也是事有凑巧,旅途之中,却在一家客店中见到店主人正在摇头晃脑的读书,一看之下,所读的便是这部《明书辑略》借来一翻,竟是原版。In the end, disconsolate and now nearly penniless, he was forced to acknowledge himself beaten and to make his way back home. It was at this low point in his fortunes that he had a sudden stroke of luck. Putting up one night on his homeward journey at an inn, he chanced to observe the landlord nodding his head and rocking himself to and fro as he read from some book. The book turned out on inspection to be the Epitome of Ming History, and when he asked to borrow it for a few moments to have a look at it, it proved, to his boundless delight, to be the original edition.这一下大喜过望,心想若向客店主人求购,一来他未必肯售,二来自己也无银子,买不起,只好偷。深夜之中悄悄起床,偷了书便即溜出店门,He calculated that if he asked to buy it the innkeeper would probably refuse; and in any case he wouldn’t be able to buy it because he hadn’t got the money. The only thing was to steal it. So he tiptoed from his bed at dead of night, took the book, and slipped from the inn without being observed.心想浙江全省有关官员都已受了庄允城之贿,一不做,二不休,索性告到北京城去。Wu was pretty sure that all the relevant officials in Zhejiang Province had received Zhuang’s bribes. ‘Very well,’ he thought to himself: ‘in for a penny, in for a pound!’ and resolved to take the case all the way to Peking.吴之荣来到北京,便写了禀帖,告到礼部、都察院、通政司三处衙门,说明庄家如何贿赂官员,改镌新版。When he got to Peking, Wu wrote out three more copies of his denunciation, one addressed to the Board of Rites, one to the Court of Censors, and one to the Chancellery, this time adding an account of how the Zhuang family had evaded justice by bribing Government officials and by printing a new, innocent edition of the seditious book.

  不料在京中等不到一个月,三处衙门先后驳复下来,都称细查庄廷鑨所著《明书辑略》一书,内容并无违禁犯例,该革职知县吴之荣所告,并非实情,显系挟嫌诬告,至于贿赂官员云云,更系捕风捉影之辞。那通政司的批驳更是严厉,说道:“该吴之荣以贪墨被革,遂以天下清官,皆如彼之贪。”To his astonishment, this denunciation, too, was rejected. After waiting in Peking for a whole month, he received the same dismissive reply from all three departments. They had carefully examined the Epitome of Ming History by Zhuang Tinglong and found no infringements. The allegations made by the cashiered District Officer Wu were without foundation and maliciously inspired. As for his allegations about the bribery of officials, these appeared to be totally groundless. The Chancellery’s finding was even more severe, stating that ‘the said Wu, having himself been dismissed from office for corrupt practices, was evidently seeking to tar the honest majority of officials with the same brush.’原来庄允城受了程维藩之教,早将新版明史送到了礼部、都察院、通政司三处衙门,有关官吏师爷,也早已送了厚礼打点。Acting on Cheng Weifan’s advice, old Zhuang had long before this sent copies of the new edition to the Board of Rites, the Court of Censors, and the Chancellery, and suitable douceurs to the relevant officials and secretaries.

  吴之荣又碰了一鼻子灰,眼见回家已无盘缠,势将流落异乡。Once more Wu had got a nose full of soot for his pains; and as he now had no money left for his journey back home, he was faced with the prospect of becoming a down-and-out in a city in which he was still a stranger.其时清廷对待汉人文士极为严峻,文字中稍有犯禁,便即处死,吴之荣所告的若是寻常文人,早已得手,偏生遇着的对手是富豪之家,这才阻难重重。The Manchu Court was at this period extremely severe in its treatment of Chinese intellectuals. Normally the punishment for the slightest infringement of a taboo found in their writings would be summary execution by beheading. If the charges made by Wu had been laid against an ordinary writer, they would long since have been acted on. It was only because their target was the member of a very wealthy family that he had encountered so many obstacles.既无退路,心想拚着坐牢,也要将这件案子干到底,Since he had no other course to fall back on, he resolved, even at the risk of imprisonment, to follow this case through to the bitter end.当下又写了四张禀帖,分呈四位顾命大臣;He wrote out four more copies of his denunciation which he addressed to four great Counsellors of State.同时又在客店中写了数百张招纸,揭露其事,在北京城中到处张贴。At the same time, sitting in his Peking lodgings, he wrote out several hundred copies of a handbill outlining his main charges which he pasted up everywhere in the city.他这一着却大是行险,倘若官府追究起来,说他危言耸听,扰乱人心,不免有杀头的重罪。This was a very dangerous thing to do, for if the authorities decided to investigate the source of the handbills, he might well face a charge of spreading alarmist reports or inciting public disquiet, for which the mandatory penalty was execution.

  那四个顾命大臣,名叫索尼、苏克萨哈、遏必隆、鳌拜,均是满洲的开国功臣。顺治皇帝逝世之时,遗诏命这四大臣辅政。Soni, Suksaha, Ebilun, and Oboi were the names of the Counsellors of State whom Wu chose to be the recipients of his letter. These four Manchu statesmen, each of them distinguished for the part he had played in the foundation of the new state, had been nominated by the dying Emperor Shun Zhi to act as Regents for his Heir, the boy Emperor Kang Xi.其中鳌拜最为凶横,朝中党羽极众,清廷大权,几乎尽操于他一人之手。Oboi was by far the most formidable of the four. His was the most numerous following at Court and at this time virtually all the powers of government were concentrated in his hands.他生怕敌党对其不利,是以派出无数探子,在京城内外打探动静。这日得到密报,说道北京城中出现许多招贴,揭发浙江庄姓百姓著书谋叛,大逆不道,浙江官员受贿、置之不理等情。In spite of this he remained excessively fearful of his political rivals and employed a regular army of informers, both at the capital and in the provinces, to keep an eye on their activities. It was from a secret report sent in by one of these spies that he learned of the handbills which had been appearing all over Peking denouncing as guilty of treason a Zhejiang commoner called Zhuang who had written a seditious book, and claiming that the Zhejiang authorities had taken bribes to hush the matter up.

  鳌拜得悉之下,立即查究,登时雷厉风行的办了起来。便在此时,吴之荣的禀帖也已递入鳌拜府中。On receipt of this information Oboi at once ordered an investigation. Now at last things began to move, this time with lightning speed. And just at this moment Wu’s letter was delivered to Oboi’s residence.他当即召见吴之荣,详问其事,再命手下汉人幕客细阅吴之荣所呈缴的那部原版明史,所言果是实情。Oboi summoned him for an interview without delay and closely questioned him. He ordered his Chinese secretaries to take the copy of the Epitome, in its original edition which Wu had brought with him and look through it carefully. Wu’s allegations were now all substantiated.

  鳌拜以军功而封公爵、做大官,向来歧视汉官和读书人,Oboi, who had won his dukedom and high office by virtue of his military exploits, had an inveterate contempt for civilians, especially Chinese officials and men of letters.掌握大权后便想办几件大案,镇慑人心,不但使汉人不敢兴反叛之念,也令朝中敌党不敢有甚异动,In order to consolidate his monopoly of power in the state he needed one or two big show trials which would cow men’s minds into submission, not only to extinguish Chinese hopes of a rebellion, but also as a means of deterring the rival factions at Court from acting against him.当即派出钦差,赴浙江查究。这一来,庄家全家固然逮入京中,连杭州将军松魁、浙江巡抚朱昌祚以下所有大小官员,也都革职查办。A Special Commissioner was accordingly despatched to Zhejiang to pursue the investigation. His first act was to arrest all members of the Zhuang family and send them off to Peking. General Songkui and the Provincial Governor of Zhejiang, all members of their staffs, and all subordinate officials of whatever rank were immediately suspended and placed under investigation;在明史上列名的文学之士,无一不鎯铛入狱。and all those scholars whose names were inscribed in the preface of the Epitome were clapped in irons and imprisoned.

  顾炎武、黄宗羲二人在吕留良家中,将此案的来龙去脉,详细道来,吕留良听得只是叹息。This was the story that Gu Yanwu and Huang Zongxi related in all its details to Lu Liuliang and to which Lu listened attentively, with many a sigh and groan.当晚三人联榻长谈,议论世事,说到明末魏忠贤等太监陷害忠良,把持朝政,种种倒行逆施,终至明室覆亡,入清后汉人惨遭屠戮,祸难方深,无不扼腕切齿。When it was time to retire, the three of them shared the same bedroom and lay awake far into the night discussing the world’s affairs: how, in the penultimate reign of the Ming dynasty, the evil eunuch Wei Zhongxian had gained control of the Government by encompassing the deaths of good, loyal ministers; how the weakening of the state by his disastrous policies had hastened the fall of the dynasty; and how, since the arrival of the Manchus, the Chinese people had been cruelly massacred and subjected to every conceivable suffering, to which they now responded with a deep and bitter hatred of their oppressors.

  次日一早,吕留良全家和顾黄二人登舟东行。First thing next morning Lu Liuliang with his wife and sons and his two friends Gu and Huang embarked on their journey to Yangzhou.江南中产以上人家,家中都自备有船,江南水乡,河道四通八达,密如蛛网,一般人出行都是坐船,所谓“北人乘马,南人乘舟”,自古已然。South of the Yangtze even households of quite moderate means had their own boat. This was a land of lakes and rivers, criss-crossed in all directions by canals and waterways, where journeys were normally made not by land but by water, so that it was often said, ‘the Northerner goes a-horseback, the Southerner by boat’.

  到得杭州后,自运河折而向北,这晚在杭州城外听到消息,Their plan, when they reached Hangzhou, was to turn into the Grand Canal and travel northwards. While they were moored for the night outside the city, they heard some news.清廷已因此案而处决了不少官员百姓:庄廷鑨已死,开棺戮尸;The Manchu Court had already sentenced a large number of those involved in the Ming History case, both officials and commoners. Zhuang Ting-long could not be executed because he was already dead, so they had broken open his coffin and gibbeted his corpse.庄允城在狱中不堪虐待而死;庄家全家数十口,十五岁以上的尽数处斩,妻女发配沈阳,给满洲旗兵为奴。His father had died in prison of maltreatment. Of the rest of the Zhuang family, which numbered some forty or fifty members, all the males over the age of fifteen had been beheaded; the females were being transported to Mukden to be the slaves of Manchu Bannermen.前礼部侍郎李令晰为该书作序,凌迟处死,四子处斩。The former Vice-President of the Board of Rites Li Lingxi who had written the preface to the Epitome had been sentenced to execution by the Slow Process. (The Slow Process meant that the condemned person’s body was slowly cut away, slice by slice, and only when he had endured every conceivable suffering did they finally cut off his head.) Vice-President Li’s four sons had been beheaded.李令晰的幼子刚满十六岁,法司见杀得人多,心肠软了,命他减供一岁,按照清律,十五岁以下者得免死充军。那少年道:“我爹爹哥哥都死了,我也不愿独生。”终于不肯易供,一并处斩。The youngest of them, a lad of barely sixteen, had been ordered by the law officers, who felt some compunction about the numbers being executed, to give his age as fifteen in his deposition, since under Qing law those of fifteen and under could not be executed, being sentenced to transportation instead; but the boy said that if his father and brothers were to die, he didn’t want to go on living either. He refused to give a lower age in his deposition and was executed along with the rest.松魁、朱昌祚入狱候审,幕客程维藩凌迟弃市。Songkui and the Provincial Governor of Zhejiang were in prison awaiting sentence. The secretary Cheng Weifan had been sentenced to execution ‘by the Slow Process’.归安、乌程的两名学官处斩。因此案牵连,冤枉而死的人亦是不计其数。The Education Officers of Gui’an and Wucheng had been beheaded. Countless people had been charged and sentenced on the flimsiest of evidence.

