Paris: De L'Imprimerie Imperiale, 1805. First Edition. Large paper copy. 4to. xiv, , 188 pp. Text in French. Fold-out map depicting the Silk road trade route; engraved plate. With Chinese characters in text. Contemporary black cloth spine over marbled paper covered boards; partial paper title label to spine. Wear to spine and boards with small loss of coth at spine ends and paper loss to boards; dampstaining to pages in last third of the book; light foxing; still a very good copy. Item #19051
Joseph Hager (1757 - 1819) was an Austrian- born Italian historian, Arabist and professor of oriental languages at Pavia, Italy. Hager published the first Chinese dictionary in 1800 in London 'Proposal for publishing by subscription…, a dictionary of Chinese language' and then his most important work on the Chinese language 'An explanation of the elementary characters of the Chinese.' In this title, he provides a description of the Chinese medals of the Imperial Cabinet of France, preceded by an essay of Chinese numismatics, with clarifications on the trade of the Greeks with China, and on the precious vases which one still finds there.