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I bought my first Violet Lake bikini in and in , it was still by far my favourite bikini, so I was delighted to be able to acquire the brand that I so love and believe in. Allison Underhill, provided by Published 5: The year in pictures: Part I 1 A Syrian girl held an oxygen mask over the face of an infant at a makeshift hospital following a reported gas attack on the rebel-held besieged town of Douma in the eastern Ghouta region on the outskirts of the capital Damascus on Jan.
The incident came during the third and final sentencing hearing for Nassar on sexual abuse charges. Part I. Sandringham House, which has been the monarch's country retreat since Ian Burt Sandringham House, where the Queen spends Christmas, has been the private home of four generations of British monarchs since It was bought by the then Prince of Wales, who later became Edward VII, as a private country retreat and the main house was rebuilt in to ensure it was big enough for his growing family.
It hosted many glittering occasions, from visits by foreign heads of state to balls for the local landed gentry, farmers and servants, and annual shoots. The idea was to make the most of the winter daylight hours for shooting and so the clocks all over the Sandringham Estate in Norfolk were advanced by half an hour. Lovecraft, CS The above fragment is translated as: In the revised version, the sentence could end with.
Grzybowska chose to normalise the dialect of farmers around Arkham. The last time Nahum Gardner ever speaks to Ammi, he says: Lovecraft, CS His words are translated as: Nahum is terrified as he dies and standard speech may sound rather too calm for a man who witnessed horrors.
Applying any dialectal form for his utterance could be proposed as a revision, for example: Apart from the mentioned fragments requiring slight revision, Grzybowska's translations seem to be the most accurate out of the stories analysed so far. The syntactic structures as well as lexical choices are carefully transformed into Polish. A fragment from The Colour out of Space is subject to close analysis in the later part of this chapter.
See Appendix D — Ryszarda Grzybowska 3. The first one contains the results of the initial research, based on various visions and accounts and an attempt to identify an idol depicting a creature unknown to man. The second part concerns a police investigation on the swamps of Louisiana, which exposes one of the meeting places used by the cultists.
In the final part, stranded sailors stumble upon an unknown island only to realise in horror that it is a place not from our world, inhabited by the creature seen on idols and in visions. In the initial paragraph, conscious of the maddening knowledge that came into his possession, he states: We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far.
Lovecraft, CC The above excerpt is translated as: In another fragment an artist recounts his dream vision to the researcher: At times the Latin words used by Lovecraft become quite a challege, as in the description of the idol portraying Cthulhu. A curious lexical choice is noted in the following fragment: These however, are rather recent in language, so perhaps the revision would not be necessary at all.
Yet another ambiguity is presented in the fragment containing a direct description of Cthulhu: The Thing of the idols, the green, sticky spawn of the stars, had awaked to claim his own. The stars were right again, and what an age-old cult had failed to do by design, a band of innocent sailors had done by accident. After vigintillions of years great Cthulhu was loose again, and ravening for delight.
Po niezliczonych latach wielki Cthulhu byl znowu wolny i spragniony uciechy. A revised version is proposed: Apart from the ambiguities, similarly as in The Colour out of Space Grzybowska slightly misunderstands some of Lovecraft's lexical choices.
The first quote comes from the introduction of a renowned scholar.. As the cult is further researched and explained, the next fragment tells of the practices in the far North. It was a faith of which other Esquimaux knew little, and which they mentioned only with shudders, saying that it had come down from horribly ancient aeons before ever the world was made.
Besides nameless rites and human sacrifices there were certain queer hereditary rituals addressed to a supreme elder devil or tornasuk; Lovecraft, CC The above excerpt is translated as: Finally, in the quote containing a description of the sunken city of R'lyeh where Cthulhu awakes, Grzybowska demonstrates a general accuracy in translating Lovecraft's style, despite minor choices which might require revision.
The unknown, unimaginable city, where even the sun is not normal is revealed as truly out of this world. The adjectives used by the author are rendered in accordance to the atmosphere of the story.
They are not, however, free of ambiguous lexical choices and unnecessary alterations. There is a slight inconsistency in following Lovecraft's manner of using Greco-Latin words. In some cases, Grzybowska inverts the meanings used by Lovecraft, which imbalances the logic of the sentence, bordering on incoherence.
