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The Leprechaun Legend Lives On 尋找拉布列康

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2019/03/05 第405期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份直接訂閱

   
 

The Leprechaun Legend Lives On  尋找拉布列康

by Bruce E. Bagnell

    

  If you’re in the United States on March 17, you may notice an unexpectedly large number of Americans are wearing at least one article of clothing that is green. These people are celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, the day of the patron saint of Ireland. In the US, Irish-Americans make up one of the country’s largest ancestry groups. In fact, the number of people that claim Irish heritage in the US is far greater than the population of Ireland!
  With more than 35 million US citizens claiming Irish ancestry, it should not be astonishing that the Irish have had a great influence on US culture. Besides St. Patrick’s Day, another charming piece of Gaelic culture that was brought to America is the myth of the leprechaun. Living in forests, caves, and even people’s gardens, leprechauns are said to be meter-tall, bearded men who have a penchant for wearing leather shoes, trousers, a long-sleeved shirt, and an overcoat, all topped with a wide-brimmed hat, often with a buckle centered on the front. They are somewhat mischievous and like to play tricks on people. As legend goes, if a human should catch a leprechaun, the little man will grant three wishes to gain his freedom.
  In some families, schools, and communities, parents and teachers help children build leprechaun traps. These are set up on the eve of St. Patrick’s Day, much like when children leave milk and cookies out for Santa Claus on Christmas Eve. Since leprechauns fancy gold, gold-colored objects are placed in the traps to lure the little fellows in. The next day, children will miraculously find evidence, like chocolates and sweets, left behind by a curious leprechaun who visited but managed to escape.
  Leprechauns are even featured as mascots for the University of Notre Dame and the Boston Celtics basketball team. It seems that adults also enjoy the legendary little leprechaun.
1. What is the first paragraph mainly about?
(A) The legend of the leprechaun.
(B) The reason why leprechauns are so popular in Ireland.
(C) The influence of Irish culture in the United States.
(D) The difference between the Irish in Ireland and Irish-Americans.
2. What does the phrase “have a penchant for” in the second paragraph most nearly mean?
(A) A strong liking or fondness for something.
(B) The ability to make or craft something.
(C) To be fashionable or stylish.
(D) To be proud of one’s ancestry.
3. Why are gold-colored objects placed inside leprechaun traps?
(A) They show that the trap belongs to rich people.
(B) They are more easily seen at night.
(C) Leprechauns are fond of eating gold.
(D) Leprechauns are attracted to gold.
4. What is the purpose of the final paragraph?
(A) To give a description of leprechauns as being very athletic.
(B) To show that leprechauns in the US are not only popular among children.
(C) To encourage readers to believe in leprechauns.
(D) To detail where most Irish-Americans live in the US.

 

1. live on  繼續存在
•The memory of our loved ones will live on even after they have passed away.
即使我們的摯愛已不在人世,對他們的追憶仍將長存。

2. make up…  構成……
•Twenty players make up the basketball team.
這支籃球隊由二十名選手組成。

3. have an influence on…  對……有影響
•Mr. Johnson’s teachings have had a significant influence on my philosophy of life.
強森先生的教誨對我的人生觀影響很大。

4. be topped with…  上面有……,被……覆蓋
•Our beef is roasted to perfection and topped with fresh onions.
我們的牛肉烤得恰到好處,上面加上新鮮的洋蔥。

5. play a trick on sb  開某人玩笑
•The students played a trick on the teacher by hiding the chalk.
學生們將粉筆藏起來捉弄這位老師。

6. manage to V  設法做到……
•Did you manage to save any money last year?
你去年有設法存到錢嗎?

