The Qin scholar addicted to antiques

Master 0sifu Story The Qin scholar addicted to antiques

Master 0sifu Story: The Qin scholar addicted to antiques

In the Qin Dynasty, there was a scholar addicted to antiques. He was so fond of collecting them that he would buy them no matter how costly they were.

秦朝时,有个读书人,好古成癖。他喜欢收藏古董古玩,无论价格多么昂贵,都要买下来。

 

One day, a man came to his door to peddle a worn-out straw mat. He said to the Qin scholar: “In those years, Ai Gong of the State of Lu gave a seat to Confucius to inquire about political affairs. This was the very straw mat on which Confucius had sat.”

一天,有个人拿着一张破席子,登门兜售,对秦士说:“当年,兽哀公设席,赐孔子坐,询问政事。这张正是当年孔子坐过的席子。”

 

Overjoyed to hear this, the Qin scholar believed it to be true. So he exchanged the land near his manor for this worn-out straw mat.

秦士喜出望外,信以为真,便用庄园附近的田地换下了这张破席子。

 

A few days later, another man came to peddle a walking stick. He told the Qin scholar: “This walking stick was used by Gu Gong Dan Fu, ancestor of King Wen of the Zhou Dynasty, when he led his people to leave Bin in order to elude the invasion of the Di people. In terms of age, it was several hundred years earlier than the straw mat which Confucius had sat on. Sir, what will you reward me?”

过了几天,又有一个人拿着一根拐杖来卖,告诉秦士:“这根手杖,还是周文王的祖先古公宜父,为躲避狄人侵略,率领众人离开那的时候所用的手杖。论年代,比孔子坐的席子还要早几百年。先生准备用什么来酬谢我呢?”

 

The Qin scholar was pleased as if he had found a treasure, and gave this man all the money in his house.

秦士如获至宝,将家中全部的钱财都给了这个人。

 

A few days later, another man with a broken bowl boasted to the Qin scholar: “Sir, neither the straw mat nor the walking stick is a genuine antique, whereas this bowl was actually made in the time of King of the Xia Dynasty, which is more remote than the Zhou Dynasty.”

几天后,又有人端着一只破碗,对秦士夸耀说:“先生,席子和手杖都不是什么古董,而这只破碗,倒真正是夏时造的,比周朝更古远了。”

 

The Qin scholar believed this broken bowl was more ancient than the straw mat and the walking stick, so he gave up his house and courtyard for the broken bowl.

秦士以为,这只破碗比席子和手杖更加古老。于是,他用自己居住的宅院买下了这只破碗。

 

The scholar possessed the straw mat, the walking stick and the broken bowl, but he had lost all his fortune. Though he had neither food nor clothes, his fondness for antiques remained unchanged. All along he could not bear to part with these three ‘antiques’.

席子、手杖、破碗,三件古董全部到手了,而秦士也倾家荡产了。这位读书人,尽管衣食无着,可是他的好古之心,依然如故,始终舍不得丢掉这三件“古董”。

 

Since then, the Qin scholar, draping the straw mat of Ai Gong of Lu over his shoulders, using the walking stick of Gu Gong Dan Fu, and holding the broken bowl of the time of Xia, begged along the street, and kept on shouting: “Elders and fellow villagers, whoever has Jiang Tai Gong’s ancient coins of Jiu Fu (the nine government offices) please give me one.”

从此,秦士披着鲁哀公的席子,拄着古公宜父的拐杖,端着夏时的破碗,沿街乞讨,嘴里不停地叫喊着:“父老乡亲,谁有姜太公的九府古钱,请赏我一文吧!”

 

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