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常春藤解析英语【6】The Sinful Centaur 神话中的人

时间:2010-12-16 02:09来源:互联网 提供网友:uf1348   字体: [ ]

by Rachel Black

It is speculated that in ancient Greece, before horses became common, invaders2 from the north rode on horseback and attacked villages. To the Greeks, these horsemen looked like monstrous3 half-men and half-animals. It seemed as if the horse and the man were both one creature. The Aztecs in the Americas felt the same way when they first spied Spanish cavalrymen.

Over time, many stories developed about these beasts with the head, body, and arms of a man but the legs, back, and tail of a horse. They were said to be lustful4, drunken creatures that savagely5 interrupted life wherever they turned up.

According to legend, the centaurs7 were the grandsons of Ixion, the king of Thessaly. When Ixion died, King Pirithous inherited part of Thessaly. The centaurs then claimed Thessaly as their birthright. The centaurs fought Pirithous, but eventually peace was secured. The centaurs were invited to Pirithous' wedding as a gesture of goodwill8. Unfortunately, they got drunk and tried to carry off Pirithous' bride and the other women. Naturally, Pirithous wouldn't stand for this, and a battle ensued. The centaurs lost the fight and were exiled.

This famous battle is depicted9 on earthenware10 in museums across the globe. History has forever judged them as drunken, violent, lustful monsters without honor. But there is a constellation11 in the heavens that tells a different tale, and the Harry12 Potter books cast them in a better light, too.

1. How did the legend of centaurs begin?
(A) When Greeks first saw men on horseback.
(B) When Ixion's son married a horse.
(C) When ancient Greeks looked at the stars in the sky.
(D) When the Harry Potter books were published.

2. What is meant by the expression "gesture of goodwill"?
(A) Act of aggression13.
(B) Show of kindness.
(C) Sign of hostility14.
(D) Nod of appreciation15.

3. What happened to the centaurs after the wedding?
(A) They lost a fight and were sent away.
(B) The centaurs made some pottery16 with the women.
(C) The centaurs regained17 Thessaly after a fight.
(D) They became stars in the sky.


1. speculate vt. 推测
例: It is speculated that the manager is going to resign next month.

2. spy vt. 侦查 & vi. 暗中监视
spy on...  暗中监视……
例: The police spied on the suspicious man 24 hours a day.

3. interrupt vt. 打断;打扰
例: David tends to interrupt people's conversations, so I don't like to be around him.

4. turn up  出现
= show up
例: My boyfriend turned up shortly before the party was about to come to an end.

5. inherit vt. 继承
例: After inheriting my grandfather's farm, my mother has been enjoying the peaceful country life.

6. claim vt. 声称;要求
claim damages on...  对……要求赔偿损失
例: After the accident, Randy claimed damages on his wrecked18 scooter.

7. secure vt. 使巩固;使安全
例: The police officers secured the area around the hotel the president was staying in.

8. be invited to...  被邀请至……
例: All of the students in this class were invited to their teacher's wedding.

9. carry off...  劫持……;获得……(奖品、荣誉等)
例: Tina carried off first prize in the composition contest.

10. ensue vt. 接着发生
例: The fire broke out in the building, and unfortunately, an explosion ensued.

11. exile vt. 放逐
be exiled to...  被放逐至……
例: After the revolution, some rioters were exiled to other countries.

12. cast...in a...light  从……的角度诠释……
例: The film cast the late president in a negative light.

For Your Information






1. sinful a. 有罪过的

2. centaur6 n.(希腊神话中)人首马身的怪物

3. invader1 n. 侵略者

4. monstrous a. 似怪物的

5. cavalryman19 n. 骑兵

6. lustful a. 好色的

7. savagely adv. 野蛮地

8. birthright n.(理应继承的)财产

9. gesture n. 表示;姿态

10. goodwill n. 亲善,友好

11. earthenware n. 陶器

12. constellation n. 星座

13. aggression n. 侵略

14. hostility n. 敌意

15. appreciation n. 欣赏

16. pottery n. 陶器


1. on horseback  骑着马

2. over time  随着时间流逝

3. stand for...  容忍∕允许……

For Your Information

1. 人马的传说如何开始的?
(A) 希腊人第一次人看见骑在马背上。
(B) 伊克西翁的儿子和一只马结婚后。
(C) 希腊人看到天上的星星后。
(D) 《哈利波特》出版后。
题解: 根据第一段,古希腊人在马匹尚未普遍之前,看见北方来的侵略者骑在马背上,这些骑着马的人看起来就像半人半马的怪物,故应选 (A)。

2. "gesture of goodwill" 指的是什么?
(A) 侵略的行动。
(B) 善意的表示。
(C) 敌意的象征。
(D) 点头表示欣赏。
题解: gesture 是『表示』,goodwill 是『友好』,意思与 (B) 相近,故选之。

3. 婚宴之后人马发生了什么事?
(A) 牠们输了战争而遭放逐。
(B) 人马和那些女人一起做陶器。
(C) 人马在战后重新得到赛萨斯。
(D) 牠们变成天空中的星星。
题解: 根据第三段,人马在婚宴上喝醉了,试图掳走皮里托斯的新娘和其它女人,引起皮里托斯的愤怒,战争因而爆发,人马打了败仗而遭到放逐,因此 (A) 为正选。