7. be fond of…  喜愛……
•Kim is really fond of heavy metal music.
小金真的很喜歡重金屬音樂。

1. unexpectedly adv. 意想不到地
•Mike showed up at the party unexpectedly.
麥克在那場派對上意外現身。

2. article n. 一件物品(如衣物、傢俱等);文章
an article of clothing / furniture  一件衣服∕傢俱
= a piece of clothing / furniture
•Paul bought several articles of furniture recently.
保羅最近買了幾件傢俱。

3. heritage n. 遺產
•Vienna is hosting a classical music festival to celebrate its musical heritage.
維也納目前正舉辦古典音樂季來頌揚其音樂遺產。

4. myth n. 神話;迷思
•The story in the magazine is just a myth. There’s not a single grain of truth in it.
雜誌裡的那則報導不過是無稽之談。毫無事實根據。

5. mischievous a. 調皮的,淘氣的
•The mother turned a blind eye to her son’s mischievous behavior.
那位媽媽對兒子調皮搗蛋的行為視而不見。

6. grant vt. 給予
•Your request for housing benefits has been granted.
你要求的住房津貼已經獲准。

7. eve n. 前夜,前夕
on the eve of…  在……的前夕
•On the eve of her wedding, Julia changed her mind about getting married.
在婚禮前夕,茱莉亞改變了結婚的心意。

8. fancy vt. 愛好,迷戀
•Linda fancies walking in the rain because she thinks it is romantic.
琳達喜歡在雨中漫步,因為她覺得這樣很浪漫。

9. lure vt. 引誘,誘惑
lure sb into N/V-ing  引誘∕誘惑某人做……
•The spy lured the guard into a trap and knocked him out.
那名間諜把警衛誘入陷阱後將他打昏。

10. miraculously adv. 神奇地,奇蹟般地
•Gary miraculously survived the plane crash without a scratch.
蓋瑞在那起墜機事件中奇蹟般地毫髮無傷活了下來。

11. legendary a. 傳奇的;非常有名的
•Achilles is a legendary hero from Greek mythology.
阿基里斯是希臘神話裡的一位傳奇英雄。

12. fashionable a. 時尚的,流行的
•Edward is fashionable and is always up to date with the latest trends.
愛德華非常時髦,而且總會趕上最新潮流。

13. athletic a. 強壯的,(擅長)運動的
an athletic meet  運動會
•There was an athletic meet on our campus yesterday.
昨天我們校園有場運動會。

claim vt. 聲稱(擁有),主張(其後常接 that 子句)
•Some people claim that you can lose weight without exercising.
有些人宣稱你不用運動就能減重。
————————————————————————-
以下介紹 claim 作動詞時的其他意思以及作名詞時的意思與用法:
a. claim 作動詞時除了可表「聲稱(擁有),主張」外,亦有「索取(錢)」、「領取(行李)」、「奪去(生命)」及「要求∕申請(合法權利)」等意思。
•Connie should claim her money back because the painting is a fake.
康妮應該把錢要回來,因為這幅畫是贗品。
•Please go over there to claim your luggage.
請到那邊領取您的行李。
•The flood claimed 20 lives.
這場洪水奪走了二十條人命。
•Many of those who claim asylum are refugees.
許多申請庇護的人都是難民。
*asylum n. 庇護
b. claim 作名詞時可表「聲稱,主張」、「要求,索賠」、「所有權」。
•Never make any claim you can’t prove to be true.
千萬不要提出任何你無法證實的宣言。
•John’s claim for unfair dismissal was rejected.
約翰針對遭不公平解僱提出的賠償要求被駁回了。
•The small island’s claim to fame is its perfect beaches for surfing.
這座小島享有盛名乃因它有極適合衝浪的海灘。

a patron saint  守護神
ancestry n. 血統;祖先(總稱)
citizen n. 公民,國民
bearded a. 有(滿臉)鬍子的
penchant n. 愛好,嗜好
trousers n. 長褲(因有兩條褲管,故恆用複數)
overcoat n. 大衣
wide-brimmed  寬邊的(為形容詞 + 名詞變成的過去分詞所形成的複合形容詞)
brim n. 邊緣
buckle n. 扣環
mascot n. 吉祥物
fondness n. 喜愛,鍾愛

