At the end of one’s rope, at the end of one’s tether

At the end of one’s rope 和 at the end of one’s tether為同義成語,意為「忍無可忍;山窮水盡;黔驢技窮;智窮力竭;筋疲力盡;束手無策;無計可施」。雖然這些中文成語的意思並非完全一樣,但都是在表示智慧、力氣或耐性已經用盡了。在句中,這兩個成語都位在 BE 動詞之後,即 to be at the end of one’s rope/tether。有時,它們會被寫成或說成 to reach the end of one’s rope/tether。

At the end of one’s rope 為美式英語,而 at the end of one’s tether 為英式英語,兩者都主要用於口語,其中 rope 與 tether (拴繩,即拴牛、馬等牲畜用的繩子) 亦可說是同義詞。At the end of one’s rope 可追溯到 1680 年代,但 at the end of one’s tether 起源於何時則無從考證,僅知它來自古瑞典語。

例句:

  • I’m at the end of my rope with these students. (我對這些學生已無計可施)
  • Cindy is at the end of her tether with her boyfriend because he is always late for their dates. (辛蒂對她男友已忍無可忍,因為他約會總是遲到)
  • By seven o’clock after a busy day we reach the end of our rope. (忙碌了一天之後,到七點我們都已精疲力竭了)
  • Susan’s been looking after these kids all day and she reaches the end of her tether! (蘇珊整天都在照顧這些小孩,已經筋疲力盡了!)
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