Despite the above, Grzybowska uses a wide variety of lexemes when translating complex descriptions and presents herself as a careful, if imperfect, translator. He is, however, the only contemporary translator whose works were corrected in newer editions of the author's stories.
The artist is not a welcome member of the local art club because his works portray monsters gnawing on human flesh in disturbing detail. Unlike most first person narrators in Lovecraft's stories, Thurber is very expressive, direct and uses coloquial language. As he recounts what Pickman told him before, a narrative within a narrative is used by the author.
In the fragment below there are a number of inconsistencies between the original version and the translation. Reid or Joe Minot or Bosworth did. Boston never had a greater painter than Richard Upton Pickman. That, you remember, was when Minot cut him. There is also the question of the final sentence of the fragment. There was none of the exotic technique you see in Sidney Sime, none of the trans-Saturnian landscapes and lunar fungi that Clark Ashton Smith uses to freeze the blood.
Omission is another phenomenon present in the translation of this fragment. Here—have another drink—I need one anyhow! The final quote mentioned in the initial analysis of this story concerns sentence logic as well as a slight mood-alteration. That nauseous wizard had waked the fires of hell in pigment, and his brush had been a nightmare-spawning wand. Give me that decanter, Eliot! The initial analysis of Pickman's Model presents a number of various inaccuracies in translation.
This novella presents the journey,that Randolph Carter, who is an experienced dreamer, undertakes, in order to find the legendary city of Kadath, where the gods dwell.
The novella is very rich in its imagery, with complex, at times overwhelming sentences and events of epic proportions. Mostly contradictory or illogical, the examples of such sentences include the following fragments: When for the third time he awaked with those flights still undescended and those hushed sunset streets still untraversed, he prayed long and earnestly to the hidden gods of dream that brood capricious above the clouds on unknown Kadath, in the cold waste where no man treads.
Lovecraft, DQ The above fragment is translated as: The use of the adverbial participle could be a way to translate the non-standard word order in the sentence. Revised,the fragment could read as follows: Carter, however, had no fear; for he was an old dreamer and had learnt their fluttering language and made many a treaty with them; Lovecraft,DQ The above fragment is translated as: In terms of words describing sound and speech, there is another fragment, in the climax of the story, where Carter, having reached the city of Kadath, faces Nyarlathothep, one of the gods, in his human form.
The deity addresses the dreamer. Watchers have spoken of this thing, and the Other Gods have grunted as they rolled and tumbled mindlessly to the sound of thin flutes in the black ultimate void where broods the daemon-sultan whose name no lips dare speak aloud. A revised version could be thus proposed: A revision of the above sentence could be: Reflecting upon these things, he was staggering to his feet in the midst of his nightmare company when there rang without warning through that pale-litten and limitless chamber the hideous blast of a daemon trumpet.
A following revision could be proposed: Another tautology appears on the following page of the translation. The story concludes in Carter's return to his home in New England, after Nyarlathothep makes him realise, that it is not the dreamlands, but the reality, where he grew up, that he cherishes. Scent of the sea and fragrance of the fields; spell of the dark woods and joy of the orchards and gardens at dawn.
These, Randolph Carter, are your city; for they are yourself. New-England bore you, and into your soul she poured a liquid loveliness which cannot die. A following revision of the final sentence could be proposed, including an attempt to preserve the alliterative qualities of the original phrase: This fragment is a truly Lovecraftian paragraph, containing florid descriptions, intentional repetition of the beginning of the phrase, inversion as well as alliterations.
Stars swelled to dawns, and dawns burst into fountains of gold, carmine, and purple, and still the dreamer fell. Cries rent the aether as ribbons of light beat back the fiends from outside. And hoary Nodens raised a howl of triumph when Nyarlathotep, close on his quarry, stopped baffled by a glare that seared his formless hunting-horrors to grey dust.
Randolph Carter had indeed descended at last the wide marmoreal flights to his marvellous city, for he was come again to the fair New England world that had wrought him. Thus a revision could be proposed: This is motivated by the fact that the world presented in The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath is a fantasy setting, full of both fable-like and terrifying creatures. As there seems to be an alarming number of inconsistencies and inaccuracies on the side of the translator.
