Guido Herman Fridolin Verbeck

1830-1898. Dutch- American missionary to Japan. Reared in the Netherlands town of Zeist under Moravian influence, he studied engineering in Utrecht and at the same time developed linguistic, literary, and musical skills. Emigrating to the USA (1852), he studied at the Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Auburn, New York (1855-59), then was ordained by the Dutch Reformed Church and sailed to Japan as a missionary. He established a school in Nagasaki and taught English through the Bible. At government request he opened a school for Japanese interpreters, using the NT and the American Constitution as textbooks. Several of his students became prominent in national affairs. In 1869 he headed a school in Tokyo which became eventually the Japanese Imperial University. Later he was appointed official translator of foreign documents and treatises for the Japanese government. In 1879 he returned to missionary activity, teaching in the theological school, lecturing, and preparing literature for the Japanese church.