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Home Chinese Idiom 如坐针毡 (rú zuò zhēn zhān)
如坐针毡 (rú zuò zhēn zhān)
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During the Chin dynasty (xī jìn 西晋) there lived a man named Du Shi, who from his youth was hard working and intelligent. As an adult, he was very knowledgeable and capable, and so he went to work in the palace.

Min Huai, the crown prince of the time, did not strive for progress. He had an irritable disposition, and often did irrational things. Du Shi was by his side everyday, criticizing his ways, saying that he was irrational and knew nothing. This made Min Huai very unhappy, as he felt that this was none of Du Shi's business. So one day,

he sent someone to fill the cushion that Du Shi usually sat on full of needles. When Du Shi sat down, he was stuck so badly that he began to bleed. Several days later, the crown prince asked him, "So, what have you been doing these past few days?" Du Shi answered, "I've been drunk, and don't remember a thing." How come you also do wrong things?" Du Shi had no reply, and yet he couldn't leave. He did not know whether to laugh or to cry.

Today, a person who finds himself in a difficult situation can be said to be "as if sitting on a bed of needles."

西晋时候有个叫杜锡的人,学识渊博,性格非常耿直,在做了太子中舍人以后,多次规劝晋惠帝的儿子愍怀太子。愍怀太子不仅不听劝告,反而对杜锡心怀怨恨,便 故意在杜锡坐的毡垫中放了一些针。杜锡没有发觉,屁股被扎得鲜血直流。第二天,太子故意问杜锡: “你昨天出了甚么事?”杜锡难以开口,只好说:“昨天喝醉了,不知道干了些甚么。”太子说:“你喜欢责备别人,为甚么自己也做错了事呢?”杜锡不敢回答, 又不能走,哭笑不得。

如坐针毡 (rú zuò zhēn zhān)
【翻译】To Be As If Sitting On a Bed of Needles.


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