As legend goes, if a human should catch a leprechaun, the little man will grant three wishes to gain his freedom.
與未來狀況相反的假設語氣
※使用本假設語氣時,if 子句一定要加助動詞 should, “if… should” 譯成「萬一」,有三種用法,句型介紹如下:
a. 若假設的可能性很高,則主要子句要用現在式助動詞:
If + 主詞 + should + V, 主詞 + will / can / may / should / ought to + V
If you should fall ill, the meeting will be put off.
萬一你生病,會議將會延期。── 你可能會生病,而會議亦可能延期
b. 若假設的可能性很低,主要子句要置過去式助動詞:
If + 主詞 + should + V, 主詞 + would / might / should / ought to + V
If you should fall ill, the meeting would be put off.
萬一你生病,會議將會延期。── 你不太可能生病,會議也不太可能延期
c. 此用法亦可與命令句形成的主要子句並用:
If I should be late, be sure to wait for me.
萬一我遲到,務必要等我。── 我可能會遲到,你務必要等我
※在此假設語氣的 if 子句中,可將 should 往前移至主詞前,並將 if 省略,句型如下:
Should + 主詞 + V, 主要子句
If Andy should tell lies, I would punish him.
= Should Andy tell lies, I would punish him.
萬一安迪說謊,我會處罰他。
※其他類似用法介紹如下:
假設語氣的 if 子句中,若有過去完成式助動詞 had 或是 were 出現時,亦可將 had 或 were 置於主詞前,並省略 if。
If Ed had done it, he would have felt sorry.
= Had Ed done it, he would have felt sorry.
如果艾德當時做了這件事,他會後悔的。
If Nick were lazy, he might fail.
= Were Nick lazy, he might fail.
如果尼克怠惰,就可能會失敗。

尋找拉布列康
  

  如果你三月十七日人在美國的話,你可能會意想不到有許多美國人身穿至少一件綠色衣物。這些人正在慶祝聖派翠克節,這是愛爾蘭守護神的節日。在美國,愛爾蘭裔美國人是該國最大的族群之一。實際上,在美國宣稱擁有愛爾蘭血統的人數還比愛爾蘭的人口要多得多!
  三千五百多萬名美國公民宣稱擁有愛爾蘭血統,那愛爾蘭人對美國文化產生了巨大的影響也就不足為奇了。除了聖派翠克節,另一個也被帶進美國的迷人蓋爾(編按:愛爾蘭的別稱。)文化即是矮精靈拉布列康的傳說。拉布列康住在森林、山洞,甚至是人們的花園裡,據說他們是一公尺高、有著鬍子的男人,他們熱愛穿皮鞋、皮褲、長袖襯衫以及長大衣,而且全都會戴著前面中間通常有一個扣環的寬邊帽。他們有些淘氣,且喜歡捉弄人們。根據傳說,如果有人抓到拉布列康,那麼這個小精靈就會給那個人三個願望以換取自己的自由。
  在某些家庭、學校和社區裡,父母和老師會幫助孩子們打造矮精靈陷阱。這些陷阱會在聖派翠克節的前一個晚上設置,與孩子們在平安夜為聖誕老公公留下牛奶和餅乾十分相像。由於拉布列康喜歡黃金,因此陷阱裡會放著金色的物品以誘惑這些矮精靈進來。隔天,孩子們就會很神奇地發現像是巧克力和甜點等的證據,是由到訪過卻設法逃脫、充滿好奇心的拉布列康所留下的。
  拉布列康甚至還是聖母大學和波士頓塞爾提克籃球隊的吉祥物。看來連大人們都很喜歡這個充滿傳奇的矮精靈拉布列康。
1. 第一段主旨為何?
(A) 拉布列康的傳說。
(B) 為什麼拉布列康在愛爾蘭如此受歡迎。
(C) 愛爾蘭文化在美國的影響。
(D) 愛爾蘭人與愛爾蘭裔美國人之間的差異。
2. 第二段的片語 “have a penchant for” 最接近的意思為何?
(A) 對某物強烈的喜歡或喜好。
(B) 製作或打造某物的能力。
(C) 時尚或時髦。
(D) 對某人的血統感到驕傲。
3. 為何金色的物品會被放在矮精靈陷阱裡?
(A) 它們彰顯出這個陷阱屬於有錢人。
(B) 它們在晚上更顯眼。
(C) 拉布列康喜歡吃黃金。
(D) 拉布列康會被黃金吸引。
4. 最後一段的目的為何?
(A) 為了將拉布列康描繪得非常健壯。
(B) 為了顯示拉布列康在美國不只受到孩子的歡迎。
(C) 為了鼓勵讀者相信拉布列康。
(D) 為了詳述美國哪裡住著最多的愛爾蘭裔美國人。
答案:
1. C 2. A 3. D 4. B

 
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