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The Book of Riddles. Лексические задачкиТекст

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18. A Thriller

One day, Johnny’s mother said to her little son:

“This is not the way to read a book, Johnny. You skip several pages at a time.”

“I’m doing it on purpose,” Johnny answered, and explained why he was doing that.

Well, why? What was the book about?

thriller триллер, остросюжетная книга; way здесь: способ ◊ This is not the way to read a book. Книгу так не читают; skip пропускать; перескакивать; page страница you skip several pages at a time ты перескакиваешь через несколько за раз; on purpose намеренно, специально; explain объяснять; What was the book about? О чём была книга?

Solve this rebus to get a clue.

19. In the Rain

Samuel was out for a walk when it started raining. He did not have an umbrella, and he wasn't wearing a hat. His clothes were soaked, yet not a single hair on his head got wet.

in the rain под дождём; was out for a walk прогуливался; he wasn’t wearing a hat он был без шляпы; clothes одежда; soaked насквозь промокший; yet несмотря на это; single один; get wet намокнуть, промокнуть.

How could this happen? Solve this rebus to get a clue.

If you don’t know, this rebus may help you find the right answer.

20. The Clever Boy

Two mothers are talking.

One of them said, “My son is very smart. He is only two years old, but he can already read his name from right to left, and from left to right.”

“And what is his name?” the other woman asked.

What was the boy’s name? If you don’t know, this rebus may help you find it out.

21. Who is on the Phone?

One day, the emergency service received a phone call.

“Please, send someone immediately! A cat has burst into my room!”

“Er… What do you mean? What cat?”

“A cat! Don’t you understand? C-A-T. Cat! He burst into my room, and is heading for me!”

emergency чрезвычайное происшествие emergency service received a phone call в службу спасения поступил звонок; immediately немедленно; burst (burst, burst) into врываться в; What do you mean? Что вы имеете в виду?; What cat? Какой кот?; Dont you understand? Неужели вы не понимаете?; Ну как вы не понимаете?!; head for sb/sth направляться к кому-либо или чему-либо

“Wait a minute. Do you want to say that a burglar broke into your house, and is going to steal your cat?’

“No! I am speaking about a cat. A real cat! The one that says “meow”. My life is in serious danger!”

“How can a cat pose a threat to your life? Who is speaking, anyway?”

Who, indeed?

burglar вор; break (broke, broken) into проникнуть в; steal красть; danger опасность; threat угроза ◊ pose a threat представлять собой угрозу; Who is speaking, anyway? А кто это вообще говорит?; indeed в самом деле

22. A Difficult Question

“If there were four flies on the table and I killed one, how many would be left?” asked the teacher.

Several children raised their hands, but only Mary gave the right answer.

fly муха; how many would be left сколько останется; raise поднимать

What was that answer?

23. The Sweets

Suppose, you had ten sweets and you hid two of them. How many sweets have you got now?

suppose предположим; sweet конфета; hide (hid, hidden) прятать

Solve this rebus to see the right answer.

24. The Bird Catcher

A bird catcher went to the forest to catch birds. By the end of the day, he caught only one bird.

“Let me go,” the bird begged him. “My husband and my hungry children are waiting for me.”

“So what? I am hungry, too. I will take you home with me, cook you, and have my supper.”

bird catcher птицелов; catch (caught, caught) ловить, поймать; Let me go. Отпусти меня; beg умолять; husband муж, супруг; wait ждать; So what? И что с того?

He put the bird in the cage, and headed home. On the way, he was caught in a storm. Lightning forked the sky, one thunderclap followed another. The bird catcher realized that would never get out of the forest alive. He lay down on the ground and waited for the Death to come for him.

cage клетка; headed home зашагал по направлению к дому; on the way по дороге; was caught in a storm попал под сильный дождь; lightning молния; fork здесь: прорезать; thunderclap удар грома; realize понять; alive живой; lie down (lay down, lain down) лечь, опуститься; ground земля; death смерть; come for sb прийти за кем-либо

Suddenly he heard the bird’s voice.

“Get up, hunter, and hide under that big tree.”

At that very moment, another lightning lit up the forest, and the bird catcher saw a big tree. He jumped up, and hid under its branches. Right above his head, there was a hole in the tree. In that hole, there lived the bird’s family.

