What does that mean? 你真的瞭解這個慣用語嗎?

Imagery buries itself in language and takes on new meaning. The transplanted and transformed sets of words are called “figures of speech.” For a figure of speech to be effective, however, a writer must first understand the original meaning of the phrase. The following sentence contains a common figure of speech. Its original meaning is explained.

“The actor harrumphed, then he brayed at the actress and clomped off the stage and into his dressing room, while the audience sat transfixed by the naked display of petulance.”

Donkeys “bray” and “clomp” and otherwise have a reputation for brash behavior and harsh guttural communication. They also are notably unwilling to act unhesitatingly. Despite these disagreeable impressions, donkeys are deemed to be unusually intelligent animals with long memories and agreeable social manners. Unfortunately, their outward characteristics have been caricatured for so long that to compare someone to a donkey generally is not intended as a compliment.

As used in a paper about drama and acting—“then he brayed… and clomped off the stage”—the allusion to the behavior of a donkey is not meant to be flattering. That the actor “brayed” and “clomped” meant that he spoke loudly and harshly at the actress who shared the stage and then exited noisily, his loud footfalls suggesting loss of personal control. “Bray” and “clomp” are both examples of onomatopoeia, which is a word that imitates the sound associated with it. A donkey braaays and walks, particularly on a wooden platform, with a clomp, clomp, clomp. Some upset actors do, too.
在這篇有關戲劇與表演的論文文章中,“then he brayed… and clomped off the stage” 使用原本用來形容驢子的特徵,可想而知,這並非在讚美他人。Brayed意指男演員對同在舞台上的女演員大聲斥責,clomped則形容他下台時的腳步聲沉重刺耳,暗指這位男演員的自我控制不佳。這兩個字都是擬聲用字,模擬與動作相關的聲音。驢子所發出的braaays叫聲,以及在木頭平台上發出clomp, clomp, clomp的腳步聲,皆暗指著某些情緒控制不佳的演員,行為就和驢子一樣。

Posted at 2011-06-02 14:46:32

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