surname of a family distinguished in the literature of Scotland, one
branch of which possesses the estate of Balnain, Inverness-shire, and
another that of Woodhouselee, Mid Lothian, -- the “haunted Woodhouselee”
of Sir Walter Scott’s ballad of ‘The Gray Brother.’ The family name
originally was Seton, that of Tytler having been assumed by the ancestor
of the family, a cadet of the noble house of Seton, who temp. James IV.,
in a sudden quarrel at a hunting match, slew a gentleman of the name of
Gray, fled to France, and changed his name to Tytler. His two sons
returned to Scotland in the train of Queen Mary in 1561, and from the
elder the families of Balnain and Woodhouselee descend.
TYTLER, WILLIAM, historian and antiquarian, the son of Alexander
Tytler, a writer in Edinburgh, was born there October 12, 1711. He
received his education at the High School and at the university of his
native city, and in 1744 was admitted into the society of writers to the
signet, which profession he exercised till his death. His portrait, from
a painting by Raeburn, engraved by Beugo (In Scots Magazine, vol. lxiii.),
[portrait of William Tytler]
In 1759 he published, in
one volume, his celebrated ‘Inquiry, Historical and Critical, into the
Evidence against Mary, Queen of Scots.’ In this work he warmly
vindicated the cause of the unfortunate Mary, and with much ingenuity
and plausibility exposed the fallacy of the proofs on which the charges
against her had been founded. In 1783 he published ‘The Poetical Remains
of James I., King of Scotland,’ with a Dissertation on the Life and
Writings of that monarch. He was an active member, and one of the
vice-presidents of the Edinburgh Antiquarian Society, and besides the
works named, he wrote an ‘Essay on Scottish Music,’ appended to Arnot’s
History of Edinburgh, as well as several papers inserted in the
‘Antiquarian Transactions.’ To the sixteenth number of ‘The Lounger’ he
contributed a paper on the ‘Defects of Modern Female Education, in
teaching the Duties of a Wife.’ He died September 12, 1792. He married,
in 1745, Anne, daughter of James Craig, Esq. of Costerton, in the county
of Mid Lothian, writer to the signet, by whom he left one daughter,
Christina, and two sons, Alexander Fraser Tytler, Lord Woodhouselee, and
Major Patrick Tytler, Lord Woodhouselee, and Lieutenant-colonel Patrick
Tytler, fort-major of the castle of Stirling. His works are:
A Historical and Critical Inquiry into the Evidence produced against
Mary Queen of Scots, and an Examination of the Histories of Dr.
Robertson and Mr. Hume with respect to that evidence. Edin. 1759, 1767,
8vo. Third edit. With Additions, and a Postscript. Edin. 1772, 8vo.
Fourth edit. Lond. 1790, 2 vols, 8vo. With large additions.
The Poetical Remains of James I. of Scotland; consisting of the King’s
Quair, in six Cantos, and Christ’s Kirk on the Green; to which is
prefixed, a Dissertation on the Life and Writings of King James. Edin.
A Dissertation on Scottish Music, first subjoined to Arnot’s History of
A Dissertation on the Marriage of Queen Mary to the Earl of Bothwell.
Printed in the Transactions of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland,
vol. i. 1791.
Observations in the Transactions of the Society of Antiquaries on the
Vision; a Poem; first published in Ramsay’s Evergreen. This may be
considered as a part of the literary history of Scotland.
On the Fashionable Amusements in Edinburgh during the last century. Ib.
He also contributed No. 16 to ‘The Lounder.’
TYTLER, ALEXANDER FRASER, LORD WOODHOUSELEE, elder son of the
subject of the preceding notice, was born at Edinburgh, October 15,
1747. In his eighth year he was sent to the High School of his native
city, where he distinguished himself by his proficiency, and in the last
year of his course became dux of the rector’s class. In 1763 he was
placed under the care of a Mr. Elphinston, who kept an academy at
Kensington. Here he cultivated, with assiduity, his talent for Latin
versification, and one of his poems having been shown to Dr. Jortin,
that eminent scholar, as an encouragement to him to proceed, presented
him with a copy of his own Latin poems. After residing at Kensington for
two years, he returned home, and, in 1765, entered the university of
Edinburgh, where he prosecuted his studies with great success. In 1770
he was admitted advocate, and in the spring of 1771 he accompanied his
relation, Mr. Kerr of Blackshiels, on a tour to Paris, returning by
Flanders and Holland. In 1771 he published, at Edinburgh, ‘Piscatory
Eclogues, with other Poetical Miscellanies, by Phinehas Fletcher;
illustrated with Notes, Critical and Explanatory.’ To the Works of Dr.
