英和四書：別冊 大學・中庸 英文 全 [Eiwa Shisho: Bessatsu Daigaku, Chūyō, Eibun, Zen, “Four Books of the Chinese Classics Translated into English”]
[Confucius; Zisi (original texts by)]; Legge, James [translated by]; Imamura, N[agayoshi] [revised and translated into Japanese by].
Tōkyō: Z.P. Maruya & Co., Meiji 18 . "New edition".
James Legge (1815-1897), a Scottish sinologist and missionary to Hong Kong, spent several decades translating the Chinese classics into English, and many different editions of his translations were published across the globe during his lifetime. While a note on the title page of this English translation published in Japan suggests that a total of eight volumes were produced by the publisher, only two are known, a Japanese volume and this English volume containing Legge's translation of The Great Learning by Confucius and The Doctrine of the Mean by Zisi, Confucius's grandson. Imamura provides an insightful preface to the book, noting the growing importance of English in Japan for trade and suggesting that, because of the lack of similarities between the Japanese and English languages, there is a need to "advance naturally from the easy and familiar [i.e. the Four Books] to the unknown and difficult". OCLC and CiNii do not locate any earlier editions under this title published by Maruya, despite the "new edition" statement on the title page. Only one copy of this edition is located in OCLC, at Emory. An unusual work which used an English translation of a classical Chinese text to teach Japanese readers English.
Original boards, slightly soiled, extremities chipped, head lightly stained. Original cloth spine. Minor foxing to text. Small tear to margin of last text page. Very good, internally fine. The English volume of a (two-volume?) series. 5, 47 p. 19.5 x 12.7 cm. Text in English.