James Dyer Ball
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James Dyer Ball (1847–1919) was a sinologist born in Canton. He later served in Hong Kong Civil services for 35 years, held various positions as security officer and chief interpreter. He died in 1919 in Enfield, Middlesex, England.
He authored many books, including
- Cantonese made easy : a book of simple sentences in the Cantonese dialect, with free and literal translations, and directions for the rendering of English grammatical forms in Chinese,
- The Celestial and his religions: or, The religious aspect in China. Being a series of lectures on the religions of the Chinese,
- The Chinese at home, or the man of Tong and his land,
- How to write Chinese : containing general rules for writing Chinese, and particular directions for writing the radicals,
- Readings in Cantonese colloquial, being selections from books in the Cantonese vernacular with free and literal translations of the Chinese character and romanized spelling
- Macao, the holy city : the gem of the Orient earth
- Things Chinese: being notes on various subjects connected with China was an encyclopedic work by J.Dyer Ball, first printed in Shanghai in late 19th century, later reprinted many times in China and United States. It is a book with more than 800 pages, with items arranged in alphabetic order, starting from abacus ending with zoology; it contains minute observations by James Dyer Ball on Chinese customs in 19th century China.