John Gregory, published in 1778, he contributed the Preliminary account
of the Author’s Life and Writings. During the same year he published a
folio volume, Supplementary to Lord Kames’ Dictionary of Decisions. In
1780 he was appointed, conjunctly with Mr. Pringle, professor of civil
history in the university of Edinburgh, and in 1786 he became sole
professor. For the use of his students he printed, in 1782, ‘A Plan and
Outlines of a Course of Lectures on Universal History, Ancient and
Modern,’ which he afterwards enlarged and published, in 1801, in 2 vols.
8vo, under the title of ‘Elements of General History, Ancient and
Modern.’ In 1791 appeared, anonymously, his best work, being an ‘Essay
on the Principles of Translation,’ the third edition of which,
considerably enlarged, was published in 1813.
In 1790, through the
influence of Lord Melville, Mr. Tytler was appointed judge-advocate of
Scotland; and on the death of his father, in 1792, he succeeded to the
estate of Woodhouselee, near Edinburgh. He had previously, on the death
of his father-in-law, became possessed, in right of his wife, of the
estate of Balnain, in the county of Inverness. In 1799 he published an
edition of Dr. Derham’s Physico-Theology, with an Account of the Life
and Writings of the Author, and a short ‘Dissertation on Final Causes,’
accompanied by notes. During the same year he wrote a pamphlet, which
was published at Dublin, under the title of ‘Ireland Profiting by
Example; or the Question Considered, whether Scotland has Gained or Lost
by the Union?’ which came out at such a seasonable time that, on the day
of publication, the sale amounted to three thousand. In 1800 appeared
from his pen an ‘Essay on Military Law, and the Practice of
Courts-Martial;’ a second edition of which was printed at London in
1806. Lord Woodhouselee’s portrait is subjoined.
[portrait of Alexander Fraser Tytler Lord Woodhouselee]
Having been appointed a
senator of the college of justice, he took his seat on the bench of the
court of session, February 2, 1802, with the title of Lord Woodhouselee,
and in 1811 he became a judge of the justiciary court. In 1807 he
published at Edinburgh, in two vols. 4to, ‘Memoirs of the Life and
Writings of the Hon. Henry Home, Lord Kames;’ and in 1810 he produced
‘An Historical and Critical Essay on the Life and Character of Petrarch;
with a Translation of a few of his Sonnets.’ Among other literary
projects, which his death prevented his completing, was the Life of
George Buchanan. He died at Edinburgh, January 5, 1813, in the 68th year
of his age. He was a contributor to the Mirror and the Lounger, and also
communicated some papers to the Transactions of the Royal Society of
Edinburgh, of which he was an original member. By his wife, Ann, eldest
daughter of William Fraser, Esq. of Balnain, whom he married in 1776, he
left four sons and two daughters. The eldest son succeeded to the estate
of Balnain, and the second to that of Woodhouselee. Another son,
Alexander, published, in 1815, a work in two volumes, entitled
‘Considerations on the Present Political State of India.’ Lord
Woodhouselee’s principal works are:
The Decisions of the Court of Session, from its first institution to the
present time; abridged and digested under proper heads in form of a
Dictionary. Edin. 1778, fol. 1797, 2 vols. fol. (A Supplement to Lord
Plan and Outlines of a Course of Lectures on Universal History, ancient
and modern, delivered in the University of Edinburgh. Edin. 1783, 8vo.
Essay on the Principles of Translation. Lond. 1797, 8vo.
An Essay on Military Law and the Practice of Courts-Martial. Edin. 1800,
Elements of General History, ancient and modern; to which is added, a
Table of Chronology, and a Comparative of ancient and modern Geography.
