1792年（乾隆五十七年），英國派遣馬戛爾尼勳爵 (George Lord Macartney, 1737-1806) 率領使團來華，謁見乾隆皇帝，提出政治及商貿上的要求。毫無疑問，這第一次的英使來華在中英關係史上佔有非常重要的位置，只是一般的意見都認為，馬戛爾尼使團是失敗而還的，因為他們所提出的任何請求都不獲清廷所應允。本文集中討論這次使團所攜帶贈送給乾隆的禮物。過去有關的研究焦點都放在英人挑選禮品的動機，他們如何希望透過展現英國當時的科學水平和軍事力量來突顯英國的雄厚實力。本文從另外的角度去思考禮品在這首次英使來華事件中的角色及意義：翻譯問題在這次呈贈禮品中的關鍵性。直到目前為止，探討翻譯與馬戛爾尼贈送禮品的研究很少，但翻譯在這問題上其實扮演了十分重要的角色，涉及的更遠超表面文字的層面，沒有釐清翻譯的問題，是不可能準確及真正理解馬戛爾尼使團這次送禮行為所產生的問題的。本文嘗試透過分析中英雙方有關馬戛爾尼使團的原始文件，尤以使團送禮清單的英文原本及中文譯本為重心，展現兩國不同的送禮文化以及對這次使團送禮活動的認知及態度，從而揭示翻譯活動本身以及翻譯研究對歷史的發展和論述所起的重要作用。 In 1792, George Lord Macartney was sent by King George of Great Britain to visit Emperor Qianlong to open the tightly closed door of China. Many studies have been made on this first British embassy to China, the significance of which cannot be further stressed. But little attention has been paid to the issue of translation involved in the interactions between the British and the Chinese.The present paper looks into the translation problems faced by the mission when they had to provide the list of presents in Chinese. On the one hand, the translators were utterly unqualified as their proficiency in written Chinese was extremely poor. On the other, many of the presents were hitherto unheard of in Qing China, hence there could not be any existing translation for reference. In the end, the Chinese version of the list was almost incomprehensible. But more importantly, one major consideration of the Embassy in their choice of presents was to demonstrate to the Chinese their achievements, particularly in science and military strength, of Great Britain. Hence the original list of present was written in a bombastic and even pompous manner, and the Ambassador expected a translation that could transmit the same spirit of pride. However, although the translators had deliberately softened the wording and the tone, the translation was badly received by Emperor Qianlong as being exaggerating and pretentious. This demonstrates unmistakably the huge cultural difference in presenting gifts in China and the West.