Maturin Veyssière La Croze

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Mathurin Veyssière de La Croze (copy after Antoine Pesne)

Maturinus Veyssière La Croze (Nantes, 1661–1739) was in his early years a learned French Benedictine historian and orientalist. Later, as a Protestant convert, he became royal librarian and professor of the University of Berlin[1] Armenologist.

He received his first education from his father, who owned a private libray. In 1677 the family got into financial difficulties and he became a novice in Saint-Florent de Saumur. He studied theology in Le Mans. In 1682 he was a Benedictine in Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés in Paris. In 1696 he came into trouble with his prior and fled to Basel. He received support from the Swiss Reformed professors Peter Werenfels and J. Buxtorf in Basel and he converted to the Reformed Church. In 1697 he became a Prussian royal librarian in Berlin. He also was a teacher for several members of the royal family. Since 1725 he was also professor of philosophy at the French Collegium in Berlin. He left many unpublished works and a considerable private library. Besides French, he spoke Latin, German, Armenian, and some Semitic and Slavic languages. Among his unpublished works were four dictionaries in Coptic, Armenian, Slavic and Syriac.

His works include Vindiciae veterum scriptorum contra J. Hardunium' (1708), the Histoire du christianisme des Indes (1724), Histoire du Christianisme d'Ethiopie et d'Arménie (1739),[2] and a Coptic-Latin dictionary.[3]

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  1. ^ For La Croze's important role in the European discovery of Buddhism see Urs App. The Birth of Orientalism. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2010 (ISBN 978-0-8122-4261-4) (pp. 106–132).
  2. ^ CRDA - II - Arménologie aux Pays-Bas
  3. ^ A list of Coptic manuscript materials in the Papyrological Institute Leiden and in the Library of the University of Leiden
  • Շրումպֆ Ա., Ուսումնասիրութիւնք հայ լեզուի և մատենագրութեան յարևմուտս (ԺԴ-ԺԹ դար), թրգմ և լրց. Գ. Զարբհանալյան, Վնտ., 1895 թ.: (Armenian)
  • Հայկական համառոտ հանրագիտարան, հ. 2, էջ 399, Երևան, 1995 թ.: (Armenian)

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