Henry Tattam

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Henry Tattam (28 December 1788 – 8 January 1868, Stanford Rivers, Essex) was a Church of England clergyman and Coptic scholar.


Tattam was Rector of St Cuthbert's Bedford, 1822-1849, and from 1831 to 1849 also Rector of Great Woolstone, Buckinghamshire.[1] He was Archdeacon of Bedford from 1845 to 1866, Rector of Stanford Rivers, Essex from 1849, and a Chaplain-in-Ordinary to the Queen from 1853.[2]


Tattam was the author of various theological and philological works, including several editions and translations of Coptic texts. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1835. Tattam visited Egypt and the Holy Land in 1838-9, meeting the patriarch and acquiring Coptic and Syriac manuscripts for the British Library. He received honorary degrees from Trinity College Dublin, the University of Göttingen and the University of Leiden.[3]

Tattam in 1848 published the The Apostolical Constitutions, or Canons of the Apostles,[4] which includes the so-called Alexandrine Sinodos (or Clementine Heptateuch) made of the Apostolic Church-Ordinance, the Egyptian Church Order and a free version of the eight book of the Apostolic Constitutions.


  • Helps to Devotion, 1825
  • Compendious Grammar of the Egyptian Language, 1830 (which was finally translated into Arabic by "Mina Saad Ibrahim" in 2010 under the title[5] الشامل في قواعد اللغة القبطية )
  • A Defence of the Church of England Against the Attacks of a Roman Catholic Priest, 1843


  1. ^ Alllibone, S. A. A critical dictionary of English literature, p. 2337
  2. ^ Boase, F., Modern English biography, 1898-1921
  3. ^ Thompson Cooper, ‘Tattam, Henry (1788–1868)’, rev. Chris Pickford, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004. The first edition of this text is available as an article on Wikisource:  "Tattam, Henry". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. 
  4. ^ Henry Tattam, The Apostolical Constitutions, or Canons of the Apostles, London 1848
  5. ^ "الشامل في قواعد اللغة القبطية". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 2015-10-30. 

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