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Three Treatises on inscribed Oracle Bones

Chalfant, Frank H.; Roswell S. Britton (Editor) Three Treatises on inscribed Oracle Bones. Drawn by Frank H. Chalfant. The Couling-Chalfant collection of inscribed oracle bone; Seven collections of inscribed oracle bone; The Hopkins collection of inscribed oracle bone. Fang fa lien mo chia ku pu tʻŭ san chung; Chia ku pu tzʻu / Fang Fa-lien mo; Pai Jui-hua chiao. Taipei [The Art Press] [1966]
Second edition, three volumes, 4to, pp.[10], 132, frontis portrait, illustrated throughout; [6], 5, 52 plates; [viii], 66 plates. A very good set bound in the Chinese style and contained in Chinese slipcase. Case slightly soiled, a few wrinkles to pages but otherwise unblemished internally.

A record of the most important collection of early Chinese writing. Frank Herring Chalfant (1862-1914) was a Presbyterian missionary in China who became an authority on the history of Chinese writing, and one of the earliest Western scholars to study the subject. He amassed this collection alongside Samuel Cooling (1859-1922), a fellow Missionary, in Shantung between 1904 and 1908. Their hoard of artefacts are now known to originate from Yin Hsu: the later capital of the Shang Kingdom. Chalfant commenced a large work on oracle bone characters during that period and, despite becoming partially paralysed in 1911, all but completed the work before his death in 1914. For 20 years his text was in the hands of his friend Berthold Laufer until it passed, in 1934, to the editor Roswell Britton (1897-1951), who was able to secure support to publish this work. The collections recorded in this work are now divided between the British Museum, the Field Museum of Chicago, the Royal Scottish Museum, and the Carnegie Museum.