The Book of Tea

今回はあまりにも有名な岡倉天心(本名:岡倉覚三)の The Book of Tea の冒頭の一部分を読んでみたいと思います。初版出版年は1906年、今から120年近く前ですが、海外では現在でも広く愛読されています。また、天心の没後、今日に至るまで多くの邦訳が出版されています。

まずは、今回の英文に出てくる単語のいくつかの発音を確認します。(発音は General British です。)↓

medicine /ˈmed(ɪ)sən/,  beverage /ˈbevərɪdʒ/,
realm /relm/,  poetry /ˈpəʊətri/, ennoble /ɪˈnəʊbl/,
æstheticism /iːsˈθetɪcɪzəm/~/esˈθetɪcɪzəm/,
inculcate /ˈɪŋkʌlkeɪt/, romanticism /rə(ʊ)ˈmæntəsɪzəm/,
conducive /kənˈdjuːsɪv/,  introspection /ˌɪntrəˈspekʃ(ə)n/,
favourable /ˈfeɪv(ə)rəbl/,  Teaism /ˈtiːɪzəm/,
cuisine /kwɪˈziːn/,  porcelain /ˈpɔːslɪn/, lacquer /ˈlækə/,
literature /ˈlɪt(ə)rətʃə/, permeate /ˈpɜːmieɪt/,
boudoir /ˈbuːdwɑː/, abode /əˈbəʊd/, salutation /ˌsæljuˈteɪʃən/,
parlance /ˈpɑːləns/, insusceptible /ˌɪnsəˈseptəbl/,
serio-comic /ˌsɪəriəʊˈkɒmɪk/, stigmatise /ˈstɪɡmətaɪz/,
æsthete /ˈiːsθiːt/, mundane /mʌnˈdeɪn/, tragedy /ˈtrædʒədi/,
riot /ˈraɪət/, emancipated /ɪˈmænsəpeɪtɪd/


Tea began as a medicine and grew into a beverage. In China, in the eighth century, it entered the realm of poetry as one of the polite amusements. The fifteenth century saw Japan ennoble it into a religion of æstheticism—Teaism. Teaism is a cult founded on the adoration of the beautiful among the sordid facts of everyday existence. It inculcates purity and harmony, the mystery of mutual charity, the romanticism of the social order. It is essentially a worship of the Imperfect, as it is a tender attempt to accomplish something possible in this impossible thing we know as life.
The long isolation of Japan from the rest of the world, so conducive to introspection, has been highly favourable to the development of Teaism. Our home and habits, costume and cuisine, porcelain, lacquer, painting—our very literature—all have been subject to its influence. No student of Japanese culture could ever ignore its presence. It has permeated the elegance of noble boudoirs, and entered the abode of the humble. Our peasants have learned to arrange flowers, our meanest labourers to offer his salutation to the rocks and waters. In our common parlance we speak of the man “with no tea” in him, when he is insusceptible to the serio-comic interests of the personal drama. Again we stigmatise the untamed æsthete who, regardless of the mundane tragedy, runs riot in the springtide of emancipated emotions, as one “with too much tea” in him.

Today’s my singing

今回は ‘Padre’ という美しいカンツォーネ風の曲を歌ってみます。
Padre とはキリスト教の「神父;牧師」のことです。カタカナで表記すると「パドレ」となりますが、英語の発音は /ˈpɑːdreɪ/ です。英語の音韻体系では音節を短母音 /e/ のみで終わらせることができないので、二重母音の /-/ か、または karaoke /ˌkæriˈəʊki/ のように /-i/ で発音されたりします。

The day that we wed
You blessed us and said
May heaven bestow you grace
There in that holy place
We shared our first embrace

Our cottage was small
But richer than all
The palaces of the king
All day the birds would sing
Our hearts were filled with spring

Padre, padre
What happened to our love so true
Padre, oh padre
In my grief I turn to you

Then he came along
And sang her his song
And won her with honey lies
He of the fiery eyes
Now it’s not her that cries

So I will pray
The hours away
And weary my heart has grown
Wondering where love has flown
Counting my beads alone

Padre, oh padre
Please tell me how such things can be
Padre, oh padre
Pray for my love and me