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Abramsky, Yehezkel (1886–1976), rabbinic scholar and Orthodox Jewish leader, was born on or about 7 February 1886 in Dashkovtsy, near Most and Grodno, Lithuania, the third child and eldest son of Mordecai Zalman Abramsky, a local timber merchant, and his wife, Freydel Goldin...

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Aguilar, Grace (1816–1847), writer on Jewish history and religion and novelist, was born on 2 June 1816 in Hackney, Middlesex, the eldest of the three children of Emanuel Aguilar (1787–1845), merchant, and his wife, Sarah (d. 1854), daughter of Jacob Dias Fernandez...

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Bennet, George (1750/51–1835), Hebraist and Presbyterian minister; details of his upbringing and parents are unknown. He passed a great portion of his life in the study of Hebrew and he was well acquainted with the learning of the rabbis, who were in his opinion more accustomed, if not better able, than Christian commentators to interpret the Hebrew ...

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Bensly, Robert Lubbock (1831–1893), Hebrew, Syriac, and biblical scholar, born at Eaton, near Norwich, Norfolk, on 24 August 1831, was the second son of Robert Bensly of Eaton, and his wife, Harriet Reeve. Educated in Eaton at a private school (where he began the study of Hebrew), and ...

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Blayney, Benjamin (1727/8–1801), Hebraist and Church of England clergyman, may have been baptized at St Swithin's, Worcester, on 18 February 1727, and may have been the son of Thomas and Betty Blayney. He was educated at Worcester College, Oxford, where he matriculated aged eighteen on 1 July 1746; he graduated BA (1750) and MA (1753). Afterwards he became a fellow, and eventually vice-principal, of ...

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Boothroyd, Benjamin (1768–1836), Independent minister and Hebrew scholar, was born at Warley, in the parish of Halifax, Yorkshire, on 10 October 1768, the son of a poor shoemaker there. He was sent to the village school, and left it when six years old, able to read the ...

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Broughton, Hugh (1549–1612), divine and Hebraist, was born in Oldbury, Shropshire, the son of Robert Broughton of Broughton, Shropshire. He referred to himself as of Welsh descent but nothing more certain is known. He received his early education from Bernard Gilpin, who prepared him for university and sent him to ...

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Hugh Broughton (1549–1612) by John Payne, 1620 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Byng, Andrew (1574–1652), Church of England clergyman and Hebraist, was born at Cambridge, the second son of Thomas Byng (d. 1599), regius professor of law and master of Clare College, Cambridge, and his wife, Catherine Randolph or Rendell (1553–1627). He matriculated from Clare...

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Alexander Gordon

revised by Rosemary Mitchell

Cook, John (1771–1824), Church of Scotland minister and Hebrew scholar, eldest son of the Revd John Cook, professor of moral philosophy at the University of St Andrews, and his wife, Janet, daughter of the Revd John Hill, was born on 24 November 1771. He graduated at ...

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Cook, Stanley Arthur (1873–1949), biblical scholar and Semitist, was born on 12 April 1873 at St John's Terrace, King's Lynn, Norfolk, the son of John Thomas Cook, coal merchant, and his wife, Frances Sarah Else. He was educated at Wyggeston School, Leicester, and at ...

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Davidson, Andrew Bruce (1831–1902), Hebraist and theologian, was born on 25 April 1831 in the farmstead at Ellon, north Aberdeenshire, the son of Andrew Davidson (d. 1863) and Helen Bruce (d. 1876). His parents were keenly interested in the ecclesiastical and theological controversies that were to lead to the Disruption of 1843 and the founding of the ...

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Etheridge, John Wesley (1804–1866), Wesleyan Methodist minister and Semitic scholar, was born at Youngwoods, a farmhouse near Newport, Isle of Wight, on 24 February 1804. His father was a Methodist local preacher and had been urged by Wesley to enter the itinerant ministry, but refused. His mother was ...

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Fagius, Paul (c. 1504–1549), protestant reformer and Hebraist, was born in Rheinzabern in the Rhine Palatinate, son of Peter Büchelin, schoolmaster and city clerk in Rheinzabern, and Margarethe Hirn of Heidelberg. At the age of eleven he went to the Neckarschule in Heidelberg...

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Fuller, Nicholas (c. 1557–1623), Hebraist and theologian, was the son of Robert Fuller and Catharine Cresset. Born in Hampshire, he received his early education in Southampton. As a youth he was appointed secretary to Robert Horne and John Watson, successively bishops of Winchester...

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Gollancz, Sir Hermann (1852–1930), rabbi and Semitic scholar, was born at Bremen on 30 November 1852, the eldest son of Rabbi Samuel Marcus Gollancz, minister of the Hambro Synagogue, then in Leadenhall Street, London, and his wife, Johanna Koppell. He had three sisters and three brothers, his youngest brother being ...

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Gray, George Buchanan (1865–1922), Congregational minister and Hebrew scholar, was born at Blandford, Dorset, on 13 January 1865, the second son of the Revd Benjamin Gray, Congregational minister at Blandford, and his wife, Emma Jane, daughter of George Buchanan Kirkman. He was educated at private schools at ...

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Kalisch, Marcus Moritz (1825–1885), Hebraist and biblical commentator, was born of Jewish parents at Treptow, Pomerania, on 16 May 1825. He was educated in Berlin, first at the Gymnasium of the Grauer Kloster, then at the University of Berlin, where he studied classical philology and Semitic languages, and finally at the rabbinical seminary. In 1848 he gained doctorates at the universities of ...

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Kennett, Robert Hatch (1864–1932), biblical and Semitic scholar, was born at Nethercourt, St Lawrence, Thanet, Kent, on 9 September 1864, the only son of four children of John Kennett, farmer, JP for the Cinque Ports and first mayor of Ramsgate, and his second wife, ...

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John Lightfoot (1602–1675) by Robert White, pubd 1684 © National Portrait Gallery, London