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DICTIONARIUM LATINO-SINICUM. Two folio volames on Chinese paper,
from two and an half to three inches thick. This is a duplicate of the dictionary just mentioned, and it is transcribed with so great exactness, that it would be taken for a copy traced from it.
The paper however is inferior, and the characters are drawn with less neatness than in the other manuscript. It is a subject of regret, that from excessive modesty the missionaries, to whom we are indebted for these useful and laborious works, have withheld their names from our grateful remembrance.
A folio manuscript, two inches thick, on Chinese paper. This is a French Chinese Dictionary, or rather, only the elements of a Dictionary; for the greatest part of the words are without any explanations, and the Chinese, moreover, is written in Latin letters only.
A manuscript in 4to, three and a half inches thick, on Chinese paper. This, like the foregoing, is no more than a sketch of a Dictionary.
No. 13. a.
A manuscript in 4to, about an inch thick, on Chinese paper. This is a collection of Chinese phrases translated into French. Each page is divided into eight horizontal bands, or strips, and has in the margin in large characters, the Chinese signs, which are used in the different Chinese phrases, and by the side of these there is a French translation.
No. 13. b.
A manuscript in 4tó, about four inches thick, on Chinese paper. This manuscript is the reverse of the foregoing; containing the French phrases explained in Chinese, and arranged according to the alphabetical order of the principal words in each phrase. This volume, though bulky, contains but little; the greater part of the pages being blank.
I should also mention DICTIONARIUM LATINO-SINICO-TATARICUM, in three volumes folio, which I have arranged as No. 1. of the Mantchou-Tartar works in the national library.* I shall not repeat the details I have already given respecting this work, and upon the utility of the Mantchou language,f in the fifth volume of Notices and Extracts of manuscripts in the national library, pages 581–606. I shall only observe that all the Latin words and examples of this Dictionary are translated both into Chinese and Mantchou. The characters, though small, are drawn with great perfection, but it is to be regretted that they are not accompanied by the pronunciation in Roman letters.
We have also in the national library several very extensive and voluminous Chinese Mantchou Dictionaries, drawn up by the tribunal established at the Emperor's Palace in Pekin. Great benefit might be derived from these works by
* Of these works I have made a separate class (fonds) which never had been done before in the national library, and which is not known in any library in Europe, unless it may be the case at the imperial library of St. Petersburgh. This class or collection now consists of more than eighty Tao's, or envelopes, which contain the same number of works, either originals or translations, from the Chinese into the Mantchou, relative to the geography, history, and philosophy of the two nations. See the first part of my Notices of Mantchou works in the National Library in the fifth volume of Notices and Extracts of Manuscripts.
+ According to the positive testimony of the best informed missionaries, such as the venerable Amyot “there is no good Chinese work which is not translated into the Mantchou-Tartar language.” This last language has an alphabet and rules which are very simple. The difficulties in it are not to be compared with those of the hieroglyphic language of the Chinese, as I think I have demonstrated in my Dissertation on the Mantchou alphabet, which is placed at the beginning of the Martchou-French Dictionary, which I published in 3 vols. in 4to, printed by Cit. nior, in 1787-1790.
means of the Mantchou language, with which it would be easy to become familiar..
In this new class we naturally place the immense work of the learned Fourmont on the Chinese language. This workis contained in thirty port-folios, of a large folio size and very thick. The materials for his Dictionary fill eighteen or twenty of these enormous port-folios. This learned man had also procured to be engraved on pear-tree wood, at the expense of government, above fifty thousand Chinese characters for his great Dictionary. Some of them were used in printing his Grammatica Sinica, his Meditationes Sinice, and the Liste du Empereurs de la Chine, which is at the end of the second vola ume of his Reflexions critiques sur les histoires des anciens peuples. The rest of them, and by far the greater part, still remain attached to the little strips of wood on which they were engraved; a slight saw-scarf in the wood marks the di, visions. Care was also taken to write over each character, its power and its number.
