Dictionary of Welsh Biography


A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z



DAVIES , BENJAMIN ( 1814 - 1875 ), Hebraist .

Born at Wernberny , near S. Clears , son of Silvanus Davies , farmer . He began to preach at the age of 15, but in later life lost his early bilingual eloquence. He was a pupil at Glandŵr , ‘ The Forge ,’ Carmarthen , and Rhyd-y-ceisiaid schools before entering Bristol Baptist College ( 1830 ), where he showed such promise in Semitic studies as to proceed to further courses at Dublin , Glasgow , and Leipzig . At Leipzig he gained the Ph.D. degree and the friendship of several eminent German Hebraists . Returning in 1838 , he was ordained in London before undertaking the first of the four academic posts which occupied the remainder of his life. They were: ( a ) principal of the new Montreal Training College for North American missionaries ( 1838-44 ); ( b ) president and theological tutor of Stepney Baptist College , London ( 1844-7 ); ( c ) professor of Semitics at McGill College , Montreal ( 1847-57 ); and ( d ) classical and oriental tutor at the former Stepney — but then Regent's Park — Baptist College ( 1857-75 ). He m. Eliza Try of Portland , Maine , during his first stay in Canada ; he outlived her and d. 19 July 1875 at his son's house in Frome .

His literary work includes: ( a ) an annotated edition of E . Robinson , Harmony of the Gospels ; ( b ) substantial contributions to the R.T.S. Paragraph Bible and to the Thes. Syr. of Payne-Smith ; ( c ) Student's Hebrew Grammar and Student's Lexicon of the Hebrew Language , based on the German works of Roediger and Gesenius respectively. He also edited the Canadian Baptist periodical The Register ( 1838-44 ), and in London served on the Revisers’ Old Testament Committee .

Sources:

  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography ;
  • The Baptist , 30 July 1875 ;
  • The Freeman , 30 July 1875 ;
  • Baptist Handbook , 1876 ;
  • Hanes y Bedyddwyr yn Neheubarth Cymru , 1839 , 499-502.
  • R. E. Cooper , From Stepney to St Giles': The Story of Regent's Park College 1810-1960 , London, 1960 .

Author:

Dafydd Rhys ap Thomas, M.A., B.D., Bangor

Published date: 1959