The "Acta Pekinensia" Project

The German Jesuit Kilian Stumpf (1655-1720) lived in Beijing from 1695 till his death in 1720, and among other important offices, was Apostolic Notary in charge of the annual report from the Jesuit mission in China to the Superior General, particularly during the Chinese Rites Controversy and the apostolic visitation of the papal legate Charles-Thomas Maillard de Tournon to China (1705-1710).

The Acta Pekinensia (Facts from Beijing) report in 1,400 pages the events of the years 1705 to 1712 of the Tournon legation. The huge manuscript is based on letters and reports by other missionaries, on eyewitnesses’ reports, on Stumpf’s own observations, on sources from the Jesuit archives in Beijing, and on Chinese and Manchu sources from the Palace Archives. The Jesuits had planned to have the Acta Pekinensia printed, but did not succeed.

An international team has been formed to bring this Project to realization.

The Project will jointly proceed on three levels:

  1. The Transcription (already completed) of the original mainly Latin Text;
  2. The English Translation of the Text (in progress).
  3. The Annotated Edition of the Document in its English translation (in progress).
  4. The On-line Edition of the Document in its Transcribed version (in preparation).

The Macau Ricci Institute is in charge of the translation into English.

The estimated budget for the translation of the Acta Pekinensia into English is around US$ 100,000 on a period of three years.


For more details, please see the following:
The "Acta Pekinensia" Project by Paul Rule -