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英語文法學堂:A drop in the bucket 杯水車薪

【明報專訊】A drop in the ocean / 九牛一毛 / 滄海一粟 / 微不足道 / 於事無補

■Reference

此英文成語的意思是力量很微薄,如一大桶水裏的一滴水,對於解決問題沒有太大作用,中文也有類似成語,如杯水車薪,用一杯水去救一車燃燒的木柴,比喻力量太小,沒有幫助。

‧The Bible, Old Testament, Isaiah (40:15): "Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh [take] up the isles as a very little thing."

(《聖經.舊約》,《以賽亞書》(40:15):「看哪,萬民都像水桶的一滴,又算如天平上的微塵;他舉起眾海島,好像極微之物。」)

‧《孟子.告子上》:「今之為仁者,猶以一杯水,救一車薪之火也,不熄,則謂之水不勝火。」

■Examples

That company lost tremendously in the Financial Tsunami. Even though some colleagues were willing to donate half of their salaries to the company, that would be only a drop in the bucket. Finally, the CEO made the painful decision to shut down the company.

(該公司在金融海嘯受到重創。儘管一些同事願意捐半薪給公司,但那只是杯水車薪,最後,總裁只好作出痛苦的決定 —— 結束營業。)

■Giveaway

Do you want to get a copy of the book? Send your answer to the question, your name, address and telephone number to english@mingpao.com. The giveaway closes on 10 April 2019. The winner will be picked and notified.

■Question

Write a short paragraph using "a drop in the bucket".

■Thanks:The Commercial Press

■資料提供:《成語學英文》

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