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愚民の上に苛き政府あり

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14:41 Dec 27, 2005
Japanese to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Poetry & Literature
Japanese term or phrase: 愚民の上に苛き政府あり
Western proverb
Yoshio Omata
Japan
Local time: 11:37
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Summary of answers provided
3 +1Over foolish people, there is a harsh government.
Mikiko
3Foolish people must be sternly ruledIan Laidlaw
2FIYishigami
1Men must be led by an iron hand in a velvet glove
casey


  

Answers


2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
愚民の上に苛き政府あり
Over foolish people, there is a harsh government.


Explanation:
It comes from Yukichi Fukuzawa's essay. The following is the translation available on the web. But is there really such a Western proverb?

A proverb of the West says, "Over foolish people, there is a harsh government. The Japanese victory was the result of the perfect cooperation between the government and the public. He suggests that the people need to be enlightened of what constitutes a highly civilized nation.


    Reference: http://www.megaessays.com/viewpaper/61032.html
Mikiko
Local time: 11:37
Native speaker of: Native in JapaneseJapanese

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Will Matter: I've never heard this proverb in English but I agree with your translation.
26 mins
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12 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 1/5Answerer confidence 1/5
愚民の上に苛き政府あり
Men must be led by an iron hand in a velvet glove


Explanation:
This was said by Napoleon. Not really a proverb, but maybe?

casey
United States
Local time: 22:37
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
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17 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5
愚民の上に苛き政府あり
FIY


Explanation:
http://www.japanology.cn/essay/zazuan/01fukuzawa_gakumon.htm
斯る愚民を支配するには迚(とて)も道理を以て諭すべき方便なければ、唯威を以て畏すのみ。西洋の諺に愚民の上に苛(から)き政府ありとはこの事なり。

http://home.comcast.net/‾m-kollar/Thoughts/others/08.htm
To rule such foolish men, reason will not do ; the only way will be to keep them in order by the show of force. A proverb of the West says, "Over foolish people, there is a harsh government."

ishigami
Local time: 10:37
Native speaker of: Native in JapaneseJapanese
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1 day21 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
愚民の上に苛き政府あり
Foolish people must be sternly ruled


Explanation:
「愚民の上に苛き政府あり」という言葉を用いたのは、愚民を支配するには道理をもって諭すのは困難で、ただ威をもって畏(おど)す以外に手はなく、人民の徳義が低い場合は政府の法が苛く(過酷に)ならざるを得ない、という意味においてであった。

The explanation suggests the meaning of the phrase is that foolish people cannot be led by truth, but must be ruled harshly, though it is not necessarily the case that they always are.


    Reference: http://www.ishiryoku.co.jp/user/takuwa/takuwa01/ser12_p04.ht...
Ian Laidlaw
Local time: 22:37
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
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