TARDIS

Ten Little Chances to be Free

tl;dr
Ten little bullets in my hand 10littlebullets
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Translation comparisons part 1.
Since I have several English translations of Les Misérables, I thought it'd be fun to compare them as a sort of belated Barricade Day gift. I'm going to try to take various excerpts, balancing them between passages that are popular in fandom, passages that are famous or iconic in general culture, and passages that are just interesting from a translation point of view. And there will be no prizes for guessing which one is up first.

Victor Hugo

Oreste à jeun et Pylade ivre

Enfin, se faisant la courte échelle, s’aidant du squelette de l’escalier, grimpant aux murs, s’accrochant au plafond, écharpant, au bord de la trappe même, les derniers qui résistaient, une vingtaine d’assiégeants, soldats, gardes nationaux, gardes municipaux, pêle-mêle, la plupart défigurés par des blessures au visage dans cette ascension redoutable, aveuglés par le sang, furieux, devenus sauvages, firent irruption dans la salle du premier étage. Il n’y avait plus là qu’un seul qui fût debout, Enjolras. Sans cartouches, sans épée, il n’avait plus à la main que le canon de sa carabine dont il avait brisé la crosse sur la tête de ceux qui entraient. Il avait mis le billard entre les assaillants et lui ; il avait reculé à l’angle de la salle, et là, l’œil fier, la tête haute, ce tronçon d’arme au poing, il était encore assez inquiétant pour que le vide se fût fait autour de lui. Un cri s’éleva :

— C’est le chef. C’est lui qui a tué l’artilleur. Puisqu’il s’est mis là, il y est bien. Qu’il y reste. Fusillons-le sur place.

— Fusillez-moi, dit Enjolras.

Et, jetant le tronçon de sa carabine, et croisant les bras, il présenta sa poitrine.

L’audace de bien mourir émeut toujours les hommes. Dès qu’Enjolras eut croisé les bras, acceptant la fin, l’assourdissement de la lutte cessa dans la salle, et ce chaos s’apaisa subitement dans une sorte de solennité sépulcrale. Il semblait que la majesté menaçante d’Enjolras désarmé et immobile pesât sur ce tumulte, et que, rien que par l’autorité de son regard tranquille, ce jeune homme, qui seul n’avait pas une blessure, superbe, sanglant, charmant, indifférent comme un invulnérable, contraignît cette cohue sinistre à le tuer avec respect. Sa beauté, en ce moment-là augmentée de sa fierté, était un resplendissement, et, comme s’il ne pouvait pas plus être fatigué que blessé, après les effrayantes vingt-quatre heures qui venaient de s’écouler, il était vermeil et rose. C’était de lui peut-être que parlait le témoin qui disait plus tard devant le conseil de guerre : « Il y avait un insurgé que j’ai entendu nommer Apollon. » Un garde national qui visait Enjolras abaissa son arme en disant : « Il me semble que je vais fusiller une fleur. »

Douze hommes se formèrent en peloton à l’angle opposé à Enjolras, et apprêtèrent leurs fusils en silence.

Puis un sergent cria : — Joue.

Un officier intervint.

— Attendez.

Et s’adressant à Enjolras :

— Voulez-vous qu’on vous bande les yeux ?

— Non.

— Est-ce bien vous qui avez tué le sergent d’artillerie ?

— Oui.

Depuis quelques instants Grantaire s’était réveillé.

Grantaire, on s’en souvient, dormait depuis la veille dans la salle haute du cabaret, assis sur une chaise, affaissé sur une table.

Il réalisait, dans toute son énergie, la vieille métaphore : ivre mort. Le hideux philtre absinthe-stout-alcool l’avait jeté en léthargie. Sa table étant petite et ne pouvant servir à la barricade, on la lui avait laissée. Il était toujours dans la même posture, la poitrine pliée sur la table, la tête appuyée à plat sur les bras, entouré de verres, de chopes et de bouteilles. Il dormait de cet écrasant sommeil de l’ours engourdi et de la sangsue repue. Rien n’y avait fait, ni la fusillade, ni les boulets, ni la mitraille qui pénétrait par la croisée dans la salle où il était, ni le prodigieux vacarme de l’assaut. Seulement, il répondait quelquefois au canon par un ronflement. Il semblait attendre là qu’une balle vînt lui épargner la peine de se réveiller. Plusieurs cadavres gisaient autour de lui ; et, au premier coup d’œil, rien ne le distinguait de ces dormeurs profonds de la mort.

