【雅思阅读】外国典故:Fish in Troubled Waters
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一、Fish in Troubled Waters浑水摸鱼;趁火打劫;陷于混乱 Fish in Troubled Waters直译是:“浑水里捕鱼”,出自《伊索寓言·渔夫》 这篇寓言江的是:有个渔夫在河里张网捕鱼,他把鱼网横栏在河道里,然后拿了一条缚着石块的绳子,不停的拍击河水,使泥沙泛起,河水浑浊,鱼儿在慌乱中纷纷自投罗网,渔夫用这个方法捕得了好多鱼。但住在附近的人指责渔夫说:“我们饮水全靠这条河,你把水搞得这么浑,叫我们到哪里去找清水饮用呢?” 渔夫回答说: “可是,我若不把水搞浑,那就非饿死不可了” 因此,人们常用to fish in trouble waters 比喻to try to win advantages for oneself from a disturbed state of affairs; to make use of sb’s misfortune to serve one’s own ends.并因此产生了谚语it’s good fishing in troubled waters(混水好摸鱼)。 在英语中,to fish in troubled waters 也可写成to fish in the muddy waters,而且water必须做waters。 eg:The man who interferes in South American politics is fishing in troubled waters I refused to let them come here because i knew they only wanted to fish in troubled waters Those who made large profits out of illegally selling rationed goods during World War II were fishing in troubled waters.    二、cat’s paw 被他人利用的人;受人愚弄者 cat’s paw 也坐cat’s-paw或catspaw,字面意思“猫爪子”,出典17世纪法国著名的寓言作家拉·封丹的《猴子与猫》。讲的是狡猾的猴子哄骗头脑简单的猫儿,替它从炉火中取出烤熟的栗子来。猫儿应命去做,结果猫爪子被火烧伤了,而取出的栗子却被猴子吃光了。 追根嗍源,远在公元前3世纪的《伊索寓言》中就有这个故事,不过没有题目。 cat’s paw常用来比喻a person used as a tool by another;one who is used merely for the convenience of a cleverer or stronger person之意。按其内涵,这个成语与汉语成语“为虎作伥”所比喻的意义相似,仅是动物的形象不同 cat’s paw除了单独做复合名词使用外,还构成to make a cat’s paw of sb(利用某人做为工具或爪牙) eg:It is easy for him to be used as a cat’s paw of evil-doing. I am afraid that he is making a cat’s paw of you.

三、Pull the chestnuts out of the fire火中取栗;替别人冒险 Pull the chestnuts out of the fire来自法国著名的寓言作家拉·封丹的《猴子与猫》。 cat’s paw与Pull the chestnuts out of the fire是同源成语,但两个成语无论在结构上或意义上都不相同,前者比喻充当别人的工具或爪牙,后者常用来表示to do sth dangerous for others的意思。 这个成语也作to pull sb’s chestnuts,或者to put the chestnuts for sb. eg:I had pulled the chestnuts out of the fire for him on several occasions and was unwilling to do it again. They are pulling chestnuts out of the fire for the imperialists without knowing it You can’t make me your catspaw to pull your chestnuts out of the fire…


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