  湖州府知府谭希闵到任还只半月,朝廷说他知情不报,受贿隐匿,和推官李焕、训导王兆祯同处绞刑。The Prefect of Huzhou, who had only held office for a fortnight, was accused by the Court of failing to report the facts and receiving bribes. Along with his Justiciar, and his Sub-Director of Studies, he was sentenced to be garotted.

  吴之荣对南浔富人朱佑明心下怀恨最深,那日去打秋风,给他抢白了一场,逐出门来, Wu Zhirong nourished a deep-seated hatred for the wealthy Nanxun householder Zhu Youming who had given him a piece of his mind and sent him packing when he came to his door begging for ‘subscriptions’. 当下向办理此案的法司声称,该书注明依据“朱氏原稿增删润饰而成”。这朱氏便是朱佑明了;The preface to the Epitome had described the book as ‘a revised and improved edition of an original manuscript by Mr Zhu’. Wu Zhirong gave the law officers in charge of the case to understand that the ‘Mr Zhu’ referred to was Zhu Youming.又说他的名字”朱佑明”,显是心存前明,咒诅本朝。Moreover he pointed out that the name Youming, which means ‘Guiding Light’, could be construed to mean ‘Supporting the Ming’ and had obviously been assumed by Zhu in defiance of the Manchu Court.这样一来,朱佑明和他五个儿子同处斩首,朱家的十余万财产,清廷下令都赏给吴之荣。As a consequence Zhu Youming and all five of his sons were beheaded and the Zhu family fortune, amounting to more than a hundred thousand taels, was awarded by the Manchu Court to Wu Zhirong.

  最惨的是,所有雕版的刻工、印书的列工、装钉的钉工,以及书贾、书铺的主人、卖书的店员、买书的读者,查明后尽皆处斩。What perhaps was cruellest of all was that the engravers, printers, and binders who produced the book, the book-traders, booksellers, and booksellers’ assistants who sold it, and even– whenever they could be traced–the readers who bought it were also summarily executed.据史书记载,其时苏州浒墅关有一个榷货主事(关吏)李尚白,喜读史书,听说苏州阊门书坊中有一部新刊的明史,内容很好,It is reliably reported that one Li Shanghai, an Excise Officer working in the Suzhou Customs at Xushuguan who had a great fondness for reading books of history, chancing to hear that the Chang Men Bookshop in Suzhou was selling copies of a newly published Ming History the contents of which had been very highly praised,派一个工役去买。工役到时,书店主人外出,那工役便在书铺隔壁一家姓朱的老者家中坐着等候,等到店主回来,将书买回。sent one of his workmen to buy a copy for him. When the man got to the shop the bookseller was out, so he sat and waited for him to return in the house next door belonging to an old gentleman called Zhu. In due course the bookseller got back, the man bought a copy of the book and delivered it to Li Shanghai,李尚白读了几卷,也不以为意。and Li read a few chapters and thought no more about it.过了几个月,案子发作,一直查究到各处贩书买书之人。A few months later, however, the Ming History affair blew up and a hunt began for all those who had either bought or sold copies of the book.其时李尚白在北京公干,以购逆书之罪,在北京立即斩决。By this time Li Shanghai was working in Peking. There he was charged with purchasing a seditious book and summarily executed.书店主人和奉命买书的工役斩首。The Suzhou bookseller who sold him the book was also executed, and so was the workman who had been sent to buy it.连那隔壁姓朱老者也受牵累,说他既知那人来购逆书,何以不即举报,还让他在家中闲坐?Even old Mr Zhu who lived next door to the bookshop was arrested. He knew the man was buying a seditious book, he was told. Why hadn’t he reported it?本应斩首,姑念年逾七十,免死,和妻子充军边远之处。They would have sentenced him, too, to be executed, but as he was over seventy they sentenced him and his wife to hard labour on a distant frontier instead.至于江南名士,因庄廷鑨慕其大名、在书中列名参校者,同日凌迟处死,计有茅元锡等十四人。As for the Southern scholars whose collaboration Zhuang Tinglong had sought in order to lend lustre to his book and whose names were inscribed in it as co-editors, fourteen of them were executed on the same day ‘by the Slow Process’.所谓凌迟处死,乃是一刀一刀,将其全身肢体肌肉慢慢切割下来,直至犯人受尽痛苦,方才处死。(此句前方解释过不再复译)因这一部书而家破人亡的,当真难以计数。Just how many whole families were wiped out because of this one book it would be impossible to say.

  吕留良等三人得到消息,愤恨难当,切齿痛骂。The feelings of Lu Liuliang and his friends when they heard this news, their cries of anger and horror, can well be imagined.黄宗羲道:“伊璜先生列名参校,这一会只怕也难逃此劫。”他三人和查伊璜向来交好,都十分挂念。’Yihuang’s name was in the list of co-editors,’ said Huang. ?’He’s hardly likely to escape now.’ Zha Yihuang was an old friend of all three of them. The other two shared Huang’s anxiety.

  这一日舟至嘉兴,顾炎武在城中买了一份邸报,上面详列明史一案中获罪诸人的姓名。When the boat reached Jiaxing, Gu Yanwu went ashore and bought a copy of the Peking Gazette which listed the names of all those who had been sentenced.却见上谕中有一句说:“查继佐、范骧、陆圻三人,虽列名参校,然事先未见其书,免罪不究。”omewhere in the Gazette’s transcript of the Imperial Edict he noticed the following words: Zha Yihuang, Fan Xiang, and Lu Qi, although listed as co-editors, had never seen the book. They are to be exempted from punishment and released from further questioning.顾炎武将邸报拿到舟中,和黄宗羲、吕留良三人同阅,啧啧称奇。Gu Yanwu took the copy of the Gazette back to the boat with him and went over it with the others. All three expressed their surprise at Zha Yihuang’s release.

  黄宗羲道:“此事必是大力将军所为。”吕留良道:“大力将军是谁?倒要请教。”This must be General Wu’s doing, ‘ said Huang Zongxi. ‘General Wu?’ said Lu Liuliang. ‘Who on earth is he?’黄宗羲道:“两年之前,兄弟到伊璜先生家中作客,但见他府第焕然一新,庭园宽大,陈设富丽,与先前大不相同。’When I went to visit Yihuang a couple of years ago,’ said Huang Zongxi, ‘I found his place completely and utterly transformed. There was an enormous garden. The fittings and furnishings of his house were positively sumptuous.府中更养了一班昆曲戏班子,声色曲艺,江南少见。There was even a troupe of Kunqu opera-players–players, moreover, of a standard it would be hard to match anywhere South of the River.兄弟和伊璜先生向来交好,说得上互托肝胆,便问起情由。伊璜先生说出一段话来,确是风尘中的奇遇。”当下便将这段故事转述了出来。Well, Yihuang and I have known each other for a very long time and have no secrets from each other, so I asked him point-blank the meaning of this transformation. The story he told me by way of explanation was one of the most extraordinary I’ve ever heard.’ He proceeded to tell them the story as he had heard it from Zha Yihuang.

  查继佐,字伊璜(《觚剩》一书中有“雪遘”一文,述此奇事,开首说:“浙江海宁查孝廉,字伊璜,才华丰艳,而风情潇洒,常谓满眼悠悠,不堪愁对,海内奇杰,非从尘埃中物色,未可得也。”)这一天家居岁暮,命酒独酌,不久下起雪来,越下越大。查伊璜独饮无聊,走到门外观赏雪景,见有个乞丐站在屋檐下避雪,Some years back Zha Yihuang had been sitting at home one day towards the end of the year, drinking on his own, when it began to snow.After a while it was snowing hard, and, as he was growing bored with his own company, he went to see what it was looking like outside. As he did so, he saw a beggar sheltering under the eaves.这丐者身形魁梧,骨格雄奇,只穿一件破单衫,在寒风中却丝毫不以为意,只是脸上颇有郁怒悲愤之色。He was a tall, powerfully built man, evidently not someone to be trifled with. Although dressed only in a ragged, unlined gown, he showed not the slightest sign of being affected by the cold, but his face had an aggrieved, angry expression on it.查伊璜心下奇怪,便道:“这雪非一时能止,进来喝一杯如何?”那乞丐道:“甚好!”Zha was conscious of something about him very much out of the ordinary. This snow is not going to stop for quite a while yet,’ said Zha to the man. ‘How about coming inside for a drink.’ ‘Good idea,’ said the beggar.查伊璜便邀他进屋,命书僮取出杯筷,斟了杯酒。说道:“请!”那乞丐举杯便干,赞道:“好酒!”Zha showed him into the house, ordered the servant to bring another wine-cup and a pair of chopsticks, and poured out a drink for them both. ‘Your health,’ he said. The beggar raised his wine-cup and drained it at a gulp. ‘Good wine,’ he said appreciatively.

