This is how it all came about. Six or seven of us were sitting one day after tea. Some were gazing across the street into the windows of a milliner's shop where the light still shone brightly upon scarlet feathers and golden slippers. Others were idly occupied in building little towers of sugar upon the edge of the tea tray. After a time, so far as I can remember, we drew round the fire and began as usual to praise men—how strong, how noble, how brilliant, how courageous, how beautiful they were—how we envied those who by hook or by crook managed to get attached to one for life—when Poll, who had said nothing, burst into tears. Poll, I must tell you, has always been queer. For one thing her father was a strange man. He left her a fortune in his will, but on condition that she read all the books in the London Library. We comforted her as best we could; but we knew in our hearts how vain it was. For though we like her, Poll is no beauty; leaves her shoe laces untied; and must have been thinking, while we praised men, that not one of them would ever wish to marry her. At last she dried her tears. For some time we could make nothing of what she said. Strange enough it was in all conscience. She told us that, as we knew, she spent most of her time in the London Library, reading. She had begun, she said, with English literature on the top floor; and was steadily working her way down to the Times on the bottom. And now half, or perhaps only a quarter, way through a terrible thing had happened. She could read no more. Books were not what we thought them. "Books," she cried, rising to her feet and speaking with an intensity of desolation which I shall never forget, "are for the most part unutterably bad!"
came about：起こった。tea：午後食（イギリスやオーストリアの早めの軽い夕食）。gazing：じっと見る。milliner's：婦人帽子店の。scarlet feathers：緋色の羽飾り。slippers：室内履き。idly：徒に。occurred in：～に専念する。drew round：～の周りに集まった。praise：誉める。noble：気高い。brilliant：才能ある。courageous：勇敢な。envied：羨んだ。by hook or by crook：是が非でも（掛けや曲がりで）。manage to：どうにか～する。get attached to：愛着を抱く。for life：一生。Poll：ポル（人名／名前）。burst into tears：わっと泣き出した。queer：奇異な。 for one thing：一つには。strange man：変わり者。a fortune：財産。in his will：彼の遺言で。on condition that：～という条件で。London Library：ロンドン（イギリスの首都）図書館。comforted：慰めた。knew in our hearts：（私たちが）内心で分かっていた。shoe laces：靴紐。untied：解ける。dried her tears：（彼女が）涙を拭った。for some time：暫くの間。could make nothing of：～が理解できなかった。in all conscience：どう考えても。steadily：絶え間なく。working her way：（彼女が）努力して進む。Times：タイムズ（新聞）。terrible thing：酷いこと。with an intensity of desolation：侘しさから激しく。for the most part：大部分は。unutterably：いい表せないほどに。
Of course we cried out that Shakespeare wrote books, and Milton and Shelley.
"Oh, yes," she interrupted us. "You've been well taught, I can see. But you are not members of the London Library." Here her sobs broke forth anew. At length, recovering a little, she opened one of the pile of books which she always carried about with her—"From a Window" or "In a Garden," or some such name as that it was called, and it was written by a man called Benton or Henson, or something of that kind. She read the first few pages. We listened in silence. "But that's not a book," someone said. So she chose another. This time it was a history, but I have forgotten the writer's name. Our trepidation increased as she went on. Not a word of it seemed to be true, and the style in which it was written was execrable.
interrupted：遮った。sobs：泣きじゃくり。broke forth：どっと出た。at length：漸く。one of the pile of books：一つの本の山（積み重ね）。carried about：持ち歩いた。Benton or Henson：ベントン（人名／名字）かへンソン（人名／名字）。history：歴史書。trepidation：狼狽。went on：続けた。execrable：忌まわしい。
"Poetry! Poetry!" we cried, impatiently. "Read us poetry!" I cannot describe the desolation which fell upon us as she opened a little volume and mouthed out the verbose, sentimental foolery which it contained.
poetry：詩。impatiently：堪え切れず。fell upon：襲う。little volume：小冊。mouthed out：口に出した。verbose, sentimental foolery：言葉数の多いお涙頂戴の戯言。
"It must have been written by a woman," one of us urged. But no. She told us that it was written by a young man, one of the most famous poets of the day. I leave you to imagine what the shock of the discovery was. Though we all cried and begged her to read no more, she persisted and read us extracts from the Lives of the Lord Chancellors. When she had finished, Jane, the eldest and wisest of us, rose to her feet and said that she for one was not convinced.
urged：主張した。of the day：当時の。leave you to：貴方に～にすることを任せる。begged：頼んだ。persisted：固執した。extracts：抜粋。the Lives of the Lord Chancellors：大法官の生活（キャンベル卿の著書）。Jane：ジェーン（人名／名前）。for one：個人として。convinced：納得する。
"Why," she asked, "if men write such rubbish as this, should our mothers have wasted their youth in bringing them into the world?"
rubbish：駄作。bringing them into the world：彼らを出産すること。
We were all silent; and, in the silence, poor Poll could be heard sobbing out, "Why, why did my father teach me to read?"
Clorinda was the first to come to her senses. "It's all our fault," she said. "Every one of us knows how to read. But no one, save Poll, has ever taken the trouble to do it. I, for one, have taken it for granted that it was a woman's duty to spend her youth in bearing children. I venerated my mother for bearing ten; still more my grandmother for bearing fifteen; it was, I confess, my own ambition to bear twenty. We have gone on all these ages supposing that men were equally industrious, and that their works were of equal merit. While we have borne the children, they, we supposed, have borne the books and the pictures. We have populated the world. They have civilized it. But now that we can read, what prevents us from judging the results? Before we bring another child into the world we must swear that we will find out what the world is like."