“A bird catcher caught me,” said the bird to her husband. “He is hiding under the branches of our tree. He is cold and hungry. We must have pity on him.”

light up (lit up, lit up) осветить; branch ветка; right above his head прямо над его головой; hole дупло; have pity жалеть, пожалеть

Upon hearing her words, the second bird turned to the bird catcher.

“You are my guest,” he said. “What can I do for you?”

“I am cold,” the bird catcher answered.

The bird left his nest, and soon came back with a piece of charcoal. He made a fire, and put some dry brushwood into it. The bird catcher got warm.

“I am hungry,” he said. “Give me something to eat.”

The bird answered:

“We, forest creatures, eat what we can get. But you will not die of hunger. I will now enter the fire, and you can eat me. I only have one thing to ask of you: Let my wife go. If you don’t, our children will die of hunger.”

upon hearing her words услышав её слова; turn to повернуться к; leave (left, left) покидать; nest гнездо; charcoal древесный уголь; dry сухой; brushwood хворост; forest creatures лесные твари; die of hunger умереть с голоду; enter the fire войти в огонь; Let my wife go. Отпусти мою жену.

The man felt something like conscience stir up inside his chest.

“No,” he said. “I will not accept this sacrifice. I will not eat you.”

He opened the cage, and let the bird out.

“Live long, and be happy,” he said.

The moment he spoke these words, the thunderstorm stopped, as if by magic, and the man could finally go safely home.

feel (felt, felt) чувствовать; something like нечто похожее на; conscience совесть; stir up шевелиться; chest грудь, грудная клетка; accept принять; sacrifice жертва; let out выпустить; thunderstorm гроза; as if by magic словно по волшебству; finally наконец; safely безопасно; sweetheart возлюбленный, возлюбленная

What is the name of the bird that was ready to sacrifice itself for its sweetheart? Solve this rebus to find out.

25. Sick Leave

A member of a military band came to the surgeon.

“I have a terrible throat ache,” he complained.

“Let me see your throat,” said the doctor. “Oh, that’s not so bad. You’ll be all right in a day or two. I think you’d better rest a little for a week or so.” And with these words the surgeon gave the man sick leave.

sick leave отпуск по болезни; member участник ◊ member of a military band музыкант военного оркестра; surgeon хирург, врач; terrible ужасный; throat горло; ache боль; complain жаловаться; you’d better rest a little вам лучше немного отдохнуть

A week later, the surgeon met the bandsman in the street.

“How’s your throat?” he asked.

“Oh, I feel much better now,” was the reply.

“I’m glad to hear that,” said the surgeon. “You can go back to your duty now. By the way, what instrument do you play in the band?”

The bandsman told him.

meet (met, met) встречать; bandsman оркестрант; You can go back to your duty now. Вы теперь можете вернуться к своим обязанностям; by the way кстати, к слову, между прочим

What instrument did he play in the band?

26. The Traveller and the Witch

One cold winter day, a man was walking through a thick forest.  Soon, night fell, and it became very dark. Suddenly, the traveller saw a hut. He knocked, and an old woman answered the door.


“Let me spend the night at your house, Granny,” said the man. “I’m chilled to the bone. I will pay you as much as you say.”

traveller здесь: путник; witch ведьма; thick forest дремучий лес; hut хижина; knock стучать; answer the door открыть деверь (в ответ на стук); let me spend the night позволь мне провести ночь; I’m chilled to the bone. Я продрог до костей.

“Come in,” said the old woman. “As for your money, you can keep it. Humans may need money, but I don’t.”

“You wouldn’t be a witch, would you?” asked the traveller, studying her ugly face.

“The very same. They call me the Bony Leg. But you need not to be afraid of me. I won’t do you any harm.”

As for your money, you can keep it. Что до ваших денег, то можете оставить их себе; humans люди (в отличие от других существ); may need money, but I dont могут нуждаться в деньгах, но я в них не нуждаюсь; You wouldnt be a witch, would you? А ты, случаем, не ведьма?; ugly уродливый; The very same. Она самая; bony костлявый; костяной; do harm причинять вред

“You can warm your chilly bones by the fire, and even stay for the night, but I have one condition,” continued the witch.

“Name it.”

“You must solve one of my riddles.”

“Deal! Ask your riddle.”

“How can a man go eight days without sleep?”

