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【美文推荐】Samuel Smiles | Companionship of Books Americanstudies 英语世界与国际研究
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【美文推荐】Samuel Smiles | Companionship of Books

Americanstudies 英语世界与国际研究 

【作者简介】塞缪尔·斯迈尔斯(Samuel Smiles, 1812-1904)是英国19世纪著名的道德学家、社会改革家和脍炙人口的散文随笔作家。丰富的人生阅历为他对人性优劣和成败得失的观察乃至文学创作打下了坚实的功底。塞缪尔·斯迈尔斯一生写过20多部著作,这些作品所蕴含的思想对世界许多国家道德文明的发展产生了巨大的影响。

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A man may usually be known by the books he reads as well as by the company he keeps; for there is a companionship of books as well as of men; and one should always live in the best company, whether it be of books or of men.


A good book may be among the best of friends. It is the same today that it always was, and it will never change. It is the most patient and cheerful of companions. It does not turn its back upon us in times of adversity or distress. It always receives us with the same kindnessamusing and instructing us in youth, and comforting and consoling us in age.

Men often discover their affinity to each other by the mutual love they have for a book -- just as two persons sometimes discover a friend by the admiration which both entertain for a third. There is an old proverb, “Love me, love my dog.” But there is more wisdom in this: Love me, love my book.” The book is a truer and higher bond of union. Men can think, feel, and sympathize with each other through their favorite author. They live in him together, and he in them.


A good book is often the best urn of a life enshrining the best that life could think out; for the world of a man's life is, for the most part, but the world of his thoughts. Thus the best books are treasures of good words, the golden thoughts, which, remembered and cherished, become our constant companions and comforters.


Books possess an essence of immortality. They are by far the most lasting products of human effort. Temples and statues decay, but books survive. Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh today as when they first passed through their author's minds, ages ago. What was then said and thought still speaks to us as vividly as ever from the printed page. The only effect of time has been to sift out the bad products; for nothing in literature can long survive but what is really good.


Books introduce us into the best society they bring us into the presence of the greatest minds that have ever lived. We hear what they said and did; we see them as if they were really alive; we sympathize with them, enjoy with them, grieve with them; their experience becomes ours, and we feel as if we were in a measure actors with them in the scenes which they describe.


The great and good do not die even in this world. Embalmed in books, their spirits walk abroad. The book is a living voice. It is an intellect to which one still listens.

http://www.bigear.cn/restext-1105-7777700029918.html


1. console  vt. 安慰;慰藉

2. affinity  n. 密切关系;吸引力

3. urn  n. 瓮;缸

4. enshrine  vt. 铭记,珍藏;把…置于神龛内

5. decay  v. 衰退,腐烂,腐朽

6. sift out  筛出



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