Due to the length of the story, the enumeration of all possible fragments where a revision could be proposed would require a significant extension of this thesis. It adopts the first person perspective of a man from the Delapore family. He moves to the rebuilt house of his ancestors in England and explores the lore behind the de la Poers, as his family was originally called. He is an ardent lover of cats and soon after moving, both he and his companions discover the mysteries of the ancestral seat.
One of these occurs in the first paragraphs of the story. Exham Priory had remained untenanted, though later allotted to the estates of the Norrys family and much studied because of its peculiarly composite architecture; an architecture involving Gothic towers resting on a Saxon or Romanesque substructure, whose foundation in turn was of a still earlier order or blend of orders—Roman, and even Druidic or native Cymric, if legends speak truly.
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Lovecraft, RW The above fragment is translated as: It may have been a conscious choice to update the description to modern historical knowledge.
It is used at the cost of accuracy. This complex sentence need not be divided and equivalents for all the words are possible to provide, since it is possible to render its entire content without sacrificing fluency, as in the revised translation below: There is a more substantial fragment containing further alterations, surprisingly, very heavy in terms of the meaning and logic of the paragraphs. The bare statistics of my ancestry I had always known, together with the fact that my first American forbear had come to the colonies under a strange cloud.
Of details, however, I had been kept wholly ignorant through the policy of reticence always maintained by the Delapores. Unlike our planter neighbours, we seldom boasted of crusading ancestors or other mediaeval and Renaissance heroes; nor was any kind of tradition handed down except what may have been recorded in the sealed envelope left before the Civil War by every squire to his eldest son for posthumous opening.
The glories we cherished were those achieved since the migration; the glories of a proud and honourable, if somewhat reserved and unsocial Virginia line. During the war our fortunes were extinguished and our whole existence changed by the burning of Carfax, our home on the banks of the James. My grandfather, advanced in years, had perished in that incendiary outrage, and with him the envelope that bound us all to the past.
Contrary to Lovecraft's original text, in the translation, the narrator states that he had been interested in the family lore for a long time and the fact that his ancestor left England for reasons unknown is one of the basic truths about de la Poers.
The next fragment contains lexical choices which are rather unsuitable for a horror story, especially when they are an inaccurate translation in regard to the original sentences. I did not draw the curtains, but gazed out at the narrow north window which I faced. There was a suspicion of aurora in the sky, and the delicate traceries of the window were pleasantly silhouetted. Lovecraft, RW Translated as: A revision of the second sentence could read as follows: In the climax of the story, the narrator discovers his terrifying ancestry which leads him to a temporary state of madness as well as a suggested act of cannibalism.
In his insane raving, he gradually adopts the language of all those before him who took part in the rituals. He lived, but my boy died!
Shall a Norrys hold the lands of a de la Poer? Magna Mater! Dia ad aghaidh's ad aodaun Dhonas 's dholas ort, agus leat-sa! However, further in the paragraph, the initial accuracy seems to be lost.
A following revision could be thus proposed: Lovecraftian prose often contains shouts in languages unknown to man, particularly in moments of ritual ecstasy. The unknown, menacing cries add to the intensity of the climax as the suggestion of archaic language is understandable in the context of the story as well as the complex architecture of the cursed house, discussed earlier.
A fragment of The Rats in the Walls is chosen for further analysis in the later part of this chapter. What is more, some fragments of his translation present flawed logic and contradiction. Lovecraft, two groups could be distinguished after performing the initial qualitative analysis of their work.
The first group are the translators who are careful in translating Lovecraft's style as accurately as possible, retaining many of its features and the richness. Manipulating the original text in such way often results in illogical or contradictory sentences which are rather difficult to comprehend and may result in the readers' rejection of the stories as poorly written and uninteresting. In both groups there were examples of the translators misunderstanding or perhaps misreading the original sentences which resulted in lexical choices that may need to be revised.
Another inaccuracy present in translations of both groups concerns sentence and paragraph division. Some long sentences are divided into several shorter ones, while others are amalgamated into very long and complex sentences. This may be, however, connected to editorial limitations. Initially the number of paragraphs, sentences and words in each fragment, both original and translated, was counted, including the discrepancies in word count, given in brackets, between the English and the Polish versions.
