Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century
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HEPBURN, James Curtis, missionary, born in Milton. Northumberland County, Pennsylvania, in 1815. He was graduated at Princeton in 1833, and at the medical department of the University of Pennsylvania in 1836. After practising in Norristown, Pennsylvania, he married and went as a medical missionary to China. the ports not being opened, he spent a year at Singapore, prior to five years of labor at Amoy. He returned to the United States in 1845, and settled in New York city, but in 1859 abandoned a large practice to go as missionary to Japan. Settling at Kanagawa, he has been engaged, with few interruptions, in daily dispensary work, as well as in translation of the Holy Scriptures, in philanthropic and literary labors, and especially in lexicography. In the autumn of 1872 the mikado accepted from his hands a copy of the Bible--an event of profound significance, and so felt by the Japanese. He has published a "Japanese-English and English Japanese Dictionary" in Roman, kata-kana Japanese, and Chinese characters (1867; 2d ed., with grammar, 1872; 3d ed., 1886). The finished work includes the archaic words of the most ancient texts, besides the expanded vocabulary which the amazing progress of new Japan has necessitated. All other dictionaries of Japanese vocables, in other languages, are based on this American scholar's monument of industry, which he created from materials that were gathered by himself, or by natives trained under his own eye.
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