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Chapter Summary

For a long time, scholars in Europe did not have sufficient command of the Chinese language to take their information on China from Chinese sources. The important role of translations of Chinese texts into European languages becomes obvious from the impact of the publication of Confucius Sinarum Philosophus (1687). The early nineteenth century saw the shift from merely mentioning the titles of Chinese works to the active use of these sources due emerging language skills. From the sixteenth century onwards, European seafarers, adventurers. and missionaries wrote extensively about their experiences in the East. Beginning in the 1830s, English as well as French writers met the demand of an interested public for up-to-date information on China. The perception of things Chinese in early modern Europe was a transnational process. Throughout Europe scholars eagerly collected, analyzed, and commented on information relating to China.

Keywords:China; Chinese; Confucius Sinarum Philosophus; European

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