The Rise and Fall of Napoleon
拿破仑人生之起落

(选自《英语世界》2015年第6期)

译/柴晚锁

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The Battle of Waterloo, which took place in Belgium on June 18, 1815, marked the final defeat of French military leader and emperor Napoleon Bonaparte (1769–1821), who conquered much of continental Europe in the early 19th century. Napoleon rose through the ranks of the French army during the French Revolution (1789–1799), seized control of the French govern¬ment in 1799 and became emperor in 1804. Through a series of wars, he expanded his empire across western and central Europe. However, a di¬sastrous invasion of Russia in 1812, coupled with other defeats, led to his abdication and exile in 1814. He re¬turned to France in 1815 and briefly resumed power. The Battle of Water¬loo, in which Napoleon’s forces were defeated by the British and Prussians, signaled the end of his reign and the end of France’s domination in Europe. After Waterloo, Napoleon abdicated and later died in exile.
滑铁卢战役于1815年6月18日打响,地点位于比利时境内,标志着法国皇帝、军事领袖拿破仑•波拿巴(1769—1821)的最终惨败,19世纪初他曾一度征服欧洲大陆大部。法国大革命期间(1789—1799),拿破仑由法军低层军官一路擢升,于1799年掌控了法国政府,并于1804年称帝。他发动一系列战争,将帝国版图扩展至西欧和中欧全境。然而,1812年入侵俄国的灾难性结果,加之其他一系列失败,致使他于1814年退位并遭流放。1815年返回法国后,他曾短暂重登权力宝座。滑铁卢战役中,拿破仑的军队被英国和普鲁士军队击败。此战既标志了拿破仑统治时代的终结,也标志了法国在欧洲主宰地位的终结。滑铁卢战败后,拿破仑宣布退位,后在流放中辞世。

Napoleon’s rise to power
登权力巅峰

[2] Napoleon Bonaparte was born on August 15, 1769, in Ajaccio, on the Mediterranean island of Corsica. The year before his birth, France acquired Corsica from the city-state of Genoa, Italy. Although Napoleon’s parents were members of the minor Corsican nobility, his family was not wealthy.
〔2〕1769年8月15日,拿破仑•波拿巴出生于地中海科西嘉岛上的阿雅克肖城。在他出生的前一年,法兰西王国兼并了意大利热那亚城邦的科西嘉。虽然拿破仑的父母出身科西嘉低层贵族世家,但家境并不富裕。

[3] After graduating from a French military academy in 1785, Napoleon joined an artillery regiment of the French army. The French Revolu¬tion began in 1789, and within three years revolutionaries had overthrown the monarchy and proclaimed a French republic. During the decade-long revolution, Napoleon rose rapidly through the ranks of the military and proved himself a talented and daring leader.
〔3〕1785年从法兰西军事学院毕业后,拿破仑加入了法国陆军某炮兵团。法国大革命于1789年爆发,短短三年,革命党人便推翻了王室统治,宣告成立法兰西共和国。长达十年的革命过程中,拿破仑在军中一路晋升,证明了自己是一个有才干、有胆识的领导者。

[4] After seizing political power in France in a 1799 coup d’état, he was given the title of first consul and became France’s leading political figure. In 1804, he crowned himself the emperor of France in a lavish cer¬emony. Under Napoleon, France en¬gaged in a successful series of battles against various coalitions of European nations, and the French empire ex¬panded across much of western and central continental Europe.
〔4〕1799年通过政变夺取法国政治权力后,他被授予第一执政的头衔,成为法国政坛头号人物。1804年,他举行了奢华的加冕仪式,自封法兰西帝国皇帝。在拿破仑领导下,法兰西与欧洲各国形形色色的反法同盟展开了一系列战役,并都取得了胜利,从而将法兰西帝国版图扩展至西欧和中欧大部分地区。

Napoleon’s abdication and return
退位及荣归

[5] In 1812, Napoleon led a di¬sastrous invasion of Russia in which his army was forced to retreat and suffered massive casualties. At the same time, the Spanish and Portu¬guese, with assistance from the Brit¬ish, drove Napoleon’s forces from the Iberian Peninsula in the Peninsular War (1808–1814). In the 1813 Battle of Leipzig, also known as the Battle of Nations, Napoleon’s army was defeated by a coalition that included Austrian, Prussian, Russian and Swedish troops. Afterward, Napoleon retreated to France, where in March 1814 coalition forces captured Paris.
〔5〕1812年,拿破仑率军入侵俄国遭遇惨败,军队被迫撤退,伤亡惨重。与此同时,在英国协助下,西班牙和葡萄牙通过半岛战争(1808—1814)将拿破仑军队逐出了伊比利亚半岛。1813年的莱比锡战役(又称“民族大会战”)中,奥地利、普鲁士、俄国和瑞典等国组成反法同盟,拿破仑的大军被联军击败。随后,拿破仑退至法国境内,同盟联军次年3月攻陷巴黎。

[6] On April 6, 1814, Napoleon, then in his mid-40s, was forced to abdicate the throne. With the Treaty of Fontainebleau, he was exiled to Elba, a Mediterranean island off the coast of Italy. Less than a year later, on February 26, 1815, Napoleon es¬caped Elba and sailed to the French mainland with a group of more than 1,000 supporters. On March 20, he returned to Paris, where he was wel¬comed by cheering crowds. The new king, Louis XVIII (1755–1824), fled, and Napoleon embarked on what came to be known as his Hundred Days campaign.
〔6〕1814年4月6日,当时已年过不惑的拿破仑被迫宣布退位。根据《枫丹白露条约》,他被流放至厄尔巴岛,遥望意大利海岸的一座地中海小岛。时隔不足一年,拿破仑于1815年2月26日逃离厄尔巴岛,率千余名支持者乘船返回法国本土。3月20日,他回到巴黎,民众欢呼迎接。即位不久的国王路易十八(1755—1824)仓皇出逃,拿破仑开始后世所称的“百日王朝”。

