English Collection

日頃目に付いた覚えたい英単語、慣用句などの表現についてのメモです。

beatboxing

2014年02月28日 | 英語学習
Reader's Digest 1月号の単語クイズは音楽に関する問題でしたが、いつも以上に難しく、15問中、知っている単語は "plectrum" と "gamelan" の二つだけでした。その他の問題の中に一つだけ覚えたいと思う単語がありました。 その単語は "beatboxing" で、次ぎのA,B,Cのどの意味かを問う問題です。
A. competition between two male singers.
B. art of imitating musical instruments with your mouth, lips and tongue.
C. very fast drumming.
私は "beatboxing" が "beat" と "boxing" の組み合わせによる語感から、Cだと思ったのですが、外れで、正解はBでした。示されていた例文は次ぎのようです。 Beatboxing astounds with the complex array of sounds one person can generate.
いつもの癖で辞書でも確認します。
・Collins Dictionary: a form of hip-hop music in which the voice is used to simulate percussion instruments
・Wiktionary: The practice of using one’s mouth, lips, tongue, voice, etc. as a percussive instrument to create beats, rhythms and melodies for music, mainly hip hop.
これなら今の若い人は知っている単語だなと思いました。
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embolism

2014年02月27日 | 英語学習
Reader's Digest 1月号の記事 MINUTES FROM DEATHに出てきた医学用語 "embolism" を覚えたいと思います。
Most worrying was her blood pressure. For a woman her age, it should have been 120 systolic. Cari's was 60. The blood pressure suggested a few possibilities: ruptured aorta, internal bleeding, fluid around the heart, septic shock or a major heart attack. The possibility that Inamdar kept coming back to, however, was a massive pulmonary embolism.
"systolic" は以前に覚えた "systole" の形容詞形ですね。"aorta" と "pulmonary" もその時に調べた辞書に出ていました。
新たに覚えたいのは "embolism" ですが、この記事の後半に出てきた次ぎの文で意味はだいたい推測できます。
The treatment for a pulmonary embolism is a thrombolytic - a drug that dissolves blood clots and would, with a bit of luck, clear the pathway to the lungs. つまり、 "embolism" は "clots" と同じ様に詰る病気の様です。辞書で確認します。
・Cambridge English Dictionary: a bubble of air, a solid mass of blood that has become hard, or a small piece of fat that blocks an artery
・Vocabulary.com: occlusion of a blood vessel by an embolus (a loose clot or air bubble or other particle): The family says it doesn't know the exact cause, though a pulmonary embolism is a possibility.
・Wiktionary: (pathology) An obstruction or occlusion of an artery by an embolus, that is by a blood clot, air bubble or other matter that has been transported by the blood stream.
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slather

2014年02月26日 | 英語学習
A compound found in coral reefs may protect us against damaging UV raysの説明で始まるReader's Digest 1月号の記事の冒頭に今日覚えたい単語がありました。
Slathering on sticky sunscreen is nobody's idea of a day at the beach, but it's worth doing.
"Slathering" は知らない単語ですが、日焼け止めクリームを "Slathering on" となると、「(身体に)塗る」の意味だと容易に推測できますが、辞書で確認します。
・Macmillan Dictionary: to put a lot of a soft thick substance on a surface, or to cover something with such a substance: slather on/over: Onion sauce is slathered over lightly boiled eggs.: slather someone/something with something: She slathered herself with suntan oil.
・Vocabulary.com: spread thickly: “I can't eat bagels without slathering them with cream cheese”
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: to spread thickly or lavishly: slathered sunscreen on her skin
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in a class of one's own

