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万物简史(MP3+中英字幕) 第112期:势不两立的科学(13)

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Unaware that disappointment was going to be a continuing feature of his life, Mantell continued hunting for fossils—he found another giant, the Hylaeosaurus, in 1833—and purchasing others from quarrymen and farmers until he had probably the largest fossil collection in Britain. Mantell was an excellent doctor and equally gifted bone hunter, but he was unable to support both his talents. As his collecting mania grew, he neglected his medical practice. Soon fossils filled nearly the whole of his house in Brighton and consumed much of his income. Much of the rest went to underwriting the publication of books that few cared to own. Illustrations of the Geology of Sussex , published in 1827, sold only fifty copies and left him 300 pounds out of pocket—an uncomfortably substantial sum for the times.
曼特尔不知道失望会伴随自己的一生,继续寻找化石——1833年,他发现了另一个庞然大物雨蛙龙——并从采石场工人和农夫手里买回别的化石,最后很可能成了英国最大的化石收藏家。曼特尔是一位杰出的医生,在搜集骨头方面也同样很有天赋,但他无法同时维持这两方面的才能。随着他越来越热衷于搜集工作,他忽视了医生职业。过不多久,他在布赖顿的家里几乎塞满了化石,花掉了大部分收入。剩下的钱被用来支付书的出版费用,而他的书又极少人愿意购买。1827年出版的《苏塞克斯的地质说明》只卖掉了50本,很不开心地倒贴了300英镑——这在当时是一笔不小的数目。
恐龙化石.jpgIn some desperation Mantell hit on the idea of turning his house into a museum and charging admission, then belatedly realized that such a mercenary act would ruin his standing as a gentleman, not to mention as a scientist, and so he allowed people to visit the house for free. They came in their hundreds, week after week, disrupting both his practice and his home life. Eventually he was forced to sell most of his collection to pay off his debts. Soon after, his wife left him, taking their four children with her.
曼特尔在绝望之中灵机一动,把自己的房子改成了博物馆,收取门票费。然而,他后来意识到这种商业行为会损害他的绅士地位,且不说科学家的地位——于是就让别人免费参观他的家庭博物馆。成百上千的人前来参观,一个星期又一个星期,既中断了他的行医工作,又扰乱了他的家庭生活。最后,为了偿还债务,他不得不变卖绝大部分收藏品。过不多久,他的妻子带着他的四个孩子离他而去。
Remarkably, his troubles were only just beginning.
值得注意的是,他的麻烦才刚刚开始。
重点单词   查看全部解释    
unaware ['ʌnə'wɛə]
想一想再看
adj. 没有发觉的,不知道的
联想记忆
mercenary ['mə:sineri]
想一想再看
adj. 唯利是图的,雇佣的 n. 唯利是图的人,雇佣兵
联想记忆
substantial [səb'stænʃəl]
想一想再看
adj. 实质的,可观的,大量的,坚固的
n.
联想记忆
collection [kə'lekʃən]
想一想再看
n. 收集,收取,聚集,收藏品,募捐
联想记忆
mania ['meiniə]
想一想再看
n. 狂热,癖好,[医]躁狂 suf. ... 狂,对
联想记忆
hunter ['hʌntə]
想一想再看
n. 猎人,猎犬,猎马,搜寻者 Hunter: 亨特(姓
 
eventually [i'ventjuəli]
想一想再看
adv. 终于,最后
 
disappointment [.disə'pɔintmənt]
想一想再看
n. 失望,令人失望的人或事
 
ruin [ruin]
想一想再看
v. 毁灭,毁坏,破产
n. 毁灭,崩溃,废墟
 
gifted ['giftid]
想一想再看
adj. 有天赋的,有才华的
 
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