BENARY, FRANZ FERDINAND:
German Orientalist; born at Cassel March 22, 1805; died at Berlin Feb. 7, 1880. The exact date of Benary's conversion to Christianity has not been ascertained, but it is known that, after studying theology and philology at the University of Bonn, he continued his theological studies at Halle (1824-27), where his attention was first turned by Gesenius to the Oriental languages. In 1827 he went to Berlin, and in addition to the theological courses there, of Hegel, Schleiermacher, Neander, and Marheineke, he attended Bopp's lectures on Sanskrit, by which he was deeply impressed.
While acting as privat-docent of Oriental languages at the Berlin University (1829-31), he published the old Hindu poem "Nalodaya" (1830).In 1831 he became assistant professor of theology. His lectures were principally on Biblical literature and exegesis, Semitic languages and paleography. Among his writings on these subjects, published chiefly in the "Jahrbücher für Wissenschaftliche Kritik," should be mentioned his treatise "De Hebræorum Leviratu," Berlin, 1835, which won for him the degree of D. D. from the University of Halle.
- Brockhaus, Conversations-Lexikon, 13th ed.;
- Le Roi, Gesch. der Evangelischen Judenmission.