新编英语教程第二册Unit18

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Unit 18

DIALOGUE I

Save Our Heritage

A: Finally we're back from the field trip.
B: Yes. But our visit to that historic city could've been more exciting.
A: I know. If it hadn't been for the destruction of some of the ancient monuments, I would've enjoyed the trip much more.
B: Yes. If some of the local officials had taken better care of them, I would've enjoyed it much more too.
A: What shocked me most was the pulling down of the stately Drum Tower. We can only see it in pictures now. If it had been destroyed in a battle or in an earthquake, I would've felt much better.
B: Oh, yes. How could they have had the heart to pull it down just to straighten the road for city traffic?
A: That's shocking! And the legendary Buddhist Temple that was built fifteen hundred years ago. There are so many beautiful tales about it. But what did we see there? Skyscrapers rising one after another.
B: It's a shame to see so many modern buildings inside the temple's precincts. The refined elegance of the old is drowned by the crude simplicity of the new. Just impossible! It makes me sick to recall what we saw there.
A: And what about the thousand-year-old corridor? It's become part of a tourist hotel just for money.
B: More than that, it's being ravaged by kitchen smoke. Do you remember the place where we had tea? What an experience!
A: Just disgusting, turning a tombstone of an imperial Tang court into a tea table.
B: It I were head of the local relics administration, I would remove the management from their office.
A: One reason that they destroy historical monuments is for money, but another is perhaps due to their ignorance of the real value of our cultural heritage.
B: In that case, I'm really for the saying "Ignorance is sin". While they are ruining those priceless treasures, perhaps they don't know that they are actually committing an inexcusable crime.
A: Fortunately there are also people who recover national treasures from piles of junk. I heard of a broken bronze vessel cast in the eleventh century B.C. which was picked out of a scrap heap. Some workers there were certainly antique-conscious.
B: Yes, I hear people working in the Administrative Bureau of Cultural Relics have saved thousands of ancient craftworks from construction sites. But their efforts are counteracted by those of antique looters.
A: Those people are vicious. I've seen a film on smugglers who tried to take antiques abroad so that they could make a fortune. They ought to be punished. Something must be done; the sooner, the better.
B: I think they must have already been punished by the law. The new law imposes well-defined restrictions on the export of valuable antiques.
A: Five thousand years of civilization have endowed our country with a great store of historical and cultural treasure. It's up to every citizen to see that they are well preserved.

DIALOGUE II

Dialogue:

Two students are reading an illustrated pamphlet on the Taj Mahal, the tomb of the Indian Shah Jehan and his wife. They are admiring its magnificent structure.
A: I'm quite struck by such a magnificent piece of architecture. It's brilliantly white under the sun.
B: My Uncle Bill has been there. He told me something about this unique ancient structure. It's made of fine white marble.
A: Not entirely of white marble. See the coloured inlays here? Such beautiful colours and tastefully matched too! Are they also marble?
B: They're coloured marble, I believe. The platform under the structure was made of red sandstone.
A: Look at the four elegant towers on the corners of the platform! Aren't they exquisite!
B: And what a beautiful garden surrounding the Taj Mahal! The green trees seem to make the marble even whiter.
A: And the pool in front of the main entrance to the building. What a brilliant design! See the reflection in the water? Just beautiful!
B: My uncle told me that the Taj Mahal is most beautiful at sunset. Then the marble picks up the colour of the sunset, and the building and its reflection in the pool gleam like pink jewels. The sight is simply overwhelming!
A: I heard that people prefer admiring it in moonlight. Then it's really out of this world.
B: And when morning comes, the Taj Mahal turns from silver to gold.
A: It must be gorgeous! I wish I could go to India and see it for myself.
B: It's unbelievable how Nature can give a human structure such mystic enchantment.

