English Collection



2014年01月31日 | 英語学習
"quarry" と言うと昔受験勉強で丸暗記した石切り場の意味しか知りませんが、WILDERNESSに出てきた次ぎの "quarry" は石切り場とは全く関係ない意味です。
"Well, what have you guys been doing?" Janet said.
Newman put the three steaks, still frozen, in a fry pan on the stove and turned the gas on medium. He drank the other half of the beer and felt it move through him like sap through a tree. He grinned.
"We been stalking our quarry," he said. He opened his shirt so that Janet could see the nickel-plated .32 revolver at his belt.
・Macmillan Dictionary: a person or animal that someone is trying to find or catch: Wolves often pursue their quarry for up to three miles before attacking them.
・Vocabulary.com: Both meanings of quarry have to do with going after something. An animal being hunted is called quarry, and when you dig a hole in the earth looking for rocks, both the digging and the hole are called quarry as well.
Gross fact: Quarry derives from the Latin cor "heart," because hunters used to drape the entrails of their chosen quarry on their dogs' backs. The origin in a word for "heart" can help you remember both quarries: a rock quarry is searching down toward the heart of the earth; a stag's heart is considered a hunter's greatest prize.
NewmanとHoodはAdolph Karlを殺そうと様子をうかがっているので、AKはまさに "quarry" となるのですね。

venetian blind

2014年01月30日 | 英語学習
They leaned against the seawall and looked at Karl's house. On the ocean side there was a sunporch, the windows closed by venetian blind. Above the sunporch the house rose two more stories.
"venetian blind" は日本語では単にブラインドといっている物とは違うのでしょうか?
・Collins Dictionary: a window blind consisting of a number of horizontal slats whose angle may be altered to let in more or less light
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: a covering for a window made of strips of wood, plastic, or metal that can be turned to block out or let in light
・Dictionary.com: a blind, as for a window, having overlapping horizontal slats that may be opened or closed, especially one in which the slats may be raised and drawn together above the window by pulling a cord.
Wikipediaで "venetian blind" を調べようとしたら "Window blind" の項に転送され、 "venetian blind" が "Window blind" の一種であることが分かります。 Wikipediaにあった説明の一部を次に引用します。
A window blind is also known as a window shade
. ...
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Venetian blinds were widely adopted in office buildings to regulate light and air.
プラスティック製でなければ、ブラインドというより "venetian blind" と言った方が情緒がありますね。もっともプラスティック製以外のブラインドは見た事がありませんが。

ball of her index finger

2014年01月29日 | 英語学習
今日とりあげる "ball" は誰でも知っている単語ですが、指の一部を示すのに使われることは知りませんでした。WILDERNESSからの抜粋です。
Janet looked at him without speaking. She ran the ball of her index finger around the rim of her glass.
"ball of her index finger" の "ball" が示している個所は辞書を見なくても分かりますが、辞書に説明があるか確認します。
・Macmillan Dictionary: the part of your foot, hand, or thumb that is slightly round and sticks out: ball of: He balanced on the balls of his feet
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: a roundish protuberant anatomical structure (as near the tip of a human finger or toe or at the base of a thumb); especially : the part of the sole of the human foot between the toes and arch on which the main weight of the body rests in normal walking
・Cambridge English Dictionary: the rounded part of your foot or thumb where the toes join the foot and the thumb joins the hand