This provides the basis for further analysis and shows which translator may be deemed as accurate in preserving the paragraph layout used by Lovecraft. Table 2. Number of sentences and paragraphs in the original texts and in translations The original text The translation Translated by Sentences Paragraphs No. It is of course necessary to consider the use of prepositions instead of noun cases, and pronouns instead of verb forms inflected for person, which increases the word count of the original as compared to the Polish versions.
All figures are rounded where necessary, discrepancies are given in brackets. There are 4 additional sentences, which means he altered the original sentences by Lovecraft.
Furthermore, he divided the original paragraphs, thus extending them from 5 to 9.
On the other hand, the word count in Lipski's translation slightly exceeds the original word count of the story; what is more, his translation seems to preserve the original sentence length rather closely, being only 5 words less on average than the original sentence.
It seems that the most accurate translation according to Tables 2 and 3 is the one by Ryszarda Grzybowska. There is only 1 additional sentence in her translation, the number of paragraphs remained the same as in the original text, there are fewer words in her translation than in the original, only 69, however, which is a still significantly smaller discrepancy when compared to other translators. Grzybowska is also close to the original average sentence length, with her sentences being only 4 words shorter, which is the lowest of all translators.
The analysis of vocabulary in the selected fragments The following tables show a comparison between the numbers of style-related words, which include vocabulary of Greco-Latin origin, adjectives, nouns and adverbs which describe situations, states or attributes evoking fear in the original text and the translation. Thus, more common words and those which do not adhere to any of the senses, are neutral or exclusively serve to construct the cohesion of the sentences are not taken into account.
Table 4. This discrepancy increases when the repetitions of used adjectives and nouns are counted. Data from Table 4 may suggest that Lipski uses a wide vocabulary to translate Lovecraft's stories, yet he does not refrain from frequent repetitions. Adverbs seem to be used accurately in his translation. Since the qualitative analysis yielded examples of additions and omissions in Lipski's translations it was thus suspected that it may be further exemplified by the quantitative analysis.
The increase in the number of adjectives in the translations can be at times ascribed to the necessity to translate compound nouns as separate words, adjectives and nouns. An example sentence from the fragment shows that Lipski tends to extend the original sentences quite significantly. I dropped prone again and clutched vainly at the floor for fear of being swept bodily through the open gate into the phosphorescent abyss. Table 5. Similarly to Lipski, there are more unique words in the translation than in the original, mostly due to compounding of nouns by Lovecraft.
The number of repetitions, however, is smaller than the repetitions used by Lovecraft, which is due to the careful choice of lexemes as the translator wants to avoid repetition and translate the author's style accurately.
What is more, Kopacz at times uses adjectives and other constructions, in turn replacing some of the original adverbs. Table 6. The word count of the translation is words less than the original version. Lovecraft, CDW The above sentence is translated as: Table 7. The number of adverbs is preserved and there are minute differences between the number of adjectives and nouns, the latter preserving even the number of repetitions in relation to the original fragment. The number of used adjectives and nouns seems to be clearly smaller than in Lovecraft's vocabulary.
Analogically, there are 10 less nouns than in the original. The average sentence length is smaller, largely due to simplification, which can be exemplified by the fragment below.
After a few moments he regretted his thoughtless haste, and wished he had tried to follow backward the frescoes he had passed on the way in. True, they were so confused and duplicated that they could not have done him much good, but he wished none the less he had made the attempt.
Lovecraft, DQ The above sentences are translated as: This may be due to omissions which influence the complexity and mood of the sentences, as illustrated by an example. The skulls denoted nothing short of utter idiocy, cretinism, or primitive semi-apedom.
Above the hellishly littered steps arched a descending passage seemingly chiselled from the solid rock, and conducting a current of air. Lovecraft, RW The above sentence is translated as: Table The table below illustrates the recurring words, starting from those of highest frequency. It is translated in a variety of ways or, at times, omitted or changed in the course of the sentence. The issue concerning the title was discussed in the earlier part of this chapter. Lovecraft seems to pose a challenge for translators, since it is not accurately translated in the recent Polish editions of his prose.