This collection of Chinese types, which is literally the only one in Europe, was deposited in the national library about fifty years ago, and is in perfect preservation.
Scaligerana. The two Scaligers, father and son, are well known as two of the most learned men of their time. The father, Julius Cæsar, was born in the territory of Verona, toward the close of the fifteenth century. He early entered on a military life; which he did not abandon for that of a scholar until the age of forty. The son Joseph was born at Agen in France, about the middle of the sixteenth century; and was a scholar from his youth. In religion he was a protestant. He died about
the age of seventy, at Leyden, where he had been for a few years professor of belles lettres. Notes of his conversation were preserved, and published after his death, with the title of Sealigerana. Of this work there are at least two editions, one at the Hague in 1666, and another, that we have before us, which professes to be a corrected edition, at Cologne in 1667.* The Scaligerana contain various notices of the learned men who were contemporary with Scaliger, of himself and his father, of his opinions, and of the state of society at the time when he lived. The work would be of service to the biographer or historian of that age. Of himself Scaliger tells us one anecdote respecting his wonderful power tion, which from any less authority might hardly appear credible. 66 I was afraid," he says,
66 I should not finish
my edition of Eusebius. I grew old. I slept only three hours, lying down at ten, and rising at half-past one; I have not been able to sleep since.” p. 227.
The apparently incredible instances of learned industry in the times which have gone by, an industry that we no more witness, may however be accounted for by the fact, that in the literary labor of those times the mind was often not very vigorously exercised. Then the labor of literary men was to acquire, to collect, and to arrange. Their work now is to originate, to invent, to reason, to make observations, and to draw inferences. Then literary men took rank more according to the learning which they possessed, now more according to the powers which they exercise. There is now more exertion in their studies, and of course they must be less protracted. It is possible that one may spend successive days and nights in preparing editions and writing commentaries like Scaliger, or in compiling a lexicon like Castell, or in collating legal authorities like lord Hales; but all human powers would
* There is another work of the same kind, containing additional notes of his conversation, which was first published at Groningen in 1669 and afterwards at Cologne in 1695, called Scaligerana prima, as relating to an earlier part of his life than that first published. See Bayle's dictionary, Eng. ed.
fail long before one day of sixteen hours had been spent in composing the orations of Burke, or, to use a name less known, the essays
of Foster. But to return to the conversation of Scaliger, which is not without entertainment; as in the following account of his father, which concludes with rather an amusing specimen of his own vanity. “My father was honored and respected by all these gentlemen of the court. He was more feared than loved at Agen. He had authority, majesty, and presence. He was terrible, and had such a voice that they all feared him. Auratus said, that Julius Cæsar Sealiger was like a king in appearance; yes like an emperor.-There never has been a king or an emperor who had a port like him. Look at me,I resemble him in every thing, especially in the aquiline nose.”
I know nyself, says Scaliger, in respect to three things, and no more—wine, poetry, and judgment of characters. If I have spoken with a man twice, I know directly what he is.
Scaliger seems in his conversation to have used French or Latin words as they occurred; of which the original of the above may be an example.
Je me connois en trois choses, non' in aliis, in vino, poesi, et juger des personnes. Si bis hominem alloquar statim scio qualis sit.
In Bayle’s distionary (Eng. ed.) it is said of Scaliger, that he would never receive any presents. Of himself however he says, “ I have been greatly indebted to the providenee of God. Since my father's death I have subsisted upon charity. (Ego ab obitu patris semper eleemosynis vixi.)” p. 232.
In one of the notes to the Scaligerana; it is mentioned by Puteanus, his printer, that he wrote so evenly that the first edition of his work De emendatione temporum was printed from his manuscript page for page. p. 234. The complaint of the decay of learning has always been
Those who complain of the degeneracy of the present age in this respect, may perhaps be disposed to compare