Reland, Adriaan

Reland, Adriaan a celebrated Orientalist, was born July 17, 1676, at Ryp, a village in Northern Holland, where his father was pastor. He early devoted himself to the study of Oriental languages under Leusden, with the aid of Henry Sicke. After staying six years for this purpose at Utrecht, he went to Leyden to finish his theological studies. He was soon afterwards offered a professor's chair at Linigen, but he preferred to return to his aged father. In 1699 he was made professor of philosophy and Oriental languages at Harderwivck, and two years afterwards was called to teach Oriental languages and ecclesiastical antiquities at Utrecht, a position which he filled to the end of his days, having in 1713 refused a professor's chair at Franeker, and in 1716 another at Leyden. He died of small-pox, Feb. 5, 1718. Reland is admitted to have been by far the greatest Orientalist of his day, and his writings display exhaustive learning; the most painstaking accuracy, and sound judgment. He was also not lacking in imagination, as some of his earlier prolusions show. To these admirable qualities he added great affability of manners and a noble sweetness of character. Of his numerous writings we here mention only the most important: Analecta Rabbinica (Ultraj. 1702): — De Religione Mohammnedica (ibid.1705 andlater): — Dissertationes Miscellaneoe (ibid. 1707): — Antiquitates Veterum Hebraeorum (ibid. 1708): — De Numis Vet. Hebraeorum (ibid. 1709): — Palestina ex Monumentis Veteribus Illustrata (ibid. 1714), a work which in its way can never be superseded: — De Spoliis Templi (Traject. 1716): — Elenchus Philologicus (Ultraj. 1709). See Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Generale, s.v.; Herzog, Real-Encyklop. s.v.

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