At last the poor duckling grew faint, lay quite still, and froze fast into the ice.
Early in the morning a farmer came that way, saw the duckling, went out to it, broke the ice with his wooden shoe, and brought the bird home to his wife, and there it revived.
The children wanted
to play with it, but the duckling fancied they meant to hurt it, and in its fright flew right into the milk can, so that the milk was splashed all about the room. The woman shrieked and smote her hands; then it flew into the butter tub
, and then down into the meal barrel and out again, by which time it cut a pretty figure, you may be sure. The woman shrieked and flung the fire-irons at it; the children tumbled over each other's legs in trying to seize it, and laughed
and shrieked again. Luckily the door was open, and out it rushed into the freshly fallen snow among the bushes, and there lay as if in a swoon.
But it would really be too heartrending to tell of al
l the distress and wretchedness the poor duckling had to put up with that hard winter. It was lying in the marsh among the rushes when the sun again began to shine warmly; the larks were singing, it was beautiful spring-time.
One day it extended its wings; they had a stronger beat than before and bore it easily away; and ere it rightly knew where it was, the duckling found itself in a large garden where apple trees stood in full bloom, where the li
lac flowers gave forth their perfume and hung on the long green branches right down towards the winding ditches.
孩子们很想跟他玩耍，不过小鸭以为他们想要伤害他。他害怕得跳到牛奶盘，将牛奶溅得满屋子都是。 女人拍着双手惊叫起来，如此一来，小鸭又飞到奶油盆里去，然后就掉进面粉桶里面了，最后才爬出来。他的样子有趣极了！ 但女人却尖声地叫了起来，并拿着火钳要打他。小孩们则挤成一团想抓住这只小鸭。他们又是笑又是叫！ 幸好大门是敞开着的，小鸭钻进灌木林中新下的雪堆里去，躺在那里，几乎像昏倒了一样。