Le bruit n’éveille pas un ivrogne, le silence le réveille. Cette singularité a été plus d’une fois observée. La chute de tout, autour de lui, augmentait l’anéantissement de Grantaire ; l’écroulement le berçait. — L’espèce de halte que fit le tumulte devant Enjolras fut une secousse pour ce pesant sommeil. C’est l’effet d’une voiture au galop qui s’arrête court. Les assoupis s’y réveillent. Grantaire se dressa en sursaut, étendit les bras, se frotta les yeux, regarda, bâilla, et comprit.

L’ivresse qui finit ressemble à un rideau qui se déchire. On voit, en bloc et d’un seul coup d’œil, tout ce qu’elle cachait. Tout s’offre subitement à la mémoire ; et l’ivrogne qui ne sait rien de ce qui s’est passé depuis vingt-quatre heures, n’a pas achevé d’ouvrir les paupières, qu’il est au fait. Les idées lui reviennent avec une lucidité brusque ; l’effacement de l’ivresse, sorte de buée qui aveuglait le cerveau, se dissipe, et fait place à la claire et nette obsession des réalités.

Relégué qu’il était dans son coin et comme abrité derrière le billard, les soldats, l’œil fixé sur Enjolras, n’avaient pas même aperçu Grantaire, et le sergent se préparait à répéter l’ordre : En joue ! quand tout à coup ils entendirent une voix forte crier à côté d’eux :

— Vive la République ! J’en suis.

Grantaire s’était levé.

L’immense lueur de tout le combat qu’il avait manqué, et dont il n’avait pas été, apparut dans le regard éclatant de l’ivrogne transfiguré.

Il répéta : Vive la République ! traversa la salle d’un pas ferme, et alla se placer devant les fusils debout près d’Enjolras.

— Faites-en deux d’un coup, dit-il.

Et, se tournant vers Enjolras avec douceur, il lui dit :

— Permets-tu ?

Enjolras lui serra la main en souriant.

Ce sourire n’était pas achevé que la détonation éclata.

Enjolras, traversé de huit coups de feu, resta adossé au mur comme si les balles l’y eussent cloué. Seulement il pencha la tête.

Grantaire, foudroyé, s’abattit à ses pieds.

Quelques instants après, les soldats délogeaient les derniers insurgés réfugiés au haut de la maison. Ils tiraillaient à travers un treillis de bois dans le grenier. On se battait dans les combles. On jetait des corps par les fenêtres, quelques-uns vivants. Deux voltigeurs, qui essayaient de relever l’omnibus fracassé, étaient tués de deux coups de carabine tirés des mansardes. Un homme en blouse en était précipité, un coup de bayonnette dans le ventre, et râlait à terre. Un soldat et un insurgé glissaient ensemble sur le talus de tuiles du toit, et ne voulaient pas se lâcher, et tombaient, se tenant embrassés d’un embrassement féroce. Lutte pareille dans la cave. Cris, coups de feu, piétinement farouche. Puis le silence. La barricade était prise.

Les soldats commencèrent la fouille des maisons d’alentour et la poursuite des fuyards.
Charles Wilbour

Orestes Fasting and Pylades Drunk

At last, mounting on each other's shoulders, helping themselves by the skeleton of the staircase, climbing up the walls, hanging to the ceiling, cutting to pieces, at the very edge of the hatchway the last to resist, some twenty of the besiegers, soldiers, national guards, municipal guards, pell-mell, most disfigured by wounds in the face in this terrible ascent, blinded with blood, furious, become savages, made an irruption into the room of the first story. There was now but a single man there on his feet, Enjolras. Without cartridges, without a sword, he had now in his hand only the barrel of his carbine, the stock of which he had broken over the heads of those who were entering. He had put the billiard-table between the assailants and himself; he had retreated to the corner of the room, and there, with proud eye, haughty head and that stump of a weapon in his grasp, he was still so formidable that a large space was left about him. A cry arose:

"This is the chief. It is he who killed the artilleryman. As he has put himself there it is a good place. Let him stay. Let us shoot him on the spot."

