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Document Details :

Title: The Latin Language in Feudal Times in Japan
Subtitle: Focusing on Kirishitan Yashiki, 'The Christian House'
Author(s): TAIDA, Ichiro
Journal: Latomus
Volume: 82    Issue: 3   Date: 2023   
Pages: 577-593
DOI: 10.2143/LAT.82.3.3292431

Abstract :
This article examines how Latin was used during the 16th-17th centuries in Japan. Western culture, especially Christianity, was prohibited from entering Japan, and the country was strictly isolated from the Western world. However, some people still had an interest in or even used Latin during that period, and they had a connection with Kirishitan Yashiki in Tokyo, built to imprison the Christian missionaries. We focus on two politicians (Masashige Inoue and Hakuseki Arai), an interpreter (Gen’emon Imamura), a merchant of Dutch East India Company (Adriaen Douw), and a Jesuit missionary (Giovanni Battista Sidotti). Inoue, who built Kirishitan Yashiki, preserved a Latin dictionary, and Sidotti, Imamura, and Arai conducted discussions in Latin in this house. Douw did not go to the house but contributed to the interrogation of Sidotti in Latin and taught Latin to Imamura at Nagasaki. Thus, Kirishitan Yashiki functioned as a stage for the reception of Latin.

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