1928年,在欧洲度蜜月的林徽因与梁思成。
1928年,在欧洲度蜜月的林徽因与梁思成。 CPA/Picture Alliance

Since 1851, obituaries in The New York Times have been dominated by white men. We launched Overlooked to tell the stories of women who left indelible marks on society, but whose deaths went unremarked by our newspaper. Now we’re expanding our lens to include other notable people — many of them marginalized — who were omitted.

自1851年以来,《纽约时报》的讣告一直以白人男性为主。我们推出了“被遗漏的”(Overlooked)栏目,讲述一些女性的故事,她们给社会留下了难以磨灭的印记,但她们的死亡没有得到时报的关注。现在,我们将视线扩大,投向其他受到忽略的重要人物,他们中的很多人都被边缘化。

Many of China’s ancient architectural treasures crumbled to dust before Lin Huiyin and Liang Sicheng began documenting them in the 1930s. In China, ancient structures were usually treated like any other buildings rather than being protected and studied, as they were in many Western countries. The husband and wife team were among the first preservationists to operate in China, and by far the best known. Their efforts have since inspired generations of people to speak out for architecture threatened by the rush toward development.

林徽因和梁思成在20世纪30年代开始对中国古建筑进行考察记录之前,许多古代瑰宝已逐渐坍塌。在中国,人们通常像对待其他建筑那样对待古建筑,而不是像西方国家那样对古建筑进行保护研究。这对夫妻是中国最早的文物保护工作者中的两位,也是最为知名的。他们的努力激励了几代人出来为受发展大潮威胁的建筑大声疾呼。

Becoming China’s premier architectural historians was no easy feat. The buildings they wanted to save were centuries old, often in shambles and located in distant parts of the country. In many cases, they had to journey through treacherous conditions in the Chinese countryside to reach them.

成为中国最著名的建筑历史学家不是一件容易的事情。他们想挽救的建筑已有好几百年的历史,这些建筑通常年久失修,而且散布在遥远的地方。许多时候,他们必须穿越中国农村的险恶环境,才能到达这些建筑的所在地。

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Exploring China’s outlying areas during the 1930s meant traveling muddy, poorly maintained roads by mule, rickshaw or on foot. This was a demanding undertaking both for Liang, who walked with a bad limp after a motorcycle accident as a young man, and Lin, who had tuberculosis for years. Inns were often squalid and lice-infested, food could be tainted, and there was always risk of violence from rebels, soldiers and bandits.

20世纪30年代在中国远离市镇的地区考察意味着,要靠骡子、人力车或徒步在很糟糕的泥泞路上旅行。对于梁思成和林徽因两人来说,这并非易事:梁思成年轻时的一场摩托车事故让他后来走路一瘸一拐,而林徽因长期患有肺结核。他们住的客栈通常很脏,到处是虱子,食物可能不干净,而且总有遭受造反农民、士兵和土匪暴力的危险。

Their greatest discovery came on an expedition in 1937 when they dated and meticulously catalogued Foguang Si, or the Temple of Buddha’s Light, in Wutai County, Shanxi Province. The breathtaking wooden temple was built in 857 A.D., making it the oldest building known in China at the time. (It is now the fourth-oldest known).

他们最大的收获来自1937年的一次考察,他们在山西省五台县发现了佛光寺,考证了它的年代,对其进行了详细的测绘编录。这座令人惊叹的木制寺庙建于公元857年,是当时中国已知的最古老的建筑。(现在,佛光寺是已知第四古老的中国建筑。)

Liang and Lin crawled into the temple’s most forbidding, forgotten areas to determine its age, including one aerie inhabited by thousands of bats and millions of bedbugs, covered in dust and littered with dead bats. Liang wrote of the experience in an account included in “Liang and Lin: Partners in Exploring China’s Architectural Past,” the English-language story of their lives written by Wilma Fairbank, their close friend and correspondent.

为了确定佛光寺的年代,梁思成和林徽因爬进了寺里最令人生畏、被人遗忘的地方,包括钻到寺的屋檐底下,那里住着成千上万只蝙蝠和数百万只臭虫,到处都是尘土,充斥着死蝙蝠。梁思成在《梁思成与林徽因——一对探索中国建筑史的伴侣》(Liang and Lin: Partners in Exploring China’s Architectural Past)一书中记述了那段经历,该书是与他们通信的好友费慰梅(Wilma Fairbank)用英文写的他们的人生故事。

“In complete darkness and amid the vile odor, hardly breathing, with thick masks covering our noses and mouths, we measured, drew, and photographed with flashlights for several hours,” Liang wrote. “When at last we came out from under the eaves to take a breath of fresh air, we found hundreds of bedbugs in our knapsack. We ourselves had been badly bitten. Yet the importance and unexpectedness of our find made those the happiest hours of my years hunting for ancient architecture.”