Clorinda：クロリンダ（人名／名前）。come to her senses：（彼女が）我に返る。it's all our fault：それは全て私たちのせいだ。save：～を除いて。has ever taken the trouble to：今までわざわざ～した。have taken it for granted that：それを～なのが当然のことだと思った。bearing children：子供を産むこと。venerated：崇めた。confess：打ち明ける。ambition：野心。have gone on：（何かを）続けて来た。industrious：良く働く。have populated：居住した。have civilized：文明化した。now that：～からには。swear that：～と誓う。
So we made ourselves into a society for asking questions. One of us was to visit a man-of-war; another was to hide herself in a scholar's study; another was to attend a meeting of business men; while all were to read books, look at pictures, go to concerts, keep our eyes open in the streets, and ask questions perpetually. We were very young. You can judge of our simplicity when I tell you that before parting that night we agreed that the objects of life were to produce good people and good books. Our questions were to be directed to finding out how far these objects were now attained by men. We vowed solemnly that we would not bear a single child until we were satisfied.
made ourselves into：（私たちが）～になった。man-of-war：軍艦（古い表現）。hide herself：（彼女が）身を潜める。scholar's study：学者の研究室。business men：実業家。perpetually：年がら年中。simplicity：簡単さ。objects of life：人生の目的。how far：どの程度。attained：達成される。vowed solemnly：真面目に誓った。
Off we went then, some to the British Museum; others to the King's Navy; some to Oxford; others to Cambridge; we visited the Royal Academy and the Tate; heard modern music in concert rooms, went to the Law Courts, and saw new plays. No one dined out without asking her partner certain questions and carefully noting his replies. At intervals we met together and compared our observations. Oh, those were merry meetings! Never have I laughed so much as I did when Rose read her notes upon "Honour" and described how she had dressed herself as an Æthiopian Prince and gone aboard one of His Majesty's ships. Discovering the hoax, the Captain visited her (now disguised as a private gentleman) and demanded that honour should be satisfied. "But how?" she asked. "How?" he bellowed. "With the cane of course!" Seeing that he was beside himself with rage and expecting that her last moment had come, she bent over and received, to her amazement, six light taps upon the behind. "The honour of the British Navy is avenged!" he cried, and, raising herself, she saw him with the sweat pouring down his face holding out a trembling right hand. "Away!" she exclaimed, striking an attitude and imitating the ferocity of his own expression, "My honour has still to be satisfied!" "Spoken like a gentleman!" he returned, and fell into profound thought. "If six strokes avenge the honour of the King's Navy," he mused, "how many avenge the honour of a private gentleman?" He said he would prefer to lay the case before his brother officers. She replied haughtily that she could not wait. He praised her sensibility. "Let me see," he cried suddenly, "did your father keep a carriage?" "No," she said. "Or a riding horse!" "We had a donkey," she bethought her, "which drew the mowing machine." At this his face lighted. "My mother's name——" she added. "For God's sake, man, don't mention your mother's name!" he shrieked, trembling like an aspen and flushing to the roots of his hair, and it was ten minutes at least before she could induce him to proceed. At length he decreed that if she gave him four strokes and a half in the small of the back at a spot indicated by himself (the half conceded, he said, in recognition of the fact that her great grandmother's uncle was killed at Trafalgar) it was his opinion that her honour would be as good as new. This was done; they retired to a restaurant; drank two bottles of wine for which he insisted upon paying; and parted with protestations of eternal friendship.
British Museum：大英博物館。King's Navy：王の海軍。Oxford：オックスフォード大学。Cambridge：ケンブリッジ大学。Royal Academy：王立美術院（正式名称：Royal Academy of Arts）。Tate：テート美術館（正式名称：Tate Gallery、2000年からはTate／テート）。concert rooms：音楽室。law courts：法廷。dined out：外食した。noting：書き留めること。at intervals：折々。observations：観察。Rose：ローズ（人名／名前）。notes：（短い）記録。honour：名誉。Æthiopian：エチオピア（国）の（ÆthiopiansはEthiopianの昔の綴り）。(had) gone aboard：乗船した。His Majesty's ships：英国軍艦。hoax：でっち上げ。captain：艦長。disguise：変装した。private gentleman：平民の紳士。bellowed：怒鳴った。cane：（処罰用の）鞭。beside himself with：（彼が）～で我を忘れた。expecting：思って（予期して）。bent over：身を屈めた。to her amazement：（彼女が）驚いたことに。behind：尻。British Navy：英国海軍。avenged：仇を取る。pouring down：垂らす。holding out：差し出す。trembling：震える。exclaimed：声を上げた。striking an attitude：格好を付けながら。imitating：模倣しながら。ferocity：狂暴さ。has still to be satisfied：まだ満たされなくてはならない（満たされるところにあるべきだ）。fell into：急に～の状態になった。profound thought：深い考え。avenge：仇を取る。mused：（良く考えて）いった。avenge：仇取り。lay the case before：（意見を）～に仰ぐ。brother officers：同僚の将校。haughtily：居丈高に。praised：称えた。sensibility：感受性。keep a carriage：四輪馬車を保有する。riding horse：乗用馬。donkey：驢馬。bethought：思い出した。mowing machine：草刈り機。lighted：（顔が）輝いた。for God's sake：お願いだから。man：君。mention：（名前を）いう。shrieked：金切り声を発した。aspen：山鳴らし（木の一種）。flushing to the roots of his hair：（彼が）髪の根元まで紅潮しながら。induce (to)：説得して～させる。proceed：続ける。decreed that：～と命じた。in the small of the back：背中の小域に。conceded：（事実と）認められる。in recognition of：（功績の）～を称えて。great grandmother's：曾祖母の。Trafalgar：トラファルガー（岬、その沖で海戦が行われた）。as good as new.：新品同様。retired：退いた。insisted upon：～を強く求めた。with protestations of eternal friendship.：末永い友情を誓って。
Then we had Fanny's account of her visit to the Law Courts. At her first visit she had come to the conclusion that the Judges were either made of wood or were impersonated by large animals resembling man who had been trained to move with extreme dignity, mumble and nod their heads. To test her theory she had liberated a handkerchief of bluebottles at the critical moment of a trial, but was unable to judge whether the creatures gave signs of humanity for the buzzing of the flies induced so sound a sleep that she only woke in time to see the prisoners led into the cells below. But from the evidence she brought we voted that it is unfair to suppose that the Judges are men.
