搪瓷茶缸
The Enamel Mug

万全
Wan Quan

| 译文摘自张培基《英译中国散文选二》

每走进百货公司,看到那些洁白的、柔和的、米黄色的和彩色诱人的搪瓷茶缸,总感到一种愉快。
Whenever I visit a department store, I always take delight in seeing the enamel mugs which, pure white or creamy, are graceful in pattern and color.

要点
1,“看到…很愉快”译为take delight in seeing…使得句式更加简洁。
2,积累颜色方面的词汇。

上中学的时候,由于少女的洁癖,喜欢使用白色的搪瓷器皿。记得那时候要买一只瑞典货的纯白大茶缸,要花五块多银元,得进“惠罗公司”之类外国铺子。一九三九 年在重庆,某商店从滇缅路运进来一批搪瓷茶缸,价钱当然比战前更贵。我凑足了钱,托朋友进城捎了一只;我的朋友也许过于紧张,一出商店门就将茶缸掉在地 上,摔脱了一块瓷。
In my middle school days, I preferred to use white enamelware because, like most young girls, I was very particular about cleanliness. In those days, I remember, a Swede-made pure white mug would cost five silver dollars, and it was obtainable only at a foreign firm. In 1939, a certain store in Chongqing offered for sale, at a price of course higher than in prewar days, a stock of enamel mugs they had laid in through the Yunnan-Burma highway. With the money I had raised. I asked a friend leaving for town to buy an enamel mug for me. Unfortunately, probably due to nervousness, he dropped it onto the ground the moment he stepped out of the store and had it chipped.

要点
1,“洁癖”本意是指“过分讲究清洁的怪癖”,这里只是讲作者特别爱好清洁,因此意译为was very particular about cleanliness,其中particular 也可换为fastidious。
2,“瑞典货的”即“瑞典出产的”,译为Swede-made,Swede意为“瑞典人”。
3,“从滇缅路运进来一批搪瓷茶缸”译为a stock of enamel mugs they had laid in through the Yunnan-Burma highway.had laid in 意为“存储”,to lay in a stock of 作“进一批…货”。
4,“过于紧张”译为nervousness,也可按“过分小心”译为over cautiousness。
5,“摔脱了一块瓷”即“使杯子缺了一块”,用have sth done的形式,chip译为“打破,弄缺”。

综述:注意本段译者对于句式的转换,如“得进‘惠罗公司’之类外国铺子”转为“只有在外国商铺才能得到”,没有译“惠罗公司”也是为了照顾读者的理解。

以后,我带着这只有疤痕的茶缸进了抗日根据地。它的用途倒意外地多起来了——喝水、盛饭、热菜,给生病的同志煮粥,必要时还可以代行“面盆”、“浴缸”的职能。从此,茶缸和我有了进一步的“战斗友情”。
Afterwards I went to the anti-Japanese base area carrying with me the enamel mug with a chip in it. Unexpectedly, over there it turned out to be a multipurpose utensil. It was used for carrying water or cooked rice, for heating up food, cooking congee for sick comrade, and when necessary, as a substitute for a basin or bathtub. Thenceforth, the militant friendship between it and me became even more profound.

要点
1,“有疤痕的茶缸”译为the enamel mug with a chip in it,此处chip意为“缺口”,与前文的have it chipped相照应,也可译为the enamel mug with a scar或the scarred mug。
2,“代行…的职能”即“取代,代替”,译为 as a substitute for…
3,“茶缸和我有了进一步的‘战斗友情’”即“茶缸和我的战斗友情进一步加深”译为the militant friendship between it and me became even more profound。