  查伊璜给他连斟三杯,那丐者饮得极是爽快。查伊璜最喜的是爽快人,心下喜欢,Zha poured him three more cupfuls in succession and the beggar drank them down with evident gusto. Zha was pleased. He liked to see someone enjoying himself uninhibitedly.说道:“兄台酒量极好,不知能饮多少?”那乞丐道:“酒逢知己千杯少,话不投机半句多。”’You have a good capacity, my friend!’ he said. ‘How many cups can you drink?’ ‘In the right company a thousand cups are too few; in the wrong company a single word is too many.’这两句虽是熟套语,但在一个乞丐口中说出来,却令查伊璜暗暗称异,当即命书僮捧出一大坛绍兴女儿红来,笑道:“在下酒量有限,适才又已饮过,不能陪兄畅饮。老兄喝一大碗,我陪一小杯如何?“The well-known saying, though unremarkable in itself, struck Zha as somewhat odd coming from the mouth of a beggar. He gave instructions to his servant to get out a large jar of his best rice-wine, Shaoxing Rosy Girl. ‘My own capacity is pretty limited,’ he said to the beggar, ‘and in any case, I have already been drinking, so I can’t keep up with you cup for cup. How would it be if you drank from a bowl while I drink from a smaller cup?’那乞丐道:“这也使得。”当下书僮将酒烫热,分斟在碗中杯内。查伊璜喝一杯,那乞丐便喝一大碗。The beggar replied that he had no objection. Zha’s page-boy first heated up the wine and then poured it out for them, a big wine-bowlful for the beggar, a tiny wine-cupful for Zha.待那乞丐喝到二十余碗时,脸上仍无甚酒意,查伊璜却已颓然醉倒。After twenty or more rounds Zha passed out; the beggar, though, apart from being very slightly flushed, showed no other sign of being the least bit tipsy.要知那绍兴女儿红酒入口温和,酒性却颇厉害。绍兴人家生下儿子女儿,便酿酒数坛至数十坛不等,埋入地下,待女儿长大嫁人,将酒取出宴客,那酒其时作琥珀色,称为“女儿红”。 It should be explained that Shaoxing Rosy Girl seems harmless enough while you are drinking it but is actually extremely potent. In Shaoxing families it is the custom when a baby is born to make anything from a few jars to several dozen jars of the wine and bury them in the ground. If the child is a girl, they wait till she has grown up and use the wine for her wedding-feast. By the time it is dug up, it will have gone a deep amber colour: hence the name Rosy Girl.想那酒埋藏十七八年以至二十余年,自然醇厚之极。The wine will have been in the ground by then for anything from sixteen to twenty-odd years, so you can imagine how strong it is.至于生儿子人家所藏之酒,称为“状元红”,盼望儿子日后中状元时取出宴客。状元非人人可中,多半是在儿子娶媳妇时用以飨客了。If the baby is a boy, they call the wine Rosy Top Boy, the idea being that it can be used at the celebration-party when the son comes out top in the Civil Service examination. Of course, very few do, so in the majority of cases it is used for the son’s marriage-feast.酒坊中酿酒用以贩卖的,也袭用了状元红、女儿红之名。书僮将查伊璜扶入内堂安睡,那乞丐自行又到屋檐之下。The names Rosy Girl and Rosy Top Boy are also given to wines made commercially and sold in the wine-shops. While the page-boy helped Zha into the rear part of the house and put him to bed, the beggar went outside of his own accord and took up his original position beneath the eaves.

  次晨查伊璜醒转。忙去瞧那乞丐时,只见他负手而立,正在欣赏雪景。Early next morning, having by now sobered up again, Zha hurried outside to see what had become of the beggar. He found him standing, hands behind his back, apparently enjoying the view.一阵北风吹来,查伊璜只觉寒入骨髓,那乞丐却是泰然自若。查伊璜道:“天寒地冻,兄台衣衫未免过于单薄。”Just then a sudden gust of north wind caught Zha, chilling him to the marrow of his bones. The beggar appeared to be completely unaffected by it; nevertheless, Zha took off his sheepskin-lined gown and put it round the man’s shoulders. ‘Here, ‘ he said. ‘Your clothes are a bit too thin for this freezing weather.’

  当即解下身上的羊皮袍子,披在他肩头,又取了十两银子,双手捧上He got out ten taels of silver and offered them to him politely, with both his hands.说道:“些些买酒之资,兄台勿却。何时有兴,请再来喝酒。昨晚兄弟醉倒,未能扫榻留宾,简慢勿怪。”This is a little something to buy wine with. Please don’t refuse. And whenever you feel like it, drop in again for a drink. I’m afraid I was so drunk last night, I wasn’t able to offer you a bed. It was no way to treat a guest. I do apologize.’

那乞丐接过了银子,说道:“好说。”也不道谢,扬长而去。The beggar took the money. That’s all right, ‘ he said. And without a word of thanks, he left, swaggering slightly as he went.第二年春天,查伊璜到杭州游玩。一日在一座破庙之中,见到有口极大的古钟,少说也有四百来斤,Some time in the spring of the next year Zha was on holiday in Hangzhou. One day while he was going over a ruined temple, he came upon an old bell. It was very large and must have weighed near enough four hundred catties.他正在鉴赏钟上所刻的文字花纹,忽有一名乞丐大踏步走进佛殿,左手抓住钟钮,向上一提,一口大钟竟然离地数尺。那乞丐在钟下取出一大碗肉、一大钵酒来,放在一旁,再将古钟置于原处。While he was admiring it and reading the inscription, a beggar came striding into the temple, grasped the boss of the bell with his left hand, raised the edge two feet or more off the ground, pulled out a large bowl of cooked meat and a large stoneware bottle from underneath it, and then set the bell down again in its original place.查伊璜见他如此神力,不禁骇然,仔细看时,竟然便是去冬一起喝酒的那乞丐,笑问:“兄台还认得我吗?”Astonished by this exhibition of superhuman strength, Zha looked at the man more closely and recognized him as the beggar he had drunk with the previous winter. ‘Don’t you remember me?’ he asked the man with a smile.那乞丐向他望了一眼,笑道:“啊,原来是你。今日我来作东,大家再喝个痛快,来来来,喝酒。”说着将土钵递了过去。The beggar looked at him for a moment and returned his smile. ‘Ha, it’s you! Today it’s my turn to be host. Let’s have another session. Come on, come on!’ He held out the bottle.

  查伊璜接过土钵,喝了一大口,笑道:“这酒挺不错啊。”那乞丐从破碗中抓起一大块肉,’Have a drink.’ Zha received the bottle and took a large swig. This wine’s not bad, ‘ he said. The beggar grabbed a piece of meat from the chipped bowl with his fingers.道:“这是狗肉,吃不吃?”查伊璜虽觉肮脏,但想:“我既当他是酒友,倘若推辞,未免瞧他不起了。”This is dog’s meat. Will you have some?’ Zha felt slightly squeamish, but reflected that, having treated the man so far as an equal, he would probably offend him if he refused, so he overcame his repugnance and took the preferred piece of meat.当下伸手接过,咬了一口,咀嚼之下,倒也甘美可口。两人便在破庙中席地而坐,将土钵递来递去,你喝一口,我喝一口,吃肉时便伸手到碗中去抓,不多时酒肉俱尽。Surprisingly, after chewing it for a bit, he found it sweetish and rather pleasant. So the two of them sat on the floor of the temple, passing the bottle back and forth and helping themselves with their fingers from the bowl of meat, until before long both wine and meat were finished.

  那乞丐哈哈大笑,说道:“只可惜酒少了,醉不倒孝廉公。”The beggar let out a great laugh. ‘What a pity there isn’t more wine! Not even enough to make a scholar tipsy!’

  查伊璜道:“去年冬天在敝处邂逅,今日又再无意中相遇,实是有缘。’Our meeting at my place last winter was a chance one, ‘ said Zha, ‘and our meeting here today was quite unforeseen. It looks almost as if fate intended us to be friends.兄台神力惊人,原来是一位海内奇男子,得能结交你这位朋友,小弟好生喜欢。兄台有兴,咱们到酒楼去再饮如何?”I’ve seen how amazingly strong you are. You are obviously a very remarkable man. To have someone like you as a friend would make me very happy. If you feel like it, why don’t we go to a restaurant and have some more to drink?’那乞丐道:“甚妙,甚妙!”两人到西湖边的楼外楼酒楼,呼酒又饮。不久查伊璜又即醉倒。The beggar enthusiastically agreed, so the two men adjourned to the restaurant on the shore of West Lake known as The Tower Beyond the Tower’. Zha ordered wine for both of them and before long had once more drunk himself into insensibility.待得酒醒,那乞丐已不知去向。When he came to, the beggar had disappeared and no one knew where he had gone.

  那是明朝崇祯末年之事,过得数年,清兵入关,明朝覆亡。These events took place in the Chong Zhen period, during the closing years of the Ming dynasty. A few years later the Manchus moved south of the Wall and the Ming dynasty was overthrown.查伊璜绝意进取,只在家中闲居,一日忽有一名军官,领兵四名,来到查府。Zha Yihuang, having now abandoned any thought of a career, was living in idleness at home. One day an army officer accompanied by five private soldiers suddenly turned up at his door.

  查伊璜吃了一惊,只道是祸事上门,岂知那军官执礼甚恭,说道:“奉广东省吴军门之命,有薄礼奉赠。”Fearing that calamity had caught up with him, Zha was naturally alarmed; but the officer was courteous in the extreme. ‘Orders of General Wu, Guangdong Headquarters, sir. I am to present you with this gift.’查伊璜道:“我和贵上素不相识,只怕是弄错了。”那军官取出拜盒,拿出一张大红泥金名帖,上写“拜上查先生伊璜,讳继佐”,下面写的是“眷晚生吴六奇顿首百拜”。 ‘Surely there must be some mistake?’ said Zha. ‘I’ve never met your commanding officer.’ The officer produced an ornamental box and extracted from it a large red presentation-card flecked with gold on which were written the words: For Zha Yihuang Esquire and underneath: With the Respectful Compliments ofWu Liuqi查伊璜心想:“我连这吴六奇的名字也没听见过,为何送礼于我?”当下沉吟不语。’I’ve never even heard this man’s name before,’ Zha thought. ‘Whatever should he be sending me a present for?’ As he remained rapt in thought and made no response, the officer spoke again.

  那军官道:“敝上说道,些些薄礼,请查先生不要见笑。”The General says this is only a trifling gift, sir. He hopes you won’t think it beneath you to accept.’说着将两只朱漆烫金的圆盒放在桌上,俯身请安,便即别去。查伊璜打开礼盒,赫然是五十两黄金,He then got the soldiers to place two round vermilion and gold lacquer gift-boxes on the table, saluted Manchu style, and took his leave. Zha opened the boxes. To his astonishment the first of them contained fifty taels of gold.另一盒中却是六瓶洋酒,酒瓶上缀以明珠翡翠,华贵非凡。查伊璜一惊更甚,追出去要那军官收回礼品,武人快步,早已去得远了。His astonishment grew when he looked in the second box and saw that it contained six botties of foreign wine, beautifully embellished with pearl and malachite. He ran outside, intending to make the officer take back the presents, but soldiers move at a brisk pace and the officer was already too far away to catch up with.查伊璜心下纳闷,寻思:“飞来横财,非福是祸。莫非有人陷害于我?”当下将两只礼盒用封条封起,藏于密室。Zha was puzzled. ‘Windfalls like this are apt to mean trouble,’ he thought. ‘I wonder if this is a trap.’ Deciding that he would take no chances, he sealed the gift-boxes with strips of sealing-tape and locked them away in a closet.查氏家境小康,黄金倒也不必动用,只是久闻洋酒之名,不敢开瓶品尝,未免心痒。Though not exactly wealthy, the Zhas were a family of some means, so Zha Yihuang did not greatly regret the gold; but he had heard about foreign wine and would dearly have liked to open one of the bottles and have a taste.