"Shoot me," said Enjolras.

And, throwing away the stump of his carbine and folding his arms, he presented his breast.

The boldness that dies well always moves men. As soon as Enjolras had folded his arms, accepting the end, the uproar of the conflict ceased in the room and that chaos suddenly hushed into a sort of sepulchral solemnity. It seemed as if the menacing majesty of Enjolras, disarmed and motionless, weighed upon that tumult, and as if, merely by the authority of his tranquil eye, this young man, who alone had no wound, superb, bloody, fascinating, indifferent, as if he were invulnerable, compelled that sinister mob to kill him respectfully. His beauty, at that moment augmented by his dignity, was a resplendence, and, as if he could be no more fatigued than wounded, after the terrible twenty-four hours which had just elapsed, he was fresh and rosy. It was of him, perhaps, that the witness spoke who said afterward before the court-martial: "There was one insurgent whom I heard called Apollo." A national guard, who was aiming at Enjolras, dropped his weapon, saying: "It seems to me that I am shooting a flower."

Twelve men formed in platoon in the corner opposite Enjolras and made their muskets ready in silence.

Then a sergeant cried: "Take aim!"

An officer intervened.

"Wait."

And addressing Enjolras:

"Do you wish your eyes bandaged?"

"No."

"Was it really you that killed the sergeant of artillery?"

"Yes."

Within a few seconds Grantaire had awakened.

Grantaire, it will be remembered, had been asleep since the day previous in the upper room of the wine-shop, sitting in a chair, leaning heavily forward on a table.

He realized, in all its energy, strenth, the old metaphor, dead drunk. The hideous potion, absinthe-stout-alcohol, had thrown him into a lethargy. His table being small and of no use in the barricade, they had left it to him. He had continued in the same posture, his breast doubled over the table, his head lying flat upon his arms, surrounded by glasses, jugs and bottles. He slept with that crushing sleep of the torpid bear and the overfed leech. Nothing had affected him, neither the musketry, nor the balls, nor the grape which penetrated through the casement into the room in which he was. Only he responded sometimes to the cannon with a snore. He seemed waiting there for a ball to come and save him the trouble of awaking. Several corpses lay about him; and, at the first glance, nothing distinguished him from those deep sleepers of death.

Noise does not awaken a drunkard; silence wakens him. This peculiarity has been observed more than once. The fall of everything about him augmented Grantaire's oblivion; destruction was a lullaby to him. The kind of halt in the tumult before Enjolras was a shock to this heavy sleep. It was the effect of a wagon at a gallop stopping short. The sleepers are roused by it. Grantaire rose up with a start, stretched his arms, rubbed his eyes, looked, gaped and understood.

Drunkenness ending, is like a curtain torn away. We see altogether and at a single glance all that is concealed. Everything is suddenly presented to the memory; and the drunkard who knows nothing of what has taken place for twenty-four hours has no sooner opened his eyes than he is aware of all that has passed. His ideas come back to him with an abrupt lucidity; the effacement of drunkenness, a sort of lye-wash which blinds the brain, dissipates and gives place to clear and precise impressions of the reality.

Retired as he was in a corner, and, as it were, sheltered behind the billiard-table, the soldiers, their eyes fixed upon Enjolras, had not even noticed Grantaire, and the sergeant was preparing to repeat the order: "Take aim!" when suddenly they heard a powerful voice cry out beside them:

"Vive la République! I belong to it."

Grantaire had arisen.

The immense glare of the whole combat which he had missed and in which he had not been, appeared in the flashing eyes of the transfigured drunkard.

He repeated, "Vive la République!" crossed the room with a firm step and took his place before the muskets beside Enjolras.