READING I

The Taj Mahal

Everyone who has seen the Taj Mahal in India would probably agree that it is indeed a thing of beauty. And it has certainly given joy to millions of people since its completion in the middle of the seventeenth century. It is doubtful that any other structure has ever been modelled, painted, photographed, or described as often as the Taj Mahal.
India is a land of architectural magnificence, having many ornate and exquisite temples, monuments, and palaces. The best-known of all these is the beautiful Taj Mahal, a tomb built by an emperor in honour of his beloved wife. It has been called "a poem in marble" and is said to be the most expensive compliment paid to a woman. Perfect in symmetry, its beauty has never been surpassed.
The history connected with the Taj Mahal is a very poignant one. When the emperor's wife was about to die, she made two requests of him: first, that he would never marry again; and second, that he would build her a tomb that would make her name remembered forever. These wishes the grief-stricken emperor readily promised to fulfil. And in the palace during the long, lonely nights that followed her death, he considered how he could best express in a monument his tender feelings for his wife. He wanted the monument to be as lovely as she was. At last the idea for the memorial came to him in a dream, and the great work was begun.
Built of white marble that shimmers in both sunlight and moonlight, the Taj Mahal stands on an eighteen-foot-high marble platform which has a delicate minaret on each corner. In the centre of the platform stands the tomb itself, octagonal in shape, crowned with a graceful dome rising high above it. There are four smaller domes around the central dome which duplicate it in design, as do the domes on top of the four dainty minarets. In the moonlight, these lovely domes seem to float like clouds in a deep-blue sea.
Surrounding the Taj Mahal are beautiful formal gardens, and leading up to the main entrance are cypress-lined reflecting pools where sparkling fountains play. Also on the grounds are a mosque and a guesthouse. Each structure adds to the beauty of the others, and together they all make up a whole whose charm has never been matched.
It is reported that it took twenty thousand men working for almost twenty years to complete this unique and delicately feminine memorial. Most of the workers were from India, but others were brought from Persia, Iraq, Turkey, and Afghanistan. Artists were brought from as far away as Italy and Portugal to help decorate the walls, both inside and outside, with inlays of precious and semiprecious stones, and to create mosaic designs of great intricacy. One of the mosaic flowers they created may have as many as three hundred pieces of stone in it.
The walls inside the tomb were originally covered with gold, and there was a canopy with ten thousand pearls on it. Many of the jewels and other valuable materials were later taken from the Taj Mahal by vandals, but the white marble with its soft warm glow still remains.
The emperor planned that when the Taj Mahal was completed he would build a similar tomb of black marble for his own burial place. It was to be built on the opposite side of the nearby river and was to be connected to the Taj Mahal by a silver bridge, which would symbolize his happy marriage with his wife.
But the second tomb was never built. By the time the Taj Mahal was finished, the emperor's sons had grown to manhood and were quarrelling with each other over which one should be the next emperor. Finally the second son succeeded in banishing one brother and killing the other two. He then seized the throne and imprisoned his father in a fort about a mile away, where he was forced to spend the last eight years of his life -- out of sight of the lovely Taj Mahal.
One day, however, the old emperor happened to notice a tiny mirror embedded in one of the pillars of the balcony where he was allowed to walk. Upon closer examination, he discovered that the little mirror, which was no more than an inch across, reflected the entire Taj Mahal. From that time until his death, he spent many hours enjoying the miniature reflection of the beautiful monument he had built for his wife; and when he died, he was buried there beside her.