Six of his contemporary translators were analysed: Robert P. At least one story translated by each of the translators was subject to qualitative analysis, which exposed inconsistencies and inaccuracies in their work. No work was absolutely free from lexical mistakes which with varying degree of gravity. The ambiguities which may require a revision of the translation included additions and omissions of essential content, exaggeration in the use of adjectives which exceeded the original text, modifications in the sentence structure leading to a change of meaning or creation of tautological and contradictory constructions, shifting the mood of the story significantly by use of diminutives or inaccurate lexical items instead of the original vocabulary.
The most accurate translation, both in terms of quality and quantity, is the work by Ryszarda Grzybowska, in spite of minor lexical mistakes and the normalisation of dialectical speech, whose content is nonetheless translated correctly.
Grzybowska's translation is closely followed by the works of Kopacz, who tends to shift the style of the author by additions which increase the coherence of the original sentences. The remaining translators are not quite accurate in their translations and many of the aforementioned ambiguities can be found in their works. Examples of revised versions were proposed for certain fragments, and it may be necessary to retranslate some of H.
Lovecraft's works into Polish again in order to present an accurate rendition of his style to the Polish readers.
Zysk i S-ka. Lovecraft, H. Style in fiction.
London-New York: Punter, David. New York: Addison Wesley Longman. Joshi, S. University of Texas Press. The Writings and Philosophy of H. Wildside Press. W rozdziale drugim przedstawiona zostaje sylwetka H. Lipski Suddenly there came another burst of that acute fear which had intermittently seized me ever since I first saw the terrible valley and the nameless city under a cold moon, and despite my exhaustion I found myself starting frantically to a sitting posture and gazing back along the black corridor toward the tunnels that rose to the outer world.
My sensations were much like those which had made me shun the nameless city at night, and were as inexplicable as they were poignant. In another moment, however, I received a still greater shock in the form of a definite sound—the first which had broken the utter silence of these tomb-like depths. It was a deep, low moaning, as of a distant throng of condemned spirits, and came from the direction in which I was staring.
Its volume rapidly grew, till soon it reverberated frightfully through the low passage, and at the same time I became conscious of an increasing draught of cold air, likewise flowing from the tunnels and the city above. The touch of this air seemed to restore my balance, for I instantly recalled the sudden gusts which had risen around the mouth of the abyss each sunset and sunrise, one of which had indeed served to reveal the hidden tunnels to me.
I looked at my watch and saw that sunrise was near, so braced myself to resist the gale which was sweeping down to its cavern home as it had swept forth at evening. My fear again waned low, since a natural phenomenon tends to dispel broodings over the unknown.
More and more madly poured the shrieking, moaning night-wind into that gulf of the inner earth. Such fury I had not expected, and as I grew aware of an actual slipping of my form toward the abyss I was beset by a thousand new terrors of apprehension and imagination. The malignancy of the blast awakened incredible fancies; once more I compared myself shudderingly to the only other human image in that frightful corridor, the man who was torn to pieces by the nameless race, for in the fiendish clawing of the swirling currents there seemed to abide a vindictive rage all the stronger because it was largely impotent.
I think I screamed frantically near the last—I was almost mad—but if I did so my cries were lost in the hell-born babel of the howling wind-wraiths. Finally reason must have wholly snapped, for I fell to babbling over and over that unexplainable couplet of the mad Arab Alhazred, who dreamed of the nameless city: Monstrous, unnatural, colossal, was the thing—too far beyond all the ideas of man to be believed except in the silent damnable small hours when one cannot sleep.
I have said that the fury of the rushing blast was infernal—cacodaemoniacal— and that its voices were hideous with the pent-up viciousness of desolate eternities. Presently those voices, while still chaotic before me, seemed to my beating brain to take articulate form behind me; and down there in the grave of unnumbered aeon-dead antiquities, leagues below the dawn-lit world of men, I heard the ghastly cursing and snarling of strange-tongued fiends. Turning, I saw outlined against the luminous aether of the abyss what could not be seen against the dusk of the corridor—a nightmare horde of rushing devils; hate-distorted, grotesquely panoplied, half-transparent; devils of a race no man might mistake—the crawling reptiles of the nameless city.
