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经典散文英译汉赏析:On the Fear of Death 谈怕死

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经典散文英译汉赏析

On the Fear of Death
谈怕死

by William Hazlitt
威廉·赫兹里特

Perhaps the best cure for the fear of death is to reflect that life has a beginning as well as an end. There was a time when we were not: this gives me no concern- why then should it trouble us that a time will come when we shall cease to be?
克服怕死心理的最好办法,也许是要想到人生不仅有终结,也有开端。本来我们并未生存于世间,这个事实并不使我们忧虑,那么,我们为什么要为了将来有一天自己会停止生存而烦恼呢?

I have no wish to have been alive a hundred years ago, or in the reign of Queen Anne? Why should I regret and lay it so much to heart that I shall not be alive a hundred years hence, in the reign of I cannot tell whom?
我既然不希望自己在一百年前,或在安女王的朝代活在世上,为什么就要为了自己在一百年后不知哪位皇帝在位的朝代,不能仍然活在世上而抱憾,而耿耿于怀呢?

To die is only to be as we were born; yet no one feels any remorse, or regret, or repugnance, in contemplating this last idea.
死亡只是恢复诞生前的原状而已;在想到诞生前的情形时,我们都毫无悔恨、遗憾、或厌恶之感.

It is rather a relief and disburdening of the mind: it seems to have been a holiday time with us then: we were not called to appear upon the stage of life, to wear robes or tatters, to laugh or cry, be hooted or applauded; we had lain perdus all this while, snug out of harm’s way; and had slept out our thousands of centuries without wanting to be waked up; at peace and free from care, in a long nonage, in a sleep deeper and calmer than that of infancy, wrapped in the softest and finest dust.
我们反而会觉得轻松解脱:那个时候彷佛是我们所度过的一段假期,我们还没有被召出现在人生舞台之上,或身着华服,或衣衫褴褛,或笑,或哭,或遭叫嚣反对,或受喝采赞扬;在那个时候,我们一直高卧在虚无之境,无人闻问,舒适而又安全;我们在长眠中度过了千百世纪,不希望被人唤醒,一直逍遥于一个漫长的浑浑噩噩的时期之中,享受着一场比婴儿时代的更为深沉而平静的睡眠,覆蔽在最轻柔最微小的尘之中,安安静静,无忧无虑。

And the worst that we dread is, after a short fretful , feverish being, after vain hopes, and idle fears, to sink to final repose again, and forget the trouble dream of life!
然后,我们在人世度过了一段短暂、烦躁、而狂热的生活,曾经抱着种种虚空的希望,怀着种种无意的恐惧,现在所最怕的事情,却是再度沉入那种最后的安息,和忘记人生的烦恼的梦境!


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