READING II

The Mosques of Istanbul

Anyone who has been in Turkey will remember the day when he first saw the skyline of Istanbul. There are many interesting buildings in the city, but those that stand out most in one's memory are the mosques, with their many domes and delicate minarets. These beautiful structures are where the Moslems go to worship. Istanbul has about a million inhabitants, and most of them are Moslems. For this reason, one sees mosques in almost every direction. No wonder the skyline of this Turkish city is so fascinating!
Many mosques have only one minaret, but the Blue Mosque has six. In fact, it is the only one in the world with that number. A more unusual feature, however, is the interior of the building. There the walls are covered with thousands of blue tiles, which make a soft glow inside the mosque and give it its name. This is the favourite mosque of almost everyone who visits Istanbul.
Another famous place in the city is the Saint Sophia Museum, which is only a short distance from the Blue Mosque. This ancient building is considered one of the world's finest religious structures. Because of this, it is now a museum rather than a place where people worship. On entering it, one is immediately impressed by the size of its interior and its huge marble columns. The big central dome appears to be floating in the air, with nothing to support it. The architect who planned Saint Sophia truly created a work of art.
Unit 18 DIALOGUE I Save Our Heritage A: Finally we're back from the field trip. B: Yes. But our visit to that historic city could've been more exciting. A: I know. If it hadn't been for the destruction of some of the ancient monuments, I would've enjoyed the trip much more. B: Yes. If some of the local officials had taken better care of them, I would've enjoyed it much more too. A: What shocked me most was the pulling down of the stately Drum Tower. We can only see it in pictures now. If it had been destroyed in a battle or in an earthquake, I would've felt much better. B: Oh, yes. How could they have had the heart to pull it down just to straighten the road for city traffic? A: That's shocking! And the legendary Buddhist Temple that was built fifteen hundred years ago. There are so many beautiful tales about it. But what did we see there? Skyscrapers rising one after another. B: It's a shame to see so many modern buildings inside the temple's precincts. The refined elegance of the old is drowned by the crude simplicity of the new. Just impossible! It makes me sick to recall what we saw there. A: And what about the thousand-year-old corridor? It's become part of a tourist hotel just for money. B: More than that, it's being ravaged by kitchen smoke. Do you remember the place where we had tea? What an experience! A: Just disgusting, turning a tombstone of an imperial Tang court into a tea table. B: It I were head of the local relics administration, I would remove the management from their office. A: One reason that they destroy historical monuments is for money, but another is perhaps due to their ignorance of the real value of our cultural heritage. B: In that case, I'm really for the saying "Ignorance is sin". While they are ruining those priceless treasures, perhaps they don't know that they are actually committing an inexcusable crime. A: Fortunately there are also people who recover national treasures from piles of junk. I heard of a broken bronze vessel cast in the eleventh century B.C. which was picked out of a scrap heap. Some workers there were certainly antique-conscious. B: Yes, I hear people working in the Administrative Bureau of Cultural Relics have saved thousands of ancient craftworks from construction sites. But their efforts are counteracted by those of antique looters. A: Those people are vicious. I've seen a film on smugglers who tried to take antiques abroad so that they could make a fortune. They ought to be punished. Something must be done; the sooner, the better. B: I think they must have already been punished by the law. The new law imposes well-defined restrictions on the export of valuable antiques. A: Five thousand years of civilization have endowed our country with a great store of historical and cultural treasure. It's up to every citizen to see that they are well preserved. DIALOGUE II Dialogue: Two students are reading an illustrated pamphlet on the Taj Mahal, the tomb of the Indian Shah Jehan and his wife. They are admiring its magnificent structure. A: I'm quite struck by such a magnificent piece of architecture. It's brilliantly white under the sun. B: My Uncle Bill has been there. He told me something about this unique ancient structure. It's made of fine white marble. A: Not entirely of white marble. See the coloured inlays here? Such beautiful colours and tastefully matched too! Are they also marble? B: They're coloured marble, I believe. The platform under the structure was made of red sandstone. A: Look at the four elegant towers on the corners of the platform! Aren't they exquisite! B: And what a beautiful garden surrounding the Taj Mahal! The green trees seem to make the marble even whiter. A: And the pool in front of the main entrance to the building. What a brilliant design! See the reflection in the water? Just beautiful! B: My uncle told me that the Taj Mahal is most beautiful at sunset. Then the marble picks up the colour of the sunset, and the building and its reflection in the pool gleam like pink jewels. The sight is simply overwhelming! A: I heard that people prefer admiring it in moonlight. Then it's really out of this world. B: And when morning comes, the Taj Mahal turns from silver to gold. A: It must be gorgeous! I wish I could go to India and see it for myself. B: It's unbelievable how Nature can give a human structure such mystic