Edin. 1801, 2 vols. 8vo.
Memoirs of the Life and Writings of the Hon. Henry Home of Kames;
containing Sketches of the Progress of Literature and general
Improvement in Scotland during the greater part of the eighteenth
century. Edin. 1807, 2 vols. 4to. Supplement. 1810, 4to.
An Historical and Critical Essay on the Life of Petrarch; with a
Translation of a few of his Sonnets. Lond. 1810, 8vo. Edin. 1812, 8vo.
An Account of some extraordinary Structures on the tops of Hills in the
Highlands; with Remarks on the Progress of the Arts among the ancient
Inhabitants of Scotland. Trans. Soc. Edin. 1790, vol. ii. 3.
Remarks on a mixed Species of Evidence in Matters of History. Ib. 1805,
vol. v. 119.
TYTLER, PATRICK FRASER, author of the History of Scotland and
other historical and biographical works, youngest son of the subject of
the preceding memoir, was born at Edinburgh 30th August 1791. He was
educated at the High School of his native city, and in 1805 entered the
university. Having studied for the bar, he was admitted a member of the
faculty of advocates 3d July 1813, and for some years held the office of
king’s counsel in exchequer. Belonging to a literary family, his tastes
and inclinations had the same bent, and he soon forsook the law for the
laborious paths of historical research. On the peace of 1814, when the
continent, so long closed, was thrown open to British travelers, Mr.
Tytler, in company with Mr., afterwards Sir Archibald Alison, baronet,
author of the History of Europe, and John Hope, advocate, afterwards
lord-justice-clerk, visited France and Belgium; and to a work published
anonymously the following year, by the former of these gentlemen,
entitled ‘Travels in France during the years 1814-15,’ he is understood
to have communicated the journals of his residence at Paris during the
stay of the allied armies there. He subsequently contributed to the
pages of the Edinburgh Magazine and Blackwood’s Magazine. A ‘Life of
Walter Scott’ and ‘A Literary Romance’ are particularly mentioned as
among these early productions.
His first separate
publication was the ‘Life of James Crichton of Cluny, commonly called
the Admirable Crichton,’ which appeared at Edinburgh in 1819. In this
work, which was very carefully written, he adduced the most satisfactory
evidence, to establish the authenticity of the testimonies and
authorities on which the statements regarding the marvelous stories
related of Crichton rest. A second edition of it, corrected and
enlarged, with an appendix of original papers, appeared in 1823. The
same year he also published, in one volume, an interesting and elaborate
work, entitled ‘An Account of the Life and Writings of Sir Thomas Craig
of Riccarton, including Biographical Sketches of the most eminent Legal
Characters, from the Institution of the Court of Session, by James V.,
till the period of the Union of the Crowns.’ In 1826 he published
anonymously the ‘Life of John Wickliffe.’
His principal work, ‘The
History of Scotland,’ was undertaken chiefly by the advice of Sir Walter
Scott, who at one time had the intention of preparing one himself, the
want of a complete, accurate, and comprehensive history of our country
having been long felt. The first volume appeared in the summer of 1828.
It professed to be an attempt “to build the history of Scotland upon
unquestionable muniments.” In the prosecution of this important work,
Mr. Tytler anxiously and carefully examined the most authentic sources
of information, and consulted the state papers in London, and all other
attainable documents bearing on the events of the times commemorated.
Successive volumes of his history appeared at intervals, and the ninth
and last was issued in the winter of 1843. He concluded his labours on
it with this touching paragraph: -- “It is with feelings of gratitude,
mingled with regret, that the author now closes this work – the history
of his country – the labour of little less than eighteen years; --
gratitude to the Giver of all good, that life and health have been
spared to complete, however imperfectly, an arduous undertaking; regret
that the tranquil pleasures of historical investigation, the happy hours
devoted to the pursuit of truth, are at an end, and that he must at last
bid farewell to an old and dear companion.” The work commences with the
accession of Alexander III. in 1249; the period when our national annals
become particularly interesting to the general reader, -- and continues
to the accession of James VI. to the throne of England in 1603. Mr.