标准答案: 1. (A) 2. (B) 3. (A)


1 invader RqzzMm     
  • They suffered a lot under the invader's heel.在侵略者的铁蹄下,他们受尽了奴役。
  • A country must have the will to repel any invader.一个国家得有决心击退任何入侵者。
2 invaders 5f4b502b53eb551c767b8cce3965af9f     
入侵者,侵略者,侵入物( invader的名词复数 )
  • They prepared to repel the invaders. 他们准备赶走侵略军。
  • The family has traced its ancestry to the Norman invaders. 这个家族将自己的世系追溯到诺曼征服者。
3 monstrous vwFyM     
  • The smoke began to whirl and grew into a monstrous column.浓烟开始盘旋上升,形成了一个巨大的烟柱。
  • Your behaviour in class is monstrous!你在课堂上的行为真是丢人!
4 lustful woszqJ     
  • Adelmo agreed and duly submitted to Berengar's lustful advances. 阿德尔摩同意了并适时地顺从了贝仁格情欲的增长。
  • The lustful scenes of the movie were abhorrent to the old lady. 电影里淫荡的画面让这老妇人厌恶。
5 savagely 902f52b3c682f478ddd5202b40afefb9     
adv. 野蛮地,残酷地
  • The roses had been pruned back savagely. 玫瑰被狠狠地修剪了一番。
  • He snarled savagely at her. 他向她狂吼起来。
6 centaur zraz4     
  • His face reminded me somehow of a centaur.他的脸使我想起半人半马的怪物。
  • No wonder he had soon been hustled away to centaur school.也难怪父母匆匆忙忙就把他送到了半人马学校。
7 centaurs 75435c85c20a9ac43e5ec2217ea9bc0a     
n.(希腊神话中)半人半马怪物( centaur的名词复数 )
  • Centaurs – marauders does not have penalty when shooting into support. 半人马掠夺者在支援射击时不受惩罚。 来自互联网
  • Centaurs burn this, observing the fumes and flames to refine the results of their stargazing (OP27). 人马用烧鼠尾草产生的火焰和烟雾来提炼他们观星的结果(凤凰社,第27章)。 来自互联网
8 goodwill 4fuxm     
  • His heart is full of goodwill to all men.他心里对所有人都充满着爱心。
  • We paid £10,000 for the shop,and £2000 for its goodwill.我们用一万英镑买下了这家商店,两千英镑买下了它的信誉。
9 depicted f657dbe7a96d326c889c083bf5fcaf24     
描绘,描画( depict的过去式和过去分词 ); 描述
  • Other animals were depicted on the periphery of the group. 其他动物在群像的外围加以修饰。
  • They depicted the thrilling situation to us in great detail. 他们向我们详细地描述了那激动人心的场面。
10 earthenware Lr5xL     
  • She made sure that the glassware and earthenware were always spotlessly clean.她总是把玻璃器皿和陶器洗刷得干干净净。
  • They displayed some bowls of glazed earthenware.他们展出了一些上釉的陶碗。
11 constellation CptzI     
  • A constellation is a pattern of stars as seen from the earth. 一个星座只是从地球上看到的某些恒星的一种样子。
  • The Big Dipper is not by itself a constellation. 北斗七星本身不是一个星座。
12 harry heBxS     
  • Today,people feel more hurried and harried.今天,人们感到更加忙碌和苦恼。
  • Obama harried business by Healthcare Reform plan.奥巴马用医改掠夺了商界。
13 aggression WKjyF     
  • So long as we are firmly united, we need fear no aggression.只要我们紧密地团结,就不必惧怕外来侵略。
  • Her view is that aggression is part of human nature.她认为攻击性是人类本性的一部份。
14 hostility hdyzQ     
  • There is open hostility between the two leaders.两位领导人表现出公开的敌意。
  • His hostility to your plan is well known.他对你的计划所持的敌意是众所周知的。
15 appreciation Pv9zs     
  • I would like to express my appreciation and thanks to you all.我想对你们所有人表达我的感激和谢意。
  • I'll be sending them a donation in appreciation of their help.我将送给他们一笔捐款以感谢他们的帮助。
16 pottery OPFxi     
  • My sister likes to learn art pottery in her spare time.我妹妹喜欢在空余时间学习陶艺。
  • The pottery was left to bake in the hot sun.陶器放在外面让炎热的太阳烘晒焙干。
17 regained 51ada49e953b830c8bd8fddd6bcd03aa     
复得( regain的过去式和过去分词 ); 赢回; 重回; 复至某地
  • The majority of the people in the world have regained their liberty. 世界上大多数人已重获自由。
  • She hesitated briefly but quickly regained her poise. 她犹豫片刻,但很快恢复了镇静。
18 wrecked ze0zKI     
  • the hulk of a wrecked ship 遇难轮船的残骸
  • the salvage of the wrecked tanker 对失事油轮的打捞
19 cavalryman 0a1dfb0666a736ffa1aac49043a9c450     
  • He is a cavalryman. 他是一个骑兵。
  • A cloud of dust on the horizon announced the arrival of the cavalryman. 天边扬起的尘土说明骑兵来了。
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