had Fanny's account of：ファニー（人名／名前）の～の話を聞いた。had come to the conclusion that：～という結論に達した。Judges：判事。impersonated：（役を）演じられる。with extreme dignity：極度の威厳を持って。mumble：ぶつぶついう。nod their heads：（彼らが）頷く。theory：持説。had liberated：放った（自由にした）。handkerchief：ハンカチ。bluebottles：青蝿（虫の一種）。critical moment：決定的な瞬間。trial：審理。gave signs of humanity：人間の兆候を示した。buzzing：ブンブン飛ぶ音。induced：引き起こした。so sound a sleep that：～くらい良い眠り。in time to：～するのに間に合って。cells：監房。evidence：証言。voted：採決した。
Helen went to the Royal Academy, but when asked to deliver her report upon the pictures she began to recite from a pale blue volume, "O! for the touch of a vanished hand and the sound of a voice that is still. Home is the hunter, home from the hill. He gave his bridle reins a shake. Love is sweet, love is brief. Spring, the fair spring, is the year's pleasant King. O! to be in England now that April's there. Men must work and women must weep. The path of duty is the way to glory—" We could listen to no more of this gibberish.
Helen：ヘレン（人名／名前）。deliver her report：彼女の報告を寄せる。recited：朗読した。a pale blue volume：薄青い冊子。O! for the touch of a vanished hand and the sound of a voice that is still：おぉ！ 消えた手の感触と静かな声音のために（アルフレッド・テニスンの詩の『Break, Break, Break／砕けよ、砕けよ、砕けよ』の一節からか）。Home is the hunter, home from the hill：狩人は帰った、丘から帰った（ロバート・ルイス・スティーヴンソンの詩の『Requiem／鎮魂歌』の一節からか）。He gave his bridle reins a shake：彼は己の手綱を揺らした（ロバート・バーンズの詩の『It was a' for our Rightful King／正当な王を全面的に支持する』）。Love is sweet, love is brief：恋は甘く、恋は短い（アルジャーノン・チャールズ・スウィンバーンの詩の『Hymn to Proserpine／プロセルピナへの讃歌』の一節からか）。Spring, the fair spring, is the year's pleasant King：春、美しい春よ、一年の好ましい王（トマス・ナッシュの詩の『Spring／春』の一節からか）。O! to be in England now that April's there：おぉ！ イギリスにいれば今や四月なのだから（ロバート・ブラウニングの詩の『Home-Thoughts, From Abroad／故郷――海外から思う』の一節からか）。Men must work and women must weep：男性は働かなくてはならなくて女性は泣かなくてならない（チャールズ・キングズリーの詩の『The Three Fishers／三人の漁師』の一節からか）。The path of duty is the way to glory：務めの小道は栄光への道（アルフレッド・テニスンの詩の『Ode on the Death of the Duke of Wellington／ウェリントン公爵の死のオード』の一節からか）。gibberish：出鱈目。
"We want no more poetry!" we cried.
"Daughters of England!" she began, but here we pulled her down, a vase of water getting spilt over her in the scuffle.
in the scuffle：取っ組み合いで。
"Thank God!" she exclaimed, shaking herself like a dog. "Now I'll roll on the carpet and see if I can't brush off what remains of the Union Jack. Then perhaps—" here she rolled energetically. Getting up she began to explain to us what modern pictures are like when Castalia stopped her.
thank God：良かった。shaking herself：（彼女が）身体を振り動かして。see if：～かどうかを確かめる。remains of ：～が残される。Union Jack：ユニオンジャック（イギリスの国旗：イングランドとスコットランドとアイルランドのjack／船首旗を組み合わせた図柄）。energetically：精力的に。Castalia：カスタリア（人名／名前）。
"What is the average size of a picture?" she asked. "Perhaps two feet by two and a half," she said. Castalia made notes while Helen spoke, and when she had done, and we were trying not to meet each other's eyes, rose and said, "At your wish I spent last week at Oxbridge, disguised as a charwoman. I thus had access to the rooms of several Professors and will now attempt to give you some idea—only," she broke off, "I can't think how to do it. It's all so queer. These Professors," she went on, "live in large houses built round grass plots each in a kind of cell by himself. Yet they have every convenience and comfort. You have only to press a button or light a little lamp. Their papers are beautifully filed. Books abound. There are no children or animals, save half a dozen stray cats and one aged bullfinch—a cock. I remember," she broke off, "an Aunt of mine who lived at Dulwich and kept cactuses. You reached the conservatory through the double drawing-room, and there, on the hot pipes, were dozens of them, ugly, squat, bristly little plants each in a separate pot. Once in a hundred years the Aloe flowered, so my Aunt said. But she died before that happened—" We told her to keep to the point. "Well," she resumed, "when Professor Hobkin was out, I examined his life work, an edition of Sappho. It's a queer looking book, six or seven inches thick, not all by Sappho. Oh, no. Most of it is a defence of Sappho's chastity, which some German had denied, and I can assure you the passion with which these two gentlemen argued, the learning they displayed, the prodigious ingenuity with which they disputed the use of some implement which looked to me for all the world like a hairpin astounded me; especially when the door opened and Professor Hobkin himself appeared. A very nice, mild, old gentleman, but what could he know about chastity?" We misunderstood her.
