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Étienne Hubert (Arabist)

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Étienne Hubert (Arabist)

For the French canoeist see Étienne Hubert, for the French cardinal see Étienne Hubert de Cambacérès

Étienne Hubert d'Orléans (Stephanus Hubertus 1567-1614) was a French physician, Orientalist and diplomat of the 17th century.

Hubert was a court physician for Moroccan ruler Ahmad al-Mansur in Marrakech from 1598 to 1600.[1] In his position he was able during a year to learn Arabic well.[2] From 1600, Hubert became Royal lecturer in Arabic at the Collège de France, until 1613. The founder of the Chair had been Guillaume Postel, and Hubert succeeded to Arnoult de Lisle, who had been his predecessor as physician to the Sultan of Morocco, from 1588 to 1598.[2] He was succeeded in the teaching position by Gabriel Sionita, who was active from 1614 to 1648.[2]

While in France in 1611, Hubert was able to meet with the Moroccan envoy Al-Hajari through the introduction of Thomas Erpenius. Hubert offered to help him in his proceeding and to represent him "to all people of authority".[1] Savary de Brèves judged rather negatively of his skills as an Arabist, but he was admired by Thomas Erpenius.[2]

Isaac Casaubon was another famous Arabist of that time, as well as Jean Martin, who would also become professor at the Collège de France,[3] and Abudacnus, an Egyptian Copt from Cairo who gave lessons in Arabic to European linguists.[4]

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