B bábi, Tibor

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Benkő, Ferenc (Francis) (Magyarlápos, now Suciu, Romania, 4 January 1745 - Nagyenyed, now Aiud, Romania, 16 December 1816) – Minister of the Reformed Church, natural scientist. He started his schooling in Nagyenyed and Kisbacon (now Bătenii Mici, Romania), later became a student at the Gábor Bethlen College at Nagyenyed. He completed his Theological studies, and continued with postgraduate education at universities in Switzerland and Germany. On his return to Hungary he traveled a great deal, took a position as a private tutor; and later became a Minister and served until 1790. Afterwards he taught at the Nagyenyed Reformed College until his death. He gave his inaugural address in Hungarian instead of Latin, this being a first at that time and caused a great sensation. He published and edited at his own expense a popular literary and scientific educational paper until 1797, entitled Pastime at Parnassus (Parnasszusi Időtöltés). He wrote the first textbook, Hungarian Mineralogy (Magyar mineralogia) in Hungarian, which he published in 1786 at Kolozsvár. He is considered to be one of the outstanding scienctific personalities of the 18th century, as well as a progressive thinker, pedagogue and pioneering innovator. – B: 0883, 1257, T: 7675.

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