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Lexicographic Tradition

(5,695 words)

Author(s): Francoise BOTTÉRO | Wenkan XU | Wolfgang BEHR
China has a long lexicographic tradition that demonstrably goes back to the 1st century CE. The Shuōwén jiězì 說文解字 ( Explaining graphs and analyzing characters), compiled by Xǔ Shèn 許慎 and submitted to the throne in 121 CE, represents the prototype of a Chinese dictionary. As the first systematical work on written words, the Shuōwén played an important role for the elaboration of dictionaries in the Chinese writing world. It gathers a large number of characters (9,353 entries), for which it provides semantic glosses related to the Classics. The ent…
Date: 2017-03-02