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【VOA】你知道吗?“tragedy”这个词竟然来源于“山羊”

发布者: 千缘 | 发布时间: 2019-12-11 02:11| 查看数: 68| 评论数: 0|帖子模式

今日问题

⊙怎么受动物启发的?

Arctic

The word arctic comes from arktos, the Greek word for “bear.” But, giant polar bears roaming the arctic tundra aren’t the bears in reference; rather, it’s the beautiful constellation Ursa Major (“Great Bear”) in the night sky above.

arctic一词来源于希腊词arktos,意为“熊”。但是,漫步在北极冻原上的巨型北极熊并不是书中提到的熊;相反,它是夜空中美丽的大熊星座。



Before arctic described the northernmost region of the globe, the adjective referred to the celestial regions above the sparkling night sky. Beautiful!

在arctic(北极)一词被用来描述地球最北端之前,这个形容词指的是闪闪发光的夜空中最好看的地区。漂亮!

Sturdy

Today, we think of a sturdy bed frame as being “robust” and “strongly built.” Seven hundred years ago, a sturdy frame would have been “hard to manage” and “reckless” (it was going through its teenage angsty phase and hated people getting on its back all the time).

如今,我们认为坚固的框架是“坚固的”和“结实的”。700年前,坚固的框架可能是“难以管理”和“鲁莽的”(它正经历着青少年时期的愤怒阶段,讨厌人们对它唠叨不停)。



The word possibly derives from the Latin turdus, the dull brown and speckled songbirds we now call thrushes. One origin narrative explains that thrushes pecked fermented grapes left over from winemaking and would become drunk. In their loopy state, they’d behave “recklessly,” ransack the fridge, leave the door open all night, and pass out on the couch. The French expression soûl comme une grive, “as drunk as a thrush,” seems to corroborate this.

这个词可能来源于拉丁语turdus,我们现在称之为画眉的一种暗褐色斑点鸣鸟。一种原始的说法是画眉啄食酿酒时剩下的发酵的葡萄会喝醉。在这种精神错乱的状态下,他们会“不顾一切”地洗劫冰箱,整夜不关门,然后昏倒在沙发上。法语表达“soul comme une grive”“像一只画眉一样昏醉”似乎证实了这一点。

Bawl

Have you ever thought that when a person bawls, it sounds like a barking dog? If so, you’re on to the Latin origins of this word.

你有没有想过,当一个人哭泣的时候,听起来就像一只狂叫的狗?如果是这样的话,你就了解了这个词的拉丁起源。



In Latin, baulare meant “to bark like a dog,” and when the word was first adopted into English, it was only used in reference to man’s best friend. But, because distressed human beings can sound so much like dogs when they gulp for air and woof sobs of sadness, bawl is now a verb used to describe crying.

在拉丁语中,baulare的意思是“像狗一样吠叫”,当这个词首次被引入英语时,它只是用来指代人类最好的朋友。但是,因为悲伤的人在大口喘气和悲伤的呜咽时听起来很像狗,所以bawl现在是一个用来描述哭泣的动词。

Butcher

A butcher makes a living slaughtering animals to sell for meat, all kinds of animals. But, the word butcher originally referred to only a single animal: the goat.

屠夫靠宰杀动物,卖各种各样的动物的肉为生。但是,单词butcher最初只指代一种动物:山羊。



From the Old French bochier (boc meant “goat”), butcher literally meant “slaughterer of goats.” Not surprising to see animal inspiration behind this word, right?

在古法语bochier (boc的意思是“山羊”)中,butcher的字面意思是“山羊的屠夫”。看到这个词背后的动物灵感并不奇怪,对吧?

Canopy

In some places, mosquitos are so bad a canopy of netting is installed around beds to keep the menaces from aggravating sleepers.

在一些地方,蚊子的危害是如此之大,人们在床的周围安装了蚊帐,防止这些威胁使人睡觉时更加恼怒。



Similarly, Ancient Greeks built kanopeions, “couches with mosquito curtains,” to block the konops, “mosquitos.” By the time the word canopy was assimilated into English in the late 1300s, it referred only to the curtain and not the couch-and-curtain ensemble.