2014年02月25日 | 英語学習
仕事でマニュアルやカタログを翻訳する事が多いのですが、興味を覚える英語の表現は一年間でせいぜい二つか三つあるかないかです。 ある計測器メーカーのプリゼン資料を訳していたら次ぎの表現がありました。
3000 series
Wide Calibration Workload
The wide range of options available for the 3000 series made possible by the unique front panel adapter interface & accurate measurement capability of the calibrator puts Transmille calibrators in a class of their own when considering the range of instruments which can be calibrated.
この "in a class of their own" は初めてみる表現です。 意味は文脈からだいたい推測できますが、辞書で確認します。
・Cambridge English Dictionary: be in a class of your own: to be the best at a particular activity: As a long-distance runner, she's in a class of her own.
・Oxford English Dictionary: in a class of or on its or one's own in class (US English): …unequaled, especially in excellence or performance…
・Collins Dictionary: in a class of its own or in a class by oneself: unequalled; unparalleled
米語と書いている辞書もありますが、上記プリゼンは英国メーカーが書いたものなので英国でも通用する慣用句でしょう。

ところでこの文章は文法的にちぐはぐな気がします。 動詞の "puts" の主語は("put" となっていないので) "accurate measurement capability" の様だ。文脈からすると、 "puts Transmille calibrators in a class of their own" としたのは、"&" の前に書かれている特色も寄与している印象を受けるのですが、動詞が "put" ではなく "puts" なので文法的な主語は "accurate measurement capability" しか考えられない。 しかし、そうするとこの文は二つの文を単に "&" で並列に繋げた文章になりますが、最初の文の動詞は "made" になり、後の文の動詞は "puts" となります。
文法は得意ではないので私の解釈が正しいかどうか確信はありませんが、どう考えてもこの文は、メーカーのネイティブが書く、よくある悪文の一つとしか思えません。
文法、英文解釈に得意な方が読んでいられたらコメントを頂けるとありがたいのですが。(数年前までは南山大学で英語を教えていた方からよくコメントを頂いたのですが、この世から消えたかどうかは定かではありませんが、すくなくともWeb上からはその方の姿が見えなくなりました。)
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compunction

2014年02月24日 | 英語学習
非常に面白く、実際に役にも立ったHow To Succeed In Business Without A Harvard MBAとは違って、How To Talk About Books You haven't Readは私にとっては全く面白い本ではありませんでした。著者が飛ばし読み(book I have skimmed)をしたと言っている、夏目漱石の「我輩は猫である」のある個所を例にあげている部分がありました。その個所の全部を引用すると長くなり過ぎるので省略して、その後に私が覚えたいと思った単語が出てきた文のみ次に引用します。
If, in this first example, the artist makes up stories without compunction, the situation is slightly different in the next one he gives, which directly concerns our consideration of unread books.
この "compunction" を辞書で調べます。
・Collins Dictionary: a feeling of remorse, guilt, or regret: Hyde had had no compunction about stealing bread, dried meat, the donkey.
・Cambridge English Dictionary: a slight guilty feeling about something you have done or might do: I wouldn't have any compunction about telling him to leave.
・Vocabulary.com: When you feel compunction you feel very, very sorry, usually for something you did to hurt someone or mess something up. When you feel no compunction, you're not at all sorry.
The noun compunction comes from the Latin verb compungere, meaning “prick sharply.” When you feel compunction, you feel a sharp prick of your conscience. The word compunction is often used in the negative in phrases like “without compunction” or "no compunction." You might say that the burglar acted without compunction when he stole your baseball card collection.
なるほど "feel a sharp prick of your conscience" ですね。
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It's been fun

2014年02月23日 | 英語学習
I'm not the easiest guy to get along with.
So when our anniversary rolled aroung, I wanted my wife to know how much I appreciated her tolerating me for the past 20 years. I ordered flowers and told the florist to enclose a card that read, "Thanks for putting up with me so long."
When my wife got the delivery, she called me at work. "Where are you going?" she asked.
"What do you mean?" I said.
She read the card aloud as the florist had written in: "Thanks for putting up with me. So long."
句読点も大事ですね。
ここまで書いていて、先日の17日が自分達の "anniversary" だった事に気が付きました。しかも上記の倍の40周年記念でした。幸い家内も忘れているようです。10年後の "anniversary" にもしまだ生きていれば私も花でも買って見ようと思いますが、多分忘れるでしょう。
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Gentleman in the city

