Van Dyck, Cornelius

Van Dyck, Cornelius (Van Allen)

(1818–95) scholar, medical missionary; born in Kinderhook, N.Y. He graduated from Jefferson Medical College (1839) and became a medical missionary for the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. He studied Arabic intensively and ran a high school in Lebanon (1843–49). In 1857, he took up the uncompleted work of Eli Smith; by 1865 he had made the first modern translation of the Bible into Arabic. He was a professor of pathology at Syrian Protestant College (1867–83). His last work was a translation of Ben Hur into Arabic.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.