THE ROMAN TIMES IN BRITISH HISTORY
In the early days of history (50-450) England was known as Britain and the people who lived there were the Britons. There were no big towns on the British Isles at that time. People lived in small villages along the rivers or near the sea. The Britons caught fish, grew wheat and had many pigs, cows and sheep in the meadows near the rivers and on the sides of the mountains. Later they learned to make things of wool and metal and sold them to the people who came across the sea.
The Romans with Julius Caesar at the head invaded the British Isles and forced the population to pay tribute.
The Romans kept their armies in Britain. They built roads and had the country under control.
They protected themselves from the attacks of the Britons by the walls which they built across Britain.
You can see the Roman walls in Britain even now. Here is Hadrian's Wallwhich was built by the emperor Hadrian in the year 122.
The Romans left the country only in the second half of the 5th century. The Roman armies were called back to Italy where they defended the country from barbaric peoples.
Roman—римский; n римлянин
British Isles—Британские острова
to keep (kept;kept)—держать
THE ENGLISH KINGDOMS
The Britons could not keep their land free for a long time. The Germanic tribes from Western Europe-the Angles, Saxons and Jutes—attacked the coasts of Вritain and after long wars with the Britons settled on the British Isles. The Britons fought bravely against the enemies and defended their land. But the enemies were stronger. They took houses, fields and cattle from the Britons. The Angles got most of the land and became the strongest tribe. The Britons went to the mountains in the west of the Isles and settled there. This part of Britain is called Wales now. As time went on the two peoples - the Angles and the Saxons - grew into one and were called Anglo-Saxons. They called their speech English, and their country England - that is, the Land of the English.
The Anglo-Saxons formed many kingdoms-Kent, Essex, Wessex, which now are counties of Great Britain. These kingdoms were at war with one another. The stronger kings took the land from the smaller kingdoms .a kingdom - королевство
a coast - берег
to form - образовывать
a tribe - племя
the Angles - англы
the Saxons - саксы
the Jutes -юты
a county -графство
to settle - поселяться
KING ALFRED THE GREAT
For two hundred years the English people were at war with the Danes who came from Denmark and the Northmen who came from Scandinavia. King Alfred when he was a boy of sixteen took part in the battles with the enemies. At twenty he became king of Wessex and began to prepare for the defence of the country. He built a feet of ships and fortifications on the coasts. The small kingdoms were united to fignt against the invaders. After the victory over the Danes, King Alfred did much for his people. He opened schools, asked scholars to translate into English the best
works of world literature and worked out the English code. The English people named him Alfred the Great.
to be at war—воевать
defence — оборона
the Danes — датчане
Denmark — Дания
the Northmen — жители северной Европы; скандинавы
a battle — битва
a fleet — флот
a scholar —ученый
a code — свод законов
INGLAND UNDER FOREIGN KINGS
The Danes returned again and again to attack England. The English people had to pay tribute. But the Danes wanted to rule over the country and after many battles took the crown from the English. They held it for twenty-four years. Three Danish kings, one after the other, ruled over England. One of these kings - Canute was at the same time king of England, Denmark, Norway and Sweden. The rule of Danish kings over England came to an end soon after Canute's death in 1035.
Now the Normans began to attack the coasts of England from Normandy (France). In 1066 the Normans won the victory and William, Duke of Normandy, was crowned king of England and called William the Conqueror.
The invaders burnt houses and killed people. The land was taken from the English and given to the Normans. The invaders spoke French, and it was the language of the upper classes and the government. English was the language of the lower classes.
the Normans — норманны
death — смерть
a conqueror— завоеватель
to burn (burnt; burnt) —жечь
to kill — убивать
After Duke Wiliiam conquered England he took away lands and houses, money and cattle from the Anglo-Saxons and gave them to the Normans. Many poor Anglo-Saxons became the serfs of the Normans. Two different peoples lived in England at that time: each spoke its own language, and each hated the other. This went on for a very long time.
