A remarkable compilation shift
A genealogical study of Medhurst’s Chinese and English Dictionary (1842–1843)
During his work on his Chinese and English Dictionary (1842–1843) Walter Henry Medhurst (1796–1857) dramatically changed his compilation strategy by shifting from depending almost exclusively on Robert Morrison’s (1782–1834) Chinese-English dictionary, Zidian 字典 (1815–1823) to depending on multiple sources including Kangxi zidian 康熙字典 (1716), Morrison’s Wuche yunfu 五車韻府 (1819–1820), and Medhurst’s own A Dictionary of the Hok-këèn Dialect of the Chinese Language (1832). By applying Lexicographic Archaeology to four linguistic case studies, this article discusses the reasons for this unusual lexicographical phenomenon. The authors argue that changes in information in Morrison’s Zidian after the 41st radical influenced Medhurst’s choices.
Published online: 01 February 2019
Medhurst, Walter Henry
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