Chinese Idiom:江郎才尽 (jiāng láng cái jìn)

Jiang Yan lived during the Liang dynasty of the Northern and Southern Dynasties Period, in the area now known as Henan province. Although he came from a poor family, he as extremely hard working, and so became a high-level civil official. Jiang Yan was very talented in the area of literature. Both his poems and his essays were outstanding, and he was known by nearly all the scholars of his time.

Jiang Yan once had a dream that a man came to him and said, "My name is Guo Pu. One of my pens has been here with your for several years; please give it back to me now." In his pocket, Jiang Yan found a multi-colored pen, which he returned to Guo Po.
As Jiang Yan grew older,the poems and essays that he wrote were not as good as those he had written when he was younger. Everyone said that when Jiang Yan gave away his multi-colored pen, he used up the last of his talent.

When a person today is so satisfied with himself that he ceases striving to improve, and therefore beings to regress, we can say that "Official Jiang has used up his talent."


南北朝时,有一位名叫江淹的人,他是当时有名的文学家。江淹年轻的时候很有才气,会写文章也能作画。可是当他年老的时候,总是拿着笔,思考了半天,也写不 出任何东西。因此,当时人们谣传说:有一天,江淹在凉亭里睡觉,做了一个梦。梦中有一个叫郭璞的人对他说:“我有一支笔放在你那里已经很多年了,现在应该 是还给我的时候了。”江淹摸了摸怀里,果然掏出一支五色笔来,于是他就把笔还给郭璞。从此以后,江淹就再也写不出美妙的文章了。因此,人们都说江郎的才华 已经用尽了。

江郎才尽 (jiāng láng cái jìn)
【翻译】Official Jiang Uses Up His Talent.

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