2014年02月22日 | 英語学習
ニューヨークのセントラルパークの話です。
A few years ago, after a long morning of sightseeing in New York, my children and I took a breather on a park bench in Central Park.
"Look!" my son said, pointing to a nearby rubbish bin. That's when we saw our first raccoon. Quite at home in the big city, he paid us no heed, concentrating only on finding a tasty lunch. He sorted through a few options before emerging with a wrapped sandwich held between his paws.
Satisfied, he jumped down and ambled casually to a spot on the gravel path, not a metre from where we sat. The children were mesmerised, the raccoon providing better entertainment than any museum. He glanced at us, perhaps as reassurance that we weren't about to pilfer his lunch. With delicate fingers, he peeled back the layers of plastic wrap until the half-eaten sandwich was uncovered.
Then he surprised us all. Instead of starting his food, he turned to a nearby rain puddle and dipped his hands in. With a casual air, he rubbed his hands together underwater for a moment, preened his whiskers, then started genteelly picking at his meal.
(Reader's Digest, August 2013)
良い子は皆食事の前に手を洗いましょう。
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amass

2014年02月21日 | 英語学習
How To Talk About Books You haven't Readというタイトルに惹かれてその本を読むことにしました。30年程前に読んだ How To Succeed In Business Without A Harvard MBAという本を思い出させるタイトルです。 著者はフランス人のPierre Bayardで、この本はフランス語から英語に訳された翻訳本です。
Valery achieved a certain fame in the world of literary criticism by calling into question the common practice of linking a work closely to its author. It was conventional in nineteenth-century criticism to maintain that knowledge of the author enhanced that of the work, and thus to amass as much information about him as possible.
"amass" つい最近他の本にも出てきて調べたはずですが、すっかり忘れているので今度はしっかりと覚えたいと思います。
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: to gather or collect (something, such as a large amount of money) especially for yourself: They've amassed a wealth of information.
・Cambridge English Dictionary: to get a large amount of something, especially money or information, by collecting it over a long period: She has amassed a huge fortune from her novels.
・Vocabulary.com: Amass means bring together or assemble. It can be a real shock to enter a room and see your amassed friends shouting "Surprise!"
Although the word amass should not be confused with "a mass," as in the thing you never want to hear has been found on your lung, they both derive from the Latin massa "lump." When you think about it, this makes sense. Whether soldiers or cancer cells, things that come together to form a whole -- in this case, a tumor or an army -- are amassed.
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round

2014年02月20日 | 英語学習

今日の単語も "JFK The Smoking Gun" の記事からです。
A quirky characteristic of the early-model Colt AR-15, the model of AR-15 in use by the Secret Service in 1963, is the rifle was prone to smoking; that is, due to its direct gas operating system, it would emit excessive levels of smoke each time a round was fired.
この "round" はこの後にももう一度次ぎのように出てきます。
All this could prove key evidence in tracing a suspect and assist the FBI on the vital information of what type of round was responsible for the devastating head shot to JFK.
こうなると "round" は弾丸の事だとほぼ確信できますが、辞書で確認します。
・Collins Dictionary: a single discharge by a number of guns or a single gun: a bullet, blank cartridge, or other charge of ammunition
・Cambridge English Dictionary: a bullet or other single piece of ammunition: The soldiers had only 20 rounds left

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galvanize

2014年02月19日 | 英語学習
ケネディー大統領暗殺の謎に迫るReader's Digest 12月号の記事 "JFK The Smoking Gun" に出てきた単語を採り上げます。
A galvanised culture of drinking and late-night partying existed within a core group of Secret Service agents.
...
Together, they helped galvanise my thoughts on what happened.
検流計の "galvanometer" というのは知っていますが、上に出てきた "galvanise" はどんな意味でしょうか?
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: to cause (people) to become so excited or concerned about an issue, idea, etc., that they want to do something about it
・Cambridge English Dictionary: to cause someone to suddenly take action, especially by shocking or exciting them in some way: Western charities were galvanized by TV pictures of starving people.: The prospect of his mother coming to stay galvanized him into action and he set about cleaning the house.
"galvanise" はこの他に "to cover (iron, steel, etc) with a protective zinc coating by"と ".stimulated by application of an electric current" があり、 "galvanometer" と関係がある事が分かりました。
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