Robin Hood was a legendary hero of those times. He was well known_and loved by the poor people of England. He was tall strong handsome, and his songs were heard everywhere. He was brave too and there was no better archer in that part of the country. He was also kind in never hurt the weak or the poor._One day the Normans came with many soldiers to Robin's house. There was a terrible fight in which Robin's father was killed. The Normans took everything from the house and burnt it down. Only Robin was saved, because he fougfit so bravely that no soldier could go near him, kill him or take him prisoner. But when Robin saw that his father was dead and that his house was burnt down he stopped fighting and ran away to the great forest of Sherwood. Many other Saxons, who were oppressed by the Normans, soon learned that Robin was in Sherwood Forest. A great number of poor men joined him. In short time there were very many men in the forest who wanted to take revenge upon the oppressors. They made Robin Hood their leader. The poor people loved Robin and his men whom they called the Merry Men. Robbin became known as Robin of Sherwood Forest or Robin Hood. We do not know how he got the name Hood. Some people say that he was called Hood because he
and his men wore green_hoods. He became known not only in England, but in many
other countries as Robin Hood. And now we know him also as Robin Hood.
to learn (learned;learnt) —узнавать
a number — число; количество
to join — присоединяться
to take revenge upon —отомстить
a hood — капюшон
a serf — крепостной
different — различный
to go on— продолжаться
an archer—стрелок из лука
hurt (hurt;hurt) — обижать,
weak — слабый
a fight — битва
save— спасать (ся
to take smb. prisoner — взять кого-л. в плен
dead [ded] — мертвый
to oppress — угнетать
Robin Hood and his men fought against monks and Norman barons who oppressed the people. Robin Hood took money from the oppressors and gave it to the рoor people. The sheriffs tried to arrest him but could not do it. At last the sheriff of Northampton decided to organize a shooting contest where he could arrest Robin Hood. He knew that Robin Hood could shoot very well. The prize was a golden arrow.
Robin Hood called his men and asked them whether they had to take part in the contest. They decided that the risk was great but they had to go.
The day of the contest was fine and clear. The town was decorated with flags and the field for the contest was full of people. The sheriff looked everywhere for Robin Hood and his men but did not see them. He knew that they were always dressed in green. The contest was won by a man dressed in red who had come from a village with a company of young men. He received the Golden Arrow and left the town. Nobody thought that it was Robin Hood. When leaving the town Robin Hood shot an arrow into the sheriff's open window. There was a paper at the end of the arrow with the following words: "Robin Hood thanks the sheriff for the Golden Arrow."
a monk —монах
a sheriff — шериф (высшее административное лицо в графстве, области)
to try — пытаться
at last — наконец
а shootinff contest—турнир, соревнование по стрельбе
an arrow —стрела
clear — ясный
with a company— в обществе
a statement— утверждение
The sheriff of Nottingham hated Robin Hood even more. He was happy when he could catch one of Robin's men and put him into prison. But he could not cat Rlobin. Robin Hood went to Nottingham very often but he was always dressed in different clothes and the sheriff could not recognize him. So Robin was never caught. One day he was walking through the forest and met a butcher. This butcher was riding to the market at Nottingham. He was dressed in a blue coat. On each side of his grey horse hung a basket full meat. Robin came out from behind the trees and stopped him.
"What have you, my good friend?" he asked. "Meat," answered the man. "Fine meat for Nottingham Market. Do you want to buy some?"
"Yes, I do," said Robin. "I'll buy it all from you, and your horse, too. How much
do you want? I want to be a butcher and go to Nottingham Market." So the butcher sold his horse and all the meat to
Robin. Then Robin changed clothes with him. He put on the butcher’s blue clothes and the butcher went away in Robin’s green suit.
to ride (rode; ridden) — ехать верхом
a basket — корзина
Robin Hood went to Nottingham Market and sold the meat very cheap. The butchers in Nottingham were very angry with Robin Hood for selling the meat so cheap. They wanted to know where he came from. They invited Robin to a dinner with the sheriff of Nottingham. On the way to the town-hall an old butcher began to ask Robin questions.
