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习语中“hundred”并非表示精确数字,往往强调数量之多,如:

by the hundred(by hundreds) (数以百计,大批大批地);

a cool hundred([口]百镑巨款,巨款);

hundred percent(百分之百,完全地);

hundreds of thousands of people(成千上万的人);

hundreds of millions of people(亿万人)

eg. "a hundred to one"一百比一,指概率极高(high probability),非常可能。

eg. "ninety-nine out of a hundred"意义与前者类似:百分之九十九,几乎全部,差不多总是.

eg. "a hundred and one"许多,如:in a hundred and one ways(千方百计地)

eg. "We have a hundred and one things to do."并非具体说明要做一百零一件事,而是强调 "有许多事要做".

eg. "hundreds and thousands" 指的是糕点上作点缀用的小蜜饯(或小糖果)。不过,"great(or long) hundred" 指的是实数,意同 "six score",或 "one hundred and twenty" 一百二十。

谚语中,"hundred"更是虚指,强调 "多",而且 通常与 "一" 形成对照。笔者收集整理如下:

A fool may throw a stone into a well which a hundred wise men cannot put out. 傻子一个投石井内,智者百位难以捞回 (或:一愚闯祸,百智难补)。

A hundred pounds of sorrow pays not one ounce of debt. 百镑愁难还一分债(或:烦恼不能还债)。

Buyers want a hundsed eyes; sellers,none. 买东西的要有百只眼,卖东西的可以不长眼. (卖者装马虎,买者要小心).

If you kill one flea in March you kill a hundred. 三月杀跳蚤,杀一少百。

One cannot do a foolish thing once in one's life,but one must hear of it a hundred times. 蠢事一生不可做一件,但一定会听到成百上千。

One enemy is too much for a man in a great post,and a hundred friends too few. 身居要职,朋友百人太少,敌人一个太多。

One father is more than a hundred school masters. 胜过师长百位。

One good head is better than a hundred strong hands. 强手百双,莫如智者一人。

One man is worth a hundred and a hundred is not worth one. 一人可抵一百,一百不抵一人。

What is lost in the hundred will be found in the shire. 乡里丢失,郡里可得。

本句中“hundred”指的县或郡是基层行政单位 (subdivision of county or shire,having its own court),大抵相当于乡或镇。据Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable,最初可能是"100 hides" 组成一个基层行政单位,因此有了 "hundred" 的名称。 (hide是英国昔日之地积单价,相当于60至120 英亩不等)。

When angry,count ten before yoll speak; if very angry,a hundred. 生气时说话前先数十,大怒中数百后再开口。 (来源:EnglishCN英语问答中心[e问e答])

 
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