Ideography and Chinese Language Theory A History

by Timothy Michael O地eill

Ideography and Chinese Language Theory A History This book examines the epistemological assumptions about language and writing that were persistent throughout the course of imperial Chinese history with an emphasis on the Han dynasty when the core theories were established and critically compares them to the history of European discourse on the abstract notion of ideography from Plato to Champollion

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Author : Timothy Michael O地eill

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Timothy Michael O窶儂eill
Ideography and Chinese Language Theory

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Timothy Michael O窶儂eill

Ideography and Chinese
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A History

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Table of Contents
Acknowledgements 窶披 vii
Introduction: Egyptian Hieroglyphic and Chinese Characters 窶披 1
Chapter 1: Platonism and the Strong Theory 窶披 18
Chapter 2: Aristotelianism and the Soft Theory 窶披 32
Chapter 3: Hellenized Egypt, Pythagoreanism, and the Primitivist Theory 窶披 42
Chapter 4: Patristic Apologetics and the Scriptural Theory 窶披 59
Chapter 5: Neoplatonism and the Hermetic Theory 窶披 85
Chapter 6: Universals and the Scholastic Theory 窶披 108
Chapter 7: Renaissance Neoplatonism and the Emblematic Theory 窶披 135
Chapter 8: Athanasius Kircher on Egyptian and Chinese Ideography 窶披 144
Chapter 9: The Great Chinese Encyclopedia 窶披 156
Chapter 10: Zhengming 豁」蜷 窶廴aking Words Correct窶 and Chinese Language
Theory 窶披 177
Chapter 11: Chinese Language Theory and the Interpretation of
the Classics 窶披 189
Chapter 12: The Erya and Lexicographic Classification 窶披 202
Chapter 13: The Erya and Chinese Language Theory 窶披 214
Chapter 14: The Shuowen jiezi and Chinese Language Theory 窶披 236
Chapter 15: The 窶彜huowen Postface窶 (Annotated Translation) 窶披 258
Conclusion: Ideography and Chinese Language Theory 窶披 274
Appendix: The Metalinguistic Terms ming 蜷, yi 鄒ゥ, yi 諢, and zhi 蠢 窶披 285
Bibliography 窶披 306

Acknowledgements
I would like to thank Oliver Weingarten, Wolfgang Behr, David Knechtges, Zev
Handel, Leroy Searle, Henry Staten, Patricia Ebrey, Anna Shields, Zhou Changツュ
zhen, Mark Pitner, Nicholas Williams, Gregory Patterson, Charles Sanft, William
Boltz, Jerry Norman, Ken-ichi Takashima, Paul Kroll, David Tod Roy, Edward
Shaughnessy, Jere Fleck, and three anonymous reviewers for the Swiss Asia
Society. I should also take this opportunity to express my profound gratitude to
Kelly Joebgen, for living with this project for so long.
Part of the research for this study was conducted during a Fulbright Fellowツュ
ship in Taiwan and a portion of the writing was done during a Fellowship from the
Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange, for which I
would like to once again state my thanks. An earlier version of chapters 14窶15 was
previously published as 窶弭u Shen窶冱 Scholarly Agenda: A New Interpretation of
the Postface of the Shuowen jiezi,窶 Journal of the American Oriental Society 133.3
(2013): 412窶440.
This book is dedicated to the memory of my grandfather, Alfred Fraser.

Introduction: Egyptian Hieroglyphic and
Chinese Characters
Analyzing the classical Chinese word shan 隴ア 窶徼o regard something as good,
beautiful,窶 the Jesuit figurist Prテゥmare wrote: 窶忤hat this hieroglyph shows us is
鄒, 窶詫amb窶, between two 險, 窶words, to speak窶. Reading the parts of the characツュ
ters across窶ヲ tells us that 險 plus 鄒 means that those that came before spoke of
the lamb窶杯he Old Testament prophets窶背hile 鄒 plus 險 means that the lamb
spoke窶蚤gni verba, Jesus Christ speaking to us.窶1 Relying on his study of the
Shuowen jiezi 隱ェ譁隗」蟄, the first etymological dictionary of Chinese, Prテゥmare
astutely picked out the oldest character registered in the lexicographic tradition
for the word he was working on, whose graphic elements are indeed two 險 and
a 鄒 (隴ア, the guwen character which writes the word more generally written 蝟).2
His figural analysis of the 窶脇tymology窶 of the word shan is nothing short of the
most critically representative example of the complexity of ideographic theory in
the history of European thought: it combines elements of the strong, soft, primiツュ
tivist, scriptural, hermetic, scholastic, and emblematic theories of ideography all
together at once simultaneously.3 These seven iterations of ideographic theory
will be examined in detail in chapters 1窶7.
In terms of a historical context for Prテゥmare窶冱 figural exegesis of this 窶鷲ieroツュ
glyph窶, Chinese characters were introduced to European reading audiences in
1585 and almost immediately assimilated to millennia-old European theories
about Egyptian hieroglyphic.4 In order to curtail any uncertainty about the nature

