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[翻译]This Is America - Columbus Day 本站原创 更新时间: 2015-10-12         

This is Columbus Day, the second Monday in October, in the United States. It is a federal holiday. That means most federal offices are closed.

十月的第二个星期一是美国联邦假日“哥伦布日”,这意味着大多数联邦办公室会放假关闭。

The holiday honors the first visit to America by the Italian explorer Christopher Columbus. Columbus thought he could reach the Far East by sailing west across the Atlantic Ocean from Europe.

这个节日是为了纪念意大利探险家克里斯托弗·哥伦布(Christopher Columbus)首次抵达美洲。哥伦布认为他从欧洲向西横穿大西洋就能抵达远东地区。

He was right.

他是对的。

But he was also wrong. He thought the world was much smaller than it is. He did not imagine that another continent — and another huge ocean — lay between Europe and East Asia.

但他也是错的。他认为世界比实际上要更小。他没料到在欧洲和东亚之间还有另一块大陆和另一片巨大的海洋。

Columbus and his crew arrived in October 1492 on an island they called San Salvador, in today’s Bahamas. They explored that island and nearby islands now known as Cuba and Hispaniola.

哥伦布和他的船员于1492年10月抵达了当时他们所称的圣萨尔瓦多岛,今天这里被称之为巴哈马。他们在该岛和现在被称之为古巴和伊斯帕尼奥拉岛的邻近岛屿进行探险。

Columbus believed these were the coastal islands of East Asia, then called the Indies. That is why he called the people who lived on the islands “Indians.”

哥伦布认为这些是东亚的沿海岛屿,于是称之为“印度”。这就是为什么居住于这些岛屿的人们被他称之为“印度人”。

He refused to accept he was wrong about the geography, even though local plants where he explored were unknown in Europe or Asia, and native people did not understand any languages spoken in the East.

他拒绝承认他在地理上犯了错误,即使他探险地的当地作物在欧洲和亚洲都是未知的,而且当地人听不懂任何东方语言。

Columbus made several other trips to what was called the New World. He saw the coast of South America and the island of Jamaica.

哥伦布又航行了好几趟前往他所谓的新大陆。他看到了南美海岸和牙买加岛。

During his trips, Columbus explored islands and waterways, searching for a passage to the Indies. He never found it. Nor did he find spicesor great amounts of gold as he had hoped. Yet, he always believed he had found the Indies.

在他的航行期间,哥伦布还探索了岛屿和水域,寻找通向印度的通道。他从未如他所愿地发现香料或大量的黄金,然而他始终认为他找到了印度。

So Why Columbus Day?

为什么会有哥伦布日?

Many people have pointed out that Christopher Columbus never recognized where he really landed. Other European explorers did land in what is now the United States. But not Columbus.

很多人指出,哥伦布从未认识到他真正登陆的地区是哪。其他欧洲探险家真正登陆了现在的美国,而不是哥伦布。

More importantly, some say, Columbus did not “discover” a new world: many native people already lived here.

有人说,更重要的是哥伦布没有发现什么新大陆,许多当地人已经生活在这里。

Critics of Columbus Day also strongly object to the holiday because Columbus treated native people cruelly. He enslaved some of the West Indians, forcing them to serve the Europeans or search for gold. He controlled parts of the population with violence and oppression.

哥伦布日的批评者还强烈反对这个假期,因为哥伦布对待土著人非常残忍。他奴役了一些西印度人(即印第安人),强迫他们为欧洲人服务或寻找黄金。他用暴力和压迫控制了部分人群。

In addition, Columbus and his fellow European voyagers forced native people to accept Christianity.

此外,哥伦布以及他的欧洲航海家同行强迫当地人接受基督教。

And, they brought new diseases that sickened and killed many of the native people. Columbus’ arrival in the Caribbean was devastatingto the people there. 

而且他们带来的新疾病让很多当地人生病和丧命。哥伦布抵达加勒比海对当地人是毁灭性的。

So why do we honor Columbus with a U.S. holiday? Well, some states — including Alaska, Hawaii and South Dakota — do not. Other Americans use the day to celebrate native people instead of Columbus.

那么为什么我们以假日纪念哥伦布呢?好吧,美国一些州,像阿拉斯加、夏威夷和南达科他州就不这么干。其他美国人用这天来庆祝土著人而不是哥伦布。

Some people ignorethe day all together. They use the time off work and school to tour the countryside in New England and see the changing colors of maple trees. Others go shopping and take advantage of Columbus Day discounts and sales.

有些人把这两个节日一起忽略了。他们用这段假期参观新英格兰地区的农村,去看看枫叶变红。另一些人去逛街,享受哥伦布日的折扣和甩卖。

Even though Columbus Day is one of the most disputed holidays in the U.S. calendar, scholars say the origins of Columbus Day aimed to bring Americans together. In 1892, President Benjamin Harrison called on the country to observe Columbus Day. He invited Americans to take a day of rest from work, and to reflecton how much they had achieved in the 400 years since Columbus landed in San Salvador.

尽管哥伦布日是美国最具争议的节日之一,学者们称哥伦布日原本是为了团结美国人。1892年,本杰明·哈里森(Benjamin Harrison)总统呼吁该国庆祝哥伦布日。他要求美国人从工作中拿出一天休息时间,反省自哥伦布登陆圣萨尔瓦多四百年来他们取得了多少成就。

Historian William Connell writes in the magazine The American Scholar that President Harrison also wanted to honor Italian Americans andNative Americans with the holiday. At that time, both groups had recently suffered violent attacks. And they suffered from ongoing discriminationin the U.S.

历史学家威廉·康奈尔(William Connell)在《美国学者》杂志上撰写称,哈里森总统还希望用这个节日纪念意大利裔美国人和土著美国人。当时这两个群体刚刚遭受暴力袭击事件。他们在美国不断遭到歧视。

Historian William Connell argues that President Harrison believed that Columbus Day could unite all Americans in shared, patriotic pride.

康奈尔认为,哈里森总统相信哥伦布日可以在共同的爱国情操下团结所有美国人。

I'm Kelly Jean Kelly.

Words in This Story

spices– n.substances (such as pepper or nutmeg) used in cooking to add flavor to food

devastated– v. destroyed much or most of something

ignore– v.do nothing about

reflect– v.think carefully about something

discrimination– n.the practice of unfairly treating a person or group of people differently from other people or groups of people