Easy Lessons in Chinese: or progressive exercises to facilitate the Study of that Language, especially adapted to the Canton dialect.

Macao: Printed at the Office of the Chinese Repository, 1842.

Price: $5,000.00

About the item

First edition. Frontispiece and folding plate. Text in English and Chinese. ix, [i], 287, [1] pp. 8vo. Rebacked and recorned in three quarters calf preserving early marbled boards, new endpapers. Horizontal tear across frontispiece , neatly repaired. Bookplate of Library of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. Cordier 1685; Lust 1067; Trübner, Catalogue of Dictionaries and Grammars of the Principal Languages, p. 37.

Item #260298

First edition of this early manual on the Chinese language for English speakers, issued as Chinese trade was opening to the West. It is the first book on China by the missionary and sinologist Samuel Wells Williams (1812-1884) who argues that the beginning student of Chinese should first learn to write the 214 radicals that comprise the various characters. With the bookplate of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, who in 1833 hired Williams to run its printing press in Guangdong.