Jewels in Her Crown: Treasures of Columbia University Libraries Special Collections

Exhibition Themes > East Asian Collections > 23. Nogŏltae ŏnhae

23.  Nogŏltae ŏnhae. Korea: s.n., Yongjo yon’gan, 1670. C. V. Starr East Asian Library

Printed with bronze moveable type, in a font created in 1668, these volumes form a textbook of colloquial Chinese for Chinese-Korean interpreters. Each Chinese character is followed by two han’gŭl (Korean alphabet) transliterations, the one on the left indicating the standard Chinese pronunciation as recorded in fifteenth-century Korean lexicons; the one on the right indicating a contemporary northern Chinese pronunciation. The set also includes a complete translation of the Chinese text into seventeenth-century spoken Korean. All the linguistic information contained in this format provides valuable data for scholars studying the developments of spoken languages as well as written languages.

Owned by Yi Sŏng-ŭi, Purchase, 1968

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