two feet by two and a half：（縦と横の寸法が）２フィート（６０．９６センチ）と２フィート半（７６．２センチ）。made notes：書き留めた。meet each other's eyes：互いの目を合わせる。Oxbridge：オックスブリッジ（オックスフォード大学とケンブリッジ大学を合わせた呼び方、イギリス英語）大学群。charwoman：雑役婦。had access to：～へ渡った。give you some idea：貴方に何かしら教える。only：ただし。broke off：（話を）止めた。built round grass plots：草地を囲い込んで建つ。by himself：（彼が）一人で。convenience and comfort.：便利さと快適さ。papers：書類。filed：（綴じて）整理される。abound：沢山。half a dozen：六つ（半ダース）。stray cats：野良猫。bullfinch：ウソ（鳥の一種）。cock：（鳥の）雄。Dulwich：ダリッチ（イギリスのロンドン郊外の地区）。kept cactuses：サボテンを手入れした。conservatory：温室。double drawing-room：二倍の客間。dozens of：数十（幾ダース）の～。ugly：醜い。squat：ずんぐりした。bristly：剛毛の生えた。separate pot：個々の鉢。aloe：竜舌蘭。keep to the point：話を逸らさない。resumed：再開した。Hobkin：ホブキン（人名／名字）。examined：調査した。life work：一生の仕事。edition of Sappho：サッフォー（古代ギリシャの女性詩人）の編纂。six or seven inches：６か７インチ（１５．２４か１７．７８センチ）。defence：擁護（defenceの綴りは主にイギリス）。chastity：貞操。German：ドイツ（国名）人。assure：請け合う（保証する）。learning：学識。prodigious ingenuity：桁外れの創造力。disputed：論争した。implements：道具。(looked) for all the world like：どう見ても～だ（～にしか見えない）。hairpin：（髪の）留め針（ヘアピン）。astounded：仰天させた。nice：高尚な。
"No, no," she protested, "he's the soul of honour I'm sure—not that he resembles Rose's sea captain in the least. I was thinking rather of my Aunt's cactuses. What could they know about chastity?"
protested：異議を唱えた。soul of honour：名誉の生き写し。sea captain：艦長。(not) in the least：少しも～でない。
Again we told her not to wander from the point,—did the Oxbridge professors help to produce good people and good books?—the objects of life.
wander from the point：話から外れる。
"There!" she exclaimed. "It never struck me to ask. It never occurred to me that they could possibly produce anything."
there：あらら。it never struck me to：私は～すると思い当たることはなかった。it never occurred to me that：私は～と思い付くことはなかった。could possibly：どうにか～できた。
"I believe," said Sue, "that you made some mistake. Probably Professor Hobkin was a gynæcologist. A scholar is a very different sort of man. A scholar is overflowing with humour and invention—perhaps addicted to wine, but what of that?—a delightful companion, generous, subtle, imaginative—as stands to reason. For he spends his life in company with the finest human beings that have ever existed."
Sue：スー（人名／名前、Susan／スーザンやSusanna／スザンナなどの短縮形）。gynæcologist：婦人科医（gynæcologistの綴りは主にイギリス）。overflowing：溢れる。humour and invention：諧謔と創案（humourの綴りは主にイギリス）。addicted to：～に病み付きである。what of that?：それが何なのか（何でもない）？。delightful companion：愉快な相棒。generous：気前良い。subtle：鋭敏な。imaginative：想像力に富む。as stands to reason：当然であるように。in company with：～と一緒に。the finest human beings：最高の人間。
"Hum," said Castalia. "Perhaps I'd better go back and try again."
Some three months later it happened that I was sitting alone when Castalia entered. I don't know what it was in the look of her that so moved me; but I could not restrain myself, and, dashing across the room, I clasped her in my arms. Not only was she very beautiful; she seemed also in the highest spirits. "How happy you look!" I exclaimed, as she sat down.
it happened that：偶然～だった。in the look of：～の様子に。moved：感動させる。restrain myself：（私が）自制する。dashing：急行する。clasped her in my arms：彼女を腕で抱き締めた。in the highest spirits：甚だ気分良く。
"I've been at Oxbridge," she said.
"Answering them," she replied.
"You have not broken our vow?" I said anxiously, noticing something about her figure.
have not broken our vow：私たちの誓いを破らなかった。figure：姿。
"Oh, the vow," she said casually. "I'm going to have a baby, if that's what you mean. You can't imagine," she burst out, "how exciting, how beautiful, how satisfying—"
casually：気楽に。I'm going to have a baby：私は赤ちゃんを産むつもりだ。if that's what you mean：もしも貴方がそうした意味でいっているのならば。burst out：急に大声を出した。
"What is?" I asked.
"To—to—answer questions," she replied in some confusion. Whereupon she told me the whole of her story. But in the middle of an account which interested and excited me more than anything I had ever heard, she gave the strangest cry, half whoop, half holloa—
in some confusion：少し狼狽えて。whereupon：すると直ぐに。gave the strangest cry：甚だ変わった叫び声を上げた。whoop：うわっ。holloa：おあっ。
"Chastity! Chastity! Where's my chastity!" she cried. "Help Ho! The scent bottle!"
There was nothing in the room but a cruet containing mustard, which I was about to administer when she recovered her composure.
cruet：薬味瓶。mustard：マスタード。administer：（薬などを）与える。recovered her composure：（彼女が）落ち着きを取り戻した。
"You should have thought of that three months ago," I said severely.
"True," she replied. "There's not much good in thinking of it now. It was unfortunate, by the way, that my mother had me called Castalia."
there's not much good in：～も仕方ない。unfortunate：不運な。my mother had me called Castalia：私の母親がカスタリアと呼ばれる私（子供）を儲けた。
"Oh, Castalia, your mother—" I was beginning when she reached for the mustard pot.
