• Miyuki Nemoto

英語と聖書の関係性


うちは英会話スクールなので、

受講生に「聖書を読んでみたら」とおススメすることはありません。

しかし、ネモトが若いころ、

「アメリカ文化/習慣、言葉を理解したければ聖書を読むべきだ」と

結構な人数のアメリカ人に言われました。

「宗教の書として聖書を読むのではなく、ある種の歴史書として読んでみては」

とアメリカ人の友だちに薦められたこともあります。

ネモトの個人的な意見ではありますが、アメリカに限らず英語圏の文化や習慣、

英語を理解するには、キリスト教を知ることがとても重要です。

言葉はそこに住んでいる人々の文化や習慣、歴史等と深く関係しています。

どの言語を学ぶにしても、それは同じです。

とくに英語は、聖書からきている言い回しや隠喩が沢山あり、

英語圏の方の思想もまた、Christianity(キリスト教)と深~く関係しているのです。

聖書を読むとなるほど~。

ここから来てるいるのね。と納得すること満載です。

アメリカに暮らす子どもたちは、キリスト教徒ではなくても

Christianity(キリスト教)と関連する物語や聖書のおはなしを知っています。

それらの物語には、それぞれ意味があり、宗教的な内容に限らず、教訓となるものが多く、

アメリカ人思想の根底になるものでもあるわけです。

まあ、考えてみれば

「仏教を知れば、日本文化がわかる」といわれるのと同じなのかもしれません。

では、最後に聖書からきている言葉で

普段よく耳にするものをピックアップしてみました。

おそらく皆さんが

ご存じのフレーズも数多くあるかと思います。

日本語訳は、今回割愛いたしました。

ご了承くださいませ。

それでは、また。

A broken heart

KJV, Psalms 34:18 - The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.

A labour of love

This phrase has a biblical origin and appears in Thessalonians and Hebrews (King James Version).

Thessalonians 1:2, 1:3:

We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers;

Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;

Drop in the bucket

From the Bible, Isaiah 40:15 (King James Version):

"Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing."

An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.

From the Code of Hammurabi. Hammurabi was King of Babylon, 1792-1750BC. The code survives today in the Akkadian language. Used in the Bible, Matthew 5:38 (King James Version):

Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.

For everything there is a reason.

(There is a reason for everything. )

For Everything there is a Season from Ecclesiastes 3. Ecclesiastes 3 is also the motivation for the song “Turn! Turn! Turn!” by the Byrds.

A leopard cannot change its spots.

'A leopard cannot change its spots' is found in the Bible, Jeremiah 13:23 (King James Version):

"Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil."

Ashes to ashes

'Ashes to ashes' derives from the English Burial Service. The text of that service is adapted from the Biblical text, Genesis 3:19 (King James Version):

In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

Eat drink and be merry.

From the Bible, Ecclesiastes VIII 15 (King James Version):

To eat, and to drink, and to be merry

Apple of my eye – Deuteronomy 2:10 / Zechariah 2:8

Cast pearls before swine

This expression is usually expressed in the negative proverbial form - 'don't cast your pearls before swine', and is found in the Bible, Matthew 7:6, first appearing in English bibles in Tyndale's Bible, 1526:

It had existed in the language for some time before that, in various forms. It may have migrated from France, as it is found in a Middle French text from 1402 as 'jeter des perles aux pourceaux'. It is also found in Middle English, in Langland's Piers Plowman, which is of uncertain date, but appeared around the same time:

Nolite mittere, Man, margerie perlis Among hogges...

The biblical text is generally interpreted to be a warning by Jesus to his followers that they should not offer biblical doctrine to those who were unable to value and appreciate it.

Twinkling of an eye – 1 Corinthians 15:52

Forbidden Fruit

Forbidden Fruit from Genesis 3:3 when Adam and Eve were commanded not to eat from the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. “But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.”

Go the extra mile Go the extra mile from Matthew 5:41 that says, “And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain” (KJV).

Sour grapes – Ezekiel 18:2

#アメリカ文化 #アメリカ習慣