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 Issues | Church History | Henry Martyn

Henry Martyn (1781-1812)

Missionary to India and Persia


  • 18 February 1781 Born at Truro, Cornwall, England.
  • Educated at Truro Grammar School and St John's College, Cambridge.
  • Intended to go to the Bar but an encounter with Charles Simeon led him to become a missionary. Through Simeon he learnt the good done in India by William Carey, he also read the life of David Brainerd, a missionary to the Native Americans. Following this he decided to become a missionary.
  • 22nd October 1803, he was ordained deacon at Ely, and afterwards priest, and served as Simeon's curate at the church of Holy Trinity, Cambridge.
  • Became a chaplain for the British East India Company.
  • Arrived in India in April 1806, where he preached and occupied himself in the study of linguistics. Translated the whole of the New Testament into Urdo, Persian and Judaeo-Persic. Also translated the Psalms into Persian and the Book of Common Prayer into Urdu. From India, he set out for Bushire, Shiraz, Isfahan and Tabriz.
  • Died from fever at Tokat, 16 October 1812


Biography of Henry Martyn by A. G. Pouncy

(Great Churchmen No. 9 - Church Book Room Press)










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