Enjoy Simple English 2019/5/7 Belling the cat 猫に鈴をつける

Enjoy Simple English 2019/5/7
Wisdom from the West古典が語る西洋の知恵
Belling the cat 猫に鈴をつける

A long time ago, the mice gathered to hold a meeting. The Leader said, “We are here today to talk about our enemy, the cat. We must do something about it.”
One Mouse spoke up. said, “Yes, we live in fear day and night! There must be something we can do.”
A Small Mouse said, “But what can we do? We can’t stop the cat. It’s too big and too powerful.”
Many mice agreed with this. They were very small and weak compared to the cat. The mice didn’t have any weapons like the big sharp claws and teeth of the cat. Another Mouse said, “We can’t fight against the cat. We know we will lose. So maybe we should keep living quietly.”
The Leader answered, “You’re right. If we fight against the cat, we will lose. But I don’t want to be afraid all the time. The problem is that we don’t know if the cat is nearby.” Then, the Leader had an idea. “Everyone, I have a plan. But before I explain, I want to ask you one question. Why are we always afraid?” All the mice thought for a while. Then, the Small Mouse answered “It’s because we don’t know if the cat will come and attack us. It moves so quickly and quietly.” “Yes, that’s right. Where is the cat? We always want to know.” The Leader continued to speak excitedly “If we know the cat is not nearby, we don’t have to be so quiet and stay inside all the time. Then, we can live free from fear.” All the mice agreed and moved their small heads up and down. One Mouse asked, “That sounds wonderful. But how can we know? The Cat doesn’t make a sound when it moves.” The Leader answered in a strong voice. “It’s very easy. We can put a bell around the cat’s neck. Then, the bell ring when the cat moves. So, we will know if it’s coming near us.”

belling the cat 猫に鈴をつける
bell 〜に鈴をつける
mice (mouse) ねずみの複数形
spoke up (speak)(意見などを)はっきり話した
in fear 恐れて、びくびくして
day and night 日夜、絶えず
weapon 武器
all the time 四六時中
nearby 近くに
excitedly 興奮して
free from fear 恐怖から解放されて(自由の)
neck 首
clap 手をたたく

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