And as I walked by the shallow crystal stream I saw unwonted ripples tipped with yellow light, as if those placid waters were drawn on in resistless currents to strange oceans that are not in the world.
Silent and sparkling, bright and baleful, those moon-cursed waters hurried I knew not whither; whilst from the embowered banks white lotos blossoms fluttered one by one in the opiate night-wind and dropped despairingly into the stream, swirling away horribly under the arched, carven bridge, and staring back with the sinister resignation of calm, dead faces.
And as I ran along the shore, crushing sleeping flowers with heedless feet and maddened ever by the fear of unknown things and the lure of the dead faces, I saw that the garden had no end under that moon; for where by day the walls were, there stretched now only new vistas of trees and paths, flowers and shrubs, stone idols and pagodas, and bendings of the yellow-litten stream past grassy banks and under grotesque bridges of marble.
And the lips of the dead lotos-faces whispered sadly, and bade me follow, nor did I cease my steps till the stream became a river, and joined amidst marshes of swaying reeds and beaches of gleaming sand the shore of a vast and nameless sea.
Upon that sea the hateful moon shone, and over its unvocal waves weird perfumes brooded. And as I saw therein the lotos-faces vanish, I longed for nets that I might capture them and learn from them the secrets which the moon had brought upon the night. But when the moon went over to the west and the still tide ebbed from the sullen shore, I saw in that light old spires that the waves almost uncovered, and white columns gay with festoons of green seaweed.
And knowing that to this sunken place all the dead had come, I trembled and did not wish again to speak with the lotos-faces. Yet when I saw afar out in the sea a black condor descend from the sky to seek rest on a vast reef, I would fain have questioned him, and asked him of those whom I had known when they were alive. This I would have asked him had he not been so far away, but he was very far, and could not be seen at all when he drew nigh that gigantic reef.
Over those horrors the evil moon now hung very low, but the puffy worms of the sea need no moon to feed by. And as I watched the ripples that told of the writhing of worms beneath, I felt a new chill from afar out whither the condor had flown, as if my flesh had caught a horror before my eyes had seen it. Nor had my flesh trembled without cause, for when I raised my eyes I saw that the waters had ebbed very low, shewing much of the vast reef whose rim I had seen before.
But far more interesting were the two vacant walls, both of which were thickly covered with mystic symbols and formulae roughly chiselled in the smooth dressed stone. The damp floor also bore marks of carving; and with but little difficulty Willett deciphered a huge pentagram in the centre, with a plain circle about three feet wide half way between this and each corner.
In one of these four circles, near where a yellowish robe had been flung carelessly down, there stood a shallow kylix of the sort found on the shelves above the whip-rack; and just outside the periphery was one of the Phaleron jugs from the shelves in the other room, its tag numbered This was unstoppered, and proved upon inspection to be empty; but the explorer saw with a shiver that the kylix was not.
Within its shallow area, and saved from scattering only by the absence of wind in this sequestered cavern, lay a small amount of a dry, dull- greenish efflorescent powder which must have belonged in the jug; and Willett almost reeled at the implications that came sweeping over him as he correlated little by little the several elements and antecedents of the scene.
With an effort, however, Willett pulled himself together and began studying the formulae chiselled on the walls.
One the doctor clearly recognised as what Mrs. Ward heard her son chanting on that ominous Good Friday a year before, and what an authority had told him was a very terrible invocation addressed to secret gods outside the normal spheres. This was on the left-hand wall as one entered the room. The right-hand wall was no less thickly inscribed, and Willett felt a start of recognition as he came upon the pair of formulae so frequently occurring in the recent notes in the library.
But the spelling differed quite widely from that of the modern versions, as if old Curwen had had a different way of recording sound, or as if later study had evolved more powerful and perfected variants of the invocations in question. The doctor tried to reconcile the chiselled version with the one which still ran persistently in his head, and found it hard to do. Ground as the later text was into his consciousness, the discrepancy disturbed him; and he found himself chanting the first of the formulae aloud in an effort to square the sound he conceived with the letters he found carved.
