PROMINENCE 1 Lesson 7 What’s an Ig?

Lesson 7

What’s an Ig? 「イグ」って何?

Part 1

Have you ever heard of the “Ig Nobel Prizes”?

They are an American parody of the Nobel Prizes.

The Ig Nobels were created in 1991 by Marc Abrahams.

“We honor achievements that first make people laugh and then make them think,” he says.

Marc explains how he came up with the idea.

“When I became the editor of a science magazine, I met all kinds of people. They were doing unique studies. However, it seemed that nobody would recognize them in any way. So, we decided to create the Ig Nobels.”

The name “Ig Nobel” is a play on words.

“Ig,” short for ignoble, means “dishonorable.”

Every year, ten prizes are given in such categories as physics, chemistry, and literature.

The ceremony is held at Sanders Theater at Harvard University in Boston.


Ig 固有名詞 イグ
Nobel 固有名詞 ノーベル
parody 名詞 パロディー
Marc Abrahams 固有名詞 マーク・エイブラハムズ
honor 動詞 ~に名誉[栄誉]を与える
achievement 名詞 業績
editor 名詞 編集者
seem 動詞 ~のように思われる
nobody 代名詞 誰も~ない
recognize 動詞 (業績などを)評価する,価値を認める
ignoble 形容詞 不名誉な
dishonorable 形容詞 不名誉な
category 名詞 区分,ジャンル
physics 名詞 物理学
chemistry 名詞 化学
literature 名詞 文学
ceremony 名詞 儀式,式典
Sanders 固有名詞 サンダーズ
Harvard 固有名詞 ハーバード
Boston 固有名詞 ボストン
play on words しゃれ, 言葉遊び
short for ~ ~の省略で

□ a play on words Naming a Korean restaurant “Seoul Food” would be a good example of a play on words.
□ short for ~ Bill is short for William.

G-19 It seems that Japanese researchers won’t get an Ig Nobel Prize this year.

Q1 When and by whom were the Ig Nobels created?
→ They were created in 1991 by Marc Abrahams.
Q2 Why did Marc create the Ig Nobels?
→ Because he wanted people to recognize unique studies. / Because he wanted unique studies to be recognized.
Q3 What does Ig stand for?
→ It stands for “ignoble.” / It is short for “ignoble” and means “dishonorable.”

FQ Do you know anybody who has won an Ig Nobel Prize? If so, what did he or she do?
→ I know Dr. Mabuchi won Ig Nobel Prize in 2014. He studied slippery banana skin. / I don’t know anyone, but I heard some Japanese toy maker invented “Bow Lingual,” a portable dog language translator and won Ig Nobel Prize more than ten years ago.