“Oh, that’s very simple. I think I could do that,” said the man, and went on to explain.

condition условие; Name it. Назови его; Deal! Договорились!; explain объяснять

What did he say? How can a man go eight days without sleep? Solve this rebus to find out.

27. The Traveller and the Witch (2)

If the witch was disappointed, she didn’t show it.

“Well done,” she said, laying the table. “It is always a pleasure to share a meal with a clever man.”

disappointed разочарованный; show показывать; well done здесь: молодец (похвала); lay the table накрывать на стол; pleasure удовольствие; share a meal разделить трапезу (с кем-либо)

The next morning, the man went to the kitchen to say goodbye to the witch.

“It’s a pity you are leaving,” said the Bony Leg. “I’d rather you didn't go so soon. It is hard to find such good company nowadays. Do you mind if ask you another riddle? If you don’t solve it, you will stay with me for three months and three days.”

The traveller seemed to hesitate.

I’d rather я бы предпочла; nowadays в наши дни; do you mind if ты не возражаешь, если; hesitate колебаться, быть в нерешительности ◊ The traveller seemed to hesitate. Казалось, путник колеблется.

“Three months is a long time,” he said. “But, alright. Ask your riddle.”

“Here it is: If you have me, you want to share me. If you share me, you haven't got me. What am I?”

The traveler told her. There was nothing to do but to let him go.

share делиться, поделиться с кем-либо; There was nothing to do but to let him go. Ничего не оставалось, кроме как отпустить его.

And you, dear reader, do you know the answer to this riddle? If you don’t, this rebus may give you a clue.

28. Captured by Cannibals

This is a story about a hunter who was unfortunate enough to be captured by cannibals. The cannibals brought him to their village, and tied him to a pole. After a while, they started to make a fire. One of the cannibals approached the prisoner, and asked him his name.

capture захватить; взять в плен; hunter охотник; unfortunate незадачливый who was unfortunate enough to be captured by cannibals которому не повезло оказаться в плену у каннибалов; village деревня; tie to привязывать к; pole шест; after a while через некоторое время; approach приближаться к; prisoner пленник

“What do you need my name for?” asked the prisoner, hopefully. “Maybe they are not going to eat me, after all? Otherwise, they wouldn’t ask me my name,” he thought.

His heart sank when he heard the answer.

Maybe they are not going to eat me, after all? Может быть, они всё же не станут меня есть?; otherwise иначе, в противном случае; sink (sank, sunk) опускаться; погружаться his heart sank у него душа ушла в пятки

What did the cannibals want his name for?

29. A Strange Illness

“Last night, I went to the theater,” said Mr. Smith to a fellow employee. “Your wife was also there. She coughed so loud that other people in the audience couldn’t help staring at her. She must be very ill.”

“Not at all.”

illness болезнь; fellow employee сослуживец; cough кашлять; other people in the audience couldn’t help staring at her другие зрители не могли не смотреть на неё; not at all вовсе нет

If the woman wasn’t ill, why was she coughing? What was the matter with her? This rebus may help you find the right answer.

30. The Clever Prince

Once upon a time, there lived a king who had a daughter, a beautiful princess. So beautiful she was that princes from all over the world would come to ask for her hand in marriage. The girl, however, did not like the idea of getting married, so much so that she would not allow any of the suitors to come near her. She would always say that only the one she touched would become her husband.

once upon a time, there lived жил-был некогда (зачин сказок); from all over the world со всего мира; would come ask for her hand in marriage приезжали просить её руки (модальный would указывает здесь на то, что действие происходило многократно); however однако; so much so настолько (ей не нравилась эта идея, что); allow позволять; suitor поклонник; she would always say она постоянно твердила; touch прикасаться ◊ only the one she touched только тот, до которого она дотронется

Many princes had come, only to leave empty-handed, until one day, a prince came from a far-away kingdom. So resourceful was this young man, that he managed to marry the princess. Although she had never seen him before, she touched him nevertheless.

leave empty-handed уйти с пустыми руками, уйти несолоно хлебавши; resourceful изобретательный; although хотя; nevertheless тем не менее

How did he make her do that? If you don’t know, this rebus may give you a clue.

31. A Solid Reason

Two doctors are discussing the condition of a patient.

One of them says, “I think, the patient needs an operation.”

“What has he got?” asks the other.

discuss обсуждать; condition состояние здоровья; patient пациент; What has he got? Что у него?

What did the first doctor say? Solve this rebus to find out.

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