I happen to enjoy sad stories as long as there’s some sweetness in them, and this one is paced very nicely, so I’m translating it for you here, though it’s much longer than my usual fare (I seem to be trending towards longer stuff these days).
This story happens between 259 B.C. and 210 B.C., and describes two characters, our heroine 孟姜女mèng jiāng nǚ, and her love, 范喜良 fàn xǐ liáng, who live under the rule of emperor 秦始皇 qín shǐ huáng during the building of the Great Wall. The story describes how they meet and how they finally part, and dwells on the strength of 孟姜女’s love for her man. There are a few specialized words here pertaining to weddings. One is 喜酒 xǐ jiǔ, meaning “happiness wine”, which is alcohol drunk at weddings to wish the bride and groom well. Another is 洞房 dòng fáng, or “marriage chamber” (literally “cave room”). And yet another is 成亲, meaning “to get married”.
An interesting word here is 眼看 yǎn kàn, which means “in a moment”, or “when ____ is just about to happen”, not “the eye sees” or “to look”, as may be supposed.
One difficult few words to puzzle out here is in the second paragraph, when it’s stated that some soldiers “不容分说” bù róng fēn shuō charge into the room. 不容 here means “without tolerating” or “would not tolerate”, and 分说 means “to explain”. So we can imagine that this means the soldiers barged in and though people tried to explain the situation to them, they weren’t interested in listening.
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连连 – lián lián – Again and again
逃难 – táo nàn – Run away from trouble
抓 – zhuā – Grab, catch, seize
知书达理 – zhī shū dá lǐ – Educated and well-balanced
眉清目秀 – méi qīng mù xiù – Good-looking with delicate features
心心相印 – xīn xīn xiāng yìn – Two hearts beat as one
成亲 – chéng qīn – To get married
张灯结彩 – zhēng dēng jié cǎi – Decorated with lanterns and colored banners
满堂 – mǎn táng – jam-packed, a full house
喜气洋洋 – xǐ qì yáng yáng – Full of joy
干着急 – gān zhán jí – Worry needlessly
跋涉 – bá shè – To trek, trudge
顽强 – wán qiáng – Tenacious
工地 – gōng dì – Construction site
踪影 – zōng yǐng – A trace (no trace of sthg)
尸首 – shī shou – Corpse
噩耗 – è hào – News of someone’s death
猛烈 – měng liè – fierce / violent
血肉模糊 – xuè ròu mó hu – Badly mutilated
残暴 – cán bào – Cruelty