"No, no, no," she said, shaking her head. "If you'd been a chaste woman yourself you would have screamed at the sight of me—instead of which you rushed across the room and took me in your arms. No, Cassandra. We are neither of us chaste." So we went on talking.
chaste：貞節な。have screamed：大声で叫んだ。at the sight of：～を見て。rushed：突進した。Cassandra：カサンドラ（人名／名前）。
Meanwhile the room was filling up, for it was the day appointed to discuss the results of our observations. Everyone, I thought, felt as I did about Castalia. They kissed her and said how glad they were to see her again. At length, when we were all assembled, Jane rose and said that it was time to begin. She began by saying that we had now asked questions for over five years, and that though the results were bound to be inconclusive—here Castalia nudged me and whispered that she was not so sure about that. Then she got up, and, interrupting Jane in the middle of a sentence, said:
meanwhile：その間に。filling up：満杯になる。assembled：集合する。bound to：必ず～である。inconclusive：決定的ではない。nudged：（肘で）そっと突いた。sentence：（特に目上の者からの）発言（古い表現）。
"Before you say any more, I want to know—am I to stay in the room? Because," she added, "I have to confess that I am an impure woman."
Everyone looked at her in astonishment.
"You are going to have a baby?" asked Jane.
She nodded her head.
It was extraordinary to see the different expressions on their faces. A sort of hum went through the room, in which I could catch the words "impure," "baby," "Castalia," and so on. Jane, who was herself considerably moved, put it to us:
extraordinary：普通ではない。hum：がやがやという音（騒めき）。catch the words：言葉を聞き取る。considerably：相当に。put it to：～に云った。
"Shall she go? Is she impure?"
Such a roar filled the room as might have been heard in the street outside.
"No! No! No! Let her stay! Impure? Fiddlesticks!" Yet I fancied that some of the youngest, girls of nineteen or twenty, held back as if overcome with shyness. Then we all came about her and began asking questions, and at last I saw one of the youngest, who had kept in the background, approach shyly and say to her:
fiddlesticks：馬鹿馬鹿しい。fancied that：（何となく）～と思った。some of the youngest：最年少の何人か。held back：口を開かなかった。overcome with shyness：内気さに圧倒される。had kept in the background：引っ込んでいた。
"What is chastity then? I mean is it good, or is it bad, or is it nothing at all?" She replied so low that I could not catch what she said.
"You know I was shocked," said another, "for at least ten minutes."
"In my opinion," said Poll, who was growing crusty from always reading in the London Library, "chastity is nothing but ignorance—a most discreditable state of mind. We should admit only the unchaste to our society. I vote that Castalia shall be our President."
crusty：無愛想な。ignorance：無学。discreditable：面目ない。unchaste：不貞な。I vote that：私は～を提案する。President：会長。
This was violently disputed.
"It is as unfair to brand women with chastity as with unchastity," said Poll. "Some of us haven't the opportunity either. Moreover, I don't believe Cassy herself maintains that she acted as she did from a pure love of knowledge."
brand：決め付ける。unchastity：不貞。haven't the opportunity either：どちらの機会も得ていない。Cassy：キャシー（人名／名前、CassyやCasablancaの愛称）。maintains that：～と断言する。
"He is only twenty-one and divinely beautiful," said Cassy, with a ravishing gesture.
divinely：素晴らしく。with a ravishing gesture：魅惑的な身振りで。
"I move," said Helen, "that no one be allowed to talk of chastity or unchastity save those who are in love."
"Oh, bother," said Judith, who had been enquiring into scientific matters, "I'm not in love and I'm longing to explain my measures for dispensing with prostitutes and fertilizing virgins by Act of Parliament."
bother：嫌だ。Judith：ジュディス（人名／名前）。enquiring into：～を調査する（enquiringの綴りは主にイギリス）。measures：手段。dispensing with prostitutes：売春婦なしで済ませること。fertilizing virgins：処女を受胎させること。Act of Parliament：議会制定法。
She went on to tell us of an invention of hers to be erected at Tube stations and other public resorts, which, upon payment of a small fee, would safeguard the nation's health, accommodate its sons, and relieve its daughters. Then she had contrived a method of preserving in sealed tubes the germs of future Lord Chancellors "or poets or painters or musicians," she went on, "supposing, that is to say, that these breeds are not extinct, and that women still wish to bear children——"
erected：建てられる。Tube：ロンドン地下鉄。public resorts：盛り場。safeguard：保護する。nation's health：国民の健康。accommodate：親切にする。relieve：気楽にする。had contrived：考案した。preserving：保存。sealed tubes：封管。germs：胚。that is to say：すなわち。breeds：血筋。extinct：絶たれた。
"Of course we wish to bear children!" cried Castalia, impatiently. Jane rapped the table.
"That is the very point we are met to consider," she said. "For five years we have been trying to find out whether we are justified in continuing the human race. Castalia has anticipated our decision. But it remains for the rest of us to make up our minds."
justified in：～を正当に理由付けられる。has anticipated：先取りした。the rest of us：残りの私たち。make up our minds：（私たちが）決心する。
Here one after another of our messengers rose and delivered their reports. The marvels of civilisation far exceeded our expectations, and, as we learnt for the first time how man flies in the air, talks across space, penetrates to the heart of an atom, and embraces the universe in his speculations, a murmur of admiration burst from our lips.
messengers：使者。marvels of civilisation：文明の驚異。penetrates：見抜く。the heart of an atom：原子の核心。embraces：（教えなどを）受け入れる。in his speculations：彼の思索の中に。murmur of admiration：感嘆の呟き。burst from：飛び出した。
"We are proud," we cried, "that our mothers sacrificed their youth in such a cause as this!" Castalia, who had been listening intently, looked prouder than all the rest. Then Jane reminded us that we had still much to learn, and Castalia begged us to make haste. On we went through a vast tangle of statistics. We learnt that England has a population of so many millions, and that such and such a proportion of them is constantly hungry and in prison; that the average size of a working man's family is such, and that so great a percentage of women die from maladies incident to childbirth. Reports were read of visits to factories, shops, slums, and dockyards. Descriptions were given of the Stock Exchange, of a gigantic house of business in the City, and of a Government Office. The British Colonies were now discussed, and some account was given of our rule in India, Africa and Ireland. I was sitting by Castalia and I noticed her uneasiness.
