Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(942 words)

1. Concept

The word “mandarin,” first attested in English and German (Mandarin) around 1630, derives from the Portuguese mandarim, which in turn goes back to the Malay menteri and Sanskrit mantrin (“minister,” “advisor”; from Sanskrit mantra, “advice”). In this sense, the Portuguese were the first to apply it to members of the Chinese bureaucratic class, and many other European languages adopted the usage. The term was later extended t…

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Mittag, Achim, “Mandarin”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 21 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_023643>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20190801

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