《中英對照讀新聞》
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2017-01-09 字型: 列印

《中英對照讀新聞》World’s last wild frankincense forests are under threat 地球最後一座乳香林瀕危

◎蔡子岳

In a tradition dating to Biblical times, men rise at dawn in the rugged Cal Madow mountains of Somaliland in the Horn of Africa to scale rocky outcrops in search of the prized sap of wild frankincense trees.

在可追溯至聖經時代的傳統,「非洲之角」索馬利蘭崎嶇的馬多山脈間,男人黎明起身,攀爬岩塊,尋找野生乳香樹的珍貴露頭。

When dried and burned, the sap produces a fragrant smoke which perfumes churches and mosques around the world. Frankincense, along with gold and myrrh, was brought by the Three Kings as gifts in the Gospel account of the birth of Jesus.

經乾燥並點燃,乳香樹汁液產生的芬芳香氣,全世界教堂、清真寺都因此薰香。乳香,與黃金、沒藥,是三位王者給耶穌誕生之福音所帶來的禮物。

But now these last intact wild frankincense forests on Earth are under threat as prices have shot up in recent years with the global appetite for essential oils. Overharvesting has led to the trees dying off faster than they can replenish, putting the ancient resin trade at risk.

然而,現在地球最後一片完整野生乳香樹林,正因近年全球追求精油導致的價格飆升而瀕危。過度採收讓乳香樹的死亡速度更甚於再生,古老的樹脂貿易因此陷入危境。

Harvesting frankincense is risky. The trees can grow high on cliff edges, shallow roots gripping bare rock slithering with venomous snakes. Harvesters often slip and tumble down canyon walls.

採集乳香極具風險。乳香樹能在懸崖邊緣長到很高,淺淺的根部緊抓著有毒蛇蜿蜒爬行在上的裸岩。採集者經常失足,沿峽谷山壁滾跌下去。

Once the resin is collected, women sort the chunks by color and size. The various classes of resin are shipped to Yemen, Saudi Arabia and eventually Europe and America. Besides its use as incense, frankincense gum is distilled into oil for use in perfumes, skin lotions, medicine and chewing gum.

收集到樹脂後,婦女依樹脂塊的顏色、尺寸排序。各類樹脂運至葉門、沙烏地阿拉伯,最終到歐洲與美洲。在製香之外,乳香膠可提煉製作香水的用油、護膚乳液、藥品及口香糖。

新聞辭典

rugged:形容詞,地面崎嶇不平的。例句:Rainy weather and rugged terrain have hampered rescue and recovery efforts.(下雨及崎嶇地形讓救援行動不易展開。)

distill:動詞,提煉。例句:She distilled the report into a paragraph.(她將報告改寫為精鍊的文章。)

shoot up:動詞片語,迅速提升、陡升。例句:David has really shot up since I saw him last.(自上回見面後,大衛的身材突然變得健壯。)

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