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★ 蝸牛與兔子奇譚(上) A Strange Tale of Snails and Rabbits

一窺中世紀迷因
10/28 生活英語

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他們可能找到了一個古老的迷因。
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Knight v Snail VIII:  Switcheroo!  It's a Monkey This Time (from the Gorleston Psalter, England (Suffolk), 1310-1324, Add MS 49622, f. 210v) (圖片轉引自 https://reurl.cc/AkmxKp)

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文章主講 Bruce, Antony

    In 2020, scientists discovered an unusual historical object in northern England. It is a small silver figure of a snail shell resting on top of a goat’ s back. On the top of the shell, a knight is seated with his hands pressed together like he s praying . At first, experts thought it was created to present a serious message. However, after examining it a bit closer, they concluded that it was designed to make people laugh. In other words, they probably discovered an ancient meme.

  在 2020 年,科學家在英格蘭北部發現一個特殊的歷史文物。那是一個小型的銀製塑像,雕刻的是一個在山羊背上的蝸牛殼。在殼上面坐著一個雙手合十的騎士,狀似在祈禱。一開始,專家們認為這個雕塑是創造來傳達一個嚴肅的訊息。然而,在更進一步的研究之後,他們斷定這是設計來博君一笑的。換句話說,他們可能找到了一個古老的迷因。

historical [ hɪsˈtɔrɪkl̩ ] a.(有關)歷史的
pray [ pre ] vi. 祈禱
conclude [ kənˈklud ] vt. 推斷出;作出(結論)

A Strange Tale of Snails and Rabbits  蝸牛與兔子奇譚

    It wasn t an easy task coming to this conclusion , as the piece is filled with hidden meanings. During medieval times, snails represented cowards. The image of knights defeating snails in battle was often used to show good defeating evil. In addition, the knight s hands pressed together in prayer might suggest the artwork has religious meanings.

  要得到這個結論並不簡單,因為這個作品充滿了隱藏意涵。在中世紀時,蝸牛代表的是懦夫。騎士在戰鬥中擊敗蝸牛的畫面經常用來表現良善擊敗邪惡。此外,這名騎士雙手合十可能在暗示這個作品含有宗教的意義。

conclusion [ kənˈkluʒən ] n. 結論
be filled with...  充滿⋯⋯
prayer [ prɛr ] n. 祈禱;祈禱儀式
religious [ rɪˈlɪdʒəs ] a. 宗教的

A Strange Tale of Snails and Rabbits  蝸牛與兔子奇譚 圖片轉引自 https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/silver-snail-found-in-a-field-is-medieval-meme-says-british-museum-bzl72k2kd
圖片轉引自 https://reurl.cc/5rWl06

    However, the artist meant to make the figure look silly. It might have been a way to make fun of knights who were slow to act when they were called on . Or, it was used to tease those who avoided combat by using religion as an excuse.

  然而,這個作品的藝術家刻意地讓這個雕塑看起來很可笑。這可能是用來嘲弄被號召時行動拖拖拉拉的騎士的一種方式。或者,它是用來嘲弄那些以宗教為藉口而逃避戰鬥的騎士。

make fun of...  取笑⋯⋯,奚落⋯⋯
call on sb  號召/召喚某人
tease [ tiz ] vt. 揶揄,取笑

 

延伸學習|on top of... 的用法

  1. on top of... 表「在⋯⋯的上面」(本文中的用法),或是「在⋯⋯的頂端」。
    Jon found his notebook sitting on top of a pile of books.
    瓊恩發現他的筆記本在一堆書上面。
  2. on top of... 也可以表「除了⋯⋯以外」,之後接名詞或動名詞,相當於 in addition to... 的用法。
    On top of two reports, I have a lot of math homework to finish.
    除了兩份報告以外,我還有很多數學作業待完成。
  3. on top of that 表示「除此之外,此外」,等同於 in addition,後面加逗號與主要子句隔開。
    I got lost on my way to the library. On top of that, it rained so heavily that I was completely wet when I finally got there.
    我在去圖書館的路上迷路了。除此之外,雨勢大到我抵達的時候全身都溼透了。

 

You Can Do This    英文試金石
請依句意在空格內填入適當的字詞

  1. 農人祈禱能夠盡快降雨來灌溉他們的作物。
    The farmers ______ for rain to come soon to water their crops.  
  2. 老師號召全班把教室整理乾淨。
    The teacher ________ the entire class to clean up the classroom.

 

Ans: 1. prayed 2. called on

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