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Von Siebold The Scholar

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Chapter Summary

In Leiden, Philipp Franz Von Siebold worked hard to classify his collection and prepare his monumental book Nippon. Between 1830 and 1859, he worked mainly as a scholar and no longer practised medicine. He wrote articles for academic journals, built his botanical garden in Leiden and remained active in the many scholarly associations he had joined, including, in October 1831 the Association of Dutch Philology in Leiden and the Société Asiatique in Paris, in 1832. Nippon reveals how much von Siebold relied on information provided by his Japanese students, his own observations supported by Japanese documents, and maps, as well as by Japanese illustrations and de Villeneuve's drawings. Von Siebold collected on the basis of ethnographic and not artistic criteria. His vast ethnographic collection is intended primarily to provide the viewer with a rounded picture of the everyday life and culture of a people.

Keywords: Dutch Philology; ethnographic museum; Leiden; Nippon; Philipp Franz Von Siebold



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