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Jan J. M. de Groot

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Jan Jacob Maria de Groot (Schiedam, The Netherlands, 18 February, 1854 – Berlin, Germany, 24 September, 1921) was a Dutch sinologist.

J. J. M. de Groot studied Chinese language and culture at the University of Leiden from September 1873 until the end of 1876 and stayed from 1877 until 1878 in China. In 1878 he became translator in Batavia (now Jakarta) in the service of the Dutch East-Indian administration—until World War II East India (now Indonesia) was a Dutch colony. His civil servant job left him much time to study the Chinese language and above all Buddhist rites. In 1883 he returned to Europe and obtained a doctorate on December 5, 1884 at the University of Leipzig. He spent a second period in China (June 1886 – April 1890) on a grant by the East-Indian government. In 1890 he returned to The Netherlands and a year later (1891) he became professor at the University of Leiden where he would stay until 1911. In this period he wrote a treatise consisting of several volumes entitled The Religious System of China. In 1903-1904 he published Sectarianism and Religious Persecution in China.

De Groot received many honors among which an honorary doctorate from Princeton on June 13, 1911. In January 1912 he moved to Berlin where he became professor and obtained the title Geheimer Regierungsrat (secret government counselor). In 1914 he was one of the 93 signatories of the Manifesto of the 93. He died in Berlin in 1921.

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