"Two at one shot," said he.

And, turning toward Enjolras gently, he said to him:

"Will you permit it?"

Enjolras grasped his hand with a smile.

This smile was not finished when the report was heard.

Enjolras, pierced by eight balls, remained backed against the wall as if the balls had nailed him there. Only he bowed his head.

Grantaire, stricken down, fell at his feet.

A few moments afterward the soldiers dislodged the last insurgents who had taken refuge in the top of the house. They fired through a wooden lattice into the garret. They fought in the attics. They threw the bodies out of the windows, some living. Two voltigeurs, who were trying to raise the shattered omnibus, were killed by two shots from a carbine fired from the dormer windows. A man in a blouse was pitched out headlong with a bayonet thrust in his belly, and his death-rattle was finished upon the ground. A soldier and an insurgent slipped together on the slope of the tiled roof, and would not let go of each other, and fell, clasped in a wild embrace. Similar struggles in the cellar. Cries, shots, savage stamping. Then silence. The barricade was taken.

The soldiers commenced the search of the houses round about and the pursuit of the fugitives.
Lee Fahnestock and Norman MacAfee

Orestes Fasting and Pylades Drunk

At last, climbing on each other's shoulders, helping themselves by the skeleton of the staircase, climbing up the walls, hanging to the ceiling, cutting to pieces at the very edge of the hatchway the last resistants, some twenty of the besiegers, soldiers, National Guards, Municipal Guards, pell-mell, most of them disfigured by wounds in the face in this terrible ascent, blinded with blood, furious, become savages, burst into the second-floor room. There was now only one single man there on his feet, Enjolras. Without cartridges, without a sword, he had remaining in his hand only the barrel of his carbine, whose stock he had broken over the heads of those coming in. He had put the billiard table between the assailants and himself; he had retreated to the corner of the room, and there, with a proud eye, haughty head, and that stump of a weapon in his grasp, he was still so formidable that a large space was left around him. A cry went up: "This is the leader. He's the one who killed the artilleryman. Since he's put himself there, it's a good place. Let him stay. Let's shoot him on the spot."

"Shoot me," said Enjolras.

And, throwing away the stump of his carbine, and crossing his arms, he presented his breast.

The audacity to die well always moves men. The moment Enjolras had crossed his arms, accepting the end, the uproar of the conflict in the room and all that chaos suddenly hushed into a sort of sepulchral solemnity. It seemed as though the menacing majesty of Enjolras, disarmed and motionless, weighed on that tumult, and as though, merely by the authority of his tranquil eye, this young man, who alone had no wound, superb, bloody, fascinating, indifferent as if he were invulnerable, compelled that sinister mob to kill him respectfully. His beauty, augmented at that moment by his dignity, was resplendent, and, as if he could no more be fatigued than wounded, after the terrible twenty-four hours just elapsed, he was fresh and healthy. Perhaps it was of him that the witness spoke who said afterward before the court-martial, "There was one insurgent whom I heard called Apollo." A National Guard who was aiming at Enjolras dropped his weapon, saying, "It is as though I'm about to shoot a flower."

Twelve men formed in platoon in the corner opposite Enjolras and readied their muskets in silence.

Then a sergeant cried, "Take aim!"

An officer intervened.

"Wait."

And addressing Enjolras, "Do you wish your eyes bandaged?"

"No."

"Was it really you who killed the sergeant of artillery?"

"Yes."

A few seconds earlier Grantaire had woken up.

Grantaire, it will be remembered, had been asleep since the previous day in the upper room of the bistro, sitting in a chair, slouched forward on a table.

He embodied, in all its force, the old metaphor "dead drunk." The hideous potion, absinthe-stout-alcohol, had thrown him into a lethargy. His table was small and of no use in the barricade, so they had left it to him. He was still in the same posture, his breast doubled over the table, his head lying flat on his arms, surrounded by glasses, jugs, and bottles. He slept with that crushing sleep of the torpid bear and the overfed leech. Nothing had affected him, neither the musket fire, nor the cannonballs, nor the grapeshot, which penetrated through the casement into the room where he was. Nor the prodigious uproar of the assault. Except that he responded sometimes to the cannon with a snore. He seemed waiting there for a cannonball to come and save him the trouble of awaking. Several corpses lay around him; and, at the first glance, nothing distinguished him from those deep sleepers of death.

