03 March 2023

昨天看我们公司的架构师们写的架构文档,在提到某个设计方案的时候,写道: Thereby hangs a tale。然后,哗啦哗啦地写了一堆。

这个 Thereby hangs a tale 直译是这里挂着一个故事。大概就是说来话长、一言难尽的意思。

所以,当别人问你一个事情的时候,你觉得这个事情一时半会解释不清楚,可以说 “Thereby hangs a tale” 因为有很多东西要解释。

这个表达方式出自莎士比亚的喜剧《皆大欢喜(As You Like It)》:


A fool, a fool! I met a fool i’ the forest,
A motley fool; a miserable world!
As I do live by food, I met a fool
Who laid him down and bask’d him in the sun,
And rail’d on Lady Fortune in good terms,
and yet a motley fool.
’Good morrow, fool,’ quoth I. ’No, sir,’ quoth he,
’Call me not fool till heaven hath sent me fortune:’
And then he drew a dial from his poke,
And, looking on it with lack-lustre eye,
Says very wisely, ’It is ten o’clock:
Thus we may see,’ quoth he, ’how the world wags:
’Tis but an hour ago since it was nine,
And after one hour more ’twill be eleven;
And so, from hour to hour, we ripe and ripe,
And then, from hour to hour, we rot and rot;
And thereby hangs a tale.’ When I did hear
The motley fool thus moral on the time,
My lungs began to crow like chanticleer,
That fools should be so deep-contemplative,
And I did laugh sans intermission
An hour by his dial. O noble fool!
A worthy fool! Motley’s the only wear.

Jaques 在森林遇到个人,他说:“现在是十点钟了。我们可以从这里看出世界是怎样在变迁着:一小时之前还不过是九点钟,而再过一小时便是十一点钟了;照这样,一小时一小时地过去,我们越长越老,越老越不中用。真是一言难尽。”