Chinese story:晏子使楚(中英)

晏子使楚 Yanzi was sent to State of Chu. 



The King of Chu intended to h umiliate the State of Qi toYan Zi's face. One day, the King of Chu gave a banquet for Yan Zi. 


Just when they were enjoying it, two petty officials brought a convictto the King.

楚王故意问道: “这人犯了了一么罪?”

Deliberately the King of Chu asked: "What crime has this man committed?"

小官回答说: “他是一个强盗。

One of the petty officials answered: "He robs."


Again the King of Chu asked: “Where is he from?"

小官回话: “他是齐国人。

The petty official answered: "He is from the State of Qi."

楚王回头对晏子说: “原来齐国人是惯于当强盗的。

The King of Chu turned to Yan Zi and said: "So the people of the State of Qi are used to committing robbery."

晏子站起来答道: “大王,我听说生长在淮南的橘树,移植到淮北就会变成积树。从外表上看,橘树和积树的叶子是一样的,但是这两种树的果子的味道却完全不同。我们齐国的老百姓从来不做强盗,一到楚国就干起犯罪的勾当来了,我看,这也许是受这里的水土环境的影响吧!”

Yan Zi stood up and replied: "Your Majesty, I heard that when orange trees grown in the south of the Huai River are transplanted to the north of Huai River, they become trifoliate orange trees. Outwardly the leaves of orange trees and those of trifoliate orange trees look alike, but the tastes of their fruits are entirely different. Our people of the State of Qinever commit robbery, but once they come to the State of Chu, they start to engage in criminal activities.I think, maybe this isthe effect of the environment and climate here." 


As the King of Chu heard this, he was struck dumb with shame.