Simon Ockley

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Simon Ockley (1678 – 9 August 1720) was a British Orientalist.

Ockley was born at Exeter. He was educated at Queens' College, Cambridge, and graduated B.A. in 1697, MA. in 1701, and B.D. in 1710.[1] He became fellow of Jesus College and vicar of Swavesey, and in 1711 was chosen Adams Professor of Arabic in the university. He had a large family, and his latter days were embittered by pecuniary embarrassments, which form the subject of a chapter in Isaac D'Israeli's Calamities of Authors.

The preface to the second volume of his History of the Saracens is dated from Cambridge Castle, where he lay a prisoner for debt.

Ockley maintained that a knowledge of Oriental literature was essential to the proper study of theology, and in the preface to his first book, the Introductio ad linguas orientates (1706), he urges the importance of the study.

He died at Swavesey.

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  1. ^ "Ockley, Simon (OKLY693S)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.