一九四六年来到北平。很想买一只新的茶缸,代替那只为我鞠躬尽瘁的旧茶缸。可是当时的北平还不易买到这玩意。有一次,在东单小市上,在一个只有几件售品的地摊上,我发现了 一只纯白的瑞典茶缸。这正是我所需要的。可是地摊女主人的索价超过我的购买力。我希望她降低售价,她竟眼泪盈眶;这时我才发现她是一个知识分子模样的青年妇女。她解释说家人等钱吃药,所卖的是自己家用的东西。我马上尽我所有付了价款。她劝说我再买一件什么,我虽然心情沉重,很想帮她的忙,但也实在没有钱了。以后,离开了北平,这只茶缸又陪伴我经历了解放战争中的几年,而且,它常常使我清晰地回忆起那位青年妇女的含泪的眼神——在穷困与内战中经历着痛苦的北平人民的眼神。
In 1946, when I came to Peiping, I was eager to buy a new enamel mug to replace the old one which had given me years of devoted service. But a new one was hard to come by in the then Peiping. Once, while roaming about a small market in Dongdan, I came across a pure white Swedish enamel mug at a roadside stall displaying only a handful of articles for sale. That was just what I needed. But the price asked by the woman owner of the stall was too high for me. When I bargained, I noticed tears brimming in her eyes. And then I also realized that she was sort of an educated young woman. She said what she had for sale was her personal belongings because she was badly in need of money to pay for the medical care of someone at home. Thereupon, I gave her all the money I had with me for the mug. She hoped that I would buy one more article from her. But, sympathetic as I was with her, I couldn’t buy anything else because I really had no money left in my pocket. Later, after leaving Peiping, I went through several years of the War of Liberation in company with the mug which often reminded me vividly of the tearful eyes of the young woman – tearful eyes typical of the common people of Peiping in the throes of hunger and civil war.

要点
1,“为我鞠躬尽瘁的旧茶缸”译为the old one which had given me years of devoted service,其中years of 是增益成分,虽无其词而有其意。“鞠躬尽瘁”的说法也有很多,如:devote oneself entirely to ...; devote one's life to ...; give oneself entirely to public duties; spare no effort in the performance of one's duty。
2,“当时的北平还不易买到这玩意”译为But a new one was hard to come by in the then Peiping,come by 意为“得到,弄到”用以表达原文的“买到”。
3,“索价超过我的购买力”即“女摊主出的价钱对我来说太高了”译为But the price asked by the woman owner of the stall was too high for me.
4,“我才发现她是一个知识分子模样的青年妇女” 译为then I also realized that she was sort of an educated young woman. sort of 意为“有几分,有那么点,近似”。
5,“我马上尽我所有付了价款”即“我马上用身上所有的钱买下了这个杯子”译为Thereupon, I gave her all the money I had with me for the mug。
6,“在穷困与内战中经历着痛苦的”译为in the throes of hunger and civil war其中in the throes of ,意为“经受…的痛苦”。

综述:以上几点都很有借鉴价值,拿起本本来。

一九四九又进入城市。我的丈夫以他的全部零用钱买了一只米黄色茶缸赠我,作为胜利的纪念品。这一只是美国货,当时百货店的人说:“这种米色搪瓷只有美国 货。”可惜,它对于我并不重要了。一来因为年岁增加,已经失去对于某些生活小节的执着;二来和平的城市生活中,茶缸的用途已经回复正常。可是,至今我碰到各种搪瓷茶缸,仍不免要看它们一眼。因为象瑞典货一样纯白的也好,“只有美国货”的米黄色的也好,都已经是我们中国的出品了;而且品种花色常在增加,价钱也便宜得多了。
In 1949, I again came to live in Peiping. My husband used all his pocket money to buy me a creamy mug in commemoration of the victory of the War of Liberation. It was of US make. “All creamy ones are US products,” declared the salesman. But the mug isn’t so important to me now because firstly, at my age, I’m no longer so particular about trivial matters in my personal life, and secondly it has resumed its normal uses in peaceful urban life. Nevertheless, up to now, whenever I come across enamel mugs of any kind, I still cannot help taking a look at them. It’s because both pure white Swede-made and creamy US-made mugs have now given way in the market to Chinese products of ever increasing variety of colors and designs and much lower prices.

当年东单地摊上那位出卖了自用茶缸的主妇,想必早已添置了我国自制的新的茶缸吧。
The woman owner of the roadside stall at Dongdan who sold me her personal mug must have long ago bought a new one of Chinese make for her own use.

要点
1,“年岁增加”即“到了我这个年纪”,译为at my age。
2,“象瑞典货一样纯白的也好,‘只有美国货’的米黄色的也好…”理解为“瑞典出产的纯白马克杯和美国产的米黄色的马克杯”译为both pure white Swede-made and creamy US-made mugs。
3,“都已经是我们中国的出品了”按“都被国货代替了”译为have now given way in the market to Chinese products,give way to 意为“让位于…”。
4,of ever increasing variety of colors and designs and much lower prices.
其中of后面是同位语,表products 的属性,特点,使用介词,句子更加简洁。

综述:最后几段,篇幅不短,主要注意说法的转换,以及最后介词的用法~实践证明,多做这种说法转换的练习对于英译汉和汉译英都是很有好处的。

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