1窶Knud Lundbテヲk, Joseph de Prテゥmare (1666窶1736), S.J.: Chinese Philology and Figurism (Aarhus:
Aarhus University Press, 1991), 31. For discussion of Figurism, see: Arnold H. Rowbotham, 窶弋he
Jesuit Figurists and Eighteenth-Century Religious Thought,窶 Journal of the History of Ideas 17.4
(1956): 471窶485.
2窶や懆ュア豁」, 蝟莉岩 (Longkan shoujing, 160.6窶7, in Shi Xingjun 驥玖。悟插 [fl. 997 C.E.], Longkan shoujing gaoli
ben 鮴埼セ墓焔髀。鬮倬コ玲悽 [Beijing: Zhonghua shuju, 2006]). On the topic of guwen 蜿、譁, see chapter 14.
3窶I take the 窶strong窶 and 窶soft窶 designations from Stolzenberg窶冱 terms for distinctions in the history
of European symbolism, see: Daniel Stolzenberg, Egyptian Oedipus: Athanasius Kircher and the
Secrets of Antiquity (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2013), 57窶58, 198窶199, and 242窶243.
4窶After the introduction of Chinese writing to Europe, Egyptian hieroglyphs (as 窶亙deographs窶)
were thereupon and consequently just as often compared to Chinese characters (as 窶亙deographs窶)窶
and later Egyptologists were forever despairing of those individuals who 窶徨ecourir テ l窶凖ゥternelle
comparaison avec la Chine窶 (Henri Sottas, 窶弃rテゥface,窶 in Jean-Franテァois Champollion, Lettre テ
M. Dacier, Secrテゥtaire Perpテゥtuel de L窶僊cadテゥmie Royale des Inscriptions et Belles-lettres, relative
テ l窶兮lphabet des hiテゥroglyphes phonテゥtiques employテゥs par les テ曳yptiens pour inscrire sur leurs
monuments les titres, les noms et les surnoms des souverains Grecs et Romains: テゥdition du
centenaire [Paris: Paul Geuthner, 1922], 33n2).

2窶

窶オntroduction: Egyptian Hieroglyphic and Chinese Characters

of Egyptian writing, I here provide a brief description of the history of its four
types窶派ieroglyphic, hieratic, Demotic, and Coptic (the last two are often considツュ
ered as writing separate languages, albeit directly descended from Old, Middle,
and Late Pharaonic Egyptian):5
Hieroglyphic: a script used to write Old and Middle Egyptian from about 3200
B.C.E. to the last datable inscription of August 24th, 394 C.E., consisting of
a combination of single consonant graphemes, called uniliterals (as in the
writing systems for languages like Moabite, Phoenician, Aramaic, Hebrew, and
Arabic, vowels are not written), multi-consonant graphemes (called biliteral
forツ two consonants and triliteral for three), and determinatives for distinツュ
guishing in writing between otherwise homophonous words (determinatives
which are placed without exception at the end of the phonetically-spelled
word). These determinatives, also known as classifiers, should perhaps be
explained more clearly. There are two types of determinatives: phonetic (selfexplanatory, in that they reinforce phonetic readings窶罵ike English 2nd, which
forces you to read the 2 as the ordinal number word rather than the cardinal
number word) and lexical. A simple illustration of how lexical determinatives
work should suffice: it would be as if in written English, in order to distinguish
between the various words signified by the combined graphemes B-A-L-L, we
added superscripts of other written English words so as to remove ambiguity
(we would not actually pronounce the superscripts when reading the word out
loud). For example, were one to write B-A-L-Lsphere, or B-A-L-Ldance, or the more
colloquial B-A-L-Lfun, it would readily allow the reader to determine which word
was intended by B-A-L-L (homophony is relatively rare in English words, but
in those of other languages窶覇.g., Chinese or Egyptian窶琶t is quite common,
which makes lexical determinatives practical and helpful in writing). This type
of classifier is in all cases in and of itself an extant and pronounceable word in
the particular language being written,6 and hence should properly be called
an interlexical classifier窶蚤s it associates a particular word with other words