  过了数月,亦无他异。这一日,却有一名身穿华服的贵介公子到来。那公子不过十七八岁,精神饱满,气宇轩昂,A few months went by without anything untoward happening, then one day a very expensively-dressed man presented himself at the house, a very energetic young fellow who, in spite of his youth–he could not have been more than seventeen or eighteen years old–had an air of authority about him.带着八名从人,一见查伊璜,便即跪下磕头,口称:“查世伯,侄子吴宝宇拜见。”查伊璜忙即扶起,道:“世伯之称,可不敢当。不知尊大人是谁?”He was accompanied by a retinue of eight attendants. As soon as he was face to face with Zha Yihuang, he fell to his knees, kowtowed, and introduced himself. ‘Uncle Zha, I am Wu Baoyu.’ Zha hurriedly raised him to his feet. ‘I don’t think I have the honour of being your uncle. Who is your father?’那吴宝宇道:“家严名讳,上六下奇,现居广东省通省水陆提督之职,特命小侄造府,恭请世伯到广东盘桓数月。”A Chinese could not in those days utter his father’s name, but Wu Baoyu found a means of conveying that his father was Wu Liuqi, Military Governor of Guangdong Province, commanding both military and naval forces. ‘My father has sent me here to invite you to spend a few months with him in Guangdong, sir.’

  查伊璜道:“前承令尊大人厚赐,心下好生不安。说来惭愧,兄弟生性疏阔,记不起何时和令尊大人相识。兄弟一介书生,素来不结交贵官。公子请少坐。“’ Some time ago I received a very generous gift from your father,’ said Zha. ‘I’ve been feeling very uncomfortable about it ever since. You see–I’m ashamed to say this, but I have such a terrible memory–I can’t remember ever having met your father. I’m only a simple scholar and I’ve never had any dealings with high officials. Look, I wonder if you’d mind just sitting here a moment?’说着走进内室,将那两只礼盒捧了出来,道:“还请公子携回,实在不敢受此厚礼。”He went inside and presently came back bearing the two lacquer gift-boxes. ‘Is there any chance of your being able to take these back? I really can’t accept presents of this kind.’

  他心想这吴六奇在广东做提督,必是慕己之名,欲以重金聘去做幕客。He imagined that Wu Liuqi must have been appointed Military Governor of Guangdong comparatively recently and, having somehow or other got to hear about him, had sent this costly present in order to buy his services as a secretary.这人官居高位,为满洲人作鹰犬,欺压汉人,倘若受了他金银,污了自己清白,当下脸色之间颇为不悦。But a man in a high position like that could only have got there by making himself a lackey of the Manchus and helping them in their oppression of the Chinese. He would therefore dirty himself by taking gifts from such a man. It was a most unfortunate situation to be in.

  吴宝宇道:“家严吩咐,务必请到世伯。世伯若是忘了家严,有一件信物在此,世伯请看。”在从人手中接过一个包裹,打了开来,却是一件十分敝旧的羊皮袍子。’My father was most insistent that you should come,’ said Wu Baoyu. ‘If you have forgotten him, I have something here which may remind you of him.’ One of the attendants handed him a bundle which he undid, revealing a very worn, ragged-looking sheepskin-lined gown.

  查伊璜见到旧袍,记得是昔年赠给雪中奇丐的,这才恍然,原来这吴六奇将军,便是当年共醉的酒友,On examining it, Zha recognized it as the one he had given to the beggar in the snow, many years before. General Wu, it dawned on him at last, was none other than his old drinking-companion, the beggar.心中一动:“鞑子占我天下,若有手握兵符之人先建义旗,四方响应,说不定便能将鞑子逐出关外。这奇丐居然还记得我昔日一饭一袍之惠,不是没良心之人,He was suddenly smitten by an idea. The Tartars now control everything, ‘ he thought, ‘but if someone with an army were to raise the standard of revolt, and if there was sufficient response from other quarters, we might just drive them out yet. If this beggar is capable of showing gratitude for those little kindnesses I did him all those years ago, he can’t be totally lacking in honourable feelings.我若动以大义,未始没有指望。男儿建功报国,正在此时,至不济他将我杀了,却又如何?”Suppose I were to appeal to his sense of patriotism–there’s just a chance it might work. If I’m ever going to do something for my country, this is the time to do it. Even if the worst comes to the worst and he kills me, it will have been worth a try.’当下欣然就道,来到广州。吴六奇将军接入府中,神态极是恭谨,说道:“六奇流落江南,得蒙查先生不弃,当我是个朋友。He brightened up then and agreed to undertake the journey. When they got to Canton, General Wu’s behaviour as he welcomed Zha to his private residence was almost reverential. ‘You remember that time at your home, when you treated me like a friend, inviting me in to drink with you and then giving me that sheepskin gown?’ he said,请我喝酒,送我皮袍,倒是小事,在那破庙中肯和我同钵喝酒,手抓狗肉,那才是真正瞧得起我了。六奇其时穷途潦倒,到处遭人冷眼,查先生如此热肠相待,登时令六奇大为振奋。’Well–that wasn’t what impressed me so much. It was afterwards in the ruined temple, the way you didn’t refuse to drink out of the same bottle or eat dog’s meat with your lingers. You treated me like someone you respected. At that time I was at the very bottom of my luck and no one had a good word to say for me.得有今日,都是出于查先生之赐。”Coming at a moment like that, your kindness gave me an enormous lift. That I’ve got to where I am today is entirely owing to you.’查伊璜淡淡的道:“在晚生看来,今日的吴将军,也不见得就比当年的雪中奇丐高明了。’I’m not at all sure that today’s General is a better person than that beggar in the snow,’ said Zha drily.”

  吴六奇一怔,也不再问,只道:“是,是!”当晚大开筵席,遍邀广州城中的文武官员与宴,推查伊璜坐了首席,自己在下前相陪。Though looking somewhat startled, Wu assented and did not pursue the matter. That evening there was a great feast to which all the officials in Canton, both civil and military, were invited. General Wu made Zha sit in the place of honour and himself took a lower seat.

  广东省自巡抚以下的文武百官,见提督大人对查伊璜如此恭敬,无不暗暗称异。那巡抚还道查伊璜是皇帝派出来微服察访的钦差大臣,The Guangdong officials, from the Provincial Governor downwards, were secretly puzzled to see the great General Wu behaving so deferentially towards his guest. The Provincial Governor concluded that Zha must be some high-ranking official from the Court, travelling incognito on a secret tour of inspection.否则吴六奇平素对人十分倨傲,何以对这个江南书生却这等必恭必敬?Why otherwise would the General, who normally treated one so off-handedly, be showing all this respect for a nobody from South of the River?酒散之后,那巡抚悄悄向吴六奇探问,这位贵客是否朝中红员。吴六奇微微一笑,说道:“老兄当真聪明,鉴貌辨色,十有九中。”He had a quiet word with General Wu as the party was breaking up. Come now, wasn’t this guest of his someone important from the Court? Wu’s face wore an almost imperceptible smile. ‘You’re a clever man, my friend. Nine times out of ten your judgement of people is correct.’这句话本来意存讥刺,说他这第十次却猜错了。岂知那巡抚竟会错了意,只道查伊璜真是钦差,The answer was ironical, meaning that this was one of the tenth times when he guessed wrong; but the Provincial Governor understood it as confirmation of his guess that Zha was an Imperial Commissioner.心想这位查大人在吴提督府中居住,已给他巴结上了,吴提督和自己向来不甚投机,倘若钦差人人回京之后,奏本中对我不利,那可糟糕;As this ‘Commissioner Zha’ was staying in the General’s private residence, the latter must have had plenty of opportunity for getting into his good graces. Unfortunately, the Provincial Governor and the General had never got on well together. Suppose the Commissioner’s report, when he got back to Court, contained something unfavourable about him? The consequences were too fearful to contemplate.回去后备了一份重礼,次日清晨,便送到提督府来。As soon as he got back, he prepared a very substantial gift and took it first thing next morning to the private residence of the Military Governor (General Wu), intending to deliver it in person to the Commissioner.

  吴六奇出来见客,说道查先生昨晚人醉未醒,抚台的礼物一定代为交到,一切放心,不必多所挂怀。He was met by Wu, however, who said that Mr Zha had been very drunk the night before and had still not recovered. If His Excellency would leave the gift with him, he would see that Mr Zha got it. Let His Excellency set his mind at ease; there was really nothing to worry about.巡抚一听大喜,连连称谢而去。消息传出,众官员都知巡抚大人送了份厚礼给查先生。The Provincial Governor was delighted with this reassurance and repeatedly thanked the General as he left. The news that His Excellency the Provincial Governor had taken a large gift to Mr Zha was soon known to all the officials in the area.这位查先生是何来头,不得而知,但连巡抚都送厚礼,自己岂可不送?数日之间,提督府中礼物有如山积。吴六奇命帐房一一照收,却不令查先生得知。None of them had any idea who Mr Zha was, but if His Excellency had thought it expedient to take him an expensive present, how could they not follow suit? Before many days had gone by, the piles of presents addressed to Mr Zha in General Wu’s private residence were reaching mountainous proportions. The General told the clerk who kept his accounts to record each delivery but to say nothing about the presents to Mr Zha.他每日除了赴军府办理公事外,总是陪着查伊璜喝酒。He himself, apart from his daily visits to headquarters to do official business, spent all his time drinking with Zha.

  这一日傍晚时分,两人又在花园凉亭中对坐饮酒。酒过数巡,查伊璜道:“在府上叨扰多日,已感盛情,晚生明日便要北归了。”One day towards evening the two men sat facing each other over their customary drinks in an open pavilion in the garden. After a few rounds, Zha began to speak. ‘I’ve been enjoying your hospitality here for quite a long time now,’ he said, ‘and I am truly grateful. But it’s time I was getting back north. I should like to start tomorrow.’吴六奇道:“先生说哪里话来?先生南来不易,若不住上一年半载,决计不放先生回去。明日陪先生到五层楼去玩玩。广东风景名胜甚众,几个月内,游览不尽。”’How can you say such a thing?’ said General Wu. ‘It wasn’t easy to get you here, and now that you are here, I’m determined not to let you go for at least a year. Tomorrow I’ll take you on an outing to the Five Storey Pagoda. There are so many famous places to visit in Guangdong. You can’t possibly see them all in only a few months.’查伊璜乘着酒意,大胆说道:“山河虽好,已沦夷狄之手,观之徒增伤心。”Emboldened by the wine he had drunk, Zha now took his courage in both hands. The scenery is beautiful,’ he said, ‘but it’s all Tartar-occupied territory. Looking at it only makes me feel sad.’吴六奇脸色微变,道:“先生醉了,早些休息罢。”The General’s face darkened slightly. ‘Mr Zha, you’re drunk. Perhaps you ought to go to bed.’查伊璜道:“初遇之时,我敬你是个风尘豪杰,足堪为友,岂知竟是失眼了。”’When I first met you, ‘ said Zha, ‘I respected you because you struck me as someone out of the ordinary who had fallen on hard times, someone I judged worthy to be a friend. But I see now that I was mistaken.’吴六奇问道:“如何失眼?”查伊璜朗声道:“你具大好身手,不为国为民出力,却助纣为虐,作鞑子的鹰犬,欺压我大汉百姓,’Why do you say that?’ said the General. Zha’s voice rose challengingly ‘You have so many good qualities, but instead of using them in the service of your own people, you work for the oppressor. You’ve turned yourself into a lackey of the Tartars, helping them to keep us Chinese enslaved.此刻兀自洋洋得意,不以为耻。查某未免羞与为友。”说着霍地站起身来。And instead of feeling ashamed, you seem to be proud of it. Well, I for my part am ashamed to be your friend.’ He rose abruptly to his feet.

