October 15, 2012
Francis Bacon's Of Beauty has "Virtue is like a rich stone, best plain set". What is exactly "best plain set"? According to leonAzul on this page, it means, best if placed against or in front of a plain setting or background. Hence my translation:
水天同, perhaps the best Chinese translator of Francis Bacon's works, has the same understanding, with this translation:
compared to others'
德行犹如宝石，朴素最美 <-- Not right
善犹如宝石，以镶嵌自然为美 <-- Correct
美德好比宝石，在幽暗背景的衬托下反而更显名贵 <-- Over-"translated"; where's 幽暗?
(The above Chinese translations are collected at fang's BLOG.)
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