Exhibition Update ~ Binding Friendship: Ricci, China and Jesuit Cultural Learnings

De Christiana expeditione apud Sinas, 1615.  The full title of this book, translated into English, is "The Christian Expedition among the Chinese undertaken by the Society of Jesus from the commentaries of Fr. Matteo Ricci of the same Society... in which the customs, laws, and principles of the Chinese kingdom and the most difficult first beginnings of the new Church there are accurately and with great fidelity described / authored by Fr. Nicolas Trigault, Flemish, of the same Society."

De Christiana expeditione apud Sinas, 1615, BX3746 .C5 R5 1615 Jesuitica. The full title of this book, translated into English, is “The Christian Expedition among the Chinese undertaken by the Society of Jesus from the commentaries of Fr. Matteo Ricci of the same Society… in which the customs, laws, and principles of the Chinese kingdom and the most difficult first beginnings of the new Church there are accurately and with great fidelity described / authored by Fr. Nicolas Trigault, Flemish, of the same Society.”

The highly accomplished Flemish Jesuit Trigault arrived as a missionary in China in 1610 and died there in 1618; the text featured to the left is Trigault’s Latin translation of Matteo Ricci’s unpublished diary text.  One of the earliest and most competent accounts of Chinese history and civilization by a European, it introduces the reader to European experiences in China dating back to the Tang dynasty (618-907) while offering a comprehensive look at Chinese culture and society.  Ricci is perhaps the most famous of all Jesuit missionaries in China, noted for his mastery of China’s language and manners, and his effective, culturally sensitive approach to evangelizing that proud, ancient civilization.  This book is just one of over fifty books from the Burns Library’s Jesuitica Collection that will be on display in the O’Brien Fine Print Room and the Thompson Room from March 21st through October 31st, 2011 as part of the exhibition, “Binding Friendship:  Ricci, China and Jesuit Cultural Learnings“.  Curated by Boston College History Professor Jeremy Clarke, SJ, this exhibition features books that pertain to east-west cultural exchange  The exhibit is free and open whenever the Burns Library is open, so click on this link to view the Burns Library’s hours.  For those of you who may be visiting the

Pictured here is a detail of the frontispiece map from De Christiana expeditione apud Sinas, 1615. This Burns Library book is currently part of the exhibit "Binding Friendship: Ricci, China and Jesuit Cultural Learnings."

Pictured here is a detail of the frontispiece map from De Christiana expeditione apud Sinas, 1615. This Burns Library book is currently part of the exhibit “Binding Friendship: Ricci, China and Jesuit Cultural Learnings.”

Boston College Chestnut Hill campus just to see this exhibit, please see these directions and visitor parking information.  We invite you to visit the Burns Library and enjoy these wonderful books on display from our Jesuitica Collection.   For a growing archive of digital material related to the “Binding Friendship” exhibit, visit bc.edu/bindingfriendship. If you are interested in learning more about the Jesuitica Collection, check out this page on a 2006 Burns Library exhibition entitled “Francis Xavier and the Jesuit Missions in the Far East“.    The text of this blog post is extracted from the exhibit catalog for “Francis Xavier and the Jesuit Missions in the Far East”, edited by Professor Franco Mormando and Jill Thomas, which is available on the website noted above. Contact the Burns Library Reading Room via e-mail atburnsref@bc.edu or by phone at 617-552-4861 if you have any questions exhibit of the Burns Library’s collections. We look forward to seeing you here at the Burns Library soon!

About John J. Burns Library of Rare Books and Special Collections at Boston College

The University’s special collections, including the University’s Archives, are housed in the Honorable John J. Burns Library, located in the Bapst Library Building, north entrance. Burns Library staff work with students and faculty to support learning and teaching at Boston College, offering access to unique primary sources through instruction sessions, exhibits, and programming. The Burns Library also serves the research needs of external scholars, hosting researchers from around the globe interested in using the collections. The Burns Library is home to more than 200,000 volumes and over 700 manuscript collections, including holdings of music, photographic materials, art and artifacts, and ephemera. Though its collections cover virtually the entire spectrum of human knowledge, the Burns Library has achieved international recognition in several specific areas of research, most notably: Irish studies; British Catholic authors; Jesuitica; Fine printing; Catholic liturgy and life in America, 1925-1975; Boston history; the Caribbean, especially Jamaica; Nursing; and Congressional archives.
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