Now the VOA Special English program WORDS AND THEIR STORIES.
A nickname is a shortened form of a person's name. A nickname also can be a descriptive name for a person, place or thing. Many American cities have nicknames. These can help establish an identity, spread pride among citizens and build unity.
A few years ago, some marketing and advertising experts were asked to name the best nickname for an American city. The winner was the nation’s largest city, New York. The top nickname was The Big Apple.
几年前，一些市场和广告专家受命于提名美国城市最佳别名。获胜者是美国最大的城市纽约。最佳别名是The Big Apple（大苹果）。
You might wonder how New York got this nickname. In the early nineteen seventies, the city had many problems. The number of visitors was falling. So a campaign was launched to give the city a new image. The head of the New York Conventions and Visitors Bureau decided to call the city, The Big Apple.
There are several explanations for where this name came from. Language expert Barry Popik studied the question and wrote about it on his website. He says John Fitz Gerald, a writer for a New York newspaper, used the name the Big Apple to mean New York in the nineteen twenties. Mister Fitz Gerald wrote about horse races. He heard the name used by men who worked at a racetrack in New Orleans, Louisiana.
关于这个名字的来历有几种不同的解释。语言专家Barry Popik对这个问题进行了研究，并在其网站上撰文谈及这个名字的来历。他表示，20世纪20年代，纽约一家报纸的记者约翰·菲茨·杰拉德（John Fitz Gerald）使用The Big Apple来指代纽约。杰拉德先生是赛马专栏记者，他从路易斯安新奥尔良赛马场工作人员那得知了这个名字。
|The Statue of Liberty is one of the most popular places to visit in the Big Apple|
Mister Fitz Gerald wrote: “The Big Apple. The dream of every lad that ever threw a leg over a thoroughbred and the goal of all horsemen. There’s only one Big Apple. That’s New York.”
杰拉德写道：“The Big Apple是每个骑过纯种赛马的小伙的梦想，也是所有骑手的目标。这世上只有一个The Big Apple，那就是纽约。”
In horse racing, the expression meant “the big time,” the place where large amounts of money could be won. The Big Apple became the name of a night club in the Harlem area of New York City in nineteen thirty-four. It also was the name of a popular dance and a hit song in the nineteen thirties.
在赛马中，The Big Apple的意思是"the big time"，可以赢很多钱的地方。1934年，The Big Apple成为纽约哈莱姆区一家夜总会的名字，它还是30年代一个著名舞蹈和一首热门歌曲的名字。
But it is not the only nickname for America’s largest city. Barry Popik’s website lists almost one hundred nicknames that describe New York. The best known are the Capital of the World. Empire City. Gotham. The City So Nice They Named it Twice. And the City That Never Sleeps. You can hear about the city in the song, “New York, New York” by Frank Sinatra.
但是，这并不是美国最大的城市纽约唯一的别名。Barry Popik的网站列举了近100个指代纽约的别名。其中最著名的是The Capital of the World(世界之都)，Empire City（帝国城），Gotham（哥谭镇），The City So Nice They Named it Twice.还有The City That Never Sleeps(不夜城)。你可以在这首歌中了解纽约，由Frank Sinatra演唱的"New York, New York"。
This program was written by Shelley Gollust. I'm Barbara Klein. You can find more WORDS AND THEIR STORIES at voaspecialenglish.com.