5窶5he standard Egyptological reference work is Wolfgang Helck and Eberhard Otto, ed., Lexicon
der テgyptologie, 7 vols. (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz, 1975窶1992). The ancient Egyptians, of course,
had their own dictionaries; for annotated translation, analysis, and discussion of Pharaonic
Egyptian lexica, see: Alan H. Gardiner, Ancient Egyptian Onomastica, 3 vols. (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 1968).
6窶For Pharaonic Egyptian see: Bjテクrn Jespersen and Chris Reintges, 窶弋ractarian Sテ、tze, Egyptian
Hieroglyphs, and the Very Idea of Script as Picture,窶 The Philosophical Forum Quarterly 39
(2008): 10n27; Karl Richard Lepsius, 窶廰ettre テ Monsieur le Prof. Hippolyte Rosellini sur l窶兮lphabet
hiテゥroglyphique,窶 Bulletino dell窶僮stituto di correspondenza archeologica 9 (1837): 32.



Introduction: Egyptian Hieroglyphic and Chinese Characters 窶

窶3

in the same language, in order to clarify which word is actually being written
in that instance窶蚤 kind of interlexical disambiguator.7 The hieroglyphic script
is lexigraphic, in that each distinct grouping of the combination of consonant
graphemes and classifiers always writes a particular word (which comes from a
particular spoken language窶琶n this case, Egyptian in various historical stages).
Hieratic: an abridged form of hieroglyphic (basically like cursive handwriting)8
used to write Middle and Late Egyptian from about 2500 B.C.E. to about 700
B.C.E., at which time Demotic began to be used more frequently (last datable
inscription in hieratic is 3rd century C.E.).
Demotic: an even more calligraphically abbreviated form of hieratic used
to write the Demotic stage of the Egyptian spoken language from about 700
B.C.E. to 452 C.E., the last datable inscription in Demotic.
Coptic: an alphabetic script with 31 or 32 letters (25 letters from Greek and 6 or
7 uniliterals from Demotic), invented by Roman Egyptian Christians, used to
write spoken Coptic Egyptian from about the 2nd century C.E. until the present
day (it still marginally survives as the liturgical language of the Coptic Church).
As with all writing systems, any language can be more or less successfully written
in any script; examples such as Hittite (an ancient窶蚤nd highly inflectional窶氾ゑソスIndoEuropean language) being written in both hieroglyphic and cuneiform, Egyptian

7窶For discussion of lexical determinatives in the four original writing systems, those being
Sumerian (17 lexical classifiers), Egyptian (93 common lexical classifiers), Chinese (traditionally
between 540 and 214 lexical classifiers), and Mayan (perhaps 1 lexical classifier), see: John
L. Hayes, A Manual of Sumerian Grammar and Texts (Malibu: Undena, 1990), 14; Dietz Otto
Edzard, Sumerian Grammar (Leiden: Brill, 2003), 9窶10; Alan H. Gardiner, Egyptian Grammar,
Being an Introduction to the Study of Hieroglyphs: Third Edition, Revised (Oxford: Griffith
Institute, 2007), 31窶33 and 442窶543; Antonio Loprieno, Ancient Egyptian: A linguistic introduction
(Cambridge:ツ Cambridge University Press, 1995), 13; Henri Sottas and E. Drioton, Introduction
テ l窶凖ゥtude des hiテゥroglyphes (Paris: Geuthner, 1922), 12窶15; Lepsius, 窶廰ettre テ Monsieur le Prof.
Hippolyte Rosellini,窶 58窶62; William G. Boltz, The Origin and Early Development of the Chinese
Writing System (New Haven: American Oriental Society, 1994), 67窶72; John Montgomery, How to
Read Maya Hieroglyphs (New York: Hippocrene, 2003), 50窶51, 80, and 129; Ignace J. Gelb, A Study
of Writing: Revised Edition (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1963), 102窶103.
8窶Champollion described hieratic as a 窶忻eritable tachygraphy,窶 see: Jean-Franテァois Champollion,
Prテゥcis du systティme hiテゥroglyphique des anciens テ曳yptiens, ou recherches sur les テゥlテゥmens premiers
de cette テゥcriture sacrテゥe, sur leurs diverses combinaisons, et sur les rapports de ce systティme avec les
autres methods graphiques テゥgyptiennes, seconde edition, 2 vols. (Paris: Imprimerie Royale, 1828),
1:18窶21, 1:45, and 1:420窶421; Jean-Franテァois Champollion, Grammaire テゥgyptienne, ou principes
gテゥnテゥraux de l窶凖ゥcriture sacrテゥe テゥgyptienne appliquテゥe テ la reprテゥsentation de la langue parlテゥe, ed.
Jacques-Joseph Champollion-Figeac (Paris: Didot, 1836), xii and 15.

