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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Speak Shenzhen
Kiribati for travelers
    2017-September-7  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

James Baquet

One would be forgiven for not being able to find Kiribati on a map.

Even after searching with advanced Internet technology, it’s still difficult to determine exactly where this island nation is. Perhaps that’s because its 800-square-kilometer land area is spread across a whopping 3.5 million square kilometers of ocean! With one exception, the country is made up of atolls and reef islands, rather than islands as we think of them. And even that one exception is a coral island of only 6 square kilometers.

But here’s a tip for finding Kiribati. It is located along the Equator, and straddles the 180th meridian, which would usually be the International Date Line, though that designation swerves around Kiribati’s islands, almost as far as the 150th meridian west. As a result, the easternmost islands of Kiribati have the most advanced time in the world: UTC +14 hours. Most good maps will show a sort of giant hook in the area; that’s to accommodate Kiribati.

These two significant lines, then — the 0 parallel and the 180th meridian — make a kind of bull’s eye on the scattered islands of Kiribati. So although their official slogan is “Kiribati: For Travelers,” they have another nickname: “the only country situated in the four hemispheres.”

The country can be divided into three groups. From east to west, they are: the Gilbert Islands, where the capital and most populated area, Tarawa, is located; the Phoenix Islands; and the Line Islands, home to Kiritimati, better known as Christmas Island, so-called because British Captain James Cook made landfall there on Christmas Eve, 1777. Because “ti” is pronounced “s” in the Kiribati language, “Kiritimati” is a homophone for “Christmas.”

That language, by the way, is called “Gilbertese,” and it is used alongside English. In fact, “Kiribati” is a rendition of “Gilberts,” from the name of another British captain, Thomas Gilbert, who with Captain John Marshall sailed through these islands in 1788 and provided the first description by Europeans.

Vocabulary:

Which word above means:

1. north-to-south line on the earth

2. piece of advice

3. halves of the globe

4. reached land

5. center of a target

6. word with the same sound

7. east-to-west line on the earth

8. huge, very large

9. provide (for)

10. turns aside

 

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