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Buchbeschreibung: no publisher),, (No place (Avignon?), 1742. 8vo. Contemporary calf, spine gilt in compartments with red title label lettered in gold, marbled endpapers, red painted edges. (12), 201,(1), XVI pp. Second (or third?) edition of the funeral oration on the sinologist and mathematician Claude de Visdelou (1656-1737), by Father Norbert of Bar-le-Duc, or Pierre Parisot (1703-1769), dedicated to Pope Benedict XIV. The oration is highly important in the so-called 'Struggle of the rites' in China between the Jesuit missionaries and the Chinese emperor and the Pope. Claude de Visdelou (1656-1737) became a Jesuit in 1673. Together with Father Guy Tachard (1648-1712) and four others he was one of the six missionaries sent to China by Louis XIV in 1685 as the famous six 'Mathématiciens du Roy'. After his arrival in Ningbo, China, in 1687, he soon acquired a wide knowledge of the Chinese language and literature. Other learned Jesuits considered that he gave too much credit to modern Chinese commentators, who being atheists and materialists, read their own ideas into the ancient Chinese sages. When the papal legate Mgr. Charles-Thomas Maillard de Tournon came to China in 1705, chiefly to regulate the question of the use of the Chinese Rites, Visdelou was the only Jesuit favourable to their prohibition. Cardinal Tournon appointed him Vicar Apostolic of Kwei-chou (Guizhou) and administrator of Huguang, with the title of Bishop of Claudiopolis (titular see of Bithynia, in Asia Minor, Turkish: Boli or Bolou), but his superiors opposed the nomination, since Visdelou had not received papal dispensation from his vow not to accept ecclesiastical dignity. With the missionaries who had submitted to the decree against the rites, Visdelou followed the legate to Macao, where he was secretly consecrated bishop, 2 Feb., 1709 (confirmed by Rome in 1711). He then set out for Pondicherry, India, where he arrived on 25 June 1709. He remained there in great retirement in the house of the French Capuchins until his death because he was not allowed to return to France. Visdelou took with him over 500 volumes in Chinese and almost his sole occupation consisted in working on these. Visdelou was the only Jesuit favourable to the prohibition of the Chinese rites and was as such at the hand of the Pope. The author of the oration, Pierre Parisot (or Curé Parisot, Norbert de Bar-le-Duc, Norbert de Lorraine, or Abbé Platel; 1703-1737) was a Capuchin monk (1716) and priest (1729) who was sent to Malabar and later to Pondicherry in December 1736 after being appointed Procurator of the French Mission. He stayed in Pondicherry for three years, where he soon came into conflict with the Jesuits on the same issue - 'the struggle of the (now Malabaric) rites' - because which Visdelou was living in exile in the same House of the Capuchins in the same town. It is very understandable, therefore, that the anti-Jesuit Father Norbert de Bar-le-Duc delivered the funeral oration for Visdelou.The original edition of the funeral oration appears to be an undated 4to edition without mentioning the printer or place of printing. Sommervogel as well as Cordier mention an 8vo edition printed in Cadiz (=Avignon, however, according to other sources) by Antoine Pereira with the same collation and published in the same year as our edition, which has to be considered therefore as the second or third edition. Fine copy, with bookplate on inside front cover ''Devie, Prêtre''.- (Binding skilfully repaired; top of second fly-leaf damaged). De Backer-Sommervogel VIII, 843; Cordier, Sinica 1100-1; Librairie Polak, Coll. de M.M. Extreme oriênt du 16e siècle au 20e siècle 305; Adelhelm Jann, Die katholischen Missionen in Indien, China und Japan (1915), passim; Claudia von Collani & Claudio Filippo Grimaldi S.J., 'Zur Ankunft des päpstlichen Legatien Charles-Thomas Maillard de Tournon in China', in: Monumenta Scrica, 42 (1944), pp. 329-59; Bibliotheca Missionum ed. Robert Streit & Joh. Dindinger, 7 (1932), pp. 105-7; Biogr. univ. XLIII, cols. 638-640; n. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 89PBMXY3Z0MC

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