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2019/12/10 第442期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份直接訂閱

The Lowdown on Crocodiles  鱷魚沒有告訴你的事
by Ivy Liu


  Crocodiles have been revered and feared by humans for millennia. These prehistoric animals date back 200 million years and are related to dinosaurs. This also links them to birds, which are descendants of avian dinosaurs. Their lifespans can reach up to 80 years in the wild. The world’s largest crocodile in captivity, weighing 2,200 pounds and measuring 18 feet, is a male saltwater crocodile named Cassius and is reported to be more than 110 years old.
  While you wouldn’t want to run the risk of being eaten by one of these semiaquatic reptiles, their feeding habits are quite interesting. Crocodiles tend to walk around underwater on their hind legs not only to adjust their buoyancy but also to help a meal slide down more easily. Crocodiles have a highly acidic stomach, allowing them to digest things like bones and horns to get the most nutrients out of their prey. Their bite is the most powerful ever measured, but crocodiles have extremely weak muscles for opening their jaws. So even a person with average strength can hold their mouths shut with their bare hands. This means crocodiles are more apt to swallow their prey in a single gulp.
  As you may have heard, crocs also have a tendency to weep while feeding. It isn’t because they feel sorry or guilty, though, but rather because their tear glands are activated while consuming their prey. Thus, “shedding crocodile tears” is an old expression for displaying insincere emotions. Even Shakespeare’s Othello has the lines, “If that the earth could teem with woman’s tears, each drop she falls would prove a crocodile,” for when Othello believes his wife is having an affair.
1. Why are birds mentioned in the first paragraph?
(A) They are descendants of crocodiles.
(B) They play a major role in crocodiles’ diet.
(C) They share the same ancestors as crocodiles.
(D) They have an equally long lifespan as crocodiles.
2. According to the first paragraph, what can you determine about crocodiles in the wild versus in captivity?
(A) Ones in the wild struggle to find food.
(B) Those in captivity have longer lifespans.
(C) Crocodiles in zoos suffer from stunted growth.
(D) Those in the wild can live more than 100 years.
3. Which of the following statements is true about a crocodile’s bite?
(A) They have the weakest bites of any animal in the world.
(B) A strong person is able to open a crocodile’s jaws with relative ease.
(C) The muscles for biting down are more powerful than the ones for opening their jaws.
(D) Crocodiles chew their prey relatively well to get the most nutrients.
4. Which of the following is NOT true regarding crocodile tears?
(A) They have been mentioned in a famous play.
(B) They are connected to a crocodile’s feeding.
(C) They are now used as a common idiom.
(D) They are a sign of a crocodile’s depth of emotions.

lowdown n.(關於某人/事/物的)最重要情況(常與介詞 on 並用)
crocodile n. 鱷魚
revere vt. 崇敬/尊敬(正式用法)
millennia n. 數千年
 millennium n. 一千年,千年期
prehistoric a. 史前的
avian a. 鳥類的
lifespan n. 平均壽命
saltwater a. 生活於鹹水的;海生的
 a saltwater crocodile  鹹水鱷,灣鱷
semiaquatic a. 半水棲的
 aquatic a. 水棲的,水生的
reptile n. 爬蟲類動物
buoyancy n. 浮力
acidic a. 酸性的
gland n. 腺
stunted a. 發育不足的,生長不良的
idiom n. 成語,慣用語

1. in captivity  (動物)被圈養的
captivity n. 囚禁;被俘(的狀態)
• Matthew felt pity for the animals living in captivity at the zoo.

2. be reported to V  據報導(為)……
• The economic growth rate of that country is reported to rise this year.
3. run the risk of V-ing  有/冒著……的危險
• You run the risk of dying if you take drugs.

4. with one’s bare hands  徒手,赤手空拳
• The strong man is capable of killing a bear with his bare hands.

5. be apt to V  有……的傾向,易於……
• Edward is apt to work best when he is under a lot of pressure.

6. in a gulp  一口吞下/喝掉
• Brian drank the rest of his tea in a gulp.

7. teem with...  充滿……
• This river is teeming with fish of various colors and sizes.

1. descendant n. 後代,後裔
• It was not until Scott researched his family tree that he realized he was a descendant of Napoleon.

2. adjust vt. 調節,調整
• You can adjust your sitting position with this cushion.

3. digest vt. 消化
• You’d better rest and digest your food you just ate before exercising.

4. nutrient n. 養分,營養物
• Protein is a nutrient that is vital to good health.

5. prey n. 獵物(集合名詞,不可數)
• A huge eagle glided over the area, looking for prey.

6. average a. 普通的;中等的
• The superstar looked like an average person when I saw him out running.

7. tendency n. 傾向;趨勢
have a tendency to V  有……的傾向
• James seems to have a tendency to persuade people in conversation.

8. guilty a. 內疚的;有罪的
feel guilty about...  因……感到不好意思/抱歉
• I felt guilty about causing you so much trouble.

9. activate vt. 使活動/活化
• The smoke from the burning pot activated the fire alarm.

10. consume vt. 吃;喝(正式用法)
• My kids consume at least three liters of milk every week.

11. expression n. 用語;表達
• My grandmother knew many funny old expressions in Taiwanese.

