The Prix Volney: v. 1-3

The Prix Volney: v. 1-3 : Its History and Significance for the Development of Linguistic Research

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"The Prix Volney Essay Series" analyzes and reproduces, often for the first time, essays submitted for this most prestigious of linguistic prizes, awarded since 1822 by the Institut de France to recognize work in general and comparative linguistics. In this, Volume I, the series editor, Joan Leopold, introduces the founder of the prize, Constantin-Francois Chasseboeuf, Count Volney, and incorporates the history of the Prix Volney into the history of academies and scholarly institutions, linguistics and the social sciences in the nineteenth century. Jean Leclant, Permanent Secretary of the Academie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres, which now awards the Prix Volney, and Professor of Egyptology at the College de France, summarizes the historical and contemporary role of the Academie, including its organization of prize competitions.Alan Kemp of the University of Edinburgh treats the first, and initially central, subject of the competition: the transcription of Oriental and other languages using modified forms of the Roman alphabet.
His essay 'Transcription, Transliteration and the Idea of a Universal Alphabet' is followed by two previously unpublished prize-winning Volney essays (1822, 1823) on this subject by Josef Scherer and a reprint of the prize-winning Essai sur l'analyse physique des langues ou de la formation et de l'usage d'un alphabet methodique (1837) by Paul Ackermann. The study of French linguistics, which was officially excluded from the competition, but which formed the basis of many entries and numerous winners, is then treated by Jacques Bourquin, for French studies in general, and by Jacques-Philippe Saint-Gerand, for French dialects in particular.The volume concludes with Gaston Bordet's and Jacques Bourquin's introductions and Jacques Bourquin's edition of the Prix Volney manuscript by Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, "Recherches sur les categories grammaticales, et sur quelques origines de la langue francaise" (1839). This is a manuscript of the only known linguistic work by the famous French social thinker.
In this, Volume II, the focus is on the authors who competed for the prize of 1835, the only year in which the theme of the contest was restricted to Amerindian (particularly Delaware) linguistics. The two competitors, Peter Stephen Du Ponceau and Constantine Samuel Rafinesque, both lived in the United States, but were of French and Swiss extraction and able to write their essays in French.R.H. Robins, of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, describes the life of Du Ponceau and his views on general linguistics and phonological theory as seen in his first Volney essay, for the competition of 1826, 'Essai de solution du probleme philologique propose en 1823 par la Commission ...', which is published here for the first time. Pierre Swiggers, of the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium, introduces Du Ponceau's Amerindian researches and their relationship to contemporary scholarship. Then follows a reprint with annotations of Du Ponceau's famous "Memoire sur le systeme grammatical des langues de quelques nations indiennes de l'Amerique du Nord", published in 1838 and based upon his prizewinning 1835 Volney manuscript which is no longer extant.This volume shows the Prix Volney Commissioners reaching out to the Western hemisphere and selecting some of the best linguistic scholarship it could offer.
This, Volume III, deals with two major nineteenth-century linguists of German origin: Friedrich Max Muller and Heymann Steinthal. Their previously unpublished Volney essays represent the far-flung interests of comparative and historical linguists in this period both in temporal and in geographical or ethnographical terms. Max Muller's essay on 'Comparative Philology and the Early Civilization of Mankind' (1849), edited by Joan Leopold, shows the earliest phases of his interest in comparative Indo-European language, culture, mythology and 'race', studies in which he became a seminal figures.Steinthal's two essays, one on languages of West Africa (1851), edited by Gerhard Bohm, and one on Chinese (1854), edited by Jerold Edmondson, show the novel phonetic, psychological and classificatory aspects of his linguistic researches, which received more recognition from the Volney Commissioners than from most of his contemporaries. Extensive biographies and bibliographies of these two authors (by Joan Leopold for Max Muller and by Hans-Ulrich Lessing for Steinthal) accompany the annotated texts of their essays.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 502 pages
  • 165.1 x 246.38 x 127mm | 3,492.64g
  • Dordrecht, United States
  • English
  • Annotated
  • 2000 ed.
  • biography
  • 0792325087
  • 9780792325086

Table of contents

Volume I: Preface. The Academie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres and its Prizes; J. Leclant. Nineteenth-Century Linguistic and Social Science: Their Reflection in the Prix Volney Competition; J. Leopold. Transcription, Transliteration and the Idea of a Universal Alphabet; A. Kemp. Josef Scherer: Prizewinning Essay of 1822; A. Kemp (ed.). Josef Scherer: Prizewinning Essay of 1823; A. Kemp (ed.). Paul Ackermann: 'Essai sur l'analyse physique des langues ou de la formation et de l'usae d'un alphabet methodique' (1838); A. Kemp (ed.). The Prix Volney and French Studies; J. Bourquin. Studies in Dialectology for the Prix Volney; J.-P. Saint-Gerand. Life of Joseph Proudhon; G. Bordet. Proudhon's 'Recherches sur les categoiries grammaticales'; J. Bourquin. Pierre Joseph Proudhon: 'Recherches sur les categories grammaticales' (1839); J. Bourquin (ed.). Index. Volume II: Du Ponceau and General and American Indian Linguistics; R.H. Robins. Peter Sephen Du Ponceau: 'Essai de solution du probleme philologique propose en l'annee 1823 par la Commission de l'Institut Royal de France, chargee de la disposition du legs de M. Le Comte de Volney' (1825); R.H. Robins (ed.). Peter Stephen Du Ponceau's 'Memoire sur le systmeme grammatical des langues de quelques jnations indiennes de l'Amerique du Nord' (1838: In Search of a Typology of Grammatical Form); P. Swiggers. Peter Stephen Du Ponceau: Memoire sur le systeme grammatical des langues de quelques nations indiennes de l'Amerique du Nord' (1838). With notes and principal bibliographical references; P. Swiggers. The Other Candidate for the 1835 Volney Prize: Constantine Samuel Rafinesque; C. Boewe. Index. Volume III: Max Muller and theLinguistic Study of Civilization; J. Leopold. Friedrich Max Muller: 'Comparative Philology of the Indo-European Languages and its Bearing of the Early Civilisation of Mankind' (1849); J. Leopold (ed.). Heymann Steinthal: Linguistics with a Psychological Basis; H.-U. Lessing. Development and Nature of African Linguistics in the Nineteenth Century with Special Reference to German-Speaking Countries; G. Bohm. Heymann Steinthal: 'Vergleichende Darstellung eines Sprachstammes der Neger nach seiner phonetischen und psychologischen Seite' (1851); G. Bohm (ed.). Steinthal and the History of Chinese Linguistics; J. Edmondson. 'Zur vergleichenden Erforschung der chinesischen Sprache' (1854); H. Steinthal.
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