  吴六奇道:“先生禁声,这等话给人听见了,可是一场大祸。”查伊璜道:“我今日还当你是朋友,有一番良言相劝。你如不听,不妨便将我杀了。查某手无缚鸡之力,反正难以相抗。”’Hush!’ said Wu. ‘If anyone were to hear you talking like this, it would be more than your life is worth.’ ‘I’m treating you still as a friend,’ said Zha, ‘and telling you what is for your own good. If you don’t want to listen, you can always kill me. I haven’t the strength to truss a chicken, so you won’t meet with much resistance.’吴六奇道:“在下洗耳恭听。”查伊璜道:“将军手绾广东全省兵符,正是起义反正的良机。登高一呼,天下响应,纵然大事不成,也教鞑子破胆,轰轰烈烈的干它一场,才不负了你天生神勇,大好头颅。”’I’m listening, ‘ said Wu. ‘I want to hear what you have to say.’ ‘The military forces of this whole province are under your command, ‘ said Zha. ‘There will never be a better opportunity for a rising. At a good clear call from above, patriots everywhere in the Empire will rise up to join you. Then even if you don’t succeed, the Tartars will have had a nasty shock, and with this last glorious stand you will have made worthy use of the wonderful strength and courage you are endowed with.’

  吴六奇斟酒于碗,一口干了,说道:“先生说得好痛快!”双手一伸,嗤的一声响,撕破了自己袍子衣襟,露出黑毛毵毵的胸膛,Wu poured out a whole bowlful of wine and drained it at a single draught. That was bravely said.’ He grasped his gown in the middle and gave it a jerk. There was a loud rending sound as it split open down the front, exposing his great chest, covered with a mat of long black hairs.拨开胸毛,却见肌肤上刺着八个小字:“天父地母,反清复明。”Then he parted the hair with his fingers so that Zha could see the two lines of small characters tattooed on his skin: (By Heaven my father and Earth my mother, I will overthrow the Qing and restore the Ming)

  查伊璜又惊又喜,问道:“这……这是什么?”Zha was both startled and delighted. ‘What. . . what. . . what is this?’吴六奇掩好衣襟,说道:“适才听得先生一番宏论,可敬可佩。先生不顾殒身灭族的大祸,披肝沥胆,向在下指点,在下何敢再行隐瞒。The General covered up his chest again. ‘I was full of admiration, listening to what you said just now, ‘ he said. ‘In order to show me where my duty lies, you spoke from the heart, knowing that you did so at the risk of your own life and the lives of everyone you hold dear.在下本在丐帮,此刻是天地会的洪顺堂红旗香主,誓以满腔热血,反清复明。”I used to be a member of the Beggars Guild; I am now Red Banner Master of the Obedience Lodge of the Triad Society; and I am under oath to give my life if necessary in the cause of overthrowing the Tartars and restoring the Ming.’

  查伊璜见了吴六奇胸口刺字,更无怀疑,说道:“原来将军身在曹营心在汉,适才言语冒犯,多有得罪。”Zha now understood the significance of the tattooed characters. ‘I see, ‘ he said. ‘So you are “in the Cao camp, but your heart is with the Han”. I’m afraid I said some very offensive things to you just now. I hope you will forgive me.’吴六奇大喜,心想这“身在曹营心在汉”,那是将自己比作关云长了,道:“这等比喻,可不敢当。”By ‘in the Cao camp’ he was referring to an episode in the famous historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms when the great warrior Guan Yu found himself similarly situated. To be compared with the God of War was hugely flattering. Wu modestly declined the compliment.查伊璜道:“不知何谓丐帮,何谓天地会,倒要请教。”’But what is the Beggars Guild?’ Zha asked him. ‘And what is this Triad Society?’

  吴六奇道:“先生请再喝一杯,待在下慢慢说来。”当下二人各饮了一杯。’Let’s have another cup first, ‘ said Wu. ‘It will take me a while to explain.’ They drank, and Wu began. Beggars and Triads.

  吴六奇道:“那丐帮由来已久,自宋朝以来,便是江湖上的一个大帮。帮中兄弟均是行乞为生,There’s been a Beggars Guild since the days of the Song dynasty. Ever since that time they have been a part of the outlaw world, part of the Brotherhood of River and Lake. Members of the Guild have got to make their living by begging.就算是家财豪富之人,入了丐帮,也须散尽家资,过叫化子的生活。Even if a rich man joins, he has to share out all his possessions and live by begging from that time onwards.帮中帮主以下是四大长老,其下是前后左右中五方护法。The Guild has a Master; under him there are four Elders; and under the Elders there are Eve Guardians, one for each of the Five Directions: front, back, right, left, and centre.在下位居左护法,在帮中算是八袋弟子,位份已颇不低。后来因和一位姓孙的长老不和,打起架来,在下其时酒醉,失手将他打得重伤。I was a Guardian of the Left and my standing in the Guild was that of an Eight Bag member. Quite a high one. But then I had a disagreement with an Elder called Sun and got into a fight with him; and being drunk at the time, I hit him too hard and hurt him badly.不敬尊长已是大犯帮规,殴伤长老更是大罪,帮主和四长老集议之后,将在下斥革出帮。那日在府中相遇,先生邀我饮酒,其时在下初遭斥逐,心中好生郁闷,Well, disrespect to a senior is a breach of Guild regulations for a start, but wounding an Elder is even more serious. So there was a council of the Master and the Elders and I was expelled from the Guild. That time you saw me outside your house and invited me in for a drink, I’d only just been expelled and I was feeling very low.承先生不弃,还当在下是个朋友,胸怀登时舒畅了不少。”That you should have seen fit to treat me as a friend at a time like that did a lot to raise my spirits.’查伊璜道:“原来如此。”’I see, ‘ said Zha.吴六奇道:“第二年春,在西湖边上再度相逢,先生折节下交,誉我是海内奇男子。在下苦思数日,心想我不容于丐帮,江湖上朋友都瞧我不起,每日里烂醉如泥,自暴自弃,眼见数年之间,就会醉死。The year after that, in the spring, when we met for the second time beside West Lake, ‘ continued Wu, ‘you treated me just as if I were an equal. You told me I was a “very remarkable man” and you said you would like to have me as a friend. I did a lot of hard thinking during the days that followed. I’d been thrown out of the Beggars Guild; my Brothers all despised me; every single day I was stinking drunk; I was a hopeless case; at the rate I was going, I’d be dead within a few years.这位查先生却说我是个奇男子,我吴六奇难道就此一蹶不振,再无出头之日?过不多时,清兵南下,我心下愤激,不明是非,竟去投效清军,Then I thought to myself, if this Mr Zha tells me I’m a remarkable man, surely I should at least make an effort? Surely there must be some sort of future for me? Well, not long after that the Manchu army came south and, in a fit of enthusiasm, without really thinking what I was doing, I volunteered.立了不少军功,残杀同胞,思之好生惭愧。”I was a good soldier. I distinguished myself. Of course, that meant that I killed a lot of my own people. When I think of it now, I feel very ashamed.’

  查伊璜正色道:“这就不对了。兄台不容于丐帮,独往独来也好,自树门户也好,何苦出此下策,前去投效清军?”Zha looked grave. ‘It was very wrong of you. Even if they wouldn’t have you in the Beggars Guild, you could have gone travelling as a loner or you could have settled down and become a family man. Why did you have to join the Manchu army? It was the worst choice you could have made.’吴六奇道:“在下愚鲁,当时未得先生教诲,干了不少错事,当真该死之极。”查伊璜点头道:“将军既然知错,将功赎罪,也还不迟。”’I’m not a clever man, ‘ said Wu, ‘and at that time I didn’t have you to advise me. I made a lot of mistakes. I did some really terrible things.’ Zha nodded. ‘As long as you know they were mistakes, ‘ he said, ‘it isn’t too late to redeem them.’

  吴六奇道:“后来满清席卷南北,我也官封提督。两年之前,半夜里忽然有人闯入我卧室行刺。这刺客武功不是我对手,给我拿住了,Wu continued. Then the Manchus took over the whole of China and I became a Military Governor. Two years ago an assassin broke into my bedroom one night and tried to stab me; but he wasn’t a match for me and I overpowered him and made him my prisoner.点灯一看,竟然便是昔年给我打伤的那位丐帮孙长老。When I lit the lamp to have a good look at him, I saw it was the Elder called Sun from the Beggars Guild, the one I’d once wounded in a fight.他破口大骂,说我卑鄙无耻,甘为异族鹰犬。他越骂越凶,每一句话都打中了我心坎。这些话有时我也想到了,明知自己的所作所为很是不对,深夜抚心自问,好生惭愧,只是自己所想,远不如他骂得那么明白痛快。He started yelling curses at me. He said I was vile and shameless, that I’d chosen of my own free will to do the dirty work of foreigners, and a lot else besides. It got worse as he went on. And every word he said went straight to my heart. You see, I’d sometimes thought those things myself. I knew perfectly well that what I was doing was wrong. Sometimes in the early hours, when I was alone with my own conscience, I felt so ashamed. Only the things I thought myself weren’t nearly as straight to the point as the things that Sun was saying.我叹了口气,解开他被我封住的穴道,说道:‘孙长老,你骂得很对,你这就去罢!’他颇为诧异,便即越窗而去。”So I just sighed and set him free. “What you say is true, Elder,” I said. “You’d better go now.” He looked very surprised; but anyway, he slipped out the window and went.’

  查伊璜道:“这件事做得对了!”’That’s something you did that wasn’t a mistake,’ said Zha. ‘

  吴六奇道:“其时提督衙门的牢狱之中,关得有不少反清的好汉子。At that time there were a lot of anti-Manchu patriots locked up in the prison-block of the Military Governor’s Yamen,’ said Wu.第二天清早,我寻些借口,一个个将他们放了,有的说是捉错了人,有的说不是主犯,从轻发落。’First thing next morning I started going over the charges and found some excuse or other to set each one of them free. Some I said were cases of mistaken identity, some I said were only accessories and could be given a lighter sentence, that sort of thing.过了一个多月,那位孙长老半夜又来见我,开门见山的问我,是否已有悔悟之心,愿意反清立功。我拔出刀来,一刀斩去左手两根手指,More than a month later, I had another midnight visit from Sun. He asked me straight out, without any beating about the bush, if I was really repentant, and if so, was I willing to engage in anti-Manchu activity? I took out my cutlass and with one chop I cut off two fingers of my left hand.说:‘吴六奇决心痛改前非,今后听从孙长老号令。’”伸出左手,果然无名指和小指已然不见,只剩下三根手指。”Elder,” I said, “I am resolved to make a clean break with the past. From now on I shall take all my orders from you.”‘ Wu held up his left hand from which the ring finger and little finger were missing.查伊璜大拇指一竖,赞道:“好汉子!”Zha held up his own thumb admiringly. ‘Good man!’ he said.

