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RESERVED - A Dictionary of the Malayan Language - William Marsden

1812 - printed for the author by Cox and Baylis, London - First Edition
A finely bound copy of this scarce important and innovative dictionary, using Malay phrases, customs, beliefs, and quotations from manuscripts in Marsden’s collection to describe the use and meaning of each word.

With interesting provenance, formerly owned by Jonas Daniel Vaughan [1825-1891] a prominent lawyer in Singapore, who attempted but ‘found the task of compiling a supplement to the Malay-English dictionary to be too complex’, as can be seen by his numerous pencil notes and marginalia in this copy. It was later owned by Dr. C. H. Wheeler a Singapore surgeon.

William Marsden DCL FRS (1754-1836) was a distinguished Irish orientalist, linguist, numismatist and pioneer in the scientific study of Indonesia. He joined the East India Company at the age of 16, and was sent to Sumatra. ‘While in Sumatra Marsden developed an academic interest in the Malay language and related tongues that was to last the whole of his life’. He began work on his dictionary in 1786, it was published together with his ‘
Grammar’ in 1812. ‘These were his most significant and enduring linguistic works. The dictionary, in particular, broke new ground in terms of methodology. Unlike many previous dictionaries and word lists, Marsden used Arabic characters for the Malay words and arranged the entries following the alphabetical order of the Arabic characters. Another innovation is the inclusion of examples of phrases from native sources, many of which were taken from manuscripts in his collection.’ - King’s College London, The Marsden Collection. 
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Price HK$ 19,000