Noise does not waken a drunkard; silence wakens him. This peculiarity has been observed more than once. The collapse of everything around him augmented Grantaire's oblivion; destruction was a lullaby to him. The sort of halt in the tumult surrounding Enjolras was a shock to his heavy slumber. As if from the sudden halt of a galloping coach, the sleeper awoke. Grantaire stood up with a start, stretched his arms, rubbed his eyes, looked, yawned, and understood.

Drunkenness ending is like a curtain torn away. We see altogether, and at a single glance, all that had been concealed. Everything is suddenly presented to the memory; and the drunkard who knows nothing of what has taken place for twenty-four hours has no sooner opened his eyes than he is aware of all that has happened. His ideas come back to him with an abrupt lucidity; the haze of drunkenness, a sort of vapor that blinds the brain, dissipates, and gives way to clear and precise impressions of the reality.

Relegated as he was to a corner and as though sheltered behind the billiard table, the soldiers, their eyes fixed upon Enjolras, had not even noticed Grantaire, and the sergeant was preparing to repeat the order: "Take aim!" when suddenly they heard a powerful voice cry out beside them, "Vive la République! Count me in."

Grantaire was on his feet.

The immense glare of the whole combat he had missed and in which he had not been, appeared in the flashing eye of the transfigured drunkard.

He repeated, "Vive la République!" crossed the room firmly, and took his place in front of the muskets beside Enjolras.

"Two at one shot," he said.

And, turning toward Enjolras gently, he said to him, "Will you permit it?"

Enjolras shook his hand with a smile.

The smile was not finished before the report was heard.

Enjolras, pierced by eight bullets, remained backed up against the wall as if the bullets had nailed him there. Except that his head was tilted.

Grantaire, struck down, collapsed at his feet.

A few moments later, the soldiers dislodged the last of the insurgents who had taken refuge in the top floors. They fired through a wooden lattice into the garret. They fought in the attic. They hurled the bodies out the windows, some still living. Two voltigeurs, who were trying to raise the shattered omnibus, were killed by two shots from a carbine fired from the dormer windows. A man in a workman's shirt was pitched out headlong, with a bayonet wound in his stomach, and his death throes ended on the ground. A soldier and an insurgent slipped together on the slope of the tiled roof and would not let go of each other, and fell, clasped in a wild embrace. Similar struggle in the cellar. Cries, shots, savage stamping. Then silence. The barricade was taken.

The soldiers commenced the search of the houses in the vicinity and the pursuit of the fugitives.
Isabel F. Hapgood

Orestes Fasting and Pylades Drunk

At length, by dint of mounting on each other's backs, aiding themselves with the skeleton of the staircase, climbing up the walls, clinging to the ceiling, slashing away at the very brink of the trap-door, the last one who offered resistance, a score of assailants, soldiers, National Guardsmen, municipal guardsmen, in utter confusion, the majority disfigured by wounds in the face during that redoubtable ascent, blinded by blood, furious, rendered savage, made an irruption into the apartment on the first floor. There they found only one man still on his feet, Enjolras. Without cartridges, without sword, he had nothing in his hand now but the barrel of his gun whose stock he had broken over the head of those who were entering. He had placed the billiard table between his assailants and himself; he had retreated into the corner of the room, and there, with haughty eye, and head borne high, with this stump of a weapon in his hand, he was still so alarming as to speedily create an empty space around him. A cry arose:

"He is the leader! It was he who slew the artillery-man. It is well that he has placed himself there. Let him remain there. Let us shoot him down on the spot."

"Shoot me," said Enjolras.

And flinging away his bit of gun-barrel, and folding his arms, he offered his breast.

