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Writes Gabriel Sivan in The Bible and Civilization (p.
236): "No Christian community in history identified more with the People of the Book than did the early settlers of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, who believed their own lives to be a literal reenactment of the Biblical drama of the Hebrew nation...
Dartmouth uses the Hebrew words meaning "God Almighty" in a triangle in the upper center of its seal.
So popular was the Hebrew Language in the late 16th and early 17th centuries that several students at Yale delivered their commencement orations in Hebrew.
The Columbia seal has the Hebrew name for God at the top center, with the Hebrew name for one of the angels on a banner toward the middle.Notes Abraham Katsch in The Biblical Heritage of American Democracy (p.70): "At the time of the American Revolution, the interest in the knowledge of Hebrew was so widespread as to allow the circulation of the story that 'certain members of Congress proposed that the use of English be formally prohibited in the United States, and Hebrew substituted for it.'" Their Biblical education colored the American founders' attitude toward not only religion and ethics, but most significantly, politics.Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Brown, Princeton, Johns Hopkins, and the University of Pennsylvania taught courses in Hebrew ― all the more remarkable because no university in England at the time offered it.(In America, Bible study and Hebrew were course requirements in virtually all these colleges and students had the option of delivering commencement speeches in either Hebrew, Latin or Greek.)(2) Many of the population, including a significant number of the Founding Fathers of America, were products of these American Universities ― for example, Thomas Jefferson attended William and Mary, James Madison Princeton, Alexander Hamilton King's College (i.e. Thus, we can be sure that a majority of these political leaders were not only well acquainted with the contents of both the New and Old Testaments, but also had some working knowledge of Hebrew.