类似地,古希腊人建造了“kanopeions(带蚊帐的埃及床)”,“挂着蚊帐的窗帘”来阻挡konops,即“蚊子”。“canopy”一词在14世纪晚期被英语同化时,仅指窗帘,而不是指沙发和窗帘的组合。

Sniper

Back in the 1800s, it was popular to hunt snipes, or long-billed birds notorious for being jittery and flying at high speeds—making them one of the most difficult game birds to shoot.

早在19世纪,猎鹬(一种长嘴鸟,因其战战兢兢和高速飞行而臭名昭著)是一种很流行的运动——这使得猎鹬成为最难射杀的鸟类之一。



Moving too close to them would really ruffle their feathers and ruin a good shot, so the only way a sniper (snipe hunter) could possibly hit the bird was from a distance, hidden out of sight.

如果离它们太近,就会激怒它们的羽毛,破坏射击的效果,所以狙击手(狙击手猎手)唯一可能击中这只鸟的方法就是躲在看不见的远处。

Hackneyed

Fans of British dramas may know that hackneys were the Ubers of centuries past. The word originates from the Old French haquenée, or a docile horse suitable for the dainty and delicate dispositions of the fairer sex.

喜欢英剧的人可能知道哈克尼是几个世纪前的英国人。这个词起源于古法语haquenée,意思是温顺的马,适合女性的娇嫩性情。



Hackney then came to describe any horse hired out for service (along with the coach or carriage it was attached to). Poor hackney horses suffered through the drudgery of hard and incessant labor, pounding the streets every day until they were used up. By extension, anything that’s hackneyed reflects that sense of wearied, worn-out toil.

哈克尼后来用来形容任何被雇佣于服务的马(以及与它们有联系的马车)。可怜的哈克尼马忍受着无休止的辛苦劳作,每天在街上奔走,直到筋疲力尽。推而广之,任何陈腐的东西都反映出一种疲惫不堪的辛劳感。

Tragedy

Replacing the word tragedy with its Ancient Greek meaning turns tragic comic: “It was such a goat song the way Romeo and Juliet both die at the end!” “Goat song”? Yes, that is indeed what tragoedia means (from tragos, “goat” and oide, “song”).

将单词tragedy(悲剧)用它的古希腊含义替换就变成了悲剧性喜剧:“罗密欧和朱丽叶最后都死了,这真是一首山羊歌!”“山羊之歌?”是的,这确实是tragoedia的意思(来自tragos,“goat”和oide,“song”)。



Numerous conjectures try to explain this peculiar meaning; some say the earliest tragic plays were performed by actors dressed in goatskins; others relate the meaning’s origins to the fact that the goat was the sacred animal of Dionysus (the god of theater) and tragedies were the first plays created in the god’s honor.

无数的猜想试图解释这一奇特的含义;有人说最早的悲剧戏剧是由穿着羊皮的演员表演的;另一些人将这个意思的起源与山羊是狄奥尼索斯(戏剧之神)的神兽这一事实联系起来,而悲剧是为纪念神而创作的第一部戏剧。

Hobby

Also related to the noble equine, a hobby in the 1400s was a “small, active horse,” perfect for pulling a cart. The name for the small horse easily lent itself to describe a tiny toy horse in the word hobbyhorse.

同样与高贵的马有关,在15世纪,hobby指“小而活跃的马”,非常适合拉车。在单词hobbyhorse中以马起名是借用了它自己的一部分去形容一种小的玩具马。



Hobbyhorses are fun but they don’t go anywhere, which is exactly the sense that hobby came to pick up next: a favorite pastime that “doesn’t go anywhere,” or that isn’t one’s main (and very serious) occupation.

木马很有趣,但它们哪儿也去不了,这正是hobby接下来开始流行起来的原因:一种“哪儿也去不了”的最喜欢的消遣,或者这不是一个人的主要(非常严肃的)职业。




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