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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 biographies contain errors and bias. We rely on volunteers to edit the historic biographies on a continual basis. If you would like to edit this biography please submit a rewritten biography in text form . If acceptable, the new biography will be published above the 19th Century Appleton's Cyclopedia Biography citing the volunteer editor





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Jonas King

KING, Jonas, missionary, born in Hawley, Massachusetts, 29 July, 1792; died in Athens, Greece, 22 May, 1869. He was graduated at Williams in 1816, and at Andover theological seminary in 1819, and was ordained to the ministry of the Congregational church in Charleston, South Carolina, on 17 December of that year. After doing missionary work in South Carolina, he was appointed professor of the Oriental languages and literature in Amherst, on the foundation of that college in 1821, and held the chair till 1828. While preparing himself for his duties in Paris, he became a missionary of the American board, and spent three years in Syria. After a brief stay in the United States in 1827-'8, he was invited to accompany one of the vessels sent with supplies to the Greeks. He married a Greek lady in 1829, resumed his connection with the American board in December of that year, and in 1831 removed to Athens, where he spent the rest of his life as a missionary. In 1832 he had established five schools, and in 1835 began to instruct a class in theology. In 1839 a schoolhouse was finished. His teachings soon attracted the attention of the authorities of the Greek church, and in 1845 he was excommunicated by the synod of Athens. In 1846, and again in 1847, he was cited to appear before a criminal court, and in the latter year an adventurer named Simonides published in a newspaper at Athens a series of articles entitled "The Orgies of King," purporting to describe shameful ceremonies that had been enacted at the missionary's house. In consequence of a popular clamor, King now fled to Italy, but in 1848 a friendly ministry came into power, and he returned to Athens. In 1851 he was appointed United States consular agent there, and on 23 March of that year some Greeks, who had come to one of his services at his house for the purpose of making a disturbance, were dispersed only by his display of the American flag. After this a new prosecution was begun against him, and in March, 1852, he was condemned to fifteen days' imprisonment and to exile. He had been accused of "reviling the God of the universe and the Greek religion," though he had done no more than preach the ordinary Calvinistic doctrines, and though Greece enjoyed nominal religious freedom. Dr. King appealed from his prison to the Areopagns, which refused to reverse the decision of the lower court, and he then formally protested against his sentence in the name of the United States government. Dr. King was now temporarily released, and in the following summer George P. Marsh, then minister to Turkey, was charged by the United States government with the special investigation of his case, and also of Dr. King's title to a lot of land, of the use of which he had been deprived by the Greek government for twenty years with no compensation. The diplomatic correspondence, which fills 200 printed pages of executive documents, resulted in the issue of an order by the king in 1854, freeing him from the penalty that had been imposed. The action of the United States government in this case was of great service to the cause of religious liberty in Greece. After this Dr. King remained in Athens till his death. He was a man of indomitable energy, and a fine Oriental scholar. As the fruit of his labors a Greek Protestant church was erected in Athens in 1874. Princeton gave him the degree of D. D. in 1832. Besides revising and translating into modern Greek sixteen volumes, among which were Baxter's " Saints' Rest" and Lyman Beecher's " Sermons on Intemperance," he published a "Farewell Letter" in Arabic to his friends in Syria (1825), which was translated into various European languages, put on the Index Expurgatorius at Rome, and produced a great effect in the eastern churches; "The Defence of Jonas King," in Greek (Athens, 1845); his " Speech before the Areopagus," in Greek (New York, 1847); " Exposition of an Apostolic Church," in Greek (Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1851; French and Italian translations at Malta); " Religious Rites of an Apostolical Church," in Greek (Athens, 1851); "Hermeneutics of the Sacred Scriptures," in Greek (1857); "Sermons," in Greek (2 vols., 1859); and " Synoptical View of Palestine and Syria," in French (Greek translation, Athens, 1859). His "Miscellaneous Works," in modern Greek, with the documents relating to his various trials, were afterward printed in one volume (Athens, 1859-'60). See "Life of Jonas King," by F. E. H. H. (New York, 1879).]KING, Mitchell, lawyer, born in Crail, Fifeshire, Scotland, 8 June, 1783; died in Flat Rock, North Carolina, 12 November, 1862. In youth he was an eager student of science and metaphysics. In 1804 he went to London to obtain employment, and on his return from a trip to Malta in that year he was captured by a Spanish privateer and taken to Malaga, whence he escaped in 1805, and landed in Charleston, South Carolina, on 17 November He opened a school there in 1806, on 1 March of that year was made an assistant teacher in Charleston college, and in 1810 was its principal. He had begun to study law in 1807, was admitted to practice in 1810, and attained note at the bar. He was a founder of the Philosophical society in 1809, delivered lectures before it on astronomy, and was also judge of the city court in 1819, and again in 1842-'4. In 1830-'2 he was an active opponent of nullification. Judge King was connected with many financial and benevolent enterprises, was a delegate to the State constitutional convention, and the author of many essays and addresses, including one before the State agricultural society at Columbia on "The Culture of the Olive" (1846). Charleston college gave him the degree of LL. D. in 1857.

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