TBC: Robert Dick Wilson learned 45 languages, including Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, as well as all the languages into which the Scriptures had been translated up to 600 AD. Asked how he accomplished so much, Wilson responded,
Well, you see, I used my spare time. When I went out for a walk I would take a grammar with me, and when I sat down to rest, I would take out the book, study it a little, and learn what I could. I made up my mind that I wanted to read the great classics in the originals, so I just learned the languages in order to do that.
I would read a grammar through, look up the examples, making notes as I went along, and I wouldn’t pass by anything until I could explain it. I never learned long lists of words, but I would read a page through, recall the words I didn’t know, and then look them up. I read anything that I thought would be interesting to me if it were in English. I got so interested in the story that I was unconscious of the labor–as a man is interested in his roses, and doesn’t think of the thorns. So I learned Greek, Latin, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Biblical Aramaic, Syriac, Arabic, and so on.
--Robert Dick Wilson