1st Edition

A Brief History of the Chinese Language IV Old Chinese Lexicon

By Xi Xiang Copyright 2023
    242 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    As the fourth volume of a multi-volume set on the Chinese language, this book studies the lexical system of Old Chinese and the development of different types of lexicons during the period.

    Focusing on lexicons in Old Chinese, the early form of the Chinese language used between the 18th century BCE and the 3rd century CE, this volume first introduces the methods of word formation in Old Chinese by analyzing words inscribed in oracle bones of the Shang Dynasty. Illustrated with examples, it then examines the lexical features of Old Chinese and explores the progress and evolutionary features of monosyllabic words, polysyllabic words, lexical meanings, synonyms, and idioms and proverbs over the course of the volume.

    This comprehensive groundwork on Chinese lexical history is a must-read for scholars and students studying ancient Chinese language, linguistics, and especially for beginning learners of the Old Chinese lexicon.

    1. Studying Words of the Shang Dynasty from Oracle Bone Inscriptions  2. The Progress of Monosyllabic Words of Old Chinese  3. The Progress of Polysyllabic Words of Old Chinese  4. The Progress of Lexical Meanings of Old Chinese  5. The Progress of Synonyms of Old Chinese  6. The Progress of Idioms and Proverbs of Old Chinese


    Xi Xiang is Professor at Sichuan University (China) and a distinguished linguist. His research interests are focused on Chinese language history and Chinese linguistics. His major works include A Brief History of Chinese, Dictionary of Poetry Classics, Commentary on the Translation of Poetry Classics, Dictionary of Ancient Chinese Knowledge, and Concise Ancient Chinese Dictionary.