《皇帝的新装》The Emperor's New Clothes 汉英对照阅读
Once upon a time, there was an emperor. He loved nothing but new clothes.
The emperor had thousands of clothes. He changed his clothes every hour. When people spoke of him, they would say, "The emperor's in his dressing room." He went to the park sometimes. But that was not for public inspection. Instead, he went to show off his new clothes.
People talked a lot about the emperor. Recently, everyone had been discussing what new clothes the emperor would wear for the annual parade.
One day, two cheats came to the country. They heard about the emperor's hobby. And they planned to earn some money from him.
The two cheats went to visit the emperor and told him that they were weavers. They said they could weave the most beautiful cloth in the world. The cloth was special because it could not be seen by those who were either stupid or not qualified for their positions.
The emperor felt very curious. He gave the two cheats a lot of gold coins and asked them to weave the cloth for his new clothes.
The cheats asked for a large workshop to set up a loom. They also asked for the finest silk and more gold coins, which they kept to themselves.
They pretended to be busy weaving cloth on the empty loom day and night.
Everybody in the country heard about the magical cloth. They were all anxious to see the cloth and to test how stupid their neighbours were.
"How are they getting on with the cloth？" one day the emperor wondered.
Then he decided to send his honest finance minister to take a look at the cloth. "Nobody is more competent than he. He must be able to see the cloth," the emperor thought.
The finance minister went into the cheats' workshop. He was shocked when he saw the loom. "Why？ I see nothing. Am I a fool？ Am I unqualified？ No, I will never let anybody know this!" he thought.
The two cheats asked him to come closer to the loom. They boasted about the beauty and uniqueness of the cloth to the minister.
As they spoke, the finance minister learned the cheats' words by heart.
The finance minister told the emperor what the cheats had said to him. The emperor was very glad. He gave the cheats more silk and gold coins.
Several days later, the emperor sent his honest interior minister to see the cloth and asked the cheats to speed up weaving.
"I've never seen such beautiful cloth!" the interior minister said to the emperor when he came back. In fact, he had seen nothing at all, either.
A few days later, the emperor could not wait any more and he came to the workshop with his officials.
In the workshop, the emperor was startled when he saw nothing but the empty loom. "Am I a fool？ Am I not qualified to be emperor？ It is terrible and I would let nobody know this," he thought.
Then he pretended to be looking at the cloth and praised, "This is excellent. And I'm really satisfied."
The officials all agreed upon the beauty of the cloth, because they didn't want anyone to know their foolishness.
The emperor gave the cheats knighthoods and medals and asked them to finish the clothes before the parade.
During the night before the parade, the cheats were busy finishing the emperor's new clothes. They pretended to take the cloth off the loom, cut it with a pair of scissors, and sewed with needles without thread. At last, they announced: the emperor's new clothes were ready!
The next morning, the emperor came to the workshop to try on the new clothes. "Your Majesty," the cheats said. "The clothes are as light as a spiderweb. You may feel like you have nothing on when you wear them."
The emperor took off all his clothes except a pair of shorts. Then the cheats dressed him up with the invisible new clothes.
"What do you think？" The emperor looked at himself in the mirror.
"How nice they look! They fit perfectly!" everyone said.
"Your Majesty, the canopy's ready. The parade may begin," the master of the ceremony said.
"OK. It's time to show off my new clothes." The emperor was very proud.
The officials pretended to carry the train of the robe and followed the emperor to the street, while the cheats had already run away.
The parade began. A lot of people stood in the street. Everyone exclaimed and praised the emperor's new clothes, "Oh, dear! How beautiful the emperor's new clothes are!"
None of them would admit that they saw nothing. And never had the emperor's new clothes been so admired.
"But he has nothing on but a pair of shorts!" a child complained, because he had tried his best to see the new clothes but saw nothing.
"Listen to this innocent child!" his father said.
The child's words spread quickly.
People began to whisper, "But what the child said seems true. The emperor is wearing nothing but a pair of shorts."
"Indeed, he wears nothing but shorts!" At last everyone agreed with what the child had said.
Hearing the people's words, the emperor realized that he had been cheated. However, he had no choice but to finish the parade.
A gust of wind blew. The emperor felt very cold. But still he walked on, holding his head erect with great dignity. (责任编辑：admin)