Alcalay, Reuven

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ALCALAY, REUVEN (1907–1976), Hebrew lexicographer and translator. Alcalay was born in Jerusalem and graduated from the Hebrew Teachers' College there. He entered government service during the Mandatory period and was translator-in-chief and superintendent of the Government Press Office from 1920 to 1948. On the establishment of the State, he served as deputy-director of the Government Information Office and from 1948 to 1951 was editor of the Israel Government Year Book. Alcalay translated many books from English into Hebrew, but his major achievement was in the field of lexicography, where his publications include the Complete Hebrew–English Dictionary, 4 vols. (1958); the Complete English–Hebrew Dictionary, 4 vols. (1963); the Complete Hebrew Dictionary, 3 vols. (1968–71), which contains hundreds of words coined by him for modern concepts; and Words of the Wise (1968), an anthology of Hebrew (and Yiddish) proverbs.