China in European Encyclopaedias, 1700-1850


This book shows how knowledge about China became part of European general knowledge. It examines English, French, and German encyclopaedias published between 1700 and 1850 and explores the use and presentation of information on China in works of general knowledge. The first chapters explore the origins of early European perceptions of China until 1850, the development of European encyclopaedias, and the sources used for entries on China. The second major part of the book examines the ways in which encyclopaedias presented information on things Chinese (geography, government, economy, history, language and literature, arts and sciences) and how this information was shaped, expanded, perpetuated, revised, and updated.
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EUR €120.00USD $150.00

Biographical Note

Georg Lehner, Ph. D. (1995) in History, University of Vienna, Austria, teaches Modern History at the University of Vienna. His research and publications focus on the history of Sino-Western relations and on European conceptions of China.

Review Quotes

"Lehner uses an impressive number of primary sources in French, English, and German. He also draws on a vast amount of secondary material spread across many disciplines and geographical areads; readers of different backgrounds and intersts are sure to find a wealth of useful information in these pages."

- Marten Soderblom Saarela (Princeton University), Sungkyun Journal of East Asian Studies, Vol. 12 No. 1 Apr. 2012, pp. 96 - 99

Table of contents

1. Backgrounds of Knowledge
2. Formations of Knowledge
3. Canonizing China
4. Geography
5. Population and Society
6. Government, Politics and Economy
7. History
8. Language and Literature
9. Philosophy and Religion
10. Arts, Sciences, and Technologies
Name Index


All those interested in intellectual history, in the history of general knowledge, and in the history of European conceptions of China.


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