活到老学到老:学了几个新单词(2014.01.09)

1. Poignant

英文字典的解释是painfully affecting the feelings;sharply painful。差不多就是“非常令人痛苦的”的意思。我是从一个同事的邮件里面看到的, 他说“This was extremely poignant”。

2. Prognosis

英文字典的解释是A prediction of the probable course and outcome of a disease;a prediction about how a given situation will develop。和diagnosis的不同是:diagnosis主要偏重于对当前症状的诊断,prognosis偏重对下一步发展的判断。这个单词我也是从一个同事的邮件里面看到的,他说“What is the prognosis on storage?”

3. Panacea

英文字典的解释是a remedy for all ills or difficulties。很多中文翻译把panacea翻译成“灵丹妙药”,未尝不可,不过失去了一点点很关键的含义。“灵丹妙药”没有把all这层意思翻译出来。有些地方把panacea翻译成“万灵药”,就好多了,虽然“万灵药”在中文里面不是一个很常见的词。或许可以翻译成“包治百病的药”。和panacea意思类似的还有一个词:silver bullet。不过silver bullet的侧重点是解决单个问题。它的英文解释是something that acts as a magical weapon; especially one that instantly solves a long-standing problem。所以和panacea还是有区别的。Panacea这个单词我也是在一个同事的邮件里学到的,他说“let us not treat any single bug as the panacea for any one type of issue”。

Btw, 这三封同事的邮件来自于同一个同事。一个老美,他的词汇量我只能仰视。

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