enchantment. READING I The Taj Mahal Everyone who has seen the Taj Mahal in India would probably agree that it is indeed a thing of beauty. And it has certainly given joy to millions of people since its completion in the middle of the seventeenth century. It is doubtful that any other structure has ever been modelled, painted, photographed, or described as often as the Taj Mahal. India is a land of architectural magnificence, having many ornate and exquisite temples, monuments, and palaces. The best-known of all these is the beautiful Taj Mahal, a tomb built by an emperor in honour of his beloved wife. It has been called "a poem in marble" and is said to be the most expensive compliment paid to a woman. Perfect in symmetry, its beauty has never been surpassed. The history connected with the Taj Mahal is a very poignant one. When the emperor's wife was about to die, she made two requests of him: first, that he would never marry again; and second, that he would build her a tomb that would make her name remembered forever. These wishes the grief-stricken emperor readily promised to fulfil. And in the palace during the long, lonely nights that followed her death, he considered how he could best express in a monument his tender feelings for his wife. He wanted the monument to be as lovely as she was. At last the idea for the memorial came to him in a dream, and the great work was begun. Built of white marble that shimmers in both sunlight and moonlight, the Taj Mahal stands on an eighteen-foot-high marble platform which has a delicate minaret on each corner. In the centre of the platform stands the tomb itself, octagonal in shape, crowned with a graceful dome rising high above it. There are four smaller domes around the central dome which duplicate it in design, as do the domes on top of the four dainty minarets. In the moonlight, these lovely domes seem to float like clouds in a deep-blue sea. Surrounding the Taj Mahal are beautiful formal gardens, and leading up to the main entrance are cypress-lined reflecting pools where sparkling fountains play. Also on the grounds are a mosque and a guesthouse. Each structure adds to the beauty of the others, and together they all make up a whole whose charm has never been matched. It is reported that it took twenty thousand men working for almost twenty years to complete this unique and delicately feminine memorial. Most of the workers were from India, but others were brought from Persia, Iraq, Turkey, and Afghanistan. Artists were brought from as far away as Italy and Portugal to help decorate the walls, both inside and outside, with inlays of precious and semiprecious stones, and to create mosaic designs of great intricacy. One of the mosaic flowers they created may have as many as three hundred pieces of stone in it. The walls inside the tomb were originally covered with gold, and there was a canopy with ten thousand pearls on it. Many of the jewels and other valuable materials were later taken from the Taj Mahal by vandals, but the white marble with its soft warm glow still remains. The emperor planned that when the Taj Mahal was completed he would build a similar tomb of black marble for his own burial place. It was to be built on the opposite side of the nearby river and was to be connected to the Taj Mahal by a silver bridge, which would symbolize his happy marriage with his wife. But the second tomb was never built. By the time the Taj Mahal was finished, the emperor's sons had grown to manhood and were quarrelling with each other over which one should be the next emperor. Finally the second son succeeded in banishing one brother and killing the other two. He then seized the throne and imprisoned his father in a fort about a mile away, where he was forced to spend the last eight years of his life -- out of sight of the lovely Taj Mahal. One day, however, the old emperor happened to notice a tiny mirror embedded in one of the pillars of the balcony where he was allowed to walk. Upon closer examination, he discovered that the little mirror, which was no more than an inch across, reflected the entire Taj Mahal. From that time until his death, he spent many hours enjoying the miniature reflection of the beautiful monument he had built for his wife; and when he died, he was buried there beside her. READING II The Mosques of Istanbul Anyone who has been in Turkey will remember the day when he first saw the skyline of Istanbul. There are many interesting buildings in the city, but those that stand out most in one's memory are the mosques, with their many domes and delicate minarets. These beautiful structures are where the Moslems go to worship. Istanbul has about a million inhabitants, and most of them are Moslems. For this reason, one sees mosques in almost every direction. No wonder the skyline of this Turkish city is so fascinating! Many mosques have only one minaret, but the Blue Mosque has six. In fact, it is the only one in the world with that number. A more unusual feature, however, is the interior of the building. There the walls are covered with thousands of blue tiles, which make a soft glow inside the mosque and give it its name. This is the favourite mosque of almost everyone who visits Istanbul. Another famous place in the city is the Saint Sophia Museum, which is only a short distance from the Blue Mosque. This ancient building is considered one of the world's finest religious structures. Because of this, it is now a museum rather than a place where people worship. On entering it, one is immediately impressed by the size of its interior and its huge marble columns. The big central dome appears to be floating in the air, with nothing to support it. The architect who planned Saint Sophia truly created a work of art.
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