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■Et tu, Brute?

J - Janice, R - Riko

A GV and a learner talk about Roman history.

R: My history class was quite fascinating today.

J:  What did you learn about?

R: Guess! I’ll give you a few clues. He was a great military leader,

     he was abducted by pirates, and he is a healthy snack.

J:  A snack?! Was he eaten by cannibals?

R  (laughs): No, silly! I’m talking about Julius Caesar.

J:  Oh, right! (pause) Wait, how is Julius Caesar a snack?

R: Caesar salad, of course!

J  (laughs): You’re so corny! Well, what did you learn about Caesar?

R: I learned that he was a very formidable man. He had a great role

     in the reformation of the Roman Empire.

J:  He was also a conqueror. Veni, vidi, vici is a Latin phrase

     attributed to him.

R: Yeah, that’s right. Is the term ‘backstabbing’ also because of him?

J:  Hmm, I don’t think so. I can see how it’s appropriate, though.

R: Actually, I’m more interested in Marcus Brutus. He was one of

     Caesar’s most trusted members in the Senate, and yet Brutus

     stabbed him.

J:  Most of the senators stabbed him.

R: Yeah, but he took a leading role in Caesar’s assassination.

    That’s not really something you would do to a friend.

J:  I sure hope not! You know, though, this has been a popular topic of

    debate for centuries. Brutus has even been turned into a literary figure.

R: Oh, in William Shakespeare’s play, right?

J:  Yes. He was quite a sympathetic character in that play. Shakespeare

     depicted him as a man who prioritized Rome above all else, even

     his close friend.

R: Ah, but then there’s Dante Alighieri, who put him in the Ninth Circle

    of Hell for treachery. Killing someone is not good, but I think it’s worse

    if you kill a friend who trusted you.

J: Yes, exactly. It’s a really complex topic, isn’t it?


Et tu, Brute?     ブルータスよ、お前か(シーザーが暗殺される時



                時に用いられる )

fascinating      興味深い、興味をそそる

abducted        誘拐される、拉致される

snack          軽い食事、軽食

cannibals        食い族

silly         おかしな、馬鹿げた

corny        (冗談が)陳腐な、つまらない

formidable        手ごわい、恐るべき

reformation       改革

conqueror        征服者

Veni, vidi, vici   「来た、見た、勝った」(ポントスの戦いの後の凱旋で


attributed        ~をゆえんとした、帰した

backstabbing     (人への)裏切り、背信

appropriate       妥当な、ふさわしい

leading role      指導者的役割

assassination      暗殺

debate          議論、論争

literary figure    文学に出てくる人物

sympathetic       同情(共感)を引き起こす

depicted         描写(表現)した、

prioritized      優先した

above all else     何よりも、何をおいても

Ninth Circle of Hell  地獄の最下層

treachery        裏切り

complex          複雑な、込み入った

●Comprehension Questions

1. What did Riko learn about in her history class?

 a. Egyptian history

 b. Roman history

 c. Japanese history

2. The following was mentioned about Julius Caesar except:

 a. He coined the term ‘backstabbing.’

 b. He was a conqueror.

 c. He reformed the Roman Empire.

3. Which author depicted Brutus in a negative manner?

 a. William Shakespeare

 b. Murasaki Shikibu

 c. Dante Alighieri




R: 今日の歴史の授業はなかなか面白かったわ。

J: 何について学んでたの?



J: スナック?!人食い族にでも食べられたの?

R (笑): いいえ、馬鹿馬鹿しい!ジュリウス・シーザーについて話しているよ。

J: そうか!(少し止まる)ちょっと待って、何でジュリウス・シーザーは


R: シーザーサラダだよ、当たり前じゃん!

J (笑): 陳腐だね!じゃ、シーザーについて何を学んできたの?

R: 非常に優れた男だっていうことわかってきた。


J: 征服者でもあったわ。「来た、見た、勝った」というラテン語の表現は彼の作だね。


J: ふーん、違うんじゃない?整合性があるとは思うけど。

R: 実は、あたしはマルクス・ブルトゥスにより興味があるんだ。



J: 議員たちはほとんどシーザーを刺したよ。

R: ええ、でも、彼はシーザーの暗殺を主導したのよ。


J: もちろんそう望まないよ。だけど、これは何世紀にも渡って討論されている


R: お~、ウィリアム・シェイクスピアの戯曲にてだね。

J: そうよ。その劇で共感された人物だったわ。シェイクスピアは彼をローマを他の


R: あ、でも、ダンテ・アリギエーリは、ブルトゥスを裏切りで地獄の



J: はい、その通り。複雑な話題だね?






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●懐かしい。It feels nostalgic.

●好きです!I like it!



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