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[时尚英语]-美,可有定律?
LEARNING.SOHU.COM    2004年7月7日10:42  
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  Question of the Month: Is Beauty No More Than A Matter of Math?

  每月一问: 美,可有定律?

  Picture the most beautiful face you have ever seen. Then ask yourself what it is about that face that makes it so lovely. That question may be difficult to answer. After all, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But is it possible to explain the beauty of a human face using math?

  According to many scholars throughout history, the answer could be yes. Most very attractive faces have proportions1 consistent2 with what is known as the “golden ratio.” This ratio can best be understood by thinking of it as a rectangle. In a golden rectangle, the long side is 1.618 times longer than the short side. Therefore, the value of the golden ratio is equal to 1.618. The proportions of the golden rectangle are thought to reflect3 perfect symmetry. If we frame4 a gorgeous5 face inside of a golden rectangle, the dimensions of each will correspond6 perfectly. The face is beautiful because it is symmetrical.

   在脑海中想像一张你所看过最美丽的脸庞。再问问自己,是什么使得那张脸看起来这么美?这个问题大概很难回答。毕竟,情人眼里出西施。但有没有可能用数学来解释人类脸型的美感呢?

   根据历代许多学者的看法,答案可能是肯定的。大多数迷人的脸型比例与人们所知的“黄金比例”相符。最容易理解这一比例的方式,就是把它想成一个矩型。一个黄金矩型的长是宽的 1.618 倍。因此,黄金比例的数值即等于 1.618。有人认为黄金矩型的比例反映出完美的对称。如果我们将一张好看的脸放在黄金矩型的框框里,脸与矩型的长宽比例将会完全契合。这张脸美丽的原因就在于它很匀称。

  Vocabulary

  1. proportions n. pl. the size and/or shape of sth. 形状;形体大小

  The proportions of Titanic were greater than those of any ship built before.

  泰坦尼克号的体积比从前所造的任何船只都大。

  2. consistent adj. being in agreement with sth. else 一致;相符

  Bill felt his salary wasn’t consistent with how hard he worked, so he asked his boss for a raise.

  比尔觉得他的薪资与他对工作的付出不成比例,因此要求老板给他加薪。

  3. reflect v. to make sth. apparent 表现;反映

  The government’s actions do not reflect the wishes of most citizens.

  政府的施政并未反映出多数民众的心声。

  4. frame v. to enclose sth. in a structure that forms borders 给 … 加框

  Brian loved my painting, so he framed it and hung it on the wall in his living room.

  布莱恩很喜爱我的画作,因此他把这张画加上框并挂在客厅的墙上。

  5. gorgeous adj. extremely beautiful 非常漂亮的;好看的

  Because she was rich, gorgeous, and single, Hana Jones received a lot of attention from men.

  汉娜·琼斯富有、美貌而又单身,因此获得众多男士的青睐。

  ● 6. correspond v. to be alike or similar 与 … 一致;符合

  If your signature on the check corresponds to the signature in your passport, the bank will cash the check.

  若你在支票上的签名与护照上的签名相符,银行就会为你兑现。

  More Information

   1. beauty is in the eye of the beholder saying 情人眼里出西施(behold 为动词,意指观看,beholder 意为观看者)

   2. ratio n. 比例 (文中的 golden ratio 为黄金比例,golden rectangle 则为黄金矩形;the value of the golden ratio 中的 value 意思为“数值”)

   3. rectangle n. 矩形;长方形

   4. symmetry n. 对称;均衡(symmetrical 为形容词,意指对称的、相称的)

   5. dimensions n. pl. (长、宽、高的)尺寸(文中的 the dimensions of each 指的是一张脸及一个黄金矩形的尺寸)

  Amazingly, the golden ratio is found in many manifestations of beauty—not just in beautiful faces. The dimensions of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt conform to the golden ratio. And the famous Greek Parthenon contains1 many golden rectangles. Moreover, the famous fifteenth-century Italian artist, Leonardo da Vinci, deliberately2 used the golden ratio in his paintings. Not surprisingly, the face of da Vinci’s Mona Lisa matches the golden rectangle.

  The golden ratio is found not only in great art and architecture, but also in nature. For example, the spiral shape of a seashell has the symmetry of a golden spiral, another derivation of the golden ratio. This seemingly3 magical quantity4 is evident5 in all that is pleasing to the human eye. However, no one has ever discovered why. Perhaps we should take comfort in the knowledge that in life, there are still some mysteries.6

   令人惊奇的是,黄金比例不只在美丽的脸蛋上找得到,在其他许多美丽的具体例证上亦可见到。位于埃及吉萨的大金字塔,其长宽高比例正符合黄金比例。而著名的希腊帕特侬神庙,其外观亦由许多黄金矩形所组成。此外,十五世纪著名的意大利艺术家达·芬奇也在画作中刻意使用黄金比例。可想而知,其代表作品蒙娜丽莎的脸型也完全符合黄金矩形。

   除了伟大的艺术作品和建筑物,黄金比例亦可见于大自然之中。例如,贝壳的螺旋即与黄金螺旋(黄金比例的衍生形式)的比例相称。这个看似神奇的数值在所有赏心悦目的外观中皆显而易见。然而,却从未有人明白个中道理。或许我们该这么想:生命中仍有一些奥秘无解的事,如此也就能够释怀了。

  Vocabulary

  ● 1. contain v. to hold sth. within certain limits 包含;含有

  These notebooks contain everything you’ll need to know to pass the final exam.

  这些笔记本里包括了本次期末考必须了解的所有内容。

  ● 2. deliberately adv. for an intended purpose 刻意地;蓄意地

  Someone deliberately set the fire that destroyed the shopping mall.

  有人蓄意纵火烧毁这家购物中心。

  3. seemingly adv. appearing to be true; apparently 看似;看起来好像

  As I was petting the seemingly friendly dog, it bit me on the leg!

  当我摸着这只看似友善的狗时,它竟咬我的腿!

  4. quantity n. sth. that can be expressed as a number (数学)表示量的数值

  Anyone who has ever studied geometry knows the importance of the quantity known as “pi” (π).

  任何学过几何学的人都知道圆周率这个数值的重要性。

  ● 5. evident adj. easy to see or understand 明显的;显然的

  Based on the amount of water in the streets, it is evident that the typhoon was the biggest one in years.

  街道上的淹水程度显示出这场台风是历年来最大的一次。

  6. mystery n. sth. that cannot be explained 神秘的事;难以理解的事

  What happens to people after they die has always been a mystery.

  人死后会遇见什么事,一直都是个谜。

  More Information

   1. manifestation n. 例证;显明

   2. conform to v. phr. 合乎;与 … 一致

   3. architecture n. 建筑风格;建筑样式

   4. spiral adj. 螺旋型的 (文中的 golden spiral 即为黄金螺旋型)

   5. derivation n. 另外衍生出的形式;衍生物

  


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