双语揭秘:为什么英国人喜欢说sorry?


英国人爱说对不起? 英国人爱说对不起?

(来源:沪江英语)

A survey reveals that the average British person will say ‘sorry’ more than 1.9 million times in their lifetime。

一项研究发现,英国人一生说“对不起”的平均次数有每人190多万次之多。

Of course, ‘sorry’ has a multitude of uses in this country。 It might be deployed apologetically in response to stepping on someone‘s foot or indignantly in response to them stepping on your foot - or sarcastically in response to them glaring at you for stepping on their foot。 In the U.S。, there are no such nuances。 Over there, ’sorry‘ tends to mean sorry。

当然,“对不起”这个词在英国能发挥多重功能。或许你不小心踩着了某人的脚所以想表示歉意,或者你被别人踩到自己的脚,所以要表示愤慨,抑或当你踩到了别人的脚,对方对你吹胡子瞪眼时表示讽刺。美国人可没这么多讲究。在美国,“对不起”一般仅指对不起。

Evidently, the word ‘whinge’ has been in steady use in Britain since the 1500s, possibly because we haven‘t stopped whingeing since。

众所周知,“抱怨(whinge)”这个词自16世纪以来就成为英国人的常用语汇,这或许是因为自这个词诞生以来,我们就从未停止过抱怨。

Yet we are no good at actual complaining。 ‘[The British] habitually refuse to tackle an issue head on,’  ‘A common response to “How are you?” in Britain is “Can’t complain”。‘

然而真正抱怨的时候我们又乏于技巧。“(英国人)习惯性的在遇到问题的时候拒绝正面处理问题。”“当被问及‘你好吗’(How are you)时,英国人的惯常回答是‘还算好。’(Can‘t complain)”。

It‘s quite true: we can’t。 Not nearly as well as our more direct transatlantic cousins, anyway。 As Moore observes: ‘If you ever accidentally cut someone in a line in Britain, what you’ll hear will be grumbling, whingeing, under-the-breath comments and sighs: the barely audible sounds of half-a-dozen people deciding, all at once, not to confront you。

的确如此,我们的确不能够正确的抱怨。这一点与大西 洋彼岸那些性情直率的美国兄弟不尽相同。摩尔教授据自己的观察发现,“在英国,如果你无意间插队到别人的前面,你只会听到小声的埋怨、嘀咕、耳语式的指摘 和叹气声:被你插队的半打英国人都会在瞬间决定不与你正面冲突,而只用勉强听到的声音发泄不满。

‘While an American might just say: “Hey, buddy - the end of the line is over there。”

“而一位美国人则会说,‘嘿,老兄,队伍的末尾在那儿!”

Howerver, I’m gratified to learn that millions of Americans, in turn, have adopted the British way of using ‘cheers’ to mean thanks or goodbye。

不过,令人欣慰的是,我发现数以百万的美国人反过来学会了英国人用“cheers”来表示感谢或告别。

Moore quotes a British banker living in New York, who says: ‘I’m getting sick of my clients saying “Cheers” to me。 Americans say “Cheers” with too much enthusiasm。 It must be delivered laconically。‘

摩尔教授引用了一位居住在纽约的英国银行家的话,他说到,‘我的顾客总会对我说‘Cheers’,对此我不得不感到厌烦。美国人对‘Cheers’这个词太有热情了。这个词本应用得更加简明直接。”


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95919000:2017-11-20 01:40:03