12. insincere a. 虛偽的,不誠懇的
sincere a. 誠懇的,誠摯的
• We could tell from Kelly’s insincere smile that she wasn’t happy to see us.
• Melvin was sincere in his apology, so his mom forgave him.

weep vi.(尤指因悲傷而)流淚/哭泣
三態為:weep, wept, wept。
• Pamela wept quietly in her room after a quarrel with her husband.
a. sob vi. 啜泣,嗚咽
• Isabella started sobbing when her mother scolded her.
b. wail vi. 慟哭,嚎啕大哭
• The family members of the victim wailed with sorrow when they learned of his death.
c. shed crocodile tears  
shed tears  流淚
shed vt. 流下,流出(三態同形)
• Don’t be fooled by the crocodile tears Martin is shedding.
• Jamie couldn’t help shedding tears when he heard the story.
d. burst into tears  突然大哭起來
= burst out crying
• The little boy burst into tears when his older brother broke his toy.
e. cry one’s eyes / heart out  
• That sad movie made Marty cry his eyes out.
f. make one’s eyes water  使某人流眼淚
*這裡的 water 為不及物動詞,表「(並非因難過而)流眼淚」。
• Cutting onions always makes my eyes water.

Crocodiles tend to walk around underwater on their hind legs not only to adjust their buoyancy but also to help a meal slide down more easily.
It isn’t because they feel sorry... but rather because their tear glands are...
介紹對等連接詞片語 “not only... but also...” 及 “not... but...” 的用法
※ not only... but (also)...  不僅……(而且)也……
= not merely... but (also)...
= not only / merely... but... as well
“not only... but also...” 是由基本的對等連接詞 but 變化而來,可用以連接對等的單字、片語和子句。
a. 連接單字:
• Smoking can damage not only your health but (also) your family’s.
b. 連接片語:
• We not only went diving but (also) enjoyed the food on that island.
c. 連接子句:
• Sadie got punished not only because she skipped class but (also) because she lied.
※ “not only... but (also)...” 連接對等的主詞時,其後的動詞要隨 but (also) 之後的主詞變化。
• Not only Liz but also her sisters love roses.
※ “not only... but (also)...” 連接對等的主要子句且 not only 置於句首時,not only 視為否定副詞,因此其後的第一個主要子句要倒裝;but also 僅為連接詞,故其後的第二個主要子句不須倒裝。
Not only did Lance win the race, but he (also) set a new record.
= Not only did Lance win the race, but he set a new record as well.
※ not... but...  並非……而是……
“not... but...” 亦由對等連接詞 but 變化而來,亦可用以連接對等的單字、片語和子句,連接對等的主詞時,其後動詞亦要隨 but 之後的主詞做變化。
• Mr. White is not a writer but a composer.
• Not I but Zoe is good at dancing.


  數千年來,鱷魚一直令人類又崇敬又畏懼。這些史前動物的歷史可追溯至兩億年前,而且牠們與恐龍有親戚關係。這也讓牠們與鳥類有了關聯,因為鳥類便是鳥型恐龍的後代。牠們在野外的平均壽命可達到八十歲。世界上被圈養的最大鱷魚是一隻名為凱修斯的雄性鹹水鱷,其體重兩千兩百磅、身長十八英尺(編按:約為一公頓重、5.5 公尺長),據報導已有一百一十多歲。
  你可能已經聽說過,鱷魚在攝食時也有流淚的傾向。 不過這不是因為牠們感到抱歉或內疚,而是因為牠們在吃獵物時會觸發淚腺。因此,「流下鱷魚眼淚」便成了展現虛偽感情的古老說法。連莎士比亞的《奧賽羅》中,在奧賽羅認為他的妻子有外遇時也說了這句臺詞:「假如地球上充滿了女人的眼淚,那一滴滴落下的,都是鱷魚的眼淚。」
1. 第一段為什麼提到了鳥類?
(A) 牠們是鱷魚的後代。
(B) 牠們在鱷魚的飲食中扮演著重要的角色。
(C) 牠們與鱷魚有共同的祖先。
(D) 牠們跟鱷魚有著一樣長的平均壽命。
2. 根據第一段,關於野生鱷魚與人工飼養鱷魚,你可以發現什麼事?
(A) 野生鱷魚覓食非常辛苦。
(B) 被圈養的鱷魚平均壽命較長。
(C) 動物園中的鱷魚有發育不良的問題。
(D) 野生鱷魚可以活一百多年。
3. 關於鱷魚的咬合,以下哪一項敘述是正確的?
(A) 牠們的咬合力是世界上所有動物中最弱的。
(B) 一個強壯的人能夠相對輕鬆地打開鱷魚的下顎。
(C) 牠們的咬合肌比用來打開下顎的肌肉更有力量。
(D) 鱷魚會相當充分地咀嚼獵物以獲得最多的營養。
4. 關於鱷魚的眼淚,以下哪一項不正確?
(A) 它們在一部著名的戲劇中被提到過。
(B) 它們與鱷魚的攝食有關。
(C) 它們現在被用作一種慣用的成語。
(D) 它們代表著鱷魚情感的強烈程度。
1. C 2. B 3. C 4. D


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