ABRAHAM ECCHELLENSIS: A learned Maronite; b. at Eckel, Syria, in the latter part of the sixteenth century; d. at Rome in 1664. He was educated in the college of the Maronites at Rome and was promoted to doctor of philosophy and theology'. For a time he was professor of Arabic and Syriac at Pisa, and afterward at Rome, where he was called by Urban III. He was one of the first to promote Syriac studies in Europe, and his Syriac grammar (Rome, 1628) was long used. In 1640 he was called to Paris by Le Jay to assist in the Paris Polyglot. The Arabic and Syriac texts for this work had been entrusted to Gabriel Sionita, a Maronite professor at Paris, who performed his work in an unsatisfactory manner. Abraham agreed to undertake the books of Ruth, Esther, Tobit, Judith, Baruch, and Maccabees, on the ground that he possessed better codices than Gabriel. The latter, however, took offense; where-upon Abraham resigned the work and returned to Rome (1642), having edited only the books of Ruth and III Maccabees. He was attacked in four letters (Paris, 1646) by Valerien de Flavigny, who wrote on the side of his friend Gabriel, and a sharp controversy ensued (cf. A. G. Masch, Bibiotheca sacra, Halle, 1778, p.358). During a second residence in Paris (1645-53) Abraham taught at the Sorbonne, and published the concluding volume of an edition of the works of St. Anthony (1646; vol. i., containing the letters, had appeared in 1641), as well as Catalogus liborum Chaldaeorum auctore Hebed Jesu (1653) and Chronicon orientale (1653), a history of the patriarchate of Alexandria, translated from the Arabic of Ibn al-Rahib, with an appendix treating of Arabia and the Arabs before Mohammed. In 1653 he returned to Rome. He published two works in answer to the views of John Selden (q.v.) concerning the early position of the episcopate, viz., De origine nominis papae (Rome, 1660) and Eutychius patriarcha A lexandrinus vindicatus (1661). (A. JEREMIAS.)