|Annotations in Dictionarium Latino Lusitanicum, ac Iaponicum (1595) in the Context of Latin Education by the Jesuits in Japan
|The Jesuits in Japan began establishing schools in the 1580s to mentor young native men in priesthood. In 1594, their students received a printed abridged edition of the Latin grammar, originally written by Manuel Alvarez, and the next year they received Dictionarium Latino Lusitanicum, ac Iaponicum (DLLI), a Latin- Portuguese-Japanese dictionary based on the Latin dictionary compiled by Ambrogio Calepino.
One of the features, when comparing the DLLI with the original, is that it cites the names of Latin classical writers without quoting sentences in several entries. This paper attempts to clarify the reasons for these annotations in this edition and reflects on the purpose of the DLLI.
Plautus is cited in about 70 entries, the most citations among all the names found in the DLLI. However, this number does not reflect the number in the original, which includes many classical writers, especially Cicero, whose works were regarded as a model for Latin prose. We also have no evidence showing that Jesuits in Japan regarded Plautus’s writing as more important than Cicero’s in teaching Latin.
The editors of the DLLI cite Vergilius most frequently after Plautus; we also find many annotations from the original showing the differences in usages such as ‘apud veteres’ (used by ancient people) or ‘apud poetas’ (used by poets). Similarly, it is reasonable to suppose that the editors included notes on ‘Plaut’ to describe the differences in older usages. They appear to retain the citations of writers and other annotations on special usages in order to teach the various nuances of Latin vocabulary to students in Japan, many of whom had elementary or intermediate language skills and needed good Latin proficiency to work as priests.
|Historical and Scholarly Lexicography and Etymology