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谁建造了津巴布韦?为什么? – 译学馆
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谁建造了津巴布韦?为什么?

Who built Great Zimbabwe? And why? - Breeanna Elliott

穿过非洲南部的一片树林
Stretched across a tree-peppered expanse in southern Africa
就是大津巴布韦遗迹
lies the magnificent ruins of Great Zimbabwe,
一座中世纪拥有惊人的财富和声望的石头城市
a medieval stone city of astounding wealth and prestige.
位于如今的津巴布韦内的大津巴布韦遗迹
Located in the present-day country of Zimbabwe,
是撒哈拉以南非洲地区已知的最大的城邦遗迹
it’s the sight of the largest known settlement ruins in Sub-Saharan Africa,
仅次于非洲大陆的埃及金字塔
second on the continent only to the pyramids of Egypt.
但这座城市的历史却笼罩在争议之中
But the history of this city is shrouded in controversy,
几十年来一直就建造者以及建造的原因争论不休
defined by decades of dispute about who built it and why.
它的名字来自修纳单词madzimbabwe
Its name comes from the Shona word madzimbabwe,
意思是由石头建成的大房子
meaning big house of stone
因为它有极高的石头墙 高达近10米
for its unscalable stone walls that reach heights of nearly ten meters
宽大约为250米
and run for a length of about 250 meters.
因为它极其壮丽和颇具历史意义
For its grandeur and historical significance,
1986年它被评为联合国教科文组织世界遗产
it was named a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1986.
在14和15世纪 它是一个繁荣的城市
Back in the 14th and 15th centuries, it was a thriving city.
在近8平方公里的范围内
Spread across nearly eight square-kilometers,
伟大的津巴布韦分为三个主要领域
Great Zimbabwe was defined by three main areas:
国王住的那座山
the Hill Complex, where the king lived;
皇室成员专用的圈地
the Great Enclosure, reserved for members of the royal family;
还有那些普通市民居住的山谷
and the Valley Complex, where regular citizens lived.
统治者是该地区强大的经济和宗教领袖
Rulers were both powerful economic and religious leaders for the region.
最繁荣的时候
At its highest point,
城市人口达到了一万八千
the city had a bustling urban population of 18,000 people
当时是非洲主要的贸易中心之一
and was one of the major African trade centers at the time.
大津巴布韦在洲际贸易网中的重要角色
What enabled this growth was Great Zimbabwe’s influential role
推动了它的发展
in an intercontinental trade network.
连接着东非斯瓦希里海岸的几个重要城邦
Connected to several key city-states along the East African Swahili Coast,
它是印度洋贸易路线的一部分
it was part of the larger Indian Ocean trade routes.
这个城市通过控制资源和交易值钱的商品
The city generated its riches by controlling the sources and trade
来创造财富
of the most prized items:
有金
gold,
象牙
ivory,
和铜
and copper.
有了这个商业力量 它就能在大陆间
With this mercantile power, it was able to extend its sphere of influence
扩展它的势力范围
across continents,
在其顶峰时期 培养强大的阿拉伯和印度商人
fostering a strong Arab and Indian trader presence throughout its zenith.
后来 考古学家们通过在现场发现的古器
Archaeologists have since pieced together the details of this history
将这段历史的细节拼凑起来
through artifacts discovered on site.
有来自亚洲的陶瓷碎片和玻璃制品
There were pottery shards and glassworks from Asia,
以及在1500里远的沿海贸易城市基尔瓦尼瓦尼
as well as coins minted in the coastal trading city of Kilwa Kisiwani
铸造的硬币
over 1,500 miles away.
他们还发现了皂石鸟的图形
They also found soapstone bird figures,
这被认为是代表着城市的每一个统治者
which are thought to represent each of the city’s rulers,
和只有在皇家住宅附近出土的小牛犊骨头
and young calf bones, only unearthed near the royal residence,
表现出精英阶层与普通民众的饮食差异
show how the diet of the elite differed from the general population.
这些线索也道出了有关这座城市衰落的理论
These clues have also led to theories about the city’s decline.
到15世纪中叶
By the mid-15th century,
大津巴布韦的建筑几乎都保留了下来
the buildings at Great Zimbabwe were almost all that remained.
考古证据表明过度拥挤
Archaeological evidence points to overcrowding
和卫生问题是造成这一问题的原因
and sanitation issues as the cause,
再加上因过度使用而引发的土壤耗竭
compounded by soil depletion triggered by overuse.
最终 随着庄稼枯萎 城市的环境恶化
Eventually, as crops withered and conditions in the city worsened,
津巴布韦的人口逐渐分散
the population of Great Zimbabwe is thought to have dispersed
并在附近形成了穆塔帕和托瓦州
and formed the nearby Mutapa and Torwa states.
几个世纪后 大津巴布韦的影响力进入了一个新的阶段
Centuries later, a new phase of Great Zimbabwe’s influence
开始在政治领域发挥作用
began to play out in the political realm
人们开始争论谁建了这座著名的石头城
as people debated who had built the famous city of stone.
在欧洲对非洲的殖民统治期间
During the European colonization of Africa,
种族主义的殖民官员声称 这些遗址不可能是非洲的起源
racist colonial officials claimed the ruins couldn’t be of African origin.
所以 没有详细的文献记载
So, without a detailed written record on hand,
他们转而依靠神话来解释伟大的津巴布韦的辉煌。
they instead relied on myths to explain the magnificence of Great Zimbabwe.
一些人声称 这证明了圣经里示巴女王的故事
Some claimed it proved the Bible story of the Queen of Sheba
她生活在一个富有的城市
who lived in a city of riches.
另一些人则认为它是由古希腊人建造的
Others argued it was built by the Ancient Greeks.
然后 20世纪早期 在遗址大量的挖掘后
Then, in the early 20th century after extensive excavation at the site,
考古学家大卫·兰德尔·麦基弗
the archaeologist David Randall-MacIver
提供明确的证据表明大津巴布韦
presented clear evidence that Great Zimbabwe
是由土著居民建造的
was built by indigenous peoples.
然而 在当时这个国家的少数白人殖民政府
Yet, at the time, the country’s white minority colonial government
试图质疑这一理论 因为它挑战了他们统治的合法性
sought to discredit this theory because it challenged the legitimacy of their rule.
事实上 政府积极鼓励历史学家
In fact, the government actively encouraged historians
对这个城市的非洲起源发起质疑
to produce accounts that disputed the city’s African origins.
然而 随着时间的推移 越来越多的证据表明
Over time, however, an overwhelming body of evidence mounted,
大津巴布韦是由非洲人建立的非洲城市
identifying Great Zimbabwe as an African city built by Africans.
在20世纪60年代和70年代
During the 1960s and 70s,
大津巴布韦成为非洲民族主义运动的重要标志
Great Zimbabwe became an important symbol for the African Nationalist movement
这种情况正在整个非洲大陆蔓延
that was spreading across the continent.
今天 大津巴布韦的废墟
Today, the ruins at Great Zimbabwe,
化为津巴布韦国旗上的一个肥皂石鸟
alluded to on the Zimbabwean flag by a soapstone bird,
表示民族自豪感和文化价值的源泉
still stand as a source of national pride and cultural value.

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谁建造了津巴布韦?为什么?

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