吴六奇继续说道:“孙长老见我意诚,又知我虽然生性鲁莽,说过的话倒是从未食言,便道:‘很好,待我回复帮主,请帮主的示下。’Wu continued: ‘Sun could see that I was sincere and he knew that in spite of my limitations I always kept my word, so he said, “All right, I’ll have a word with the Master when I get back and see what he says.”十天之后,孙长老又来见我,说帮主和四长老会商,决定收我回帮,重新由一袋弟子做起。Ten days later he came to see me again. He said the Master and the Four Elders had had a council and decided to take me back into the Guild, only I’d have to start at the bottom again as a One Bag novice.又说丐帮已和天地会结盟,同心协力,反清复明。He also told me that the Beggars Guild now had a pact with the Triad Society and was joining forces with them in their struggle to overthrow the Manchus and restore the Ming.那天地会是台湾国姓爷郑大帅手下谋主陈永华陈先生所创,近年来在福建、浙江、广东一带,好生兴旺。The Triad Society was founded by Chen Jinnan, who is the military adviser of Marshal Zheng in Taiwan. Chen is the Grand Master, or Helmsman as they call it. This last couple of years the Triads have been very active in the three south-eastern provinces of Fujian, Zhejiang, and Guangdong.孙长老替我引见会中广东洪顺堂香主,投入天地会。天地会查了我一年,交我办了几件要事,见我确是忠心不贰,最近陈先生从台湾传下讯来,封我为洪顺堂红旗香主之职。”Sun got me an introduction to the Master of the Obedience Lodge of the Triad Society in Guangdong, so that I could apply for membership. They put me on probation for a year, during which time I was given a lot of important jobs to do. They knew then that I was completely loyal. In a recent despatch from Helmsman Chen in Taiwan I was appointed Red Banner Master of the Obedience Lodge.’

  查伊璜虽不明天地会的来历,但台湾国姓爷延平郡王郑成功孤军抗清,精忠英勇,天下无不知闻。Zha didn’t know anything about the Triad Society, but he had, like everyone else, heard of the courage and patriotism of Marshal Zheng, or ‘Coxinga’ as the Europeans called him, whose army in Taiwan was still maintaining a heroic resistance against the Manchus.这天地会既是他手下谋主陈永华所创,自然是同道中人,当下不住点头。If this Helmsman Chen who founded the Triad Society was Coxinga’s military adviser, then it must be all right. He nodded his approval.

  吴六奇又道:“国姓爷昔年率领大军,围攻金陵,可惜寡不敌众,退回台湾,但留在江浙闽三省不及退回的旧部官兵却着实不少。’A year ago Marshal Zheng led a large army to besiege Nanking,’ Wu continued. ‘Unfortunately he was heavily outnumbered and had to fall back on Taiwan. But there are still a lot of his former soldiers scattered about in the provinces of Jiangsu, Zhejiang, and Fujian who weren’t in time for the evacuation and got left behind.陈先生暗中联络老兄弟,组成了这天地会,会里的口号是‘天父地母,反清复明’,那便是在下胸口所刺的八个字。寻常会中兄弟,身上也不刺字,It’s these old companions-in-arms that the Helmsman has secretly contacted and organized to form the Triad Society. It’s their motto that I have tattooed on my chest. Members of the Triad Society don’t normally tattoo themselves.在下所以自行刺字,是学一学当年岳武穆‘尽忠报国’的意思。”I did it in imitation of the great patriot General Yue Fei who had the words “Loyal to the End” tattooed on himself, to show his devotion to the Imperial House of the Song dynasty, in their struggle against the Jurched Tartars.’查伊璜心下甚喜,连喝了两杯酒,说道:“兄台如此行为,才真正不愧为海内奇男子之称了。”Zha was so impressed that he drank two cups of wine in quick succession. ‘After all this,’ he said, ‘I think you really do deserve to be called a “very remarkable man”‘.吴六奇道:“‘海内奇男子’五字,愧不敢当。只要查先生肯认我是朋友,姓吴的便已快活不尽。我们天地会总舵主陈永华陈先生,又有一个名字叫作陈近南,那才真是响当当的英雄好汉,’I don’t know about that,’ said Wu. Til be happy enough if you will just allow me to call myself your friend. Now Helmsman Chen–there’s a real hero for you! He’s a Brave Man and True if ever there was one!江湖上说起来无人不敬,有两句话说得好:‘平生不识陈近南,就称英雄也枉然。’Among the Brotherhood of River and Lake you’ll never hear anyone speak of him without respect. There’s a little rhyme about him: Who’s never yet met Chen Jinnan Can’t call himself a proper man.在下尚未见过陈总舵主之面,算不了什么人物。”I’ve never set eyes on him myself, so you see, I can’t claim to be anybody much at all.’查伊璜想象陈近南的英雄气概,不禁神往。斟了两杯酒,说道:“来,咱们来为陈总舵主干一杯!”两人一口饮干。Quite carried away by his mental picture of this paragon among men, Zha poured out two more cups of wine. ‘Come!’ he said. ‘Let’s drink to him then. A toast. To Helmsman Chen!’ The two men drained their cups.查伊璜道:“查某一介书生,于国于民,全无裨益。只须将军哪一日乘机而动,奋起抗清,查某必当投效军前,稍尽微劳。”’An individual scholar like me is not much use,’ said Zha. ‘I’ve never yet succeeded in doing anything that would benefit my country. But I promise you that when the moment comes for you to start your rising, I’ll be there to volunteer. I’ll do my bit, I promise you, however feeble it may be.’

  自这日起,查伊璜在吴六奇府中,与他日夜密谈,商讨抗清的策略。From that time onwards Zha’s days and nights were spent in secret conversations with his host in which all kinds of strategies were discussed for carrying on resistance against the Manchus.吴六奇说道:“天地会的势力已逐步扩展到北方诸省,各个大省之中都已开了香堂。”Wu told him that the Triad Society was gradually extending its influence in the northern provinces. Lodges had now been opened up in every major province of China.查伊璜在吴六奇幕中直耽了六七月之久,这才回乡。回到家里,却大吃一惊,旧宅旁竟起了好大一片新屋,Zha stayed on six or seven months longer in General Wu’s residence before finally returning to his own home. But what a surprise was waiting for him when he got there! A group of large buildings had sprung up next door to his old home.原来吴六奇派人携了广东大小官员所送的礼金,来到浙江查伊璜府上大兴土木,营建楼台。The General had secretly had all the money donated by the Guangdong officials as ‘gifts for Mr Zha’ transferred to Zha’s place in Zhejiang to pay for the construction of a magnificent new residence for his friend.

  查伊璜素知黄宗羲和顾炎武志切兴复,奔走四方,聚合天下英雄豪杰,共图反清,因此将这件事毫不隐瞒的跟他说了。Knowing that Huang Zongxi and Gu Yanwu were passionately devoted to the cause of the Ming restoration and that they spent their days travelling about the country looking for likely recruits to join in the anti-Manchu Resistance, Zha had felt no compunction about telling them this story and had concealed nothing from them in the telling.

  黄宗羲在舟中将这件事源源本本的告知了吕留良,The Scholar in the Doorway This, then, was the story which Huang Zongxi retold, in all its details, for Lu Liuliang’s benefit that evening on the boat in Jiaxing.说道:“此事若有泄漏,给鞑子们先下手为强,伊璜先生和吴将军固是灭族之祸,而反清的大业更是折了一条栋梁。”’But if any of this leaked out,’ he concluded, ‘and the Tartars decided to gain the advantage by striking first, not only would our friend Zha and General Wu and their families be wiped out, but the backbone of the entire anti-Manchu Resistance would be broken.’吕留良道:“除了你我三人之外,此事自是决不能吐露只字,纵然见到伊璜先生,也决不能提到广东吴将军的名字。”Lu Liuliang agreed. ‘Except among us three, no word of this must ever pass our lips,’ he said. ‘Even in our friend Zha’s company, if we ever see him again, we must never mention the name of General Wu.’黄宗羲道:“伊璜先生和吴将军有这样一段渊源,朝中大臣对吴将军倚畀正殷,吴将军出面给伊璜先生说项疏通,朝廷非卖他这个面子不可。”’Anyway,’ said Huang, ‘you see now what the connection is which links Zha with General Wu. General Wu has made himself so indispensable to the great ministers at Court that when he risked his reputation by speaking out on Zha’s behalf, they couldn’t very well refuse him this favour.’吕留良道:“黄兄所见甚是,只不知陆圻、范骧二人,如何也和伊璜先生一般,说是‘未见其书,免罪不究’? ‘Yes, I am sure you are right,’ said Lu, ‘but what about the other two men? According to the Gazette they were given the same verdict as Zha: “exempted from punishment and released from further questioning” on the grounds that they hadn’t seen the book?难道他二人也有朝中有力者代为疏通吗?”Surely they too didn’t have an influential friend at Court to speak up for them?’黄宗羲道:“吴将军替伊璜先生疏通,倘若单提一人,只怕惹起疑心,拉上两个人来陪衬一下,也未可知。”’I suppose General Wu thought it would look suspicious if he only spoke up on behalf of one person,’ said Huang. ‘He probably added the other two names at random in order to make it look better.’吕留良笑道:“这等说来,陆范二人只怕直到此刻,还不知这条命是如何拾来的。”Lu laughed. ‘If that’s the case, ‘ he said, ‘those two must still be wondering how on earth they managed to get off with their lives.’顾炎武点头道:“江南名士能多保全一位,也就多保留一份元气。”Gu nodded gravely. ‘Every single scholar from South of the River who can stay alive represents a portion of the Primal Spirit of our nation that has been preserved,’ he said.(按:《聊斋志异》中有“大力将军”一则,叙查伊璜遇吴六奇,结语说:“后查以修史一案,株连被收,卒得免,皆将军力也。”评语称:“厚施而不问其名,真侠烈古丈夫哉。而将军之报,慷慨豪爽,尤千古所仅见。如此胸襟,自不应老于沟渎。以是知两贤之相遇,非偶然也。”《觚剩》一书中叙此事云:“先是苕中有富人庄廷鑨者,购得朱相国史稿,博求三吴名士,增益修饰,刊行于世,前列参阅姓氏十余人,以孝廉夙负重名,亦借列焉。未机私史祸发,凡有事于是书者,论置极典。吴力为孝廉奏辩得免。”至于吴六奇参与天地会事,正史及过去裨官皆所未载。)

  他三人所谈,乃当世最隐秘之事,其时身在运河舟中,后舱中只有吕氏母子三人,黄宗羲又是压低了嗓子而说,自不虞为旁人窃听,舟既无墙,也不怕隔墙有耳了。lthough what the three men were talking about was a matter of the utmost secrecy, they were in a boat on the Grand Canal with only Lu’s wife and two sons in the rear cabin; and Huang had all the time been speaking in a very low voice. There seemed little danger of their being overheard. A Boats have no walls, after all, in which the proverbial ears can be concealed.不料顾炎武一句话刚说完,忽听得头顶一声怪笑。It was therefore all the more startling when Gu’s last words were followed by a sinister laugh, coming from somewhere above their heads.三人大吃一惊,齐喝:

“什么人?”却更无半点声息。三人面面相觑,均想:“难道真有鬼怪不成?”’Who’s that?’ the three of them cried out simultaneously, their hair standing on end. But all was quiet. They looked at each other, all asking themselves the same silent question. ‘A ghost? But surely there are no such things as ghosts?’

