Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Line by Line - Verse 55, Line 2

Poisonous insects will not sting him;
~ James Legge translation, from The Sacred Books of the East, 1891 ~

Wasps and serpents will not sting him;
~ Gia-fu Feng and Jane English translation, published by Vintage Books, 1989 ~

Poisonous insects do not sting them
~ Derek Lin translation, from Tao Te Ching: Annotated & Explained, published by SkyLight Paths, 2006 ~

bees can't sting him,
~ Ron Hogan rendition, from Beatrice.com, 2004 ~
Needless to say, this line (and the next two) is not to be taken literally. If you set your child on a yellowjacket's nest, chances are very good that the poor child would be stung left and right! Derek Lin tells us that "poisonous insects represent the sting of malicious gossip."

To view the Index page for this series to see what you may have missed or would like to read again, go here.

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