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剑桥雅思12Test6Passage2阅读原文翻译 The lost city 失落的城市 剑桥雅思12阅读第 […]


剑桥雅思12Test6Passage2阅读原文翻译 The lost city 失落的城市



雅思真题阅读词汇 剑桥雅思12 test 6 passage 2 失落的城市lost city

剑桥雅思12Test6Passage2阅读答案解析 The Lost City 失落的城市

剑桥雅思12 Test6 Passage2阅读原文翻译


When the US explorer and academic Hiram Bingham arrived in South America in 1911, he was ready for what was to be the greatest achievement of his life: the exploration of the remote hinterland to the west of Cusco, the old capital of the Inca empire in the Andes mountains of Peru. His goal was to locate the remains of a city called Vitcos, the last capital of the Inca civilisation. Cusco lies on a high plateau at an elevation of more than 3,000 metres, and Bingham’s plan was to descend from this plateau along the valley of the Urubamba river, which takes a circuitous route down to the Amazon and passes through an area of dramatic canyons and mountain ranges.

当美国探险家和学者Hiram Bingham于1911年到达南美大陆时,他已经为即将到来的自己人生中最伟大的成就做好了准备:探索库斯科西部遥远的内陆地区,秘鲁安第斯山脉印加帝国的古都所在。他的目标是找到被称为Vitcos的城市遗迹,印加文明最后的首都。库斯科位于海拔3000多米的高原之上。Bingham计划沿着乌鲁班巴河的河谷一路向下。走环形路线到达亚马逊,并穿过一片巨大的峡谷和山脉。


When Bingham and his team set off down the Urubamba in late July, they had an advantage over travellers who had preceded them: a track had recently been blasted down the valley canyon to enable rubber to be brought up by mules from the jungle. Almost all previous travellers had left the river at Ollantaytambo and taken a high pass across the mountains to rejoin the river lower down, thereby cutting a substantial corner, but also therefore never passing through the area around Machu Picchu.



On 24 July they were a few days into their descent of the valley. The day began slowly, with Bingham trying to arrange sufficient mules for the next stage of the trek. His companions showed no interest in accompanying him up the nearby hill to see some ruins that a local farmer, Melchor Arteaga, had told them about the night before. The morning was dull and damp, and Bingham also seems to have been less than keen on the prospect of climbing the hill. In his book Lost City of the Incas, he relates that he made the ascent without having the least expectation that he would find anything at the top.

7月24日,他们在山谷中已经走了一些日子。这天天亮的很慢。Bingham正努力为下一阶段的路途安排足够的骡子。他的同伴对陪同他登上附近的山丘,观察当地农民Melchor Arteaga前天晚上告诉他们的一些遗迹毫无兴趣。那天早晨阴暗潮湿,Bingham似乎也对攀登小山的前景不那么期待。他在《印加的失落城市》一书中提到,他爬山时根本就没有期望能在山顶发现任何东西。


Bingham writes about the approach in vivid style in his book. First, as he climbs up the hill, he describes the ever-present possibility of deadly snakes, ‘capable of making considerable springs when in pursuit of their prey’; not that he sees any. Then there’s a sense of mounting discovery as he comes across great sweeps of terraces, then a mausoleum, followed by monumental staircases and, finally, the grand ceremonial buildings of Machu Picchu. ‘It seemed like an unbelievable dream … the sight held me spellbound …’ he wrote.



We should remember, however, that Lost City of the Incas is a work of hindsight, not written until 1948, many years after his journey. His journal entries of the time reveal a much more gradual appreciation of his achievement. He spent the afternoon at the ruins noting down the dimensions of some of the buildings, then descended and rejoined his companions, to whom he seems to have said little about his discovery. At this stage, Bingham didn’t realise the extent or the importance of the site, nor did he realise what use he could make of the discovery.



However, soon after returning it occurred to him that he could make a name for himself from this discovery. When he came to write the National Geographic magazine article that broke the story to the world in April 1913, he knew he had to produce a big idea. He wondered whether it could have been the birthplace of the very first Inca, Manco the Great, and whether it could also have been what chroniclers described as ‘the last city of the Incas’. This term refers to Vilcabamba, the settlement where the Incas had fled from Spanish invaders in the 1530s. Bingham made desperate attempts to prove this belief for nearly 40 years. Sadly, his vision of the site as both the beginning and end of the Inca civilisation, while a magnificent one, is inaccurate. We now know that Vilcabamba actually lies 65 kilometres away in the depths of the jungle.



One question that has perplexed visitors, historians and archaeologists alike ever since Bingham, is why the site seems to have been abandoned before the Spanish Conquest. There are no references to it by any of the Spanish chroniclers – and if they had known of its existence so close to Cusco they would certainly have come in search of gold. An idea which has gained wide acceptance over the past few years is that Machu Picchu was a moya, a country estate built by an Inca emperor to escape the cold winters of Cusco, where the elite could enjoy monumental architecture and spectacular views. Furthermore, the particular architecture of Machu Picchu suggests that it was constructed at the time of the greatest of all the Incas, the emperor Pachacuti (c. 1438-71). By custom, Pachacuti’s descendants built other similar estates for their own use, and so Machu Picchu would have been abandoned after his death, some 50 years before the Spanish Conquest.


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