4窶

窶オntroduction: Egyptian Hieroglyphic and Chinese Characters

being written in cuneiform, Akkadian being written in hieroglyphic, Greek being
written in hieroglyphic, Elamite being written in cuneiform, and Sanskrit, Monツュ
golian, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese being written in Chinese characters are
common occurrences in the ancient and modern world. The only major problem
is that a script traditionally associated with (if not invented to write) one language
sometimes lacks the means to write the sound values of another language窶覇.g.,
why the inventors of the Coptic alphabet took 6 or 7 letters (uniliteral consonant
graphemes) from Demotic in order to be able to write the sounds of the Egyptian
language that could not be written with the existing Greek alphabet.9
The first historical occurrence of script-borrowing is that of the Akkadians
in the mid-third millennium B.C.E. borrowing Sumerian cuneiform to write Old
Akkadian (a Semitic language linguistically unrelated to Sumerian). The Sumeツュ
rians窶杯he first inventors of writing on earth窶派ad an epic version of the story of
the invention of writing, which ascribes this innovation to the inability of a royal
messenger to remember a particularly grand oral missive recited by the king: 窶廩is
speech was very grand, its meaning very deep; the messenger窶冱 mouth窶ヲ could not
repeat it. The lord of Kulab patted some clay and put the words on it as on a tablet.
Before that day, there had been no putting words on clay; but now, when the sun
rose on that day窶敗o it was! The lord of Kulab had put words as on a tablet窶敗o it
was!窶10 Even Ignace Gelb, whose grammatological work is otherwise extremely
problematic, admits that 窶徼he signs used in the earliest [Sumerian] writing are
clearly word signs窶ヲ this is the stage of writing we call logography or word writing
and which should be sharply distinguished from the so-called 窶亙deography窶.窶11
As cuneiform script, invented to write Sumerian, is structurally a combination
ofツsyllabographs and lexigraphs, the Akkadians were able to make the shift with
only those few script changes needed to write the emphatic consonants and the
glottal stop of Old Akkadian窶敗ounds that did not occur in spoken Sumerian (and
thus were not originally part of cuneiform script); copious amounts of cuneiform
bilingual dictionaries still survive窶巴eginning around 2300 B.C.E. as word-lists,
becoming canonical recensions by around 1200 B.C.E., and continuously copiedツout
on clay tablets until the early years C.E.窶背herein each Sumerian word is first spelled

9窶5he number 6 or 7 depended on which dialect of Coptic, see: Gardiner, Egyptian Grammar,
6; G. P. G. Sobhy, 窶弋he Pronunciation of Coptic in the Church of Egypt,窶 Journal of Egyptian
Archaeology 2 (1915): 15窶19; William H. Worrell, Coptic Sounds (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan
Press, 1934); L. Depudt, 窶廾n Coptic Sounds,窶 Orientalia 62 (1993): 338窶375.
10窶や廢nmerkar and the Lord of Aratta,窶 in Herman Vanstiphout, trans., Epics of Sumerian Kings:
The Matter of Aratta, ed. Jerrold A. Cooper (Leiden: Brill, 2004), 85.
11窶Gelb, Study of Writing, 65. For the problems, cf. Gelb, Study of Writing, 35, 85, 95, 106窶107,
249窶250, and 283n45.



Introduction: Egyptian Hieroglyphic and Chinese Characters 窶

窶5

phonetically with syllabographs, then its lexigraph is given, followed by a definition
gloss in Sumerian, and a translation gloss in Akkadian (Sumerian was retained as
a literary language after the Old Babylonian period, 1894窶1595 B.C.E., during which
time it died out as a spoken tongue). The huge corpus of Mesopotamian lexicoツュ
graphic works was published over the course of the mid-twentieth century.12
Jean-Franテァois Champollion (1790窶1832) was able to decipher the hieroglyphic
writing system and read Pharaonic Egyptian not simply because he could idenツュ
tify the phonetic values of particular graphemes via the combined hieroglyphic,
Demotic, and Greek transcription of the name of Ptolemy on the Rosetta Stone,
or that of Cleopatra et al. in various inscriptions (others, like Thomas Young, had
also done this),13 but more importantly because he assumed that the majority of
the hieroglyphs outside the cartouche were also phonetic in nature, and actually
wrote the spoken language of ancient Egypt.14