The audacity of a fine death always affects men. As soon as Enjolras folded his arms and accepted his end, the din of strife ceased in the room, and this chaos suddenly stilled into a sort of sepulchral solemnity. The menacing majesty of Enjolras disarmed and motionless, appeared to oppress this tumult, and this young man, haughty, bloody, and charming, who alone had not a wound, who was as indifferent as an invulnerable being, seemed, by the authority of his tranquil glance, to constrain this sinister rabble to kill him respectfully. His beauty, at that moment augmented by his pride, was resplendent, and he was fresh and rosy after the fearful four and twenty hours which had just elapsed, as though he could no more be fatigued than wounded. It was of him, possibly, that a witness spoke afterwards, before the council of war: "There was an insurgent whom I heard called Apollo." A National Guardsman who had taken aim at Enjolras, lowered his gun, saying: "It seems to me that I am about to shoot a flower."

Twelve men formed into a squad in the corner opposite Enjolras, and silently made ready their guns.

Then a sergeant shouted:

"Take aim!"

An officer intervened.

"Wait."

And addressing Enjolras:

"Do you wish to have your eyes bandaged?"

"No."

"Was it you who killed the artillery sergeant?"

"Yes."

Grantaire had waked up a few moments before.

Grantaire, it will be remembered, had been asleep ever since the preceding evening in the upper room of the wine-shop, seated on a chair and leaning on the table.

He realized in its fullest sense the old metaphor of "dead drunk." The hideous potion of absinthe-porter and alcohol had thrown him into a lethargy. His table being small, and not suitable for the barricade, he had been left in possession of it. He was still in the same posture, with his breast bent over the table, his head lying flat on his arms, surrounded by glasses, beer-jugs and bottles. His was the overwhelming slumber of the torpid bear and the satiated leech. Nothing had had any effect upon it, neither the fusillade, nor the cannon-balls, nor the grape-shot which had made its way through the window into the room where he was. Nor the tremendous uproar of the assault. He merely replied to the cannonade, now and then, by a snore. He seemed to be waiting there for a bullet which should spare him the trouble of waking. Many corpses were strewn around him; and, at the first glance, there was nothing to distinguish him from those profound sleepers of death.

Noise does not rouse a drunken man; silence awakens him. The fall of everything around him only augmented Grantaire's prostration; the crumbling of all things was his lullaby. The sort of halt which the tumult underwent in the presence of Enjolras was a shock to this heavy slumber. It had the effect of a carriage going at full speed, which suddenly comes to a dead stop. The persons dozing within it wake up. Grantaire rose to his feet with a start, stretched out his arms, rubbed his eyes, stared, yawned, and understood.

A fit of drunkenness reaching its end resembles a curtain which is torn away. One beholds, at a single glance and as a whole, all that it has concealed. All suddenly presents itself to the memory; and the drunkard who has known nothing of what has been taking place during the last twenty-four hours, has no sooner opened his eyes than he is perfectly informed. Ideas recur to him with abrupt lucidity; the obliteration of intoxication, a sort of steam which has obscured the brain, is dissipated, and makes way for the clear and sharply outlined importunity of realities.

Relegated, as he was, to one corner, and sheltered behind the billiard-table, the soldiers whose eyes were fixed on Enjolras, had not even noticed Grantaire, and the sergeant was preparing to repeat his order: "Take aim!" when all at once, they heard a strong voice shout beside them:

"Long live the Republic! I'm one of them."

Grantaire had risen. The immense gleam of the whole combat which he had missed, and in which he had had no part, appeared in the brilliant glance of the transfigured drunken man.

He repeated: "Long live the Republic!" crossed the room with a firm stride and placed himself in front of the guns beside Enjolras.

"Finish both of us at one blow," said he.

And turning gently to Enjolras, he said to him:

"Do you permit it?"

Enjolras pressed his hand with a smile.

This smile was not ended when the report resounded.

Enjolras, pierced by eight bullets, remained leaning against the wall, as though the balls had nailed him there. Only, his head was bowed.

Grantaire fell at his feet, as though struck by a thunderbolt.

