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All that glitters is not gold

刊登日期: 2019.10.04
作者: Grace Tse  

An English expression says that all that glitters is not gold. This short witty sentence is true because apart from gold, a lot of other materials can produce small, bright flashes of reflected light, particularly under the sun. Can you name some of these materials? 

Metaphorically,“all that glitters is not gold”implies that someone who looks nice could be actually bad. 

My parents always tell me to be cautious about making new friends because all that glitters is not gold. 

This proverb also applies to superficially beautiful things which turn out to be worthless

Mary bought an expensive mobile phone last week, but the power button did not work yesterday. All that glitters is not gold. 

Its original idea can be traced back to the 12th century, in which the French theologian and poet, Alain de Lille, wrote “Do not hold everything gold that shines like gold”. 

It was William Shakespeare, a renowned British playwright, who created a closer-to-modern version in his play “The Merchant of Venice” in the 17th century. In Act II, Prince Morocco opens a gold casket and reads the inscription

“There is a written scroll! I’ll read the writing. 

All that glisters is not gold; …” 

In Shakespearean times, the archaic word “glisters ” was used for “glitters”. 

Nowadays, we often use this proverb in our daily life to describe people who behave hypocritically and things which are deceptive. Have you ever experienced a situation in which “all that glitters is not gold”(閃閃發光的不全是黃金; 虛有其表)? 


Glossary

Witty 
巧妙的
Reflected 
反射的
Superficially 
表面上
Worthless 
沒有價值
Inscription 
銘刻
Archaic 
古代的
Hypocritically 
偽善地
Deceptive 
騙人

 

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