Robert Charles (scholar)

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Portrait of R. H. Charles

Robert Henry (R. H.) Charles, FBA (1855–1931) was an Irish biblical scholar and theologian. He is known particularly for English translations of apocryphal and pseudepigraphal works, and editions including Jubilees (1895), the Book of Enoch (1906), and the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs (1908) which have been widely used. He wrote the articles in the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica attributed to the initials "R. H. C."

He was born in Cookstown, Co. Tyrone, on 6 Aug 1855 and educated at the Belfast Academy, Queen's College, Belfast and Trinity College, Dublin, with periods in Germany and Switzerland. He gained a D.D. and became Professor of Biblical Greek at Trinity College. He also became archdeacon of Westminster in 1919, serving until his death in 1931. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

Select bibliography[edit]

  • The Book of Enoch, Oxford: Clarendon, 1893, reprinted in 1895. Republished by Boston, MA: Samuel Weiser; 2003. ISBN 1-57863-259-5
  • The Ethiopic Version of the Hebrew Book of Jubilees, Oxford: Clarendon, 1895.
  • The Apocalypse of Baruch, London: Black, 1896.
  • and W. R. Morfill, The Book of the Secrets of Enoch, Oxford: Clarendon, 1896. Republished by Filiquarian Publishing, 2006. ISBN 1-59986-936-5
  • The Assumption of Moses, London: Black, 1897.
  • A Critical History of the Doctrine of a Future Life, London: Black, 1899.
  • Ascension of Isaiah, London: Black, 1900.
  • The Book of Jubilees or the Little Genesis, London: Black, 1902.
  • Encyclopaedia Biblica (contributor), 1903
  • The Ethiopic Version of Book of Enoch, Oxford: Clarendon, 1906.
  • The Greek Versions of the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs, Oxford: Clarendon, 1908.
  • The Book of Enoch or 1 Enoch: Translated from the Editor's Ethiopic Text, Oxford: Clarendon, 1912.
  • Fragments of a Zadokite Work. Translated from the Cambridge Hebrew Text and edited with Introduction, Notes, and Indexes, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1912.
  • Studies in the Apocalypse, Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1913.
  • Eschatology: The Doctrine of a Future Life in Israel, Judaism and Christianity, London: Black, 1913 (rpt. New York: Schocken 1963 with an introduction by G. W. Buchanan).
  • ed. The Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament, 2 vols.; Oxford: Clarendon, 1913. Republished in 1976. ISBN 0-19-826155-1
  • Religious Development Between the Old and the New Testaments, William and Norgate, 1914. Republished in 1925.
  • Charles, Robert H. (2007) [1916]. The Chronicle of John, Bishop of Nikiu: Translated from Zotenberg's Ethiopic Text. Merchantville, NJ: Evolution Publishing.
  • Lectures on the Apocalypse, Schweich Lecture for 1919.
  • A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Revelation of St. John, 2 vols., Edinburgh: Clark, 1920.
  • The Teaching of the New Testament on Divorce, London: Williams & Norgate, 1921
  • A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Book of Daniel, Oxford: Clarendon, 1929.


  • T. W. Manson, "Charles, Robert Henry," in The Dictionary of National Biography, 1931–40, ed. L. G. Wickham Legg, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1949, pp. 169–70.
  • "Concise Dictionary of National Biography"

External links[edit]