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KIRCHER, Athanasius.

China monumentis,

Stock Code
Antwerp, Meurs, 1667

'One of the most influential books in shaping the European conception of China in its day' (Löwendahl).

'Gathering his work from other members of the Society [of Jesuits], Kircher wrote one of the century's most influential treatises on China. His primary purpose was to establish the authenticity of the Nestorian monument discovered in Sian, and to that end he produced in print the original Chinese and Syriac inscriptions on the monument, the Chinese text in romanization, and finally a Latin translation and his explication of the Chinese and Syriac texts. In addition, Kircher included a sizeable description of China and other places in Asia. For example, in a section devoted to Christianity in China, he sketched all the old overland routes, including that of Grueber and d'Orville from Agra to Peking, as well as giving a description of Tibet. Following what he thought to be the spread of idolatry from

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First edition, folio (32.5 x 21 cm), additional engraved title (with Amsterdam imprint), portrait of the author, 2 folding maps, 22 plates and illustrations within the text, 2pp. ad at end, occasional staining or spotting, contemporary vellum, stained, occasional light toning, generally a very good fresh copy.


Cordier, BS 26; Merrill 20 (Antwerpen 1667); de Backer-S. IV, 1064, 24; Lipperheide Le 3; Löwendahl 133.

Stock ID:93169

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