“Haven’t you ever been here before?” he asked.
“Haven’t I?” answered Robin.
“Haven’t I ever seen you before?”
“Are you a new in the business? Well, I think so,” said the old butcher, getting very angry.
“Do you?” said Robin laughing.
Soon they came to the town-hall and the butchers learned nothing about Robin Hood. At dinner the sheriff heard about the new butcher who sold meat so cheap. The sheriff wanted to buy cattle cheap too. So he asked Robin Hood if he had any cattle to sell. Robin offered the sheriff to see his cattle in the field the next morning.
That night the sheriff took out three hundred pounds of his gold and put it in three bags. In the morning the sheriff got on his horse, and with three hundred pounds in gold went with Robin Hood to see the cattle. When the sheriff saw that they were on the road to Sherwood Forest he was frightened and wanted to go back to Nottingham. But Robin laughed only and they went on. When they came into the forest Robin saw about a hundred deer among the trees.
“Look there” he cried. “How do you like my cattle?”
to be angry with—злиться, сердиться
Haven’t I?—Разве я не был?
The sheriff was more frightened and wanted to go back, but Robin Hood invited him to dine with Merry Men. That was just what Robin Hood always did. He gave those men, who took money from poor people, a very fine dinner, and than he made them pay very much money for it. The sheriff understood that he was in the hands of Robin Hood. After dinner Robin Hood asked the sheriff to pay for the dinner.
“I am poor men,” said the sheriff, “I have no money.”
“No money! What have you in your bags, then?” asked Robin.
“Only stones, nothing but stones,” answered the frightened sheriff.
Robin’s men opened the bags and put the three hundred pounds of gold on the ground. “Sheriff,” said Robin, ”I shall take all this money and give it to the poor. You have taken much more than that.” Then Robin told his men to bring the sheriff’s horse. The sheriff got on his horse, and Robin led him through the forest. Than he said good-bye to the sheriff and went away laughing. So the sheriff paid three hundred pounds in gold for a dinner with Robin Hood.
to make smb. do smth.—заставлять кого-либо сделать что-либо
noting but… --ничего кроме…
When Robin Hood lived in his father’s house, he often met a girl. Her name was Marian. She lived with her father not far from Robin’s house. They walked in the forest and sometimes went hunting together. They liked each other very much and one day Robin asked Marian to marry him. But just at that time the Normans came and killed Robin’s father, burnt down his house and took away everything he had. Robin did not see Marian for a long time. He wrote a letter, where he told her about his father and their home. “I shall always love you,” he wrote, “but the life in the forest is not for you, so I shall never see you again, good-bye!”
Marian was very sad when she read Robin’s letter. She cried all day long. At last she decided to go to Sherwood Forest and look for Robin.
It was a long way to Sherwood Forest and Marian was afraid to travel so far alone. She dressed herself like a knight and went off to look for Robin. One day Robin dressed himself as a Norman knight and went to Nottingham. On his way through the forest he met another knight. . “What’s your name and where are you going?” They could not see each other’s faces because their heads and faces were covered by their vizors. Marian (for it was she) was afraid to answer. “Ah,” said Robin, “you do not want to answer. Then fight.” Robin was taller and stronger than Marian, but she fought bravely. Marian got a wound in one arm, Robin got a wound in his cheek. Robin felt sorry for the young knight who was fighting so well. “Stop! Stop!” cried he. “You will be one of my men.” Robin forgot that he was dressed like o Norman knight and spoke in his language and in his voice. When Marian heard Robin’s voice she dropped her sword and took off the vizor. Her face was pale but she smiled.
to marry—выходить замуж
to be afraid—бояться
to cover—зд. закрывать
to feel (felt; felt)—чувствовать
to bandage—перевязывать рану