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Maurits Schaalje archive

Identifier: ubl195

Scope and Contents

Included in this collection are:

  1. Notebooks and manuscript study materials for learning Mandarin, Hokkien, Cantonese and Hakka.
  2. Hokkien-Dutch and Dutch-Hokkien manuscript dictionaries.
  3. Manuscript collections of Hokkien sayings and riddles.
  4. Manuscripts of secret societies and other religious manuscripts and objects.
  5. Manuscript report on secret societies by Schaalje.
  6. Chinese translations of Netherlands Indies law.
  7. Some religious objects (a tangki’s doudu).

This collection is part of the Collection Bibliotheca Publica Latina.


  • 1855-1896

Language of Materials

Dutch, Chinese, Mandarin, Hokkien, Hakka, Cantonese

Conditions Governing Use

Regulations that apply during the use of these materials can be found on the website of Leiden University Library.

Biographical / Historical

Maurits Schaalje (1840-1899) studied Chinese (Mandarin) with J.J. Hoffmann in Leiden in 1855-1859, and Hokkien, Cantonese and Hakka in China (Amoy, Canton) in 1859-1864. He was Chinese interpreter in Tanjung Pinang, Riau (1864-1872, 1875-1888) and in Medan (1890-1896).


0.7 metre


M. Schaalje (1840-1899) was tolk voor de Chinese taal in Nederlands-Indië in 1864-1896. De collectie omvat vele handschriften van zijn studie Chinees: Mandarijn, Hokkien, Hakka en Kantonees. Er zijn ook een nota van Schaalje en enkele manuscripten over de Chinese geheime genootschappen.


M. Schaalje (1840-1899) worked as a Chinese interpreter in the Netherlands Indies in 1864-1896. The collection contains many manuscripts from his Chinese studies of Mandarin, Hokkien, Hakka and Cantonese. It also contains Schaalje’s report and some manuscripts concerning Chinese secret societies.

Physical Location

Leiden University Library, Special Collections

Other Finding Aids

The manuscripts BPL 2104-2106 are included in the online catalogue (tab Special Collections) and are described in more detail in Kuiper, Catalogue (2005).

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Acquired at Van Stockum’s auction in The Hague in May 1917.


No future additions are to be expected.

Related Materials

Amongst the Special Collections of Leiden University Library is the Collection Chinese and Sino-Western manuscripts and early printed books, including the collection of De Grijs (BPL 1780-1784), a sinologist who studied in Leiden in 1854-1855 and in China in 1856-1864. He was Chinese interpreter in the Netherlands Indies in 1865-1885.

A description of the Collection Chinese and Sino-Western manuscripts and early printed books is online available.

Separated Materials

M. Schaalje, tolk voor de Chineesche taal, NEHA archives, IISG, Amsterdam


  • Kuiper, K., Catalogue of Chinese and Sino-Western Manuscripts in the Central Library of Leiden University, Leiden 2005. (Codices Manuscripti, 33).
  • Kuiper, K., M. Schaalje, tolk voor de Chineesche taal, Leiden 2004.


The material can be requested and consulted in the Special Collections Reading Room.

Processing Information

The Schaalje collection was registered upon arrival as BPL 2104-2106.

Collection guide of the Maurits Schaalje archive (1855-1896)
Archief van Maurits Schaalje
Koos Kuiper, 2012
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Beschrijving is in het Engels.

Revision Statements

  • 30 January 2013: latest update

Repository Details

Part of the Leiden University Libraries Archives & Collections Repository

Witte Singel 27
Leiden 2311 BG Netherlands
+31 71 527 2857