“在完全的黑暗和难耐的秽气中好几个小时地测量、画图和用闪光灯拍照。当我们终于从屋檐下钻出来呼吸新鲜空气的时候,发现在背包里爬满了千百只臭虫,我们自己也被咬得很厉害。可是我们的发现的重要性和意外收获,使得这些日子成为我多年来寻找古建筑中最快乐的时光。”

林徽因是20世纪著名的中国建筑师、作家。她在1930年代与丈夫梁思成一起记录下中国的建筑遗产。
林徽因是20世纪著名的中国建筑师、作家。她在1930年代与丈夫梁思成一起记录下中国的建筑遗产。 CPA Media/Picture Alliance

Though Lin and Liang worked to save remnants of ancient China, their lives were inextricably entangled with modern Chinese history.

虽然林徽因和梁思成的工作是挽救中国的古代遗产,但他们的人生却与中国现代历史不可分地联系在一起。

Liang was born in Tokyo on April 20, 1901, where his father, Liang Chi Chao, a diplomat, was stationed. Lin was born in Hangzhou, China, on June 10, 1904. Children of prominent families, they both lived and studied abroad and grew up to be open-minded intellectuals when much of Chinese society was constrained by strict traditions.

梁思成1901年4月20日出生在日本东京,他的父亲梁启超当时在那里生活。林徽因1904年6月10日出生在中国杭州。他们都来自于名门望族,都曾在国外生活和学习,后来都成为思想开放的知识分子,而在当时的中国社会,许多东西都受到严格传统的束缚。

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Their families knew each other, and they journeyed to the United States together to attend the University of Pennsylvania in 1924. Lin was enthusiastic about studying architecture, but the university’s architecture school would not admit her because it was considered improper for young ladies to work late into the night, unsupervised, with young men. So when they graduated in 1927 Lin earned a bachelor of fine arts degree, having taken classes in architecture, and Liang became the official architect, earning a bachelor’s and later a master’s degree in the field. But they always worked together.

他们两家是世交,两人于1924年一起前往美国,在宾夕法尼亚大学(University of Pennsylvania)读书。林徽因对读建筑学很感兴趣,但宾大的建筑学院没有接收她,因为当时人们认为,在无人监督的情况下,让年轻的女士与年轻的男子一起工作到深夜不合适。所以,他们1927年毕业时,林徽因拿到的是美术学士学位,她也上过建筑学的课;梁思成则成为正式的建筑师,他先是获得了建筑学士学位,后来又获得了建筑硕士学位。但他们总是一起工作。

“I think they saw each other as partners, not as business but as life partners,” Nancy S. Steinhardt, a professor of East Asian art at the University of Pennsylvania who has studied the couple’s work, said in a telephone interview. “It’s not clear who did which parts of drawings or articles they wrote; they were a team.”

“我认为,他们把彼此视为伙伴,不是商业伙伴,而是人生伴侣,”宾夕法尼亚大学东亚艺术教授夏南希(Nancy S. Steinhardt)在接受电话采访时说,夏南希研究过他们的工作。“分不清他们的绘图或文章中哪部分是谁做的;他们是一个团队。”

At first glance they made an incongruous couple. Lin was a glamorous, vivacious polymath who wrote poetry, fiction, criticism and drama, and made her home into a kind of intellectual salon.

乍看上去,他们不像一对合适的夫妻。林徽因富有魅力,活泼且多才多艺,她写诗、写小说,还写评论和戏剧,她把家变成了一个知识沙龙。

Liang was a highly focused architect and teacher who could be taciturn, but warmed to people once he knew them. Their differences proved complementary, much to the benefit of Chinese architecture.

梁思成是一位高度专注的建筑师和教师,他可能沉默寡言,但一旦与人熟悉后,他会变得友好。事实证明,他们性格上的差异是一种互补,也给中国的建筑学带来了很大的好处。

Lin entertained several suitors as a young woman, including the poet Xu Zhimo, but married Liang in Canada in 1928, where they traveled after their graduation. After several months in Europe they returned to China, where Liang and Chinese colleagues from the University of Pennsylvania founded the architecture department at Northeastern University in Shenyang, the country’s second architecture program. His academic writings and lectures from the 1930s were eventually bound and released as “A History of Chinese Architecture,” a rare effort to write a comprehensive book about the subject.

林徽因年轻时曾受到几个人的追求,其中包括诗人徐志摩,但她于1928年在加拿大与梁思成结了婚。在欧洲旅行了几个月后,他们回到中国,梁思成和几名来自宾大的中国同事在沈阳的东北大学创建了建筑系,这是国内的第二个建筑系。他在20世纪30年代的学术手稿和讲义最终被编辑成《中国建筑史》一书,这是一本罕见的关于这个题材的综合性著作。

During the early 1930s, after moving to Beijing, they began regular expeditions into the Chinese countryside to seek out some of the remaining ancient wooden structures, surviving examples of the architecture Mr. Liang detailed in his book.

