不要对礼物挑三拣四 分享到
‘Don’t Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth’ 2018-01-08104762

中英
Việt-Anh
ไทย-อังกฤษ
英文

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Now, the VOA Learning English program Words and Their Stories.
这里是美国之音慢速英语词汇故事栏目。
On this show, we explore the origins and usage of common expressions in American English.Sometimes we tie the show to an event or special time of the year.This show could be tied to any time of the year that features a holiday.
本栏目主要探讨美式英语中常见表达的起源和用法。有时本栏目还会和一年当中的一些重要事件或时刻相联系。这次节目就与一年当中的各种节日相关。
Holidays are a wonderful time of the year!They are a time when people slow down and take a break from their daily lives.
节日是一年中美妙的时刻。人们可以从日常生活中慢下来,休息一下。
While holidays are celebrated in different ways, many have something in common -- gift-giving!
虽然节日的庆祝方式多种多样,但有一样是相同的,那就是送礼物。
And who doesn’t like to get a present.Covered in pretty paper, maybe tied with a bow or ribbon, a wrapped gift is a surprise.It could be anything!
谁不喜欢收礼物呢。外面用漂亮的纸包好,再用蝴蝶结或丝带绑好,包装好的礼物本身就是一个惊喜。里面可以装任何东西。
“Oh, you really shouldn’t have!”is a common response when someone hands you a gift.We say this even when we are thinking to ourselves, “Yay! I got a present!”
“真的没必要!”这是人们收到礼物时的共同回应。即使我们心里想的是:“耶,我收到礼物了”,我们也会这样说。
Sometimes the gift is perfect.
有时礼物本身就很完美。
“It’s just what I have always wanted!” you might say.
“这就是我一直想买的那个!”可能还会这样说。
Sometimes it’s not.
但有时并不是。
We have all been there.You happily tear open a gift, wondering what is inside.But then you see it and you are ... disappointed.But you must not show it.And you absolutely must not criticize the gift and make comments about why you don’t like it.
我们都有这样的经历。你开心地打开礼物,想要知道里面是什么。但看到时却失望了。可是绝对不能表现出来。也绝对不能批评这个礼物,不能说任何不喜欢的话。
In other words, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.
换句话说就是不要对礼物挑三拣四。
This idiom is really old.
这个习语历史真的非常悠久了。
Way back in 1546, a man named John Heywood supposedly used this phrase in some Middle English text.(“No man ought to looke a geuen hors in the mouth.”)
可以追溯到1546年,一个名叫约翰·伍德的人曾在中世纪英语文本中使用过这个短语。(“没有人可以对礼物挑三拣四。”)
However, some word experts say the idiom is much older than that.However old it is, people must have used it when gifting a horse was a common thing.
然而,一些词汇专家认为,这个习语的历史比那还要久远。无论多么久远,人们一定是在经常把马当作礼物的时候使用它。
To understand this idiom, we must understand a bit about horse’s teeth.They grow over time.So, checking the length of the teeth is a way of knowing the horse’s age.
为了解这个习语,我们必须了解一些有关马牙齿的知识。马的牙齿一直在长。所以测量马的牙齿长度可以知道马的年龄。
Although I have never given or received a horse, I’m guessing a young horse makes a better gift than an old one.
虽然我从未向他人赠与或收到过马,但我猜年轻的马会比老马更适合做礼物。
However, checking the horse’s mouth would be a sign of mistrust towards the gift giver.This would be bad manners.And it might make the giver feel embarrassed or even angry!
但是,检查马的嘴可能成为对赠送礼物的人不信任的表现。这是不礼貌的。也会让礼物赠与者感到尴尬或生气。
The polite thing to do is simply to say “thank you” and accept the gift horse graciously.
礼貌一点的方法就是简单说句“谢谢”,然后亲切地接受礼物。
These days, horses are not common gifts.But we commonly use this idiom.
如今,马不再是经常能见到的礼物了。但我们还经常用这个习语。
Today “don’t (or never) look a gift horse in the mouth” means don’t find fault with something that has been received as a gift or favor.Don’t be ungrateful when you receive a present, even if it’s not exactly what you wanted.
今天,这个习语的意思变成不要对礼物或赠与挑三拣四。收到礼物时要心存感激,即使并不是自己想要的。
If you complain about a gift someone has given you or a favor someone has done for you,you could be accused of looking a gift horse in the mouth.
如果对于他人给予的礼物或帮助进行抱怨,那么就会被控对礼物挑三拣四的帽子。
Besides gifts, you can use this idiom for other things, such as a favor.
除了说礼物之外,这个习语也可用到其他东西上,如帮助。
Let’s say you ask a friend to help cook a dish for a party you are throwing for a group of senior citizens in your neighborhood.
例如,请求朋友帮助在与邻居中一群老人的聚会上做一道菜。
She comes to the dinner, smiling from ear to ear, and hands you the dish she has cooked.It is very burnt and it smells ... odd.But you don’t want to look a gift horse in the mouth.You thank her for her dish and the time she took to make it.Then you put it on the table ... in the back ... where people hopefully won’t see it.
她来吃晚餐,亲切的微笑,并把做的菜递给你。菜几乎都烧焦了,也不太好闻。但是不要对此挑三拣四,你要感谢她特地花费时间做的菜。然后把这道菜放到餐桌后边,尽可能放到人们注意不到的地方。
So, next time you get a gift that is less than perfect, remember that it is not nice to look a gift horse in the mouth.After all, it’s the thought that counts.This means that it’s the thought of gift-giving and not the gift itself that is important.
所以,下次收到的礼物时,虽然不怎么完美,但也不要挑三拣四。毕竟,心意更重要。这句话的意思是想要送礼物的心意比礼物本身更重要。
And don’t worry.If you get something as a gift that you really don’t like, you can always pass it along to someone else who may actually like it.
不要担心。如果你收到了一份真的不喜欢的礼物,你可以把它转送给喜欢它的人。
In other words, you can always re-gift it!
换句话说就是,你总是可以把它当作礼物再送出去。
And that’s the end of this Words and Their Stories!
以上就是本期单词故事栏目的全部内容。
I’m Anna Matteo.
安娜·马里奥为您播报。

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