2014年01月28日 | 英語学習
WILDERNESS by Robert B. Parkerを読み始めました。表紙に A NOVEL OF VIOLENCE, CRISP DIALOGUE, AND SUSPENSE....とあるので余り私の好みの小説ではありませんが、昨年RINGを読んで余り抵抗を感じなかったので読んでみることにしました。
Two women came into the bar. One wore white pants and a blue-striped halter top that showed a lot of cleavage. The other had on a denim jumpsuit with rhinestone trim and a pair of sling-strip high heels. The cuffs of her pants were rolled up in a six-inch-wide turn. They sat in a booth behind Newman and Hood and looked for a long time at Hood.
小説なので当たり前ですが、色々な場面の描写が詳しく、体の筋肉も日本語でも知らない特定の筋肉の部位名とか着ている衣服の説明がよく出てきます。上に引用した個所にも服の描写がありますが、そこに出てきた "cuffs" は私が知っているカフスボタンの "cuffs" ではないので、辞書を見ます。
・Collins Dictionary: (US & Canadian & Australian) the turned-up fold at the bottom of some trouser legs Also called (in eg Britain): turn-up
イギリス英語では "turn-up" とも言うのですね。説明の詳しいVocabulary.comも見ます。 A cuff is the very end of a long sleeve or the rolled bottom of your jeans. You might prefer to wear a cuff on the bottom of your pants in order to show off your striped socks.
One kind of cuff is at the end of your sleeve or trouser leg, and another is a type of jewelry you might wear around your wrist, like a wide gold cuff. You can also use the word cuff as shorthand for handcuff, the silver kind that police officers put on suspects' wrists during an arrest. The mid-fourteenth century version was cuffe, and it meant "mitten or glove," from the Medieval Latin cuffia, or "head covering.

flush against

2014年01月27日 | 英語学習
Tuesdays with Morrieも終わりに近くなってきました。ALSのMorrieの容態は悪くなる一方です。
Morrie, dressed in pajama bottoms, lay in bed on his side, his head flush against the pillow, his mouth open. The physical therapist was showing me how to bang loose the poison in his lungs--which he needed done regularly now, to keep it from solidifying, to keep him breathing.
"flush against" の状態が分かりません。 "flush" に私の知らない意味があるに違いありません。辞書を見ます。
・Macmillan Dictionary: if two surfaces or edges are flush, they are exactly level with each other: The cabinet doors aren't quite flush.
・Cambridge English Dictionary: at the same level as another surface: I want the light fittings to be flush with the ceiling.
"flush" も色々な意味を持っているのですね。
Your face can flush, and the sky can flush at sunset when it glows with shades of pink. You can also use flush as an adjective to mean "lined up" or "level," like when you hang a medicine cabinet in your bathroom, making sure it's flush against the wall. Yet another meaning of a flush is a peak or boom ? a professional poker player might describe her period of winning game after game as a flush.(Vocabulary.com)

Kick in the pants

2014年01月26日 | 英語学習
I selected a pair of jeans as a gift for my extremely skinny friend. When I went to pay for them, the cashier looked me up and down and said, "Well, you're pretty optimistic, aren't you?"
(from Reader's Digest October, 2013)
タイトルのKick in the pantsは明らかにjeansとのシャレで選ばれていますね。
・Collins English Dictionary
1.a reprimand or scolding designed to produce greater effort, enthusiasm, etc, in the person receiving it
2.a setback or disappointment
例文: 'It's a kick in the pants for the politicians who promise to deliver and then don't', said 57-year-old fireman Peter Kloed.


2014年01月25日 | 英語学習
"out of sight, out of mind"をモットーにしている訳ではありません、ほんの数年前の同僚やら上司の名前も離れたら思いだせません。小、中、高、大学の卒業後、いずれの学校の同窓会に顔を出したことはありませんが、昨日、7年前に定年退職した会社の45周年の記念を兼ねた会社のOB/OG会に出席しました。名前は忘れても顔は結構覚えていますね。顔が変った人もいましたが。
3年程前に読んだKazuo Ishiguroの小説 "Pale view of hills" にあった次の文をメモしていたことを思い出しました。
That's why these reuinions are so important. One shouldn't be so quick to forget old allegianes. And it's good to take a glance back now and then, it helps keep things in perspective.