20世纪30年代初搬到北京之后,他们开始定期到中国农村去寻找古代木结构建筑中尚存的一些实例,这些存留下来的建筑在梁思成的书中有详尽的描述。

Their explorations ended when Japanese forces invaded China in 1937. In 1940 the extended Liang family, now with a young daughter and a son, relocated to a cottage they built in a village near Kunming in southern China. Lin’s tuberculosis got worse, and the straitened circumstances of wartime made life all but intolerable.

日本军队1937年入侵中国后,他们的考察停了下来。1940年,他们把家搬到了中国南方城市昆明附近的一个村子,那时他们已有一儿一女,住在村里自己建的一个小屋里。林徽因的肺结核变得更严重了,战争让他们过上了穷困潦倒、让人难以忍受的生活。

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During the war they used their copious notes, photographs and drawings to continue writing about architecture. When the war ended Liang became a visiting professor at Yale and China’s representative to the committee that designed the United Nations building in Manhattan in 1949. Lin, burdened by caring for her family and by illness, remained in China.

在战争期间,他们靠大量的笔记、照片和绘图,继续从事建筑方面的写作。战争结束后,梁思成前往耶鲁大学(Yale)担任客座教授,并成为1949年设计曼哈顿的联合国大楼委员会中的中国代表。林徽因由于要照顾家人,又患病在身,留在了中国。

After the Communist takeover in 1949, Liang and Lin, archetypal bourgeois intellectuals, became fodder for Communists trying to display party loyalty. Lin did not have to endure the mistreatment for long — her health worsened, and she died of tuberculosis on April 1, 1955, at 51.

1949年共产党掌权之后,典型的资产阶级知识分子梁思成和林徽因成了共产党员努力展示对党忠诚的攻击对象。林徽因的健康状况进一步恶化,没能在恶虐的处境下坚持多久。1955年4月1日,她因肺结核去世,享年51岁。

But Liang, who had returned to China to care for her, was accused of being a counterrevolutionary and endured re-education and public shaming from party officials. He was also powerless to stop the demolition of the ancient walls and gates that surrounded Beijing — he argued for their preservation, but Maoist forces wanted to reinvent the city as an industrial center. Still, he continued to work and teach and eventually remarried. He died on Jan. 9, 1972, at 70.

梁思成因为要照顾林徽因回国后,反而被指控为反革命,他受过再教育,以及来自中共官员的公开羞辱。他也无力阻止环绕北京的古城墙和城楼被拆除,他主张保护城墙,但毛泽东想把这座城市改造成一个工业中心。尽管如此,梁思成还是继续工作和教书,并最终再婚。他于1972年1月9日去世,享年70岁。

The work of Liang and Lin lived on, with the help of Fairbank and Liang’s second wife, Lin Zhu. Decades after Liang’s death, they tracked down his lost drawings and photographs. Fairbank combined them with his written work to create “A Pictorial History of Chinese Architecture,” which was published in 1984. It is an in-depth look at Chinese architecture, documenting many buildings that no longer stand.

在费慰梅和梁思成的第二任妻子林洙的帮助下,梁思成和林徽因的工作得以继续。梁思成去世几十年后,费慰梅和林洙把他丢失的绘图和照片找了回来。费慰梅把这些图片与他的文字结合起来,于1984年出版了《图像中国建筑史》(“A Pictorial History of Chinese Architecture”)一书(中译本出版于2011年——译注)。这本书对中国建筑做了深入的研究,记录了许多已经不复存在的建筑。

Lin and Liang have also become folk heroes in China, their lives recounted in novels, films and a documentary series

林徽因和梁思成也成为了中国的民间英雄,人们用小说、电影和一个系列记录片讲述他们的生活。

Lin and Liang have also become folk heroes in China, their lives recounted in novels, films and a documentary series.

以设计华盛顿越战纪念碑闻名的建筑师和艺术家林璎(Maya Lin)是林徽因的侄女,她在2017年告诉《史密森尼》杂志(Smithsonian Magazine):“比起梁思成和林徽因的工作,大多数中国人对他们的个性和爱情经历了解得更多。”

Lin’s niece, the architect and artist Maya Lin, who is known for making the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, told Smithsonian Magazine in 2017 that “most people in China know more about Liang and Lin’s personalities and love lives than their work."

“但从建筑的角度来看,他们非常重要,”她继续说道。 “如果不是他们的话,我们就不会拥有这么多中国古代建筑样式的记录,它们就不复存在了。

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"But from an architectural point of view, they are hugely important," she continued. "If it weren’t for them, we would have no record of so many ancient Chinese styles, which simply disappeared.”

但北京的开发商们更关心施工项目,而不是他们遗留下来的东西。2012年,开发商在夜幕的掩护下,拆除了梁思成和林徽因20世纪30年代在北京住过的房子,让保护主义者大为失望。