Antiquarianism and Intellectual Life in Europe and China, 1500-1800
Publication Year: 2012
Published by: University of Michigan Press
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Title Page, Copyright Page
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Introduction: Antiquarianism and Intellectual Life in Europe and China
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Until very, very recently, mentioning “antiquarianism” to most historians would elicit expressions of disdain and, even more tellingly, disassociation. If the achievements of modern scholarship represented the gains of disciplinarity and “expertise,” antiquarianism represented for many its opposite: prescientific...
Part 1: Antiquarianism and the Study of the Past
One: Writing Antiquarianism: Prolegomenon to a History - Peter N. Miller
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Fifty years ago Arnaldo Momigliano lamented, “I wish I could simply refer to a History of Antiquarian Studies. But none exists.”1 If there is still no single-volume history of antiquarianism, many, many pieces of this puzzle have been assembled. Already...
Two: The Many Dimensions of the Antiquary’s Practice
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We are in the habit of considering the past a continent which is the privileged territory for our Western conception of history to explore. Although Arnaldo Momigliano, in a famous essay, drew our attention to “alien...
Three: Far and Away? Japan, China, and Egypt, and the Ruins of Ancient Rome in Justus Lipsius’s Intellectual Journey
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Friday, August 8, 1591, was a noticeable and still tangible day in Lipsius’s outstanding antiquarian scholarship.1 The high standards he had already reached did not pass unremarked by then, because of his appealing detailed monographs on Roman law and...
Four: Comparing Antiquarianisms: A View from Europe
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Comparative history is about the art of the question. Like a question, comparison directs our attention to new horizons. And, like a good question, it contains within itself the seeds of an answer. But it is not an answer—it is a suggestion of what an answer might look...
Part 2: Authenticity and Antiquities
Five: The Credulity Problem
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Early modern European antiquarians made plenty of blunders—but they were such interesting blunders.1 In the first third of the fifteenth century, for example, Italian scholars developed a fluid and legible handwriting based on the manuscripts...
Six: Artifacts of Authentication: People Making Texts Making Things in Ming-Qing China
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“Lost and misguided in the pursuit of things,” asked one collector in sixteenth-century China, “Who knows what is right?”1 Feng Fang 豐坊 (1493–1566) was lamenting his contemporaries’ blind rush after the antiques, books, artworks, and other artifacts that were available...
Part 3: The Discovery of the World
Seven: Styles of Medical Antiquarianism
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Between the fifteenth and the early seventeenth century, learned physicians quite frequently turned their attention to aspects of antiquity and, in some instances, types of sources more usually thought of as the province of antiquaries: social customs, institutions, and the evidence of material as well as textual remains. While...
Eight: Therapy and Antiquity in Late Imperial China
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By the era of humanism in Europe, the universities had made medicine a profession. When historians write about the antiquarian interests of physicians in Vienna or Venice, we know whom they mean. That leads to the most fundamental of all possible comparisons with China. When its historians write about...
Nine: Wang Shizhen and Li Shizhen: Archaism and Early Scientific Thought in Sixteenth-Century China
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David Freedberg’s study of the early seventeenth-century Academy of Linceans and the circle of Federico Cesi, a social network of scholars who wrote to each other and exchanged visits to share the results of their studies, raises a number of points...
Ten: The Botany of Cheng Yaotian (1725–1814): Multiple Perspectives on Plants
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Among the many Chinese scholars who wrote about plants, Cheng Yaotian 程瑤田 (1725–1814; personal name Yichou 易疇) stands out for his innovative approach.1 Although his primary interest was philological, seeking to understand references to plants in classical literature, his analyses went far beyond the...
Part 4: Antiquarianism and Ethnography
Eleven: The Study of Islam in Early Modern Europe: Obstacles and Missed Opportunities
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In at least two major instances—the study of the classical world, and the study of Judaism—early modern scholars knew that, in order to understand a culture, it was necessary to consider how that culture understood itself, by studying its own hermeneutics...
Twelve: Thinking About “Non-Chinese” in Ming China
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At the start of his Record of All Vassals (Xian bin lu), a text completed no later than 1591, Luo Yuejiong, a scholar from Jiangxi (in southern China) whom we otherwise know little about, seeks to explain to his readers why his historical survey of “non-Chinese” peoples...
Part 5: Antiquarianism and a “History of Religion”
Thirteen: From Antiquarianism to Philosophical History: India, China, and the World History of Religion in European Thought (1600–1770)
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Voltaire is known as one of the first European historians who proclaimed the necessity of a worldwide perspective against the ethnocentric bias of the European tradition. He represents a late exponent of the libertine tradition, in that his challenge to ethnoc...
Fourteen: Whose Antiquarianism? Europe versus China in the 1701 Conflict between Bishop Maigrot and Qiu Sheng
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The controversy over the Chinese rites, which unfolded over the course of the seventeenth century, was in part a struggle over how to view antiquity. On one side were a group of Chinese literati converts and most Jesuit missionaries, who claimed that the...
Fifteen: From Antiquarian Imagination to the Reconstruction of Institutions: Antonius van Dale on Religion
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“In the field of religion, the long-standing cooperation between antiquarian and philosopher was disturbed.”1 Such is the verdict of Arnaldo Momigliano about the situation of history of religion during the eighteenth century. How did this disturbance...
List of Contributors
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Page Count: 448
Illustrations: 23 illustrations
Publication Year: 2012
Series Title: Bard Graduate Center Cultural Histor