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常春藤生活英语:娱乐泰斗巴纳姆

所属教程:常春藤生活英语

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2020年02月14日

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Phineas Taylor (P.T.) Barnum knew how to catch people's eye and make money. His unique museums and traveling shows made him famous. Also, he came up with the three-ring circus, which made circuses more exciting and impressive than ever before.

Barnum was born in Connecticut in 1810 and was named after his grandfather. His father ran an inn1, store, and tailor2 shop while his mother cared for the children. His father died when Barnum was 15 and left the family with nothing.

After his father's death, Barnum used his impressive math skills as a shopkeeper. During that time, he learned how to bargain and how to persuade customers. He was also involved in the lottery3, which was creating excitement across the US. At 19, Barnum married Charity Hallett, and they had four daughters together. At 22, Barnum was locked up for publishing his liberal4 beliefs in the newspaper he started. His interest in politics5 continued throughout his life.

When Barnum looked back on his youth, he admitted that he never liked hard work. Instead, he was more interested in trying to make money from having fun.

费尼尔司?泰勒?巴纳姆不但清楚该如何吸引众人目光,也知道怎么赚钱。他那独特的博物馆和巡回演出使他声名大噪。此外,他还想出了三环马戏团,这使得马戏团表演比以前都还要来得更精采刺激(编按:三环马戏团有三个小舞台,上头有三种不同表演同时进行着)。

巴纳姆于1810年出生在康乃狄克州,并以其祖父之名为名。他父亲经营小旅馆、商店和裁缝店等生意,母亲则照顾小孩。巴纳姆十五岁时,他的父亲不幸过世,而且丝毫没有留下分文给家人。

在他父亲过世后,担任店主的巴纳姆活用他那令人赞叹的数学能力。在那段期间,他学会了如何讲价和说服客人。他也参与了彩券买卖,这种游戏当时在全美国引起轰动。巴纳姆十九岁时和雀若蒂?海蕾特结为连理,他们一同生下了四个女儿。巴纳姆二十二岁时,因为在他办的报纸上发表主张改革的思想而锒铛入狱。他终其一生都对政治抱有兴趣。

当巴纳姆回顾起年少岁月时,他坦承自己从不喜欢辛苦的工作。他反而对试图从玩乐中赚钱更感兴趣。

Building Your Vocabulary

publish vt. 刊登;出版

This company published many good novels.

这间公司出版了许多很棒的小说。

Phrases for Learning

1. catch + 所有格 + eye  吸引某人的注意

The pretty girl caught Sam's eye right away.

那位美丽的小姐马上引起了山姆的注意。

2. come up with...  想出∕提出……

Robbie is so creative that he came up with many interesting ideas.

罗比很有创意,提出了许多有趣的点子。

3. be involved in...  与……有关;参与……

Larry was involved in the protest yesterday.

赖瑞参与了昨天的抗议活动。

4. lock + 人 + up  把某人关进监狱

The judge decided to lock the thief up.

法官决定把这名小偷关进牢里。

5. look back on...  回顾∕回忆起……

Helen looked back on her last relationship with sadness.

海伦感伤地回忆起她前一段感情。

参考字词

1. inn n. 小旅馆

2. tailor n.(为男顾客量体裁衣的)裁缝(本文中作形容词用)

3. lottery n. 摸彩;彩票

4. liberal a. 主张变革的

5. politics n. 政治;政治活动

Enjoy Box

马戏团的变革

巴纳姆的三环马戏团开创了马戏团表演的新局,在马戏团史中占有举足轻重的地位。随着时代的演进,马戏团表演也历经过不少的变革。关于马戏团的起源众说纷纭,有一说是马戏团源于古罗马时代的角斗士斗兽场,circus一字源自拉丁文表『圆圈』的字,指的可能就是圆形露天竞技场。

另有一说则是源于中国唐代的『透剑门伎』马戏表演,其表演者乘小马奔腾跳跃来娱乐观众。较广为人知的说法则是1769年于英国伦敦所创立的菲利普?艾特雷马戏团。其实在那之前,各项马戏团的特技、小丑杂耍、魔术或动物等表演都已具雏型。菲利普是首位将其统合规划为完整表演的人,因而被奉为马戏团始祖。菲利普的马戏团也是将场地建成圆形的先驱,此举是为了让所有观众都能清楚看到表演。

马戏团表演从最初的马术杂技,逐渐加入高空秋千及走钢丝、飞刀、吞火等惊险刺激的表演,直至今日,常给人虐待动物负面印象的动物表演已渐式微,取而代之的是结合现代科技的声光效果。马戏团融合了娱乐和艺术,其多元化的表演仍持续带给观众炫目迷人的精采感受。

Tips In Use

...Barnum used his impressive math skills as a shopkeeper.

(……担任店主的巴纳姆活用他那令人赞叹的数学能力。)

as 在句中作介词用,表『作为(某种身分时)』。例:

As your best friend, I will be there for you no matter what.

(身为你的挚友,我无论如何都会支持你。)

as 作介词用,还有下列两种意思:

1. 表『当作』(与 think of, treat, respect 等并用)。例:

Fionna thinks of Johnny Depp as the most handsome man in the world.

(费欧娜认为钱宁?戴普是世上最帅的男人。)

2. 表『充当,担任』。例:

This empty room can serve as a guest room sometimes.

(这间空房有时可以充当客房用。)

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