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Beatissimos Vero Quibus Utrumque(九年级阅读)  

2014-10-11 12:18:42|  分类: 九年级阅读 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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从阅读经典中得到人生启示。

       No, the title isn’t English.This is theLatin proclamation made by Pliny theYounger(小普林尼)in a letter to Cornelius Tacitus(塔西图斯),a historian of the Roman Empire.He says it is a gift from the gods to write something worth reading or do something worth writing about.The title of this article is the end of his thought:“and most blessed are,of course,those who do both.”
  Pliny the Younger was writing about the death of his uncle,Pliny the Elder(老普林尼),an official in charge of the Roman fleet(舰队)in the Bay of Naples and author of Naturalis Historia (《自然史》),one of the most complete encyclope-dias to survive from the Roman Empire.Pliny the Elder witnessed the eruption of Mt.Vesuvius (维苏威火山),the volcano that buried the ancient Roman city of Pompeii(庞贝古城).He heroically sailed through falling ash and scorching(灼热的)heat to help evacuate people from the eruption area.Before,he had written many things worth reading,but now he had done something truly worth writing about.
  But are ancient texts still worth reading today?That is the question Shanghai schools are trying to answer.
  As the new school year begins,first- year students in Shanghai are using shorter Classical Chinese textbooks.They have eight fewer poems.Why?Some believe it’s an unnecessary burden to memorize so much.Others think poems are a waste of time.But are they useless?

       Just like in China,students in the United States still study classical literature,both in English translation and in the original ancient languages.In high school,I delivered part of Cicero’s(西塞罗)speech to the Roman senate (罗马元老院),exposing the rebellious schemes of Catilina(卡提利纳的反叛阴谋),in Latin.I can still recite some of Bottom’s(波特穆)lines that I memorized for a middle school performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare.
  However,in each of these cases,I did more than just memorize and recite—I performed in front of classmates,teachers and my parents.I became a better public speaker.I practiced writing and delivering speeches.Preparing for a performance also helped me better understand the characters’personalities,language and history.
  Many stories in Classical Chinese are worth reading.Perhaps Shanghai’s schools could use Classical Chinese not only to teach valuable skills,but also to inspire their students to do something worth writing about.

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