‘That is most wise, Mr Banks. And although you have not yet taken a wife, perhaps soon there come the day when you have the needs of a wife and children to consider.’
‘That’s certainly possible. Unfortunately, just at present, this question of a wife, in my case, Western customs notwithstanding …’ I became confused and stopped. But the old man nodded sagely, saying:
‘Of course, in matters of the heart, things are never simple.’ Then he asked: ‘You wish for children, good sir? I wonder how many you will have.’
‘As a matter of fact, I already have a child. A young girl. Though she isn’t really my daughter as such. She was an orphan and now she’s in my care. I do look on her as a daughter.’
I had not thought about Jennifer for some time, and mentioning her like this so
unexpectedly caused a powerful feeling to well up within me. Images of her ran through my mind; I thought of her at her school, and wondered how she was, and what she had been doing that day.
I perhaps turned away to hide my emotions. In any case, when I next looked at him, Mr Lin was nodding again.
‘We Chinese are well used to such arrangements,’ he said, ‘Blood is important. But so is household. My father took in an orphan girl and she grew up with us as though she were my sister. I regarded her as such, though I knew always of her origins. When she died, in the cholera epidemic when I was still a young man, I felt as much grief as when my blood sisters passed away.’
‘If I may say so, Mr Lin, it’s a great pleasure to talk to you. It’s rare to find someone so immediately understanding.’
He gave a small bow, bringing his fingertips together before him. ‘When one has lived as long as I have, and through the turmoil of these years, one knows many joys and sadnesses. I hope your adopted daughter will be happy here. I wonder which room you will give her. But of course, forgive me! As you say, you will alter.’


註釈:

‘That is most wise, Mr Banks. And although you have not yet taken a wife, perhaps soon there come the day when you have the needs of a wife and children to consider.’
「take a wife」は「妻をめとる」。

‘That’s certainly possible. Unfortunately, just at present, this question of a wife, in my case, Western customs notwithstanding …’ I became confused and stopped.
「notwithstanding …」は「・・・にもかかわらず」。

But the old man nodded sagely, saying:
「sagely」は「思慮深かそうに」。

‘Of course, in matters of the heart, things are never simple.’ Then he asked: ‘You wish for children, good sir? I wonder how many you will have.’
「good sir」は「男性への呼びかけ」。

‘As a matter of fact, I already have a child. A young girl.
「as a matter of fact」は「実際」。

Though she isn’t really my daughter as such.
「as such」はここでは「厳密な意味での」。

She was an orphan and now she’s in my care.

I do look on her as a daughter.’
「look on …」は「をみなす、考える」。

I had not thought about Jennifer for some time, and mentioning her like this so
unexpectedly caused a powerful feeling to well up within me.
「well up」は「湧き出る」。

Images of her ran through my mind; I thought of her at her school, and wondered how she was, and what she had been doing that day.
I perhaps turned away to hide my emotions.

In any case, when I next looked at him, Mr Lin was nodding again.
「in any case」は「ともかく」。

‘We Chinese are well used to such arrangements,’ he said, ‘Blood is important.

But so is household.
「household」は「家中の者」「家庭」。

My father took in an orphan girl and she grew up with us as though she were my sister. I regarded her as such, though I knew always of her origins. When she died, in the cholera epidemic when I was still a young man, I felt as much grief as when my blood sisters passed away.’

‘If I may say so, Mr Lin, it’s a great pleasure to talk to you.
「if I may say so」は「こう申し上げては何ですが」。

It’s rare to find someone so immediately understanding.’
「understanding」はここでは形容詞で「理解力のある」の意。

He gave a small bow, bringing his fingertips together before him.
「bringing his fingertips together before him」は「前で手を合わせた」ということです。

‘When one has lived as long as I have, and through the turmoil of these years, one knows many joys and sadnesses.
「turmoil」は「騒ぎ」。

I hope your adopted daughter will be happy here. I wonder which room you will give her. But of course, forgive me!

As you say, you will alter.’
「as you say」は「あなたが前にも言った通り」。「alter」は「変更する」。


『今日のイデイオム』

「as a matter of fact」
「実際」

「as such」
「厳密な意味での」

「look on …」
「をみなす、考える」

「well up」
「湧き出る」

「in any case」
「ともかく」

「if I may say so」
「こう申し上げては何ですが」

「as you say」
「あなたが前にも言った通り」