Gottfried de Purucker (1874-1942), was born in Suffern, New York, son of a prominent Anglican minister who for some years served as a chaplain of the American Church in Geneva, Switzerland. Educated there in the College de Geneve as well as by private tutors, Dr. De Purucker specialized in Hebrew and Greek in preparation for ministry. Later, he gained proficiency in other languages as well, including Sanskrit.
When exposure to the writings of the early Church Fathers left him unsatisfied, he turned to theosophy with its broad interpretation of all religious and philosophic streams. His greatest contribution to Western though has been his clarification of the basic philosophic principles enunciated by H.P. Blavatsky. From 1929 until his death in 1942 Dr. De Purucker was international head of the Theosophical Society.