  三人中顾炎武最为大胆,也学过一点粗浅的防身武艺,一凝神间,伸手入怀,摸出一柄匕首,推开舱门,走上船头,凝目向船篷顶瞧去,Gu was the boldest of the three and had moreover a rudimentary knowledge of self-defence. Listening intently, he extracted a dagger from the bosom of his gown and, pushing open the cabin door with his other hand, advanced to the bow of the boat and peered up towards the matting roof of the cabin.突然间船篷窜起一条黑影,扑将下来。顾炎武喝道:“是谁?”举匕首向那黑影刺去。As he did so, a black shape suddenly rose up from it, leaped down on to the deck and made towards him. Who are you?’ Gu shouted, raising the dragger and striking out at the shape.但觉手腕一痛,已给人抓住,跟着后心酸麻,已给人点中了穴道, But while his arm was still in mid-air he felt a sharp pain in his wrist, as someone caught it in a vice-like grip. Immediately after that, he experienced what felt like a sudden cramp in the centre of his back. The ‘someone’–evidently a practised hand–had struck him on a vital point and paralysed him. 匕首脱手,人也给推进了船舱之中。The dagger dropped from his hand and he felt himself being pushed back inside the cabin.

  黄宗羲和吕留良见顾炎武给人推进舱来,后面站着一个黑衣汉子,心中大惊,见那汉子身材魁梧,满面狞笑。吕留良道:“阁下黑夜之中,擅自闯入,是何用意?”Huang and Lu watched with astonishment as Gu staggered backwards into the cabin, followed by a tall fellow entirely dressed in black. The man’s face wore an evil grin. ‘What do you mean, sir, by bursting in on us like this in the dead of night?’ said Lu.那人冷笑道:“多谢你们三个挑老子升官发财啦。The man gave a sardonic laugh. ‘I must thank you three gentlemen for gaining me my promotion,’ he said,吴六奇要造反,查伊璜要造反,鳌少保得知密报,还不重重有赏?嘿嘿,’–and a tidy fortune, too. When My Lord Oboi receives my confidential report informing him that General Wu and this man Zha are plotting rebellion, I can be sure of a very large reward. Heh, heh!三位这就跟我上北京去作个见证。”And you three gentlemen, by accompanying me to Peking, will be able to provide most useful corroboration.’吕顾黄三人暗暗心惊,均深自悔恨:“我们深宵在舟中私语,还是给他听见了,The three gentlemen heard this with growing alarm, and cursed themselves for their crassness in supposing that a private conversation held on a boat at night could not possibly be overheard. Each of them was thinking the same thought:我们行事鲁莽,死不足惜,这一下累了吴将军,可坏了大事。”’It doesn’t matter so much if we die, but by naming General Wu we have ruined everything!’

  吕留良道:“阁下说什么话,我们可半点不懂。你要诬陷好人,尽管自己去干,要想拉扯上旁人,那可不行。”他已决意以死相拚,如给他杀了,那便死无对证。’My good sir, none of us has the faintest idea what you are talking about,’ said Lu valiantly. ‘If you wish to bring false charges against innocent people, that is your own affair; but pray don’t try to involve us in it.’ He said this having resolved to resist and get himself killed, thereby eliminating himself as a witness.

  那大汉冷笑一声,突然欺身向前,在吕留良和黄宗羲胸口各点一点,吕黄二人登时也都动弹不得。The big man gave a scornful laugh, then, lunging forwards, he struck Lu and Huang in quick succession somewhere in the pit of the stomach, instantly immobilizing them both.那大汉哈哈一笑,说道:“众位兄弟,都进舱来罢,这一次咱们前锋营立的功劳可大着啦。”后梢几个人齐声答应,He laughed again, this time with satisfaction, at their helplessness. ‘Come into the cabin, boys,’ he shouted. This time the Vanguard Battalion has done rather well.’ There was an answering cry from the stern.进来了四人,都是船家打扮,一齐哈哈大笑。Four men, all dressed as boatmen, trooped into the cabin and joined in the laughter of their chief.

  顾黄吕三人面面相觑,知道前锋营是皇帝的亲兵,不知如何,这几人竟会早就跟上了自己,扮作船夫,一直在船篷外窃听。The three captives looked at each other questioningly. They knew that the Vanguard Battalion was part of the Emperor’s personal bodyguard. These men must have been with them throughout the journey. Disguised as boatmen they had, from the other side of the matting, been able to eavesdrop on every word they had said. How on earth had this happened?黄宗羲和吕留良也还罢了,顾炎武这十几年来足迹遍神州,到处结识英雄豪杰,眼光可谓不弱,对这几名船夫却竟没留神。Huang and Lu could perhaps absolve themselves, but Gu who for the past dozen years or more had trodden the roads from one end of China to the other in quest of likely talent for the Resistance, Gu with his vast knowledge of men–how had he failed to see these spurious boatmen for what they really were?

只听一名亲兵叫道:“船家掉过船头,回杭州去,有什么古怪,小心你的狗命。”后梢上那掌舵的梢公应道:“是!”One of the so-called boatmen, resuming the voice and manner of a guardsman, called out now to the steersman in the stern. Turn about, steersman, we’re heading back to Hangzhou! And no funny business, if you value your dog’s life!’ An obedient ‘Aye, aye!’ answered him from the stern.

掌舵梢公是个六七十岁的老头儿,顾炎武雇船时曾跟他说过话,这梢公满脸皱纹,弯腰如弓,确是长年摇橹拉纤的模样,The steersman was an old fellow in his late sixties whom Gu had personally interviewed when they hired the boat. He had a face lined all over with wrinkles and a back as bent as a bow–the very picture of an old waterman who had spent a lifetime handling paddles and pulling ropes.当时见了便毫不起疑。没想到这老梢公虽是货真价实,他手下的船夫却都掉了包,自是在众亲兵威逼之下,无可奈何,It had never occurred to Gu to question his credentials. In fact, the old steersman was genuine enough, but had been forced by threats and intimidation to accept these Imperial Guardsmen as substitutes for his own assistants.只怪自己单顾得和黄吕二人高谈阔论,陷身危局而不自知。Gu now deeply reproached himself for having been so wrapped up in discussion of higher things with his two friends that he had neglected the elementary precautions that might have prevented them from falling into this trap.

  那黑衣大汉笑道:“顾先生,黄先生,吕先生,你三位名头太大,连京里大老们也知道啦,否则我们也不会跟上了你们,哈哈!”The big fellow in black laughed again. ‘Mister Gu, Mister Huang, Mister Lu, you are famous men, you know. Even the big shots in Peking know about you, otherwise we wouldn’t have been shadowing you.’转头向四名下属道:“咱们得了广东吴提督谋反的真凭实据,就这赶紧去海宁把那姓查的抓了来。He turned to address his four subordinates: ‘We’ve now got clear evidence that Governor Wu of Guangdong is planning rebellion. What we’ve got to do now is proceed as quickly as possible to Haining and arrest this Zha fellow.这三个反贼倔强得紧,逃是逃不了的,得提防他们服毒跳河。你们一个钉住一个,有什么岔子,干系可不小。”Now, you’ve got three very determined rebels here. They can’t get away, but they might try to poison themselves or jump in the canal, and you’ve got to stop them. I’m going to assign each one of them to one of you to look after individually. If there are any accidents, you’ll be in trouble.’那四人应道:“是,谨遵瓜管带吩咐。”瓜管带道:“回京后见了鳌少保,人人不愁升官发财。”’Very good, Major Gua,’ the men replied. ‘Leave it to us, sir.’ ‘When we get back to Peking and report to Lord Oboi, ‘ said Major Gua, ‘there will be rewards and promotion for all four of you.’一名亲兵笑道:“那都是瓜管带提拔栽培,单凭我们四个,哪有这等福分。”船头忽然有人嘿嘿一笑,说道:“凭你们这四人,原也没这等福份。”’It’ll all be thanks to you, Major,’ said one of the guardsmen sycophantically. The four of us would never be so lucky if it weren’t for you.’ A laugh rang out from the bow of the boat. ‘The four of you never will be so lucky!’

  船舱门呼的一声,向两旁飞开,一个三十来岁的书生现身舱口,负手背后,脸露微笑。The double doors of the cabin flew open and a thirty-year-old man in scholar’s dress appeared standing in the doorway. He held his hands clasped behind his back and his face wore a faintly ironic smile.瓜管带喝道:“官老爷们在这里办案,你是谁?”那书生微笑不答,迈步踏进船舱。’We’re on Government business here, ‘ Major Gua shouted at him, ‘and we are officers of the law. Who are you?’ The scholar made no reply but continued to smile as he stepped inside the cabin.刀光闪动,两柄单刀分从左右劈落。那书生闪身避过,随即欺向瓜管带,挥掌拍向他头顶。Immediately, to left and right of him, two cutlasses flashed out and would have cut him down; but already he had dodged and was lunging towards Major Gua with arm upraised to slice down on his head.瓜管带忙伸左臂挡格,右手成拳,猛力击出。那书生左脚反踢,踹中了一名亲兵胸口,The Major parried the blow with his left hand, simultaneously striking out with his right fist. Ducking the blow, the scholar kicked backwards with his left foot at the nearest of the guardsmen, catching him in the pit of the stomach.那亲兵大叫一声,登时鲜血狂喷。另外三名亲兵举刀或削或剁。船舱中地形狭窄,The man let out a great cry and began vomiting blood. The other three guardsmen had their cutlasses up and were cutting and slashing at the scholar, who, because of the lack of space in the cabin, was now bringing into play his advanced ‘grappling’ skills,那书生施展擒拿功夫,using a kungfu technique known as Catch-Can.劈击勾打,喀的一声响,一名亲兵给他掌缘劈断了颈骨。One blow, made with the edge of the hand, landed with a cracking sound on one of the guardsmen, breaking his neck.瓜管带右掌拍出,击向那书生后脑。那书生反过左掌,砰的一声,双掌相交,瓜管带背心重重撞上船舱,船舱登时塌了一片。Major Gua swung a blow with his right palm towards the back of the scholar’s head, but the scholar had already whirled about, bringing his own left palm round to catch the blow. He did this with such force that the two palms met in a mighty clap, throwing the Major off his balance, so that he fell against the cabin wall, hitting it heavily with his back and causing the whole structure to lean towards one side.那书生连出两掌,拍在余下两名亲兵的胸口,喀喀声响,二人肋骨齐断。In quick succession the scholar now aimed two chopping blows at the midriffs of the two remaining guardsmen. There were sickening thumps as they struck home and both men collapsed with broken ribs.

