Catalogue of Japanese manuscripts and rare books , Catalogue of Oriental Mansucripts, Xylographs, etc., in Danish Collections, vol. 10.1. Copenhagen: Nordic Institute of Asian Studies Press, 2015. xxxiii, 446 pp. Hardcover £125.00, isbn 978-87-7694-147-5. The Japanese collection in the Royal Library in Copenhagen, which is fully described in this beautifully produced catalogue, bears witness, like so many other European collections, to the enthusiastic collecting activities of Europeans in Japan in the late nineteenth century. One of those collectors was William Sophus Bramsen (1850-1881), who was also a scholar of Japan but whose name is less well known than those of other early scholars of Japan, even though he wrote in English, probably because he died before he could make a major contribution to Japanese studies. Given his role as a collector, it is worth briefly pausing to consider his career. Bramsen was born in Copenhagen to Danish parents but travelled to Japan in 1871 as one of a group of young Danes employed as telegraph operators. He spent ten years in Japan, working as a telegraphist either in Taipei or in Nagasaki and then in 1875 he joined the Mitsubishi Mail Steam Navigation Company, having earned the admiration
East Asian Publishing and Society – Brill
Published: Aug 3, 2015
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