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VOA慢速英语[词汇典故]母亲相关的短语

2015-05-27    来源:普特英语听力    【      美国外教 在线口语培训
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Now, the VOA Learning English program Words and Their Stories. Each week at this time, we tell about everyday expressions in American English and how to use them.
 
In the United States, Mother’s Day falls on the second Sunday in May. It was back in 1908 when a woman named Anna Jarvis created this unofficial holiday to honor mothers. However, Ms. Jarvis would later criticize Mother’s Day. She said it had become too commercial -- too much about spending money.
 
She had a good point.
 
Traditionally, children and husbands celebrate mothers of all ages by buying flowers, cards and other gifts or taking them to dinner in a nice restaurant. But today, you will not need any money at all. We instead will talk about some expressions that use the word "mother."
 
To start with, most mothers give birth. So, your motherland is where you were born and your mother tongue is your native language.
 
Some cultures believe Mother Earth gave birth to everything that exists on our planet. In Greek mythology, a goddess named Gaia was the mother of all. She was said to have created the Earth and the Universe. Mother Nature is a little different. This term relates to the natural world as if it were a woman.
 
It has been said that there is nothing as great as a mother’s love. Some mother expressions mean just that. The mother lode comes from mining. It means the place where the largest amount of gold, silver, or anything else of value can be found.
 
But now, the term mother lode means a rich supply of anything. We often use the word "strike” with this expression. For example, you might say, “She just graduated college and struck the mother lode with her new job!” In other words, the woman’s new job is making her rich!
 
When we call something “the mother of all,” this means it is the biggest or best of something. Here is an example: “We are going to throw the mother of all parties this weekend. So you have to come!”
 
Naturally, the word “mother” can be used to mean to give birth, even to something you cannot touch, such as an idea or wisdom. The saying “necessity is the mother of invention” means that when people really need to do something, they will find a way to do it. And “experience is the mother of wisdom” means that people learn from what happens to them.
 
You might think that all expressions about mothers are sweet and loving. Not so.
 
A boy who is “tied to his mother’s apron strings” is controlled by his mother. We can also call him a “mama’s boy.” Both of these terms are even more insulting if you are talking about a man, not a young boy. It can be a huge mistake for a woman to marry a “mama’s boy” who is still “tied to his mother’s apron strings.”
 
A show about mothers would not be complete without talking about the very popular but mysterious Mother Goose. The short poems and songs that Mother Goose supposedly wrote are very much a part of growing up in the United States. Real or not, you could say Mother Goose is the mother of all nursery rhyme writers.
 
We do know that writer Robert Louis Stevenson was real. He is famous for such stories as “Treasure Island" and “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.” He also wrote this poem titled, simply, “To My Mother.”      
 
You too, my mother, read my rhymes
 
For love of unforgotten times,
 
And you may chance to hear once more
 
The little feet along the floor. 
 
To all mothers of all types around the world, we here at VOA Learning English wish you a very Happy Mother’s Day!
 
I'm Anna Matteo.


现在是美国之音慢速英语词汇典故节目。每周的这个时间,我们都会谈谈美式英语中日常短语及用法。

在美国,五月的第二个星期天就是母亲节,母亲节可以追溯到1908年,一位名叫Anna Jarvis的女性创立了这个非官方节日纪念母亲们,然而, Jarvis女士之后却指责母亲节已经变得过于商业化——过度浪费金钱。

她说的不错。

传统上,孩子和丈夫通过买花、卡片和其它礼物或带母亲在优雅的餐厅用餐来为各个年龄层的母亲们庆祝。但是,今天你根本不必花钱,相反我们将谈谈几个用到“母亲”这个单词的短语。

首先,多数母亲会生宝宝,所以,祖国(motherland)就是你的出生地,mother tongue是指母语。

一些文化相信大地(Mother Earth)给予了我们星球上所有存在的一切生命。在希腊神话中,女神Gaia是最伟大的母亲,传说中她开创了地球和宇宙。大自然(Mother Nature)有一些不同,这个词语与自然界相关,好像其是女性。

人们说,母爱最伟大。一些关于母亲的短语就是这类意思,母矿(mother lode)一词源自采矿业,它指的是金银矿或其它价值连城的东西蕴藏量最大的地方。

但是现在,mother lode这个术语可指任何供应充足的事物,我们常常使用"strike”与该短语连接。比如,你可以说“她才刚毕业,struck the mother lode with her new job.”换而言之,这女孩的新工作让她发财了!

当我们说某事是“the mother of all”,这是指这是最大的或最好的 ,举个例子,“这周末我们要办最炫的聚会,所以你一定要来呀!”

单词母亲自然可以用来指生育,甚至可以指如想法或智慧等虚幻的事物。比如谚语“:需要是发明之母(necessity is the mother of invention)”是指当人迫切需要什么,就会找到实现的方法。实践出真知(experience is the mother of wisdom)是指人会从经验中学习总结。

你可能认为所有和母亲相关的短语很温馨有爱,其实并非如此。

一个男孩唯母命是从(tied to his mother’s apron strings)是指由母亲支配,我们可以说他是“奶嘴男(mama’s boy)”,如果用来谈论男人而非男孩就更具侮辱性,女人嫁给唯母命是从的奶嘴男是天大的错误。

关于母亲的节目如果不谈盛行而诡异的鹅妈妈童谣就不完整了。据说,鹅妈妈童谣所写的短诗歌占据了美国人成长的重要部分。不论真假,你可以说鹅妈妈童谣是最好的童谣作者。

我们知道确有作者罗伯特路易斯•鲍尔弗史蒂文森,他著有小说《金银岛》和《化身博士》,他还写有标题为《致母亲》的这样一首诗。

母亲,请你也来读我的诗吧!
为了那段难忘的岁月,
你可能偶然再次听见
一双小脚丫沿着地板走动的声息。

美国之音慢速英语节目祝全世界所有的母亲们节日快乐!

我是Anna Matteo.



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