sacrificed：犠牲にした。intently：没頭して。reminded：注意した（気付かせた）。on we went through：私たちは良く調べ続けた。vast tangle of statistics：統計値の莫大な縺れ。millions：数百万。such and such：これこれの。proportion：割合。constantly：いつでも。average size：平均的な規模。maladies：疾病。incident to：～から起こる。childbirth：分娩。read of：～について知られる（読まれる）。slums：貧民街。dockyards：造船所。descriptions：描写。given of：（描写が）～について与えられる（行われる）。stock exchange：証券取引所。gigantic house of business：巨大な社屋。the City：ロンドン（イギリスの首都）の（商業や金融の）中心部（イギリス英語）。Government Office：政庁。British Colonies：イギリス植民地。rule：統治。India, Africa and Ireland：インド（国名）とアフリカ（大陸）とアイルランド（国名）。uneasiness：不安。
"We shall never come to any conclusion at all at this rate," she said. "As it appears that civilisation is so much more complex than we had any notion, would it not be better to confine ourselves to our original enquiry? We agreed that it was the object of life to produce good people and good books. All this time we have been talking of aeroplanes, factories, and money. Let us talk about men themselves and their arts, for that is the heart of the matter."
never come to any conclusion at all at this rate：このままではどんな結論にも全く達することがない。had any notion：少しでも考えた。confine ourselves to：（私たちが）～に制限する。original enquiry：元の調査（enquiryの綴りは主にイギリス）。all this time：今まで。aeroplanes：飛行機（イギリス英語）。
So the diners out stepped forward with long slips of paper containing answers to their questions. These had been framed after much consideration. A good man, we had agreed, must at any rate be honest, passionate, and unworldly. But whether or not a particular man possessed those qualities could only be discovered by asking questions, often beginning at a remote distance from the centre. Is Kensington a nice place to live in? Where is your son being educated—and your daughter? Now please tell me, what do you pay for your cigars? By the way, is Sir Joseph a baronet or only a knight? Often it seemed that we learnt more from trivial questions of this kind than from more direct ones. "I accepted my peerage," said Lord Bunkum, "because my wife wished it." I forget how many titles were accepted for the same reason. "Working fifteen hours out of the twenty-four, as I do——" ten thousand professional men began.
diners out：外食する人たち。slips of paper：紙片。framed：（文を）纏められる。after much consideration：多く検討した後に。at any rate：少なくとも。unworldly：俗離れする。whether or not：～なのかどうか。possessed those qualities：それらの資質を備えた。Kensington：ケンジントン（イギリスのロンドン市の地区）。cigars：葉巻き。Sir Joseph：ジョゼフ（人名／名前）卿（イギリスのbaronet／準男爵かKnight／ナイトの爵位を持つ人の名前に付ける敬称）。baronet：準男爵（爵位の一つ）。knight：騎士（爵位の一つ）。trivial：些細な。peerage：爵位。Lord Bunkum：バンカム（人名／名字）卿（Lordは侯爵と伯爵と子爵と男爵の主に名字に付ける簡易的な尊称、公爵と子爵の子息、伯爵の長子の尊称、イギリス英語）。forget：気に留めない。titles：称号。professional men：職業人。
"No, no, of course you can neither read nor write. But why do you work so hard?" "My dear lady, with a growing family——" "But why does your family grow?" Their wives wished that too, or perhaps it was the British Empire. But more significant than the answers were the refusals to answer. Very few would reply at all to questions about morality and religion, and such answers as were given were not serious. Questions as to the value of money and power were almost invariably brushed aside, or pressed at extreme risk to the asker. "I'm sure," said Jill, "that if Sir Harley Tightboots hadn't been carving the mutton when I asked him about the capitalist system he would have cut my throat. The only reason why we escaped with our lives over and over again is that men are at once so hungry and so chivalrous. They despise us too much to mind what we say."
my dear lady：ご婦人。growing family：育ち盛りの子供。British Empire：大英帝国。significant：意義深い。refusals：拒否。morality and religion：道徳と宗教。as to：～に関する。invariably：変わることなく。brushed aside：無視される（払い除けられる）。pressed at extreme risk to the asker：質問者を極度の危険へ追い遣った（押し付けた）。Jill：ジル（人名／名前）。Harley Tightboots：ハーレー・タイトブーツ（人名）。carving the mutton：羊肉を切り分ける。capitalist system：資本主義体制。escaped with our lives：（私たちが）やっとの思いで（命拾いして）逃げた。at once so hungry and so chivalrous：同時に余りに空腹で余りに（婦人に）丁重である。despise：軽蔑する。
"Of course they despise us," said Eleanor. "At the same time how do you account for this—I made enquiries among the artists. Now, no woman has ever been an artist, has she, Poll?"
Eleanor：エレノア（人名／名前）。account for：～について説明する。made enquiries：調査した。
"Jane-Austen-Charlotte-Brontë-George-Eliot," cried Poll, like a man crying muffins in a back street.
Jane-Austen-Charlotte-Brontë-George-Eliot：ジェーン‐オースティン‐シャーロット‐ブロンテ‐ジョージ‐エリオット（小説家のJane Austin／ジェーン・オースティンとCharlotte Brontë／シャーロット・ブロンテとGeorge-Eliot／ジョージ・エリオット）。crying muffins：マフィン（菓子の一種）を叫ぶ（呼び売りする）。back street：裏通り。
"Damn the woman!" someone exclaimed. "What a bore she is!"
damn the woman：忌々しい女。a bore：うんざり者（イギリス英語）。
"Since Sappho there has been no female of first rate——" Eleanor began, quoting from a weekly newspaper.
of first rate：一流の。quoting：引用して。weekly newspaper：週刊誌。
"It's now well known that Sappho was the somewhat lewd invention of Professor Hobkin," Ruth interrupted.