  瓜管带纵身从船舱缺口中跳将出去。那书生喝道:“哪里走?”左掌急拍而出。Major Gua now tried to slip out through the gap that had opened in the matting wall of the cabin when his collision with it had pushed the framework out of kilter. ‘Where are you off to?’ cried the scholar, striking out at him with the palm of his left hand.眼见便将击到他背心,不料瓜管带正在此时左脚反踢,这一掌恰好击在他的足底,一股掌力反而推着他向前飞出。The blow was aimed at the upper part of his back, but just at that moment the Major kicked out backwards with his left foot and the forward-swinging palm of the scholar, chancing to catch the backward-kicking foot of the Major, so accelerated the letter’s retreat that he went flying out over the canal.瓜管带急跃窜出,见岸边有一株垂柳挂向河中,当即抓住柳枝,一个倒翻筋斗,飞过了柳树。那书生奔到船头,提起竹篙,挥手掷出。There was a weeping willow tree leaning out over the canal at that point, however, and the Major was able, with a great effort, to catch hold of its branches, and then, with a mighty flip, to somersault right over the tree and on to the ground. The scholar ran to the bow of the boat, picked up a boat-pole and hurled it, javelin-like, towards the Major.月光之下,竹篙犹似飞蛇,急射而前。但听得瓜管带“啊”的一声长叫,竹篙已插入他后心,将他钉在地下,篙身兀自不住晃动。In the bright moonlight the bamboo pole gleamed like a flying snake. They heard the Major let out a long, terrifying cry–‘Aaaah!’–and there he lay, face downward, pinned to the ground by the pole, which continued to quiver in his back.

  那书生走进船舱,解开顾黄吕三人的穴道,The scholar returned to the cabin. With a few expert touches he restored the use of their limbs to the three paralysed captives;将四名亲兵的死尸抛入运河,重点灯烛。顾黄吕三人不住道谢,问起姓名。then he dragged the bodies of the four guardsmen to the side of the boat and pushed them over into the canal. After that he relit the lamp in the cabin. Gu, Huang, and Lti, unable to find sufficient words to express their gratitude, inquired as to their deliverer’s name.

  那书生笑道:“贱名适才承蒙黄先生齿及,在下姓陈,草字近南。”The scholar smiled. ‘My name was on Mr Huang’s lips only a short time ago. I am Chen Jinnan. Most people refer to me as Helmsman Chen.’

  注:

  本书的写作时日是一九六九年十月廿三日到一九七二年九月廿二日。在构思新作之初,自然而然的想到了文字狱。我自己家里有过一场历史上著名的文字狱。我的一位祖先查嗣庭,于清雍正四年以礼部侍郎被派去做江西省正考官,出的试题是“维民所止”。这句话出于《诗经·商颂·玄鸟》:“邦畿千里,维民所止。”意思说,国家广大的土地,都是百姓所居住的,含有爱护人民之意。那本来是一个很寻常的题目,但有人向雍正皇帝告发,说“维止”两字是“雍正”两字去了头,出这试题,用意是要杀皇帝的头。雍正那时初即位,皇位经过激烈斗争而得来,自己又砍了不少人的头,不免心虚,居然凭了“拆字”的方法,将查嗣庭全家逮捕严办。

  查嗣庭大受拷掠,死在狱中,雍正还下令戮尸,儿子也死在狱中,家属流放,浙江全省士人不准参加举人与进士的考试六年。查慎行后来得以放归,不久即去世。

  另有一种说法是,查嗣庭作了一部书,书名《维止录》。

  有一名太监向雍正说“维止”两字是去“雍正”两字之头。又据说《维止录》中有一则笔记:“康熙六十一年某月日,天大雷电以风,予适乞假在寓,忽闻上大行,皇四子已即位,奇哉。”“大行”是皇帝逝世,皇四子就是雍正,书中用到“奇哉”两字,显然是讥刺雍正以不正当手段篡位。《维止录》中又记载,杭州附近的诸桥镇,有一座关帝庙,庙联是:“荒村古庙犹留汉,野店浮桥独姓诸。”诸、朱两字同音,雍正认为是汉人怀念前明。至于查嗣庭在江西出的试题,其实首题是《论语》:“君子不以言举人,不以人废言”,第三题是《孟子》:“山径之蹊间,介然用之而成路,为间不用,则茅塞之矣。今茅塞子之心矣。”这时候正在行保举,廷旨说他有意讪谤,三题茅塞于心,廷旨谓其“不知何指,居心殊不可问。”

  雍正的上谕中说:“查嗣庭……朕令在内廷行走,后授内阁学士,见其语言虚诈,兼有狼顾之相,料其心术不端。今阅江西试录所出题目,显系心怀怨望,讽刺时事之意。料其居心乖张,平日必有记载,遣人查其寓所行李中,有日记二本,悖乱荒唐、怨诽捏造之语甚多。又于圣祖之用人行政,大肆讪谤……热河偶发水,则书淹死官员八百余人,又书雨中飞蝗蔽天:此一派荒唐之言,皆未有之事。……着即拿问,交三法司严审定拟。”雍正所公开的罪名是:看其相而料其心术不端;讽刺时事;日记中记录天灾。本书初在《明报》发表时,第一回称为“楔子”,回目是查慎行的一句诗“如此冰霜如此路”。查慎行本名嗣琏,是嗣庭的亲哥哥,他和二弟嗣瑮、三弟嗣庭都是翰林。此外堂兄嗣韩是榜眼,侄儿查升是侍讲,也都是翰林。查慎行的大儿子克建、堂弟嗣珣都是进士。当时称为“一门七进士、叔侄五翰林”,门户科第甚盛。查慎行和嗣瑮因受胞弟文字狱之累,都于严冬奉旨全家自故乡赴京投狱。当时受到牵连的还有不少名士,查慎行在投狱途中写诗赠给一位同科中进士的难友,有两句是:“如此冰霜如此路,七旬以外两同年。”

  查慎行在清朝算得是第一流诗人,置之唐人宋人间大概只能算第二流了。清人王士祯、赵翼、纪晓岚等都评他的诗与陆游并驾齐驱,互有长短,恐怕有点过誉。康熙皇帝很喜欢他的诗,他中举后三次考不中进士,康熙召他进宫,在南书房当直。进宫之后再考,才中二甲第二名进士,这时他的堂兄、二弟、侄儿、儿子都已中了进士。和查慎行癸未年(康熙四十二年)同科中进士的有他堂弟嗣珣,以及同乡陈世倌(《书剑恩仇录》中陈家洛的父亲)。查慎行和二弟嗣瑮都是黄宗羲的弟子。

  查慎行有《敬业堂诗集》五十卷,续集六卷。他在北京狱中之时,仍不断做诗,今录其狱中诗数首,以见其诗风一斑:

“哭三弟润木”:“家难同时聚,多来送汝终,吞声自兄弟,泣血到孩童。地出阴寒洞,天号惨澹风。莫嗟泉路远,父子获相逢。”(原注:上侄先一日卒。)按:润木即查嗣庭,其子早一日死。

“闰三月朔作”:“年光何与衰翁事,也复时时唤奈何。为百草忧春雨少,替千花惜晓风多。”按:“春雨少”当暗指朝廷少恩,“晓风多”,当指政事严苛。

  五言绝句:“南所对北监,传是锦衣狱。剩有围外人,追口口夏夏思祸酷。”按“祸”指明末魏忠贤等太监陷害无辜。“虫以臭得名,横行罪难掩,均为血肉害,虮虱当末减。“人间有桃杏,怅望春维暮。风卷飞花来,谁家庭下树。”(原注:清明前一日大风,杏花数片,吹入墙内。)“败群鹊”:“朝喳喳,暮啰啰,鹊声喜,乌声恶。儿童打乌不打鹊,道是纥干生处乐维南(按:纥干,出名,积雪极寒)。两鹊鸷不仁,占巢高树旁无邻,有如鹰化为鸠眼未化,以猛济贪四顾图并吞,每当下食群退避,六国何敢争强秦?我欲驱使去,举火兼巢焚,一回一叹还逡巡。天生万物何物无败群?吁嗟乎!天生万物何物无败群?”“春已尽矣,孤柳尚未舒条,困步其下偶成。”:“围外新叶树,出墙高亭亭,画地乃为牢,独来伴拘囹。我衰何足道,日夜望汝荣。已经三月余,众眼终未青。将毋学病叟,尔作支离形?并生天地间,草木非无情。寄语后栽者,匆依问囚厅。”

  查慎行的诗篇中极多同情平民疾苦之作,甚至对禽兽草木也寄以同情心。《敬业堂诗集》当时公开刊行,狱中诸诗也都保留。

  本书五十回的回目都是集查慎行诗中的对句。《敬业堂诗集》篇什虽富,要选五十联七言句来标题每一回的故事内容,倒也不大容易。这里所用的方法,不是像一般集句那样从不同诗篇中选录单句,甚至是从不同作者的诗中选集单句,而是选用一个人诗作的整个联句。有时上一句对了,下一句无关,或者下一句很合用,上一句却用不着,只好全部放弃。因此有些回目难免不很贴切。所以要集查慎行的诗,因为这些诗大都是康熙曾经看过的(“狱中诗”自是例外),康熙又曾为查慎行题过“敬业堂”三字的匾额。当然,也有替自己祖先的诗句宣扬一下的私意。当代读书人知道查慎行是清代一位重要诗人,但他的诗作到底怎样,恐怕很少人读到过,毕竟,他不能和真正的大诗人相比。

  古人写文章提到自己祖先,决不敢直呼其名,通常在字号或官衔之下加一“公”字。记得小时候在祠堂中听长辈谈论祖先,说到查慎行时称“初白太公”,说到查升时称“声山太公”。现代人写白话文,不必这样迂了,要尊敬祖先,在自己心中尊敬就是了。

  本回回目中,“钩党”是“牵连陷害”,“纵横钩党清流祸”的意思是:对许多有名的读书人株连迫害。“峭茜”是高峻鲜明,形容人格高尚、风采俊朗,“峭茜风期月旦评”的意思是:贤豪风骨之士,当会得到见识高超之人的称誉。

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