Sunday, December 18, 2016

What does "所以" mean?

My Korean dictionary says that 所以 (소이) means "the reason" or "(the reason) why," which can be translated as "because" when needed. Wow! That was simple. So then why does the book "Outline of Classical Chinese Grammar" translate it as "that by which"?

Maybe because the author of the book was trying to translate the individual characters "所 (소)" and "以 (이)," but if that were the case, where is the "by which" part? In "Du's Handbook of Classical Grammar," it also says 所以 (소이) can be translated as "that by which," adding that the 以 means "by." It also says that "that by which" can translate as "the reason why." In "A New Practical Primer of Literary Chinese," 所以 (소이) is translated as "the means by which" and "the reason why." It seems all three books want to translate the "以" in 所以 (소이) as "by," but I have a different opinion.

My Korean dictionary says 所 (소) can mean "a place," "a thing," or "what." The character that follows 所 seems to usually be a verb in the passive voice, so 所得 (소득) translates as "what (所) was earned (得)," which can translate simply as "income"; 所望 (소망) translates as "what (所) was desired (望)," which can translate simply as "desire"; and 所聞 (소문) translates as "what (所) was heard (聞)," which can translate simply as "a rumor" or "hearsay." These examples suggest that the 以 in 所以 (소이) should also be translated as a verb in the passive voice.

As a verb, 以 (이) can mean "to use," "to take," or "to consider," but I think it can also mean "to reason," which is very close in meaning to the verb "to consider." My Korean dictionary says 以 (이), as a noun, can mean "reason," which translates in Korean as "이유 (理由)" or "까닭." Based on the way Chinese characters often work, if there is a noun meaning, then there is also a similar verb meaning, and vice versa. For example, 問 (문) can mean "a question," but it can also mean "to question" or "to ask." Therefore, since 以 (이) can mean "a reason," we can assume it can also mean "to reason." That would mean that 所以 (소이) has, at least, four possible translations:
  1. "what (所) is used (以)"
  2. "what (所) is taken (以),"
  3. "what (所) is considered (以)"
  4. "what (所) is reasoned (以)," which can translate as the noun "reason."
One of the example sentences in "Du's Handbook" is as follows:
“This is why I am sad.”
The above sentence can literally translate as "This is (此) my (吾) reason (所以) [for] being sad (悲也)."

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Who married Miss Nevada 1962?

ANSWER: Bruce K. Grant, author of the following three books:

Here is the engagement announcement for Bruce Kent Grant and Audrey Nelle Chambers from the November 17, 1964 edition of the "Reno-Gazzette Journal":
"Former Miss Nevada Will Marry"
Mr. and Mrs. Frank M. Chambers of Las Vegas have announced the engagement of their daughter, Audrey Nelle Chambers, to Bruce Kent Grant, son of Mr.- and Mrs. Kent Grant, also of Las Vegas. The bride elect was Miss Nevada 1962 and a former student of the University of Nevada. She is completing her senior year hat the Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. The future bridegroom served as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Korea from 1960 to 1963. He attended the BYU and is now serving in the Army Intelligence Corps. A December 18 wedding in the St. George LDS Temple is planned.
According to the engagement announcement, Bruce Grant (born in April 1940) began serving in the Army Intelligence Corps after serving as a missionary in South Korea from 1960 to 1963. It does not say if he was drafted or not. According to an online profile of 1962 Miss Nevada HERE, in 1978 Mrs. Grant lived in Korea for ten years with her husband, who was working as an advisor to the Commander in Chief for all forces and was a leading expert in the Korean language.

Besides writing the three books shown above, Bruce Grant also translated, I think, "Han Joon Nok: Reminiscences in Retirement," which were the memoirs of Queen Heongyeong (헌경왕후), who was born on August 6, 1735 and died on January 13, 1816.
What I find interesting is that Bruce K. Grant seemed to publish only from 1979 until 1982. I wonder why. I assume his government job and family kept him too busy after that, which is unfortunate. As far as I know, Mr. Grant and his wife are still living today, which would mean he is now 76 years old.
  • "Guide to Korean Characters, Reading and Writing Hangul and Hanja" 1979
  • "Han Joon Nok: Reminiscences in Retirement," 1980
  • "White Field Korean," 1982
  • "Korean Proverbs, Dragon Head, Snake Tail, and a Frog in a Well," 1982