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万物简史(MP3+中英字幕) 第65期:事物的测定(12)

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Norwood's two daughters brought their father additional pain by making poor marriages. One of the husbands, possibly incited by the vicar, continually laid small charges against Norwood in court, causing him much exasperation and necessitating repeated trips across Bermuda to defend himself.
诺伍德的两个女儿的婚姻都不尽如人意,给她们的父亲带来了额外的痛苦。有个女婿可能受那位牧师的唆使,不断为了小事去法院控告诺伍德,惹得他非常气愤,还不得不经常去百慕大的那一头为自己辩护。
Finally in the 1650s witch trials came to Bermuda and Norwood spent his final years in severe unease that his papers on trigonometry, with their arcane symbols, would be taken as communications with the devil and that he would be treated to a dreadful execution. So little is known of Norwood that it may in fact be that he deserved his unhappy declining years. What is certainly true is that he got them.
最后,在17世纪50年代,百慕大开始流行审讯巫师,诺伍德提心吊胆地度过了最后的岁月,担心自己那些带有神秘符号的三角学论文会被看做在跟魔鬼交流,自己会被可怕地判处死刑。我们对诺伍德的情况知之甚少,反正他在不愉快环境中度过了晚年,实际上也许是活该。肯定没错的是,他的晚年确实是这样度过的。
地球周长.jpgMeanwhile, the momentum for determining the Earth's circumference passed to France. There, the astronomer Jean Picard devised an impressively complicated method of triangulation involving quadrants, pendulum clocks, zenith sectors, and telescopes (for observing the motions of the moons of Jupiter).
与此同时,测定地球周长的势头已经到达法国。在那里,天文学家让•皮卡尔发明了一种极其复杂的三角测绘法,用上了扇形板、摆钟、天顶象限仪和天文望远镜(用来观察土星卫星的运动)。
After two years of trundling and triangulating his way across France, in 1669 he announced a more accurate measure of 110.46 kilometers for one degree of arc. This was a great source of pride for the French, but it was predicated on the assumption that the Earth was a perfect sphere—which Newton now said it was not.
他花了两年时间穿越法国,用三角测绘法进行测量;之后,他宣布了一个更加精确的测量结果:1度经线为110.46公里。法国人为此感到非常自豪,但这个结果是建立在地球是个圆球这个假设上的--而现在牛顿说地球不是这种形状的。
重点单词   查看全部解释    
declining [di'klainiŋ]
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adj. 下降的,衰落的 动词decline的现在分词
 
execution [.eksi'kju:ʃən]
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n. 执行,实施,处决
n. 技巧,表演
 
vicar ['vikə]
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n. 教区牧师,教堂牧师,传教牧师
 
pendulum ['pendjuləm]
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n. 摆,钟摆,摇摆不定的事态(或局面)
联想记忆
pride [praid]
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n. 自豪,骄傲,引以自豪的东西,自尊心
vt
 
assumption [ə'sʌmpʃən]
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n. 假定,设想,担任(职责等), 假装
联想记忆
source [sɔ:s]
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n. 发源地,来源,原始资料
 
momentum [məu'mentəm]
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n. 动力,要素,势头,(物理)动量
联想记忆
symbols ['simbəls]
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n. 符号;象征;标志;符号表(symbol的复数)
 
complicated ['kɔmplikeitid]
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adj. 复杂的,难懂的
动词complica
 
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