Tytler’s style is plain and perspicuous, always animated, and often
elegant and vigorous. His laborious researches begin especially to be
most effective when he reaches the troublous times of the fifth James.
He is then most successful in bringing new sources of information to
light, in correcting old mistakes, and combating and overturning
cherished prejudices. The first and second volumes were reviewed by Sir
Walter Scott in the Quarterly, and he intended, had he lived, to have
criticized the work throughout, for he considered it, says Mr. Lockhart,
as a very important one in itself, and had, moreover, a warm regard for
the author, the son of his early friend, Lord Woodhouselee. Mr. Tytler’s
high church Episcopalian principles pervade the tone of his admirable
history, and a charge which, in the seventh volume, he brought against
John Knox, of being ‘Pre-cognizant of and implicated in” the murder of
David Rizzio, was ably answered by the Rev. Thomas M’Crie, D.D., son of
the distinguished biographer of Knox, in the Appendix to his ‘Sketches
of Scottish Church History,’ as well as by other writers, jealous for
the character and honour of the great reformer. The evidence adduced by
Mr. Tytler certainly appears altogether insufficient to sustain such a
charge, in the face of all historical testimony to the contrary. Mr.
Tytler’s ‘History of Scotland’ introduced him to the notice of Sir
Robert Peel, when premier, and a pension of £200 a-year was bestowed
upon him by government.
During the period when he
was chiefly occupied in the composition of his great national work. Mr.
Tytler wrote several other works of interest and value, a list of which
is given below. One of these, contributed to the ‘Family Library,’
published by Mr. Murray, entitled ‘Lives of Scottish Worthies,’ in 3
vols. 12mo, contained biographies of Alexander III., Michael Scott, Sir
William Wallace, Robert the Bruce, John Barbour, Andrew Winton, John de
Fordoun, James I., Robert Henryson, William Dunbar, and Sir David
Lindsay, and was one of the most attractive of his publications. His
life of Sir Walter Raleigh, 1832, is remarkable for the view which he
starts and supports on the subject of Sir Robert Cecil’s plots,
connected with Raleigh’s ruin. It contains some new materials of
interest, and is valuable for its able defence of that adventurous and
interesting personage, and for its careful digest of state papers, and
graphic descriptions of contemporaneous events. The same indeed may be
said of all Mr. Tytler’s works.
With his other
attainments, he was a good lyrical poet, and about 1829 he wrote a few
verses for one of the ‘Bannatyne Garlands.’ Having in his youth served
in the Mid Lothian yeomanry cavalry, the lively songs which he then
composed, having reference to the military duties of himself and
comrades, were frequently sung with great applause at the mess table. In
1833, in conjunction with Mr. Hog of Newliston, and Mr. Adam Urquhart,
advocate, he presented to the Bannatyne and Maitland Clubs, a volume
illustrative of the Revolution, entitled ‘Memoirs of the War carried on
in Scotland and Ireland in 1689-91,’ by Major-general Hugh Mackay.
constitution, never robust, gradually gave way under the exhausting
labours of a literary life. He was a severe and in general an accurate
historical student; and his pension, it was thought, would have enabled
him to continue his researches in British history, and perhaps have
induced him to have written a work connected with the annals of England,
which he is known to have contemplated, and for which he collected
materials. For the last six or seven years of his life, however, the
state of his health prevented him from pursuing his favourite studies.
He died at Great Malvern, Worcestershire, on Christmas eve, 1849, in his
59th year. He was twice married. His first wife, Rachel Elizabeth,
daughter of Thomas Hog, Esq. of Newliston, died in 1835. By her he had
two sons, Alexander and Thomas Patrick, both in the East India Company’s
military service, and one daughter. His second wife, Anastasia, daughter
of Thomson Bonar, Esq. of Campden Place, Kent, an eminent Russian
merchant, survived him.
Mr. Tytler’s works are:
Life of James Crichton of Cluny, commonly called the Admirable Crichton.
Edin. 1819, 8vo. 2d edit. Corrected and enlarged, with an Appendix of
original papers. 1823.
An Account of the Life and Writings of Sir Thomas Craig of Riccarton,
including Biographical Sketches of the most eminent legal characters,
since the Institution of the Court of Session by James V. