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Song sung by the elder in Bestial Blade Chapter 1

book cover

The True God falls from the heavens, morals collapse and decay,

Heavenly law wellaway, and men can turn into beasts,

The blade-bearer roars, and the grazer rushes.

It rushes and rushes, lightly and resigned…

Bestial Blade by Priest

I’ve been rereading some of the earlier chapters to recall some details, and I noticed that, in Chapter 1, the elder sung a song when it gave baby Chang An a bone plate. The first translator didn’t translate it though, so I’ll be doing it instead, since this song seems very important in the story. It has been alluded to many times, as well.

Translator’s Notes

真神坠苍,伦常崩朽,  
呜呼天道,人可成兽。  
执刀者呼啸,食草者奔走。  
奔走奔走,瑟瑟苟苟……

The first two lines lament the corruption of humankind. Lu._.ci and Joyce of the Chrysanthemum Garden server helped me out immensely in translating this!

食草 – Literally, to feed on grass, and hence, “grazer.” Probably a metaphor for the weaker ones (i.e. sub-beasts and women)

Alternative Translations

[Updated as of Jun 23, 2020 (11:21 pm, GMT+8)]

瑟瑟苟苟

The 瑟瑟 here refers to light sounds, such as the rustling of grass or the sound of wind. Like an onomatopoeia (pronounced as sè sè). It can also mean “to tremble” or “to shiver.”

can mean indifferent, but it could also mean careless. A modern definition, as especially used in the Chinese internet world, would be “preserve one’s own life at all costs.” It got this meaning from the expression 苟全性命, as it’s the first character in it. [Thanks to Jouicifer for pointing this out!]

The point is, I don’t fully understand what this song means, so I won’t give an “absolute” interpretation of it. I’m putting out all these alternate definitions, so you can try to interpret it as you see fit. I will be occasionally updating this footnote if I find out more about it.

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