Weird and menacing in that abyss of antique blasphemy rang his voice; its accents keyed to a droning sing-song either through the spell of the past and the unknown, or through the hellish example of that dull, godless wail from the pits whose inhuman cadences rose and fell rhythmically in the distance through the stench and the darkness.
Every person in that low-pitched sitting room stopped his ears, and Ammi turned away from the window in horror and nausea. Words could not convey it—when Ammi looked out again the hapless beast lay huddled inert on the moonlit ground between the splintered shafts of the buggy.
That was the last of Hero till they buried him next day. But the present was no time to mourn, for almost at this instant a detective silently called attention to something terrible in the very room with them. In the absence of the lamplight it was clear that a faint phosphorescence had begun to pervade the entire apartment. It glowed on the broad-planked floor and the fragment of rag carpet, and shimmered over the sashes of the small-paned windows. It ran up and down the exposed corner-posts, coruscated about the shelf and mantel, and infected the very doors and furniture.
Each minute saw it strengthen, and at last it was very plain that healthy living things must leave that house.
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Ammi shewed them the back door and the path up through the fields to the ten-acre pasture. They walked and stumbled as in a dream, and did not dare look back till they were far away on the high ground.
They were glad of the path, for they could not have gone the front way, by that well. It was bad enough passing the glowing barn and sheds, and those shining orchard trees with their gnarled, fiendish contours; but thank heaven the branches did their worst twisting high up. When they looked back toward the valley and the distant Gardner place at the bottom they saw a fearsome sight. All the farm was shining with the hideous unknown blend of colour; trees, buildings, and even such grass and herbage as had not been wholly changed to lethal grey brittleness.
The boughs were all straining skyward, tipped with tongues of foul flame, and lambent tricklings of the same monstrous fire were creeping about the ridgepoles of the house, barn, and sheds. Then without warning the hideous thing shot vertically up toward the sky like a rocket or meteor, leaving behind no trail and disappearing through a round and curiously regular hole in the clouds before any man could gasp or cry out. No watcher can ever forget that sight, and Ammi stared blankly at the stars of Cygnus, Deneb twinkling above the others, where the unknown colour had melted into the Milky Way.
But his gaze was the next moment called swiftly to earth by the crackling in the valley. It was just that.
Only a wooden ripping and crackling, and not an explosion, as so many others of the party vowed. Yet the outcome was the same, for in one feverish, kaleidoscopic instant there burst up from that doomed and accursed farm a gleamingly eruptive cataclysm of unnatural sparks and substance; blurring the glance of the few who saw it, and sending forth to the zenith a bombarding cloudburst of such coloured and fantastic fragments as our universe must needs disown.
Through quickly re-closing vapours they followed the great morbidity that had vanished, and in another second they had vanished too. Behind and below was only a darkness to which the men dared not return, and all about was a mounting wind which seemed to sweep down in black, frore gusts from interstellar space. There was no light in this vast and evil-smelling crypt, and the small lamp of the sinister merchant shone so feebly that one could grasp details only little by little. At the farther end was a high stone dais reached by five steps; and there on a golden throne sat a lumpish figure robed in yellow silk figured with red and having a yellow silken mask over its face.
To this being the slant-eyed man made certain signs with his hands, and the lurker in the dark replied by raising a disgustingly carven flute of ivory in silk-covered paws and blowing certain loathsome sounds from beneath its flowing yellow mask.
This colloquy went on for some time, and to Carter there was something sickeningly familiar in the sound of that flute and the stench of the malodorous place. He knew that the creature on the dais was without doubt the high-priest not to be described, of which legend whispers such fiendish and abnormal possibilities, but he feared to think just what that abhorred high-priest might be. Then the figured silk slipped a trifle from one of the greyish-white paws, and Carter knew what the noisome high-priest was.
And in that hideous second stark fear drove him to something his reason would never have dared to attempt, for in all his shaken consciousness there was room only for one frantic will to escape from what squatted on that golden throne. He knew that hopeless labyrinths of stone lay betwixt him and the cold table-land outside, and that even on that table-land the noxious shantak still waited; yet in spite of all this there was in his mind only the instant need to get away from that wriggling, silk-robed monstrosity.
