Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Young, Robert (1822-1888)

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search

YOUNG, ROBERT (1822–1888), theologian and orientalist, son of George Young, manager of a flour mill, was born in Haddingtonshire on 10 Sept. 1822; his father died when Robert was a child. After education at some private schools, he was in 1838 apprenticed to the printing business, and in 1847 became a printer and bookseller on his own account. During his apprenticeship he employed his spare time in studying Hebrew and other oriental languages, and also interested himself in various forms of religious work; for three years he was connected with Dr. Chalmers's Territorial church sabbath school in the West Port, Edinburgh. On starting business as a printer he proceeded to publish a variety of works intended to facilitate the study of the Old Testament and its ancient versions, of which the first was an edition with translation of Maimonides's 613 precepts. From 1856 to 1861 he was literary missionary and superintendent of the mission press at Surat; and during this time he added Gujarati to his acquirements, which already included Gaelic and Finnish, in addition to the Romance and Teutonic languages; while he did not neglect his Semitic studies. From 1864 to 1874 he conducted the ‘Missionary Institute;’ in 1867 he visited the most important cities in the United States. The best known of his works is his ‘Analytical Concordance to the Bible’ (1879, 4to), which has gone through many editions. In 1871 he stood unsuccessfully for the Hebrew chair at St. Andrews. Most of his life was passed in Edinburgh, where he died on 14 Oct. 1888, leaving two sons and four daughters.

[Banner of Ulster, 18 Dec. 1855; Schaff's Encyclopædia of Living Divines, 1887.]

D. S. M.