Fair highlight from Rulon-Miller Books


[Brollo, Basilio & Chr. Louis Joseph de Guignes.]. Dictionnaire Chinois, Français, et Latin, publié d'apres l'ordre de sa Majesté l'empereur et roi Napoleon le Grand; par M. de Guignes, resident de France à la Chine…. Paris: Imprimerie Imperiale, 1813-[19].


First edition, folio, pp. viii, lvi, 1112, [2] errata; recent half tan calf antique over marbled boards, red morocco labels on spine; perforated Free Library / Philadelphia stamp at the bottom of the title page and a small rubberstamp of the same on the following leaf; a nice copy.

Lust, quoting Klaproth: "As everyone knew, the dictionary had been compiled by Brollo (1648-1704) even if his name did not appear on the title-page. It can be seen that De Guignes rearranged it, translating part of the definitions of characters, though none of the compounds, into French. He does not seem to have added much."

"The Franciscan Basilio Brollo was the author of the first comprehensive Chinese-Latin dictionary, which he composed in Nanking in 1694 and in 1699, describing and translating approximately 7,000 and 9,000 ideograms respectively. For a long time these dictionaries circulated in manuscript copies, providing an indispensable tool for the first European sinologists. During the 17th century attempts were made to publish them, but the high cost always involved discouraged publication. At the beginning of the 19th century the French government decided to publish a dictionary and in 1808 entrusted this task to C.L. Joseph de Guignes (1759-1845), former consul of France in Canton. Using the manuscript copy of Brollo's dictionary then in the Vatican Library, in 1813 de Guignes published the dictionary bearing his name, and not that of Brollo, as the author. Thanks to Abel-Rémusat, and to J. Klaproth, the fraud was disclosed and the merits of the modest friar were recognized" (Guiliano Bertuccioli, "Sinology in Italy 1600-1950," in Europe Studies China (1995), pp. 69-70).

Contains an extensive historical preface, word index and tables. Handsomely printed in Chinese and Roman character. Cordier, Sinica, col. 1589; Lust 1037; Zanmuller 42; not in Vancil. 

Rulon-Miller Books, 400 Summit Ave., St. Paul, MN 55102-2662, United States
www.rulon.com rulon@rulon.com