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THOMAS JEFFERSON CONANT (1802-1891)

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Originally appearing in Volume V06, Page 823 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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THOMAS JEFFERSON CONANT (1802-1891), American Biblical scholar, was born at Brandon, Vermont, on the 13th of December 1802. Graduating at Middlebury College in 1823, he became tutor in the Columbian University (now George man. " Superior in power of affection, more able to keep both the intellectual and the active powers in continual subordination to feeling, women are formed as the natural intermediaries between Humanity and man. The Great Being confides specially to them its moral Providence, maintaining through them the direct and constant cultivation of universal affection, in the midst of all the distractions of thought or action, which are for ever withdrawing men from its influence. . . . Beside the uniform influence of every woman on every man, to attach him to Humanity, such is the importance and the difficulty of this ministry that each of us should be placed under the special guidance of one of these angels, to answer for him, as it were, to the Great Being. This moral guardianship may assume three types, the mother, the wife and the daughter; each having several modifications, as shown in the concluding volume. Together they form the three simple modes of .solidarity, or unity with contemporaries,—obedience, union and protection—as well as the three degrees of continuity between ages, by uniting us with the past, the present and the future. In accordance with my theory of the brain, each corresponds with one of our three altruistic instincts—veneration, attachment and benevolence." How the positive method of observation and verification of real facts has landed us in this, and much else of the same kind, is extremely hard to guess. Seriously to examine Washington University) from 1825 to 1827, professor of Greek, Latin and German at Waterville College (now Colby College) from 1827 to 1833, professor of biblical literature and criticism in Hamilton (New York) Theological Institute from 1835 to 1851, and professor of Hebrew and of Biblical exegesis in Rochester Theological Seminary from 1851 to 1857. From 1857 to 1875 he was employed by the American Bible Union on the revision of the New Testament (1871). He married in. 183o Hannah O'Brien Chaplin (18o9-1865), who was herself the author of The Earnest Man, a biography of Adoniram Judson (1855), and of The History of the English Bible (1859), besides being her husband's able assistant in his Hebrew studies. He died in Brooklyn, New York, on the 3oth of April 1891. Conant was the foremost Hebrew scholar of his time in America. His treatise, The Meaning and Use of ` Baptizein " Philologically and Historically Investigated (1860), an " appendix to the revised version of the Gospel by Matthew," is a valuable summary of the evidence for Baptist doctrine. He translated and edited Gesenius's Hebrew Grammar (1839; 1877) 1 and published revised versions with notes of Job (1856), Genesis (1868), Psalms (1871), Proverbs (1872), Isaiah i.–xiii. 22 (1874), and Historical Books of the Old Testament, Joshua to II. Kings (1884).
End of Article: THOMAS JEFFERSON CONANT (1802-1891)
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