City Readers Digital Historic Collections at the New York Society Library
Jean-Baptiste Du Halde (1674-1743)
Jean-Baptiste Du Halde (Chinese: 杜赫德; 1 February 1674 – 18 August 1743) was a French Jesuit historian specializing in China. He did not travel to China, but collected seventeen Jesuit missionaries' reports and provided an encyclopedic survey of the history, culture and society of China and "Chinese Tartary," that is, Manchuria.
Voltaire said of Du Halde's work: "Although it is developed out of Paris, and he hath not known the Chinese, [he] gave on the basis of the memoirs of his colleagues, the widest and the best description the empire of China has had worldwide."