"Anyhow, there is no reason to suppose that any woman ever has been able to write or ever will be able to write," Eleanor continued. "And yet, whenever I go among authors they never cease to talk to me about their books. Masterly! I say, or Shakespeare himself! (for one must say something) and I assure you, they believe me."
anyhow：とにかく。and yet：尚且つ。masterly：名人に相応しい（お見逸れした）。I say：ほら（イギリス英語）。
"That proves nothing," said Jane. "They all do it. Only," she sighed, "it doesn't seem to help us much. Perhaps we had better examine modern literature next. Liz, it's your turn."
Elizabeth rose and said that in order to prosecute her enquiry she had dressed as a man and been taken for a reviewer.
Elizabeth：エリザベス（人名／名前）。prosecute her enquiry：（彼女が）調査を行う。taken for：思われる（取られる）。reviewer：書評家。
"I have read new books pretty steadily for the past five years," said she. "Mr. Wells is the most popular living writer; then comes Mr. Arnold Bennett; then Mr. Compton Mackenzie; Mr. McKenna and Mr. Walpole may be bracketed together." She sat down.
Wells：ウェルズ（作家のHerbert George Wells／ハーバート・ジョージ・ウェルズ）。living writer：現代作家。Arnold Bennett：アーノルド・ベネット（小説）。Compton Mackenzie：コンプトン・マッケンジー（作家）。McKenna：マッケナ（小説家のStephen McKenna／スティーブン・マッケナ）。Walpole：ウォルポール（小説家のHugh Walpole／ヒュー・ウォルポール）。bracketed together：一纏めに扱われる。
"But you've told us nothing!" we expostulated. "Or do you mean that these gentlemen have greatly surpassed Jane-Eliot and that English fiction is——where's that review of yours? Oh, yes, 'safe in their hands.'"
"Safe, quite safe," she said, shifting uneasily from foot to foot. "And I'm sure that they give away even more than they receive."
shifting uneasily from foot to foot：（落ち着きなく）そわそわと足を動かして。give away：明かす（差し出す）。even more than：～もさることながら。
We were all sure of that. "But," we pressed her, "do they write good books?"
"Good books?" she said, looking at the ceiling. "You must remember," she began, speaking with extreme rapidity, "that fiction is the mirror of life. And you can't deny that education is of the highest importance, and that it would be extremely annoying, if you found yourself alone at Brighton late at night, not to know which was the best boarding house to stay at, and suppose it was a dripping Sunday evening—wouldn't it be nice to go to the Movies?"
with extreme rapidity：極度の迅速さで（一気呵成に）。extremely：甚だしく。annoying：悩まされる。Brighton：ブライトン（イギリスのイーストサセックス州の町）。boarding house：下宿屋。dripping：雨垂れの。go to the Movies：映画に行く。
"But what has that got to do with it?" we asked.
what has that got to do with it?：そのことがそれと何の関係があるか？
"Nothing—nothing—nothing whatever," she replied.
"Well, tell us the truth," we bade her.
"The truth? But isn't it wonderful," she broke off—"Mr. Chitter has written a weekly article for the past thirty years upon love or hot buttered toast and has sent all his sons to Eton——"
Chitter：チター（人名／名字）。weekly article：週刊の記事。has sent all his sons Eton：息子全員をイートン校（イギリスのイートン大学）に入れた（行かせた）。
"The truth!" we demanded.
"Oh, the truth," she stammered, "the truth has nothing to do with literature," and sitting down she refused to say another word.
It all seemed to us very inconclusive.
"Ladies, we must try to sum up the results," Jane was beginning, when a hum, which had been heard for some time through the open window, drowned her voice.
sum up the results：結論を取り纏める。drowned her voice：彼女の声を掻き消した。
"War! War! War! Declaration of War!" men were shouting in the street below.
declaration of war：宣戦布告。
We looked at each other in horror.
"What war?" we cried. "What war?" We remembered, too late, that we had never thought of sending anyone to the House of Commons. We had forgotten all about it. We turned to Poll, who had reached the history shelves in the London Library, and asked her to enlighten us.
House of Commons：庶民院。enlighten：明らかにする。
"Why," we cried, "do men go to war?"
"Sometimes for one reason, sometimes for another," she replied calmly. "In 1760, for example——" The shouts outside drowned her words. "Again in 1797—in 1804—It was the Austrians in 1866—1870 was the Franco-Prussian—In 1900 on the other hand——"
calmly：穏やかに。in 1760：1760年に（ヴァンディヴァッシュの戦い：イギリス東インド会社とフランス東インド会社による）。in 1797：1797年に（海戦：イギリスとフランス共和国による）。in 1804：1804年に（戦争：スペイン王国とイギリスによる）。Austrians：オーストリア（国名）人。in 1866：1866年に（普墺戦争：プロイセン王国とオーストリア帝国による）。1870：1870年（普仏戦争：プロイセン王国とフランス帝国による）。Franco-Prussian：プロイセン（国名）‐フランス（国名）。on the other hand：他方で。
"But it's now 1914!" we cut her short.
we cut her short：私たちは彼女（の話）に口を挟んだ（遮った）。
"Ah, I don't know what they're going to war for now," she admitted.