12窶Benno Landsberger et al., ed., Materialien zum sumerischen Lexikon, 18 vols. (Rome: Pontificio
Instituto Biblico, 1937窶1986). For further discussion, see: Miguel Civil, 窶廰exicography,窶 in
Stephen J. Lieberman, ed., Sumerological Studies in Honor of Thorkild Jacobson on his seventieth
birthday, June 7, 1974 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1976), 123窶157; Morgens Trolle Larsen,
窶弋he Mesopotamian Lukewarm Mind: Reflections on Science, Divination, and Literacy,窶 in
Francesca Rochberg-Halton, ed., Language, Literature, and History: Philological and Historical
Studies Presented to Erica Reiner (New Haven: American Oriental Society, 1987), 203窶205; Aage
Westenholz, 窶廣n essay on the Sumerian 窶廊exical窶 Texts of the Third Millennium,窶 Orientalia
54 (1985): 294窶298; Hayes, Manual of Sumerian Grammar, 273窶276; Miguel Civil, 窶彜umerian,窶
in Giulio Lepschy, ed., History of Linguistics, 4 vols. (London: Longman, 1994窶1998), 1:76窶87;
Jean-Claude Boulanger, Les Inventeurs de dictionnaires: de l窶册duba des scribes mテゥsopotamiens au
scriptorium des moines mテゥdiテゥvaux (Ottowa: Les Presses de l窶儷niversitテゥ d窶儖ttowa, 2003), 65窶96.
13窶5homas Young, An Account of Some Recent Discoveries in Hieroglyphical Literature and
Egyptian Antiquities including the Author窶冱 Original Alphabet as Extended by Mr. Champollion with
a translation of five unpublished Greek and Egyptian manuscripts (London: John Murry, 1823), 14,
18窶19, 21窶22, 32, 43, 45窶49, 51, 56窶57, and 61窶62.
14窶7iz., 窶徑es signes reconnus pour phonテゥtiques dans les noms propres, conservent cette valuer
phonテゥtiques dans tous les textes hiテゥroglyphiques oテケ ils se rencontrent窶ヲ c窶册st-テ-dire que ces hiテゥroglyphes
sont phonテゥtiques dans l窶冰n comme dans l窶兮utre cas窶ヲ signes purement phonテゥtiques, experiment les
sons et les articulations des mots de la langue テゥgyptienne窶 (Champollion, Prテゥcis, 1:102窶106窶琶n all cases
the emphatic italics are Champollion窶冱); 窶徑es anciens テ曳yptiens l窶册mployティrent テ toutes les テゥpoques,
pour reprテゥsenter alphabテゥtiquement les sons des mots de leur langue parlテゥe窶ヲ toutes les inscriptions
hiテゥroglyphiques sont, en trティs-grande partie, composテゥes de signes purement alphabテゥtiques窶 (Prテゥcis,
1:11); 窶彡omme l窶兮lphabet des caractティres phonテゥtiques est, selon moi, la clef principale de l窶凖ゥcriture
hiテゥroglyphique窶 (Prテゥcis, 1:20); 窶忖ne trティs-grande partie des caractティres qui composent toute inscription
hiテゥroglyphique, expriment, et l窶冩n ne saurait plus en douter, des voix et des articulations, c窶册st-テ-dire,
des mots de la langue parlテゥe des テ曳yptiens窶 (Prテゥcis, 1:460); 窶徑es groupes hiテゥroglyphiques exprimant
des mots テゥgyptiens, noms communs, verbes, prテゥpostions ou conjonctions, et dans un foule de formes
grammaticales propres テ la langue テゥgyptienne窶ヲ reprテゥsentant proprement la prononciation des

