Coinciding with Brown’s Year of China, the University Library has acquired an exceptionally rare book, the first Western book on Chinese medicine, Les Secrets de la Medecine des Chinois (Grenoble, 1671). The volume is composed of anonymous translations of early Chinese texts attributed to Jesuit authors, including the first accounts in the West of the Chinese theory of pulses and the theory and practice of acupuncture. Brown University is now one of only seven institutions worldwide — and the first institution in the northeastern United States — to hold a copy of this text. Les Secrets de la Medecine des Chinois will be stored along with Brown’s other treasures in the John Hay Library. Information about the book, as well as other objects of interest to those teaching, learning, and researching about China, will be made available this spring in a brochure celebrating the Library’s collection on the occasion of the Year of China.

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