成語故事

As Precarious As a Pile of Eggs

During the Spring and Autumn Period, Duke Ling of the Kingdom of Chin ordered a nine-level platfrom built for himself, and issued an order prohibiting people from dissuading him. When the minister Shiun Shi heard about this, he immediately went to see the duke with a petition, Surrounding Shiun Shi were men armed with bows and arrow, ready to shoot should be mention the platfrom. But Shiun Shi simply said to the duke, "I've come today to demonstrate a little skill of mine; I can pile nine duck eggs on top of a stack of twelve chessmen."

Feeling that this would be very interesting indeed, Duke Ling ordered the armed men to retreat. As Shiun Shi piled up first the chessmen and then the eggs, the people watching all exclaimed how dangerous it was. To which Shiun Shi replied, "This is not dangerous. In order to build a nine-level platfrom, our national treasury has benn emptied and there is no one left to cultivate the land or weave cloth. Neighboring countries are planning to attack us, and we have no way to protect ourselves." Duke Ling was deeply moved, and issued an order to cease construction of the platform.

Today, a dangerous situation can be described as being "as precarious as a pile of eggs."

危如累卵

春秋時,晉靈公為了享樂,不惜花費大量人力物力,要建造一座九層的高台。由於建了三年還沒建好,弄得民窮財盡,百姓都很不滿。他怕大臣前來勸諫,便下令說﹕「如果誰敢來勸諫我,一律處斬!」大臣們都很害怕,不知如何是好。

大臣荀息為了挽救國家,不顧安危前來求見。晉靈公認為荀息一定是來勸諫,就命衛士拈弓搭箭,只要他開口規勸,便立即射死他。荀息拜見靈公後,若無其事地說 ﹕「我今天只是來給您表演一個小小的絕技。我能把十二個棋子疊起來,再把九個雞蛋一個個加上去而不會倒下來。」靈公覺得有趣,消除了戒心,便讓他表演。荀息把棋子堆起來,再把雞蛋一個個疊上去。靈公在一旁看得提心吊膽,緊張得連聲喊道﹕「危險啊!危險啊!」

荀息卻不慌不忙地說﹕「這怎算危險,還有比這更危險的呢!」靈公連忙問:「還有更危險的?快讓我看看!」荀息說﹕「大王,您建的九層高台建了三年還沒建好,就已弄得國內男人無法耕田,女人無法織布,國庫空虛,百姓叫苦連天了。現在鄰國正準備入侵,我們國家已危在旦夕,這不是更危險嗎?」靈公聽了這番話,猛然醒悟,立刻下令說:「馬上停建九層高台!」


搜尋
Alphabetical - A · B · D · E · F · G · H · I · L · M · O · P · R · S · T · U · V · W ·

A B D E F G H I L M O P R S T U V W
[返回頁頂]

返回頁頂