By Ellen Jordan,2014-07-04 23:07
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    Lesson 4 The Invisible Japanese Gentlemen

    Word List

    1. courteous a. characterized by gracious consideration toward others/ polite 谦恭的;有礼的 2. blonde a. & n. having golden or pale-coloured hair白肤金发(女子)

    3. petite a. small, slender, and trim. (used of a girl or woman) 娇小的

    4. Regency n. typical of the period 1810-1820 in England 摄政时期(1811-1820)

    a person or group selected to govern in place of a monarch or other ruler who

    is absent, disabled, or still in minority 摄政者

    5. oval n. & a. resembling an egg in shape卵形的/ resembling an ellipse in shape; elliptical


    6. miniature n. a copy or model that represents or reproduces something in a greatly

     reduced size缩小模型,缩微模型

     a small painting executed with great detail, often on a surface such as ivory


    a. being on a small or greatly reduced scale 小型的

    7. signet-ring n. signet -- seal图章戒指

    8. aviary n. a large enclosure for holding birds in confinement 大鸟舍 cage

    9. fiancé n. a man engaged to be married 未婚夫

    10. panel n. a flat, usually rectangular piece forming a raised, recessed, or framed part of the

     surface in which it is set 镶板

    11. sensitivity n.

    sensitive a. easily influenced to the attitudes, feelings, or circumstances of others 敏感的

     e.g. She is sensitive to what people think of her. 她很敏感人们对她是怎么想的。 12. paperback n. a book having a flexible paper binding 平装本 hardcover精装本: 13. crutch n. a device used for assistance or support 支撑物

    e.g. to walk on crutches 拄着拐杖走路

    14. rake v. aim heavy gunfire along the length of 扫射

    search or examine thoroughly 搜索

     e.g. rake through the files for the misplaced letter为找一封错放的信而搜找那些文件

     rake the library for new books在图书馆里寻找新书

    rake the sky with a searchlight用探照灯扫视天空

    The clouds raked the mountain summits.云朵掠过山峰。

    15. champagne n. 香槟酒

    16. elaborate a. intricate and rich in detail复杂精美的/ complicated/carefully prepared and

     finished/ very detailed and complicated

    v. express at greater length or in greater detail 详述

     e.g. an elaborate lace pattern复杂精美的花边图案

     The chairman just wanted the facts; you don't need to elaborate on them.


    17. courtesy n. polite behavior有礼貌的举止行为

    courteous a.

    18. enfeeble v. deprive of strength; make feeble使丧失力量?使虚弱

    feeble a.

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    Lesson 4 The Invisible Japanese Gentlemen

    e.g. I felt feeble when I was ill. 我生病的时候感到很虚弱。

    Grandmother has been getting feebler lately.近来祖母愈益衰弱了。

    19. snatch v. & n. grasp or seize hastily, eagerly, or suddenly 抢夺

    e.g. He snatched up his gun and fired. 他突然取出枪来射击。

    He snatched the book from my hands. 他从我的手里抢走了书。

    A bird had snatched up the snake from the ground and then dropped it on to the wires.


    snatch at the chance of抓住机会

    20. decorative a. serving to decorate or embellish; ornamental 装饰性的?装饰的

    decorate v.

    decoration n.

    21. submit v. give in to the authority, power, or desires of another 服从

     offer as a proposition or contention将„作为意见提出

    submission n.

    e.g. refuse to submit to an unjust decision拒绝服从不公正的决定

    I submitted my papers to the examiner. 我把试卷交给主考老师。

    I hope you can submit you term papers before the deadline.


    submit willingly心悦诚服

    22. simultaneously ad.

    simultaneous a. happening, existing, or done at the same time 同时的

    e.g. This event was almost simultaneous with that one.


    23. counterpart n. one that closely resembles another 相似物

    24. Naples n. 那不勒斯(意大利港市)

    25. abrasive a. harsh and rough in manner 生硬粗暴的

    26. blurb n. a brief publicity notice, as on a book jacket 简介

    27. evasive a. inclined or intended to evade 逃避的

    evade v.

    e.g. take evasive action采取逃避行动

     evade responsibility回避责任


     In this sort story, Greene creates the favourable image of a girl, who is not only attractive in looks but also firm in spirit. She has just had her first novel published, and now intoxicated by her success and inflated by the publisher’s praise, she wants to stake her future on a writer’s career. For such a girl, Greene expresses great sympathy and deep concern, himself being a veteran author who knows all the problems and sufferings of being a writer. While he seems to be worrying abut the particular girl, he offers all young would-be writers his reflections on being a writer and his advice to them on choosing other careers than writing.

     Greene seriously believes that writing requires enormous pains and is never an easy job. A writer may put forth “years of effort” but end up in “doing nothing well”. The girl obviously did not realize this when she set out to write. Beside, writing calls for extremely keen observation. The girl is certainly not up to the job, for she fails to notice even those Japanese gentlemen seated

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    Lesson 4 The Invisible Japanese Gentlemen

    highly visibly in an English restaurant. The girl is sure to suffer if she really embarks on a career as a novelist. As an older person of about her mother’s age, Greene cannot bear to see her, whom he has affectionately portrayed in the story, suffer in her future life. He would like to advise her to take up some other job, because in his words, “she deserves better of life” then toiling as a

    professional scribbler.

     The girl’s fiancé and the Japanese gentlemen have respective roles to play in the story. The man is described as weak in personality and as such, serves as a perfect foil for the girl’s strong character. In several places of the story, the author gives meticulously detailed descriptions of the Japanese gentlemen at the fish dinner. Although the girl is also mentioned as having looked at them on a number of occasions, her glances have never come to anything. In this way, the girl’s exaggerated powers of observation are set well apart from a true writer’s watchfulness. The title of the story epitomizes this meaning.

Detailed explanation of the difficulty sentence

     There were eight Japanese gentlemen having (what the writer observed)

    a fish dinner at Bentley's. They spoke to each They hardly ever spoke during the meal, when

    other rarely in their incomprehensible tongue, they did speak, they spoke in their native

    but always with a courteous smile and often tongue Japanese, which was impossible to

    with a small bow. All but one of them wore understand (incomprehensible) to the author.

    glasses. Sometimes the pretty girl who sat in

    the window beyond gave them a passing (bay window) A large window or series of

    glance, but her own problem seemed too windows projecting from the outer wall of a

    serious for her to pay real attention to anyone in building and forming a recess within 凸窗,

    the world except herself and her companion. 楼的外墙突出来的一个大窗或一连串窗子;


    She had thin blonde hair and her face was

    pretty and petite in a Regency way, oval like a Her face was small, delicate, and clean, and

    miniature, was as oval-shaped as a miniature, representing

     the typical feminine face admired as perfect by

    (a sharp contrast) people in Regency time.

    though she had a harsh way of speaking - She spoke in a firm, commanding tone and an

    perhaps the accent of the school, Roedean or upper-class manner, typical of those who had

    Cheltenham Ladies' College, which she had not been educated at Roedean or Cheltenham

    long ago left. She wore a man's signet-ring on Ladies’ College (a public school = private

    her engagement finger, and as I sat down at my secondary school e.g. Eton College), both being

    table, with the Japanese gentlemen between us, highly prestigious schools for upper-class

    she said, 'So you see we could marry next young women (ladies with a good family

    week'. background).