6窶

窶オntroduction: Egyptian Hieroglyphic and Chinese Characters

Champollion was inspired by Abel-Rテゥmusat窶冱 description of the traditional
Chinese 蜿榊 fanqie spelling system,15 which had been used in China since the
mid-second century C.E.; the key insight that passed from Abel-Rテゥmusat to Chamツュ
pollion (which appeared not inconsequentially on pages 4 and 11 of the Lettre テ M.
Dacier), was that Chinese so-called ideographs could be used to write sounds.16
Abel-Rテゥmusat had noticed the use of binomes to transcribe foreign words,17 but
believed that fanqie was commonly used to spell foreign names phonetically,18

mots de la langue テゥgyptienne parlテゥe窶 (Prテゥcis, 1:182); 窶徘uisque la plus grande portion de tout text
hiテゥroglyphique consiste en signes phonテゥtiques, l窶凖ゥcriture sacrテゥe fut en liasion directe avec la langue
parlテゥe, car la plupart des signes de l窶凖ゥcriture reprテゥsentaient les son de la langue orale窶 (Champollion,
Grammaire テゥgyptienne, 48); 窶徼outefois les diffテゥrentes applications que nous venons de faire de
l窶兮lphabet phonテゥtique テ des caractティres ou groupes hiテゥroglyphiques expriment des noms communs des
deux genres, des articles, des prテゥpositions, des prenoms, des formes de verbes, &c., nous ont conduits,
ce me semble, テ des rテゥsultats assez probans par eux-mテェmes, sinon pour dテゥmontrer dテゥjテ, du moins
pour nous induire テ croire que la plus grande partie de tout text hiテゥroglyphique pourrait bien テェtre
absolument phonテゥtique窶 (Prテゥcis, 1:136窶137); 窶廛E SIGNES DONT UNE TRテS-GRANDE PARTIE EXPRIME
LES SONS DES MOTS DE LA LANGUE PARLテ右 DES テ烏YPTIENS, C窶僞ST-テ-DIRE, DE CARACTテRES
PHONテ欝IQUES窶 (Prテゥcis, 1:298, the supremely emphatic capital letters here are also Champollion窶冱).
15窶5hat is, using initial consonant of one word as the upper speller, and the medial, vowel, final,
and coda of another word as the lower speller, and combining them to spell out the word one
wants to gloss phonetically窶蚤n example in modern standard Mandarin would be 蛟 (gティ) + 騾
(tナ肱g) = 蟾・ (gナ肱g) (written in normal syntactic form: 蟾・, 蛟矩壼渚 or 蟾・, 蛟矩壼). For more extended
discussion of fanqie, see chapter 9.
16窶4ee also: Champollion, Prテゥcis, 1:17, 1:345n1, 1:346n2, 1:352, 1:352n1, 1:353, 1:353n1, 1:353n2, and
1:354n1; Champollion, Grammaire テゥgyptienne, xvii, 12, 49, and 58. Champollion窶冱 brother, JacquesJoseph Champollion-Figeac (1778窶1867), also had extensive contact and exchanged correspondence
with Abel-Rテゥmusat, see: Amiテゥ Champollion-Figeac, Les Deux Champollion: leur vie et leurs oeuvres,
leur correspondance archテゥologique relative au dauphinテゥ et テ l窶凖ゥgypte: テゥtude complティte de biographie
et de bibliographie 1778窶1867 (Grenoble: Drevet, 1887), 13, 21, 125, 147, and 156. On Abel-Rテゥmusat
himself, Franke succinctly writes: 窶彳verybody knows that 1814 was the birth-year of Sinology.
On 11 December 1814 a 窶呂haire de langues et littテゥratures chinoises et tartares-mandchoues窶 was
established along with a chair for Indology at the Collティge de France. It was given to Jean-Pierre
Abel-Rテゥmusat (1788窶1832) who was just 27 years old when he began his lectures 16 January 1815.
All this happened during the collapse of the Napoleonic empire, between Leipzig and Waterloo窶
(Herbert Franke, 窶廬n search of China: Some general remarks on the history of European sinology,窶
in Ming Wilson and John Cayley, ed., Europe Studies China: Papers from an International Conference
on the History of European Sinology [London: Han-Shan Tang Books, 1995], 13).
17窶Jean-Pierre Abel-Rテゥmusat, Mテゥlanges asiatiques, ou recueil de morceaux de critique et de
mテゥmoires relatifs aux religions, aux sciences, aux ciutumes, a l窶冑istoire et a la gテゥographie des
nations orientales, 2 vols. (Paris: Librairie Orientale de Dondey-Duprテゥ, 1825窶1826), 2:50窶51.
18窶Jean-Pierre Abel-Rテゥmusat, テ瑛テゥmens de la grammaire Chinoise ou principes gテゥnテゥraux du kouwen ou style antique et du kouan-hoa, c窶册st-テ-dire, de la langue commune gテゥnテゥralement usitテゥe dans
l窶册mpire chinois: Nouvelle テゥdition publiテゥe conformテゥment a celle de l窶冓mprimerie royale et augmentテゥe

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