資料526 「サンタクロースはいるの?(Is there a Santa Claus?)」という手紙に答えた新聞社の社説

 
           

 「サンタクロースはいるの?(Is there a Santa Claus?)」
         
という手紙に答えた新聞社の社説  

              
    

 

1897年(明治30年)のこと、ニューヨークに住んでいたバージニアという8歳の
少女が、「サンタクロースは本当にいるの? 本当のことを教えて」と新聞社に手紙を出しました。新聞社では、社説でバージニアちゃんに返事を書きました。
1897年9月21日付けの “
The Sun” という新聞です
  

 

                       

 

 

 

 

Editorial of The Sun | September 21, 1897

   
    
Is There a Santa Claus?

 We take pleasure in answering at once and thus prominently the communication below, expressing at the same time our great gratification that its faithful author is numbered among the friends of THE SUN
:

    “DEAR EDITORI am 8 years old.
    “Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
    “Papa says  ‘If you see it in THE
SUN  it's so.’ 
    “Please tell me the truth;  is there a Santa Claus?

                                                                    “VIRGINIA  O'HANLON.
    “
115 WEST NINETY ・FIFTH STREET.”

  VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, VIRGINIA, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

  Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The external light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

  Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

  You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

 No Santa Claus! Thank GOD! he lives, and lives forever. A thousand years from now, VIRGINIA, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

 

 

 

 

         (注) 1. 上記の「サンタクロースはいるの?(Is there a Santa Claus?)」という手紙に
          答えた新聞社の社説
は、“LIBRARY OF CONGRESS HUMANITIES”と
          いうホームページに出ている“
The Sun
の1897年9月21日の新聞によりまし
          た。カンマ、ピリオドなどは、新聞の通りにしてあります。

             → 
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS HUMANITIES
                  → 
The Sun  September 21, 1897 
      2.フリー百科事典『ウィキペディア』に、「サンタクロースは実在するのか」という項
           があって、この新聞社説を取り上げています。
             『ウィキペディア』 → 
「サンタクロースは実在するのか」

 
          3偕成社から、絵:東逸子、訳:中村妙子で『サンタクロースっているんでしょうか?』
            という絵本が出ています。

       4 ネット上にはいろいろな日本語訳が出ています。例えば、青空文庫に大久保ゆう
            訳の「サンタクロースはいるんだ(YES, VIRGINIA, THERE IS A SANTA CLAUS )」
            があります。
             
青空文庫 → 大久保ゆう訳の「サンタクロースはいるんだ(YES, VIRGINIA,
                            
THERE IS A SANTA CLAUS ) 
       
      
「〔世界でいちばん有名な社説〕Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a
Santa Claus.」というペー
         ジもあります。
            → 
「〔世界でいちばん有名な社説〕Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus.」




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