2014年01月24日 | 英語学習
Meanwhile, as Morrie raised his own children, Charlie was still living in the Bronx. He still read the paper. One night, he went outside after dinner. A few blocks from home, he was accosted by two robbers.
"Give us your money," one said, pulling a gun.
Frightened, Charlie threw down his wallet and began to run. He ran through the streets, and kept running until he reached the steps of a relative's house, where he collapsed on the porch.
Heart attack.
He died that night.
気の毒な話です。それはともかく、"accost" の意味が分からないので辞書を引きます。
. ・Macmillan Dictionary: to stop someone and speak to them, especially in a way that could annoy them or make them feel embarrassed: Wherever he goes he is accosted by young people asking for his autograph.
・Collins Dictionary: to approach, stop, and speak to (a person), as to ask a question, accuse of a crime, solicit sexually, etc: If you see Colin Montgomerie, please don't accost him with: "Hey, Mister, didn't you used to be somebody?
・Vocabulary.com: To accost is to approach someone aggressively or confront them in an inappropriate way.
Accost describes a confrontation ? one that's often aggressive in nature. You're likely to be accosted by angry picketers if you wear your finest fur coat to a march against animal cruelty. The paparazzi make their living by accosting celebrities, pushing in close to snap candid photos as the stars leave their limos. The drunk man who accosts his attractive female co-worker at a company cocktail party is looking for more than conversation.
日本には乞食がいないので、"accost" される機会は少ないですね。

rail against

2014年01月23日 | 英語学習
次ぎの文の "I" はTuesdays with Morrieの著者 Mitchです。
I jotted some of the things Morrie was saying on a yellow pad. I did this mostly because I didn't want him to see my eyes, to know what I was thinking, that I had been, for much of my life since graduation, pursuing these very things he had been railing against--bigger toys, nicer house. Because I worked among rich and famous athletes, I convinced myself that my needs were realistic, my greed inconsequential compered to theirs.
今日採り上げる表現 "railing against" も以前に調べた気がするのですが、忘れているのでまた辞書を見ます。
・Collins Dictionary: (intransitive; followed by at or against) to complain bitterly or vehemently ⇒ to rail against fate
・McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs: to complain vehemently about someone or something. Why are you railing against me? What did I do? Leonard is railing against the tax increase again.
The verb rail means to criticize severely. When you rail against increased taxes at a town meeting, you speak openly and loudly about how wrong the increase is and point out the problems it will cause.
Rail can also mean "to complain." When your mom asks you to vacuum the house, you might rail against this chore by saying that you ALWAYS do the vacuuming, that vacuuming is SO hard, and that you hate the stupid vacuum! Rail can also mean to spread negative information about someone in an abusive way. If your "friends" rail against you to everyone in school, they're spreading nasty rumors about you, and you should find new friends!
例: “She railed against the bad social policies”
今度は何とかこの "rail against" を覚えたいですね。

revel in

2014年01月22日 | 英語学習
I began to enjoy my dependency. Now I enjoy when they turn me over on my side and rub cream on my behind so I don't get sores. Or when they wipe my brow, or they massage my legs. I revel in it. この "revel in" はこの後にも次ぎの様に出てきました。
Mitch, it is impossible for the old not to envy the young. But the issue is to accept who you are and revel in that.
辞書で "revel in" の意味を調べます。
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: to take intense pleasure or satisfaction: reveled in the quiet after everyone had gone: reveling all night is not conducive to a productive next day at work
・Cambridge English Dictionary: to get great pleasure from a situation or an activity: She's revelling in her newly found freedom.: He revelled in his role as team manager.
・Vocabulary.com: Revel means to take great pleasure. If you revel in something, you're not just pleased or even excited; you're overwhelmed by joy.
It used to mean riotous merry-making. Now it means to bask in the self-reflected glow of your own pleasure. You revel in your victory lap after winning the race. Your brother is constantly on your case for being clumsy, so when he knocks down a table filled with glassware, you revel in it. Think of it as a high level of pleasure.