A few moments later, the soldiers dislodged the last remaining insurgents, who had taken refuge at the top of the house. They fired into the attic through a wooden lattice. They fought under the very roof. They flung bodies, some of them still alive, out through the windows. Two light-infantrymen, who tried to lift the shattered omnibus, were slain by two shots fired from the attic. A man in a blouse was flung down from it, with a bayonet wound in the abdomen, and breathed his last on the ground. A soldier and an insurgent slipped together on the sloping slates of the roof, and, as they would not release each other, they fell, clasped in a ferocious embrace. A similar conflict went on in the cellar. Shouts, shots, a fierce trampling. Then silence. The barricade was captured.

The soldiers began to search the houses round about, and to pursue the fugitives.
Lascelles Wraxall

Orestes Sober and Pylades Drunk

At length, by employing the skeleton of the staircase, by climbing up the walls, clinging to the ceiling and killing on the very edge of the trap the last who resisted, some twenty assailants, soldiers, National and Municipal Guards, mostly disfigured by wounds in the face received in this formidable ascent, blinded by blood, furious and savage, burst into the first-floor room. There was only one man standing there--Enjolras; without cartridges or sword, he only held in his hand the barrel of his carbine, whose butt he had broken on the heads of those who entered. He had placed the billiard-table between himself and his assailants, he had fallen back to the end of the room, and there, with flashing eye and head erect, holding the piece of a weapon in his hand, he was still sufficiently alarming for a space to be formed round him. A cry was raised,--

"it is the chief; it was he who killed the artilleryman; as he has placed himself there, we will let him remain there. Shoot him on the spot."

"Shoot me," Enjolras said.

And, throwing away his weapon and folding his arms, he offered his chest. The boldness of dying bravely always moves men. So soon as Enjolras folded his arms, accepting the end, the din of the struggle ceased in the room,, and the chaos was suddenly appeased in a species of sepulchral solemnity. It seemed as if the menacing majesty of Enjolras, disarmed and motionless, produced an effect on the tumult, and that merely by the authority of his tranquil glance, this young man, who alone was unwounded, superb, blood-stained, charming, and indifferent as an invulnerable, constrained this sinister mob to kill him respectfully. His beauty, heightened at that moment by his haughtiness, was dazzling, and as if he could be no more fatigued than wounded after the frightful four-and-twenty hours which had elapsed, he was fresh and rosy. It was to him that the witness referred when he said at a later date befor the court-martial, "There was an insurgent whom I heard called Apollo." A National Guard who aimed at Enjolras lowered his musket, saying, "I feel as if I were going to kill a flower." Twelve men formed into a platoon in the corner opposite to the one in which Enjolras stood, and got their muskets ready in silence. Then a sergeant shouted, "Present."

An officer interposed.

"Wait a minute."

And addressing Enjolras,--

"Do you wish to have your eyes bandaged?"

"No"

"It was really you who killed the sergeant of artillery?"

"Yes"

Grantaire had been awake for some minutes past. Grantaire, it will be remembered, had been sleeping since the past evening in the upper room with his head lying on a table. He realized in all its energy the old metaphor, dead drunk. The hideous philter of absinthe, stout and alcohol, had thrown him into a lethargic state and, as his table was small and of no use at the barricade, they had left it him. He was still in the same posture, with his chest upon the table, his head reeling on his arms, and surrounded by glasses and bottles. He was sleeping the deadly sleep of the hybernating bear, or the filled leech. Nothing had roused him, neither the platoon fire, nor the cannon-balls, nor the canister which penetrated through the window into the room where he was, nor the prodigious noise of the assault. Still he at times responded to the cannon by a snore. He seemed to be waiting for a bullet to save him the trouble of waking; several corpses lay around him and, at the first glance, nothing distinguished him from these deep sleepers of death.

Noise does not wake a drunkard, but silence arouses him, and this peculiarity has been more than once observed. The fall of any thing near him increased Grantaire's lethargy, and noise lulled him. The species of halt which the tumult made before Enjolras was a shock for this heavy sleep, and it is the effect of a galloping coach which stops short. Grantaire started up, stretched out his arms, rubbed his eyes, looked, yawned, and understood. Intoxication wearing off resembles a curtain that is rent, and a man sees at once, and at a single glance, all that is concealed. Everything offers itself suddenly to the memory, and the drunkard, who knows nothing of what has happened during the last twenty-four hours, has scarce opened his eyes ere he understands it all. Ideas return to him with a sudden lucidity; the species of suds that blinded the brain is dispersed, and makes way for a clear and distinctive apprehension of the reality.

