Henry Zylstra

Short Name: Henry Zylstra
Full Name: Zylstra, Henry, 1909-1956
Birth Year: 1909
Death Year: 1956

Henry Zylstra (b. Platte, SD, 1909; d. Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 1956) earned an undergraduate degree at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan; studied German literature at Iowa State University; and received his Ph.D. in compara­tive literature from Harvard University. From 1943 to 1956 he taught in the English department at Calvin College. His tenure there was interrupted by service in the United States Navy (1943-1945), during which he received the Bronze Star for "unusu­ally meritorious service." He was studying under a Fulbright professorship at the Free University of Amsterdam when he died of a heart attack in 1956. A founder of Reformed Journal, Zylstra was a greatly esteemed teacher and leader at Calvin College and in the Christian Reformed Church. His writings on education and on the relationship between culture and the Christian faith were especially valued; many of his essays were collected posthumously in Testament of Vision (1958). His translations of theological works from Dutch into English were also of a high calibre. From 1951 until his death Zylstra served on the committee that prepared the 1959 Psalter Hymnal.

Bert Polman


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