* * * * *
The war was over and peace was in process of being signed, when I once more found myself with Castalia in the room where our meetings used to be held. We began idly turning over the pages of our old minute books. "Queer," I mused, "to see what we were thinking five years ago." "We are agreed," Castalia quoted, reading over my shoulder, "that it is the object of life to produce good people and good books." We made no comment upon that. "A good man is at any rate honest, passionate and unworldly." "What a woman's language!" I observed. "Oh, dear," cried Castalia, pushing the book away from her, "what fools we were! It was all Poll's father's fault," she went on. "I believe he did it on purpose—that ridiculous will, I mean, forcing Poll to read all the books in the London Library. If we hadn't learnt to read," she said bitterly, "we might still have been bearing children in ignorance and that I believe was the happiest life after all. I know what you're going to say about war," she checked me, "and the horror of bearing children to see them killed, but our mothers did it, and their mothers, and their mothers before them. And they didn't complain. They couldn't read. I've done my best," she sighed, "to prevent my little girl from learning to read, but what's the use? I caught Ann only yesterday with a newspaper in her hand and she was beginning to ask me if it was 'true.' Next she'll ask me whether Mr. Lloyd George is a good man, then whether Mr. Arnold Bennett is a good novelist, and finally whether I believe in God. How can I bring my daughter up to believe in nothing?" she demanded.
in process of：～の最中で。being signed：調印。idly：所在なく。minute：議事録。quoted：引用した。made no comment upon：～へ言明しなかった。Oh, dear：おや、まあ。on purpose：わざと。ridiculous will：馬鹿げた遺言。bitterly：苦々しく。checked：確かめた。what's the use?：何の役に立つか（無駄なことだ）？。caught：見付けた。Ann：アン（人名／名前）。Lloyd George：ロイド・ジョージ（当時のイギリス首相）。Arnold Bennett：アーノルド・ベネット（小説家）。
"Surely you could teach her to believe that a man's intellect is, and always will be, fundamentally superior to a woman's?" I suggested. She brightened at this and began to turn over our old minutes again. "Yes," she said, "think of their discoveries, their mathematics, their science, their philosophy, their scholarship——" and then she began to laugh, "I shall never forget old Hobkin and the hairpin," she said, and went on reading and laughing and I thought she was quite happy, when suddenly she drew the book from her and burst out, "Oh, Cassandra, why do you torment me? Don't you know that our belief in man's intellect is the greatest fallacy of them all?" "What?" I exclaimed. "Ask any journalist, schoolmaster, politician or public house keeper in the land and they will all tell you that men are much cleverer than women." "As if I doubted it," she said scornfully. "How could they help it? Haven't we bred them and fed and kept them in comfort since the beginning of time so that they may be clever even if they're nothing else? It's all our doing!" she cried. "We insisted upon having intellect and now we've got it. And it's intellect," she continued, "that's at the bottom of it. What could be more charming than a boy before he has begun to cultivate his intellect? He is beautiful to look at; he gives himself no airs; he understands the meaning of art and literature instinctively; he goes about enjoying his life and making other people enjoy theirs. Then they teach him to cultivate his intellect. He becomes a barrister, a civil servant, a general, an author, a professor. Every day he goes to an office. Every year he produces a book. He maintains a whole family by the products of his brain—poor devil! Soon he cannot come into a room without making us all feel uncomfortable; he condescends to every woman he meets, and dares not tell the truth even to his own wife; instead of rejoicing our eyes we have to shut them if we are to take him in our arms. True, they console themselves with stars of all shapes, ribbons of all shades, and incomes of all sizes—but what is to console us? That we shall be able in ten years' time to spend a week-end at Lahore? Or that the least insect in Japan has a name twice the length of its body? Oh, Cassandra, for Heaven's sake let us devise a method by which men may bear children! It is our only chance. For unless we provide them with some innocent occupation we shall get neither good people nor good books; we shall perish beneath the fruits of their unbridled activity; and not a human being will survive to know that there once was Shakespeare!"
intellect：知性。fundamentally：根本的に。brightened：（人が）晴れやかになった。scholarship：学識。drew (from)：～から引き離した。torment：苦しませる。fallacy：誤信。schoolmaster：男性教員（イギリス英語）。public house keeper：居酒屋の主人（public houseを居酒屋とするのはイギリス英語）。scornfully：蔑んで。since the beginning of time：開闢以来。they're nothing：彼らは仕様もない（無価値だ）。at the bottom of：～の原因で。cultivate：磨く。gives himself no airs：（彼が）勿体振らない。instinctively：本能的に。goes about enjoying his life：彼の人生を楽しむことに取りかかる。barrister：法廷弁護士（barrister at lawの略、イギリス英語）。civil servant：文官。general：将官。maintains a whole family：家族全体を養う。poor devil：可哀想な人。condescends：謙遜する。rejoicing：喜ばせること。console themselves with：～に慰めを見出だす。of all shades：あらゆる色合いの～。Lahore：ラホール（パキスタンの町）。for Heaven's sake：お願いだから。devise a method：方法を考え出す。our only chance：私たちの唯一の好機（チャンス）。provide them with：彼らに～を与える。innocent occupation：他愛ない気晴らし。perish：（非業に）死ぬ。fruits：結実。unbridled activity：勒の外れた（放逸な）活動。
"It is too late," I replied. "We cannot provide even for the children that we have."
"And then you ask me to believe in intellect," she said.
While we spoke, men were crying hoarsely and wearily in the street, and, listening, we heard that the Treaty of Peace had just been signed. The voices died away. The rain was falling and interfered no doubt with the proper explosion of the fireworks.
hoarsely and wearily：声を枯らして怠そうに。Treaty of Peace：平和条約。died away：次第に消えた。interfered：阻まれる。
"My cook will have bought the Evening News," said Castalia, "and Ann will be spelling it out over her tea. I must go home."
spelling it out：それを一字ずつ読み上げる。over her tea：彼女の午後食を取りながら。
"It's no good—not a bit of good," I said. "Once she knows how to read there's only one thing you can teach her to believe in—and that is herself."
"Well, that would be a change," sighed Castalia.
So we swept up the papers of our Society, and, though Ann was playing with her doll very happily, we solemnly made her a present of the lot and told her we had chosen her to be President of the Society of the future—upon which she burst into tears, poor little girl.
swept up：さっと取る。solemnly made her a present of the lot：真面目に（数ある内から）一つばかりの贈り物をした。