Napoleon marches on Bel¬gium
出征比利时

[7] Upon Napoleon’s return to France, a coalition of allies – the Austrians, British, Prussians and Rus¬sians – who considered the French emperor an enemy began to prepare for war. Napoleon raised a new army and planned to strike preemptively, defeating the allied forces one by one before they could launch a united at¬tack against him.
〔7〕拿破仑返回法国后,视其为共同敌人的奥地利、英国、普鲁士及俄国组成反法同盟,开始筹划发动战争。拿破仑重新召集起一支队伍,准备先发制人,不等联军有机会发起联合进攻,就先将它们各个歼灭。

[8] In June 1815, Napoleon’s forces marched into Belgium, where separate armies of British and Prus¬sian troops were camped. At the Battle of Ligny, on June 16, Napo¬leon defeated the Prussians under the command of Gebhard Leberecht von Blucher (1742–1819). However, the French were unable to totally destroy the Prussian army.
〔8〕1815年6月,拿破仑的军队挺进比利时,英国和普鲁士部队分别驻扎在那里。6月16日爆发的林尼战役中,拿破仑一举击溃格布哈特•莱贝雷希特•冯•布吕歇尔(1742—1819)率领的普鲁士军队。然而,法军未能完全击溃普鲁士军。

The battle of Waterloo
滑铁卢战役

[9] Two days later, on June 18, Napoleon led his army of some 72,000 troops against the 68,000¬man British army, which had taken up a position south of Brussels near the village of Waterloo. The British army, which included Belgian, Dutch and German troops, was commanded by Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wel¬lington (1769–1852), who had gained prominence fighting against the French during the Peninsular War.
〔9〕两天后,即6月18日,拿破仑率领约7.2万人的部队向驻扎在布鲁塞尔南部滑铁卢村附近的6.8万名英军发起进攻。英军中包括来自比利时、荷兰以及德国的士兵,由威灵顿公爵阿瑟•韦尔斯利(1769—1852)统一指挥。威灵顿公爵在抗击法军的半岛战争中战功卓著,声名鹊起。

[10] In a critical blunder, Napo¬leon waited until midday to give the command to attack in order to let the waterlogged ground dry after the previous night’s rainstorm. The de¬lay gave Blucher’s remaining troops, who, by some accounts, numbered more than 30,000, time to march to Waterloo and join the battle later that day.
〔10〕拿破仑犯了一个致命的错误,为等待因前夜暴雨成了烂泥塘的战场变干,他直到中午才发出进攻命令。这一拖延为布吕歇尔残部提供了足够时间赶赴滑铁卢,在当天晚些时候加入战事。有统计称,这支残部人数超过3万。

[11] Although Napoleon’s troops mounted a strong attack against the British, the arrival of the Prussians turned the tide against the French. The French emperor’s outnumbered army retreated in chaos. By some estimates, the French suffered more than 33,000 casualties (including dead, wounded or taken prisoner), while British and Prussian casualties numbered more than 22,000.
〔11〕尽管拿破仑的部队向英军发起了强有力的攻势,但普鲁士军队的加入让局势逆转,变得对法军不利。人数上居于劣势的法军溃不成军,撤退过程中乱作一团。有估算称,法军伤亡人数超过3.3万,其中包括战死、受伤和被俘人数,而英军和普鲁士军队的伤亡人数也超过2.2万。

[12] Reportedly fatigued and in poor health during the Belgian cam¬paign, Napoleon committed tactical errors and acted indecisively. He also was blamed for appointing inadequate commanders. Ultimately, the Battle of Waterloo marked the end of Na¬poleon’s storied military career. He reportedly rode away from the battle in tears.
〔12〕据传闻,比利时战事期间,由于心力交瘁,身体欠佳,拿破仑犯了战术错误,行动上优柔寡断。也有人指责他用人不当,委任的指挥官指挥不力。归根结底,滑铁卢战役为拿破仑充满传奇的军事生涯画上了句号。据说,他骑马离开战场时,眼里噙满了泪水。

[13] Wellington went on to serve as British prime minister, while Blucher, in his 70s at the time of the Waterloo battle, died a few years later.
〔13〕威灵顿公爵日后当选英国首相,而滑铁卢战役时已年逾古稀的布吕歇尔几年后就离开了人世。

Napoleon’s final years
最后的岁月

[14] On June 22, 1815, Napoleon once again abdicated. That October, he was exiled to the remote, British-held island of Saint Helena, in the South Atlantic Ocean. He died there on May 5, 1821, at age 51, most likely from stomach cancer. Napoleon was buried on the island; however, in 1840, his remains were returned to France and entombed in a crypt at Les Invalides in Paris, where other French military leaders are interred. ■
〔14〕1815年6月22日,拿破仑再次退位;同年10月,他被流放至南大西洋中偏远的英属圣赫勒拿岛。1821年5月5日,他在岛上辞世,极可能死于胃癌,终年51岁。拿破仑当时被葬在该岛,不过1840年,其遗骸运回法国,安葬于巴黎荣誉军人院一间教堂地下室内,与法国其他军事领袖一道长眠于此。 □

(译者单位:北京林业大学外语学院)

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