Twice traveled to England, where he learned to speak English fluently. Edited an English-French-German dictionary (1765). Translated numerous works from English to German. Published English-German (1777) and German-English (1790) dictionaries. Lecturer in English language at the University of Leipzig (1775), where he was a well-known and popular teacher.
Son of a poor family of Sinnatengrün ben Wunsiedel. Educated at Leipzig (M.A. 1758).