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Chapter Summary

Encyclopaedias display the ways of early modern European perceptions of China in the most condensed way. It clearly indicate the divergence between the materials used by eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century scholars and those accounts of early Sino-European encounters mainly used by scholars during the last decades in their research on the history of early Sino-European encounters. The popularization of European knowledge on China only began to take place after the predominance of Portugal and Spain in Europe's early modern discovery of East Asia was drawing to its close. Since early modern times, European observers regularly included various superlatives in their accounts of China.

Keywords: China; encyclopaedias; Europe



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