Concealed, as he was, in a corner, and sheltered, so to speak, by the billiard-table, the soldiers, who had their eyes fixed on Enjolras, had not even perceived Grantaire, and the sergeant was preparing to repeat the order to fire when all at once they heard a powerful voice crying at their side,--

"Long live the Republic! I belong to it."

Grantaire had risen; and the immense gleam of all the combat which he had missed appeared in the flashing glance of the transfigured drunkard. He repeated, "Long live the Republic!" crossed the room with a firm step, and placed himself before the muskets by Enjolras' side.

"Kill us both at once," he said.

And turning gently to Enjolras, he asked him,--

"Do you permit it?"

Enjolras pressed his hand with a smile, and the smile had not passed away ere the detonation took place. Enjolras traversed by eight bullets, remained leaning against the wall, as if nailed to it; he merely hung his head; Grantaire was lying stark dead at his feet. A few minutes later the soldiers dislodged the last insurgents who had taken refuge at the top of the house, and were firing through a partition in the garret. They fought desperately, and threw bodies out of windows, some still alive. Two voltigeurs, who were trying to raise the smashed omnibus, were killed by two shots from the attics; a man in a blouse rushed out of them, with a bayonet thrust in his stomach, and lay on the ground expiring. A private and insurgent slipped together down the tiles of the roof, and as they would not loosen their hold fell into the street, holding each other in a ferocious embrace. There was a similar struggle in the cellar; cries, shots and a fierce clashing; then a silence. The barricade was captured, and the soldiers began searching the adjacent houses and pursuing the fugitives.

patria_ou_mort

2008-06-10 04:29 am (UTC) (Link)

...just dropping a comment to say... oh, wow, this is AWESOME. Thank you for sharing!

brittlesmile

2008-06-10 07:08 am (UTC) (Link)

This is amazing! Thank you so much for making this available. I can guarantee that I'll be wasting countless time comparing translations now.

icicaille

2008-06-10 08:21 pm (UTC) (Link)

Thank you so much! I still swear by Wraxall, haha.

josiana

2008-06-11 06:08 am (UTC) (Link)

Thank you for going through all that effort. ^___^ This is wonderful.

THANK YOU (and some questions)

(Anonymous)

2014-08-17 08:23 pm (UTC) (Link)

Thank you very, very much for putting this up! It's really helpful in deciding which version of the Brick I should read. I was wondering if you ever did put up the other parts (I can't find them)? And I heard some stuff about some of the translators (one of them would have worked for/with/profitted by a guy who made money from frauding people) and I wondering if you thought that should influence me in my choice? Though I suppose Victor Hugo wasn't a saint himself. Anyway, thanks again for doing this! I hope you're well and have a wonderful day <3

Re: THANK YOU (and some questions)

10littlebullets

2014-08-18 01:17 am (UTC) (Link)

No, I don't think I ever did! I don't know much about the translators personally, but my recommendations would be Fahnestock/MacAfee or the new translation by Christine Donougher, and the ones I definitely would not recommend are Norman Denny (who is openly contemptuous of his source material and feels very little need to be faithful to it) and Isabel Hapgood (clunky, antiquated, and just plain inaccurate with a lot of idioms and turns of phrase).

Of the others: Wilbour is more faithful than Wraxall, but both of them impart an old-fashioned fussiness to the prose that just isn't there in the original French, and the Julie Rose translation is if anything too modernized. None of them are bad, but they don't hit the balance between accuracy and tone/prose style that Fahnestock/MacAfee and Donougher do.

Me again

(Anonymous)

2014-08-17 08:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Hi, sorry, it's the same anon as the comment before, but I also wanted to ask you which translation you personally prefer and why, if that's okay to ask? Thank you anyway!