The History of Science Collection provides a glimpse of the scientific discoveries and inventions in Europe during the past five hundred years. These works are the products of some of the most original and profound minds that have worked in the quest for scientific knowledge. They illustrate awesome achievements of the human intellect.
Highlights of this collection were exhibited in 2001 as: Landmarks in Science & Technology - A Library Special Collection.
Read the Library's Guide to the History of Science if you want to learn more about the Library's resources in this area.
This collection consists of more than 180 maps, charts, pictures and atlases. It has samples of almost all maps of China produced by European cartographers from the 16th to 19th centuries, vividly recording the long history of cross-cultural exchanges between China and the West. It also includes several travelogues of the same historical periods.
The Antique Maps Database allows you to search the entire collection, view the images of the maps, and read detailed descriptions of them.
Highlights from this collection have been exhibited several times. Two recent exhibitions can be viewed online:
A limited edition printed catalog of the collection, China in European Maps - A Library Special Collection is available for purchase.
This small collection covering the subjects of geography, natural resources, commerce, and social customs and conditions may seem to be rather a mixed collection. However, each has its own historical value, and together they serve to enrich and illuminate the map collection, providing a partial yet diverse reflection of the gradual process of cultural exchange between China and the West since the 16th century. They are acquired to support the Antique Maps of China Collection.
This collection contains maps of China published in or before 1949 mostly by Chinese or Japanese publishers. In addition to provincial maps and city maps of mainland, there are a number of maps of Taiwan which were made by Japanese.
This collection contains over 300 full scale reproductions of Chinese calligraphy and paintings mainly from the National Palace Museum in Taipei. These masterpieces comprise works of renowned artists such as Wang Xizhi (王羲之), Huai-su (懷素), Han Gan (韓幹), Fan Kuan (范寬) , Su Shi (蘇軾), and Mi Fu (米芾).
Created by the Japanese publishing company, Nigensha, this collection faithfully recreates the shades of the ink in all their gradations, as well as the textures and consistencies of the original silk and paper. They allow the user an opportunity to appreciate and study these works in a way that is usually only available to expert visitors at the National Palace Museum.
Paul Ta-Kuang Lin (林達光) (1920-2004), Professor of McGill University and the University of British Columbia, was a prominent scholar in the 20th century who devoted his whole life to promoting a better understanding of China and to build continental bridges between China and the West that spanned over several decades and covered many major areas including academic, cultural, political and economic. In 2007, Mrs. Eileen Lin donated her late husband's personal collection to the Library. The collection consisted of over 4,500 booklets and books that would illuminate the study of contemporary China.
There are more than 2,000 volumes of thread-bound books kept in the Special Collections. They are published during the Ching Dynasty or before the People's Republic of China was founded. The contents of this collection are quite diversified with subjects on philosophy, history, art, literature, etc.