The slant-eyed man had set his curious lamp upon one of the high and wickedly stained altar-stones by the pit, and had moved forward somewhat to talk to the high- priest with his hands. In almost the same second he seized the lamp from the altar and darted out into the frescoed labyrinths, racing this way and that as chance determined and trying not to think of the stealthy padding of shapeless paws on the stones behind him, or of the silent wrigglings and crawlings which must be going on back there in lightless corridors.
Those he now saw were even more horrible than those he had seen then, and he knew he was not in the corridors leading outside.
In time he became quite sure he was not followed, and slackened his pace somewhat; but scarce had he breathed in half-relief when a new peril beset him. His lamp was waning, and he would soon be in pitch blackness with no means of sight or guidance. When the light was all gone he groped slowly in the dark, and prayed to the Great Ones for such help as they might afford. At times he felt the stone floor sloping up or down, and once he stumbled over a step for which no reason seemed to exist.
The farther he went the damper it seemed to be, and when he was able to feel a junction or the mouth of a side passage he always chose the way which sloped downward the least. But there was not any warning of the thing which came at last; only the thing itself with its terror and shock and breath-taking chaos.
One moment he was groping slowly over the slippery floor of an almost level place, and the next he was shooting dizzily downward in the dark through a burrow which must have been well-nigh vertical. Through a nearly square opening in the tiled floor, sprawling on a flight of stone steps so prodigiously worn that it was little more than an inclined plane at the centre, was a ghastly array of human or semi-human bones.
Those which retained their collocation as skeletons shewed attitudes of panic fear, and over all were the marks of rodent gnawing. This current was not a sudden and noxious rush as from a closed vault, but a cool breeze with something of freshness in it. We did not pause long, but shiveringly began to clear a passage down the steps. It was then that Sir William, examining the hewn walls, made the odd observation that the passage, according to the direction of the strokes, must have been chiselled from beneath.
I must be very deliberate now, and choose my words. After ploughing down a few steps amidst the gnawed bones we saw that there was light ahead; not any mystic phosphorescence, but a filtered daylight which could not come except from unknown fissures in the cliff that overlooked the waste valley. A few steps more, and our breaths were literally snatched from us by what we saw; so literally that Thornton, the psychic investigator, actually fainted in the arms of the dazed man who stood behind him.
Norrys, his plump face utterly white and flabby, simply cried out inarticulately; whilst I think that what I did was to gasp or hiss, and cover my eyes. Of seven cultivated men, only Sir William Brinton retained his composure; a thing more to his credit because he led the party and must have seen the sight first. It was a twilit grotto of enormous height, stretching away farther than any eye could see; a subterraneous world of limitless mystery and horrible suggestion.
For yards about the steps extended an insane tangle of human bones, or bones at least as human as those on the steps. Like a foamy sea they stretched, some fallen apart, but others wholly or partly articulated as skeletons; these latter invariably in postures of daemoniac frenzy, either fighting off some menace or clutching other forms with cannibal intent. When Dr. Trask, the anthropologist, stooped to classify the skulls, he found a degraded mixture which utterly baffled him.
They were mostly lower than the Piltdown man in the scale of evolution, but in every case definitely human. Many were of higher grade, and a very few were the skulls of supremely and sensitively developed types. All the bones were gnawed, mostly by rats, but somewhat by others of the half-human drove.
Mixed with them were many tiny bones of rats—fallen members of the lethal army which closed the ancient epic. I wonder that any man among us lived and kept his sanity through that hideous day of discovery.The world they present is far from real, governed by the laws of fluid dream logic, fantastic in setting and the course of events. All the bones were gnawed, mostly by rats, but somewhat by others of the half-human drove.
This fragment is a truly Lovecraftian paragraph, containing florid descriptions, intentional repetition of the beginning of the phrase, inversion as well as alliterations.
It is of course necessary to consider the use of prepositions instead of noun cases, and pronouns instead of verb forms inflected for person, which increases the word count of the original as compared to the Polish versions.
Not Hoffmann or Huysmans could conceive a scene more wildly incredible, more frenetically repellent, or more Gothically grotesque than the twilit grotto through which we seven staggered; each stumbling on revelation after revelation, and trying to keep for the nonce from thinking of the events which must have taken place there three hundred years, or a thousand, or two thousand, or ten thousand years ago.
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