Of Study 论读书(1) ——弗朗西斯·培根

Of Study 论读书(1) ——弗朗西斯·培根

STUDIES serve for delight, for ornament, and for ability. Their chief use for delight, is in privateness and retiring; for ornament, is in discourse; and for ability, is in the judgment, and disposition of business. For expert men can exe-cute, and perhaps judge of particulars, one by one; but the general counsels, and the plots and marshalling of affairs, come best, from those that are learned.

读书足以怡情,足以博彩,足以长才。其怡情也,最见于独处幽居之时;其博彩也,最见于高谈阔论之中;其长才也,最见于处世判事之际。练达之士虽能分别处理 细事或一一判别枝节,然纵观统筹、全局策划,则舍好学深思者莫属。

To spend too much time in studies is sloth; to use them too much for ornament, is affectation; to make judgment wholly by their rules, is the humor of a scholar. They perfect nature, and are perfected by experience: for natural abilities are like natural plants, that need proyning, by study; and studies themselves, do give forth directions too much at large, except they be bounded in by experience.

读书费时过多易惰,文采藻饰太盛则矫,全凭条文断事乃学究故态。读书补天然之不足,经验又补读书之不足,盖天生才干犹如自然花草,读书然后知如何修剪移接;而书中所示,如不以经验范之,则又大而无当。

Crafty men contemn studies, simple men admire them, and wise men use them; for they teach not their own use; but that is a wisdom without them, and above them, won by observation. Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.

有一技之长者鄙读书,无知者羡读书,唯明智之士用读书,然书并不以用处告人,用书之智不在书中,而在书外,全凭观察得之。读书时不可存心诘难作者,不可尽信书上所言,亦不可只为寻章摘句,而应推敲细思。 

Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested; that is, some books are to be read only in parts; others to be read, but not curiously; and some few to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention.

书有可浅尝者,有可吞食者,少数则须咀嚼消化。换言之,有只须读其部分者,有只须大体涉猎者,少数则须全读,读时须全神贯注,孜孜不倦。 

Some books also may be read by deputy, and extracts made of them bothers; but that would be only in the less important arguments, and the meaner sort of books, else distilled books are like common distilled waters, flashy things.

书亦可请人代读,取其所作摘要,但只限题材较次或价值不高者,否则书经提炼犹如水经蒸馏、淡而无味矣。

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