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Little hero of the year

鼠年说鼠,没想到我们对老鼠的误解有这么深

中文 英文 双语 2020-01-21    来源:21世纪学生英文报·高一      阅读数:49428
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导读:今年是农历鼠年,但在人们的印象里,老鼠似乎是一个十分不讨喜的动物,与老鼠有关的成语往往是“胆小如鼠”“抱头鼠窜”“鼠目寸光”“贼眉鼠眼”等等。那么,老鼠为何能够成为十二生肖之首,我们对老鼠又有什么样的误解?

QIANTU

Do you know why the cat is the enemy of the rat?
你知道猫为什么是老鼠的天敌吗?

As Chinese folklore goes, the rat and cat made an appointment to attend a competition held by the Jade Emperor. It would decide the zodiac animals. However, the quick-witted rat did not wake the cat up and at last won by riding on the ox’s back to sneak ahead.
在中国民间传说中,猫和老鼠约好一起参加玉皇大帝举办的比赛,决出生肖动物。但机灵的老鼠却没有叫醒猫,它藏在牛的背上溜到了前面。

Thus, the rat ranked first on the 12 Chinese zodiac signs and became an enemy of the cat. So when Chinese people talk about the rat, they are likely to see it as greedy and dishonest. For example, there is the phrase “a thief’s eyebrow and a rat’s eyes”, to describe someone who looks untrustworthy.
因此,老鼠成了中国十二生肖之首,也成了猫的死对头。所以,当中国人谈论老鼠时,大家都认为它贪婪又狡诈。比如,“贼眉鼠眼”一词便用来形容看起来不可信的人。

In the real world, rats are known for spreading diseases. It was regarded as one of the “four pests” in 1960s China.
在现实生活中,众所周知,老鼠能够传染疾病,在上世纪60年代被视为中国的“四害”之一。

Rats have also long been blamed for spreading the Black Death, which took the lives of about 25 million people around Europe in the 14th century。
老鼠向来也是传播黑死病的罪魁祸首,在14世纪的欧洲,约有2500万人死于此病。

Nevertheless, it’s time to know the other side of the rat, as the Chinese Lunar New Year is around the corner. The Year of the Rat starts on Jan 25.
但随着今年1月25日中国农历鼠年的到来,是时候了解老鼠的另一面了。

Chinese literature has some positive views of rats. In the novel Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio, written by Qing dynasty writer Pu Songling, a courageous, smart and faithful rat, smaller in size and weaker in strength, battles with a fierce snake to save its companion.
老鼠在中国文学中也有一些正面的形象。在清朝作家蒲松龄所著的小说《聊斋志异》中,一只勇敢聪明又忠心耿耿的小老鼠,在体型和力量都处于下风的情况下,为救自己的同伴与一条凶猛的蛇一战。

There is also folklore treating the rat as a great hero. It is said that the rat created the world by taking a bite of heaven, bringing light to humans. It helped people survive by stealing firewood and grain seeds. As a result, many people worship the rat by offering sacrifices and praying for success.
也有民间传说将老鼠视为大英雄。据说老鼠把天咬开了一个洞,为人类带来了光明,从而创造了世界。它还为人们偷来了赖以生存的火种和谷种。因此,许多人都有崇拜老鼠的风俗,向其献祭,祈求成功。

Since rats live together in societies and have many babies with a high survival rate, they also represent cooperation and reproduction.
因为老鼠是群居动物,繁衍快,生命力强,它们也象征着合作与繁衍。

With all these qualities, it is believed that people born in the Year of the Rat are smart and good at making money.
这些品质令人们认为,生肖属鼠的人都聪明伶俐,且善于生财。

21英语网站版权说明  (Translator & Editor: Wang Xingwei AND Ji Yuan)


以上文章内容选自《21世纪学生英文报高中版》,详情请见《21世纪学生英文报高中版》高一778期
辞海拾贝
Folklore民间传说 Zodiac animals生肖
Quick-witted机灵的 Four pests四害
Worship崇拜 Sacrifices祭品


 


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