翻訳『The Adventure of the Second Stain』(その4)

シャーロック・ホームズの短編『第二の血痕(The Adventure of the Second Stain)』の原作を、自分好みに気楽に訳しています。(気の向くままに投稿して、あとで時々修正を入れるかもしれません。)



The Return of Sherlock Holmes/Chapter 13 - Wikisource, the free online library


“Consider the facts, sir. It is inconceivable that it was taken after eleven-thirty at night, since I understand that Mr. Hope and his wife were both in the room from that hour until the loss was found out. It was taken, then, yesterday evening between seven-thirty and eleven-thirty, probably near the earlier hour, since whoever took it evidently knew that it was there, and would naturally secure it as early as possible. Now, sir, if a document of this importance were taken at that hour, where can it be now? No one has any reason to retain it. It has been passed rapidly on to those who need it. What chance have we now to overtake or even to trace it? It is beyond our reach.”

「事実を考えてみてください。昨夜の十一時半以降に手紙が盗まれたということはないでしょう。ホープ卿と奥様は朝の紛失に気づくまでその部屋にいましたから。手紙が盗まれたのは、つまり、昨夜の七時半から十一時半までの間、しかも早い時間のうちに盗まれたのかもしれない。なぜなら、誰であれそれを盗んだ者は手紙がそこにあると知っていたわけです、となれば、できるだけ早く盗もうとしたでしょう。では、この重要な手紙がその時間に盗まれたとしたら、それは今どこにあるのか? 盗んだ者が手紙を持ち続ける理由はありません。必要とする者に迅速に届けられているでしょう。今の我々にそれを取り返したり追跡したりできるチャンスがどこにあると言うのです? すでに我々の手の届く範囲は超えています」


The Prime Minister rose from the settee.

“What you say is perfectly logical, Mr. Holmes. I feel that the matter is indeed out of our hands.”

“Let us presume, for argument's sake, that the document was taken by the maid or by the valet—”

“They are both old and tried servants.”



“I understand you to say that your room is on the second floor, that there is no entrance from without, and that from within no one could go up unobserved. It must, then, be somebody in the house who has taken it. To whom would the thief take it? To one of several international spies and secret agents, whose names are tolerably familiar to me. There are three who may be said to be the heads of their profession. I will begin my research by going round and finding if each of them is at his post. If one is missing especially if he has disappeared since last night we will have some indication as to where the document has gone.”

「あなたのお話からすると寝室は三階にありますね、家の人間に誰にも見つからずにその部屋に入ることはできません。そうなると必然的に、家の中にいる人間の仕業ということになるのです。その人間は誰のために盗みを働いたのか? 国際的に活動しているスパイや諜報員のうちの一人のためでしょう、彼らの名前なら私にもまずまず聞き覚えがある。三人ほど、今回の事件に関わっていると考えられる人間がいます。私は彼らの拠点から調査を開始しましょう。もしそのうちの一人が昨夜から姿を消しているとなれば、手紙がどこにあるか突き止める手掛かりになりますから」


“Why should he be missing?” asked the European Secretary. “He would take the letter to an Embassy in London, as likely as not.”

“I fancy not. These agents work independently, and their relations with the Embassies are often strained.”



The Prime Minister nodded his acquiescence.

I believe you are right, Mr. Holmes. He would take so valuable a prize to headquarters with his own hands. I think that your course of action is an excellent one. Meanwhile, Hope, we can not neglect all our other duties on account of this one misfortune. Should there be any fresh developments during the day we shall communicate with you, and you will no doubt let us know the results of your own inquiries.”



The two statesmen bowed and walked gravely from the room.

When our illustrious visitors had departed Holmes lit his pipe in silence, and sat for some time lost in the deepest thought. I had opened the morning paper and was immersed in a sensational crime which had occurred in London the night before, when my friend gave an exclamation, sprang to his feet, and laid his pipe down upon the mantelpiece.



“Yes,” said he, “there is no better way of approaching it. The situation is desperate, but not hopeless. Even now, if we could be sure which of them has taken it, it is just possible that it has not yet passed out of his hands. After all, it is a question of money with these fellows, and I have the British treasury behind me. If it's on the market I'll buy it—if it means another penny on the income-tax. It is conceivable that the fellow might hold it back to see what bids come from this side before he tries his luck on the other. There are only those three capable of playing so bold a game – there are Oberstein, La Rothiere, and Eduardo Lucas. I will see each of them.”



I glanced at my morning paper.

“Is that Eduardo Lucas of Godolphin Street?”


“You will not see him.”

“Why not?”

“He was murdered in his house last night.”








My friend has so often astonished me in the course of our adventures that it was with a sense of exultation that I realized how completely I had astonished him. He stared in amazement, and then snatched the paper from my hands. This was the paragraph which I had been engaged in reading when he rose from his chair.




 今回は珍しくワトソンがホームズを驚かせたシーンです。"My friend has so often astonished me in the course of our adventures that it was with a sense of exultation that I realized how completely I had astonished him. " ここは一文が長く、訳すのが少しむずかしいのですが、やっぱり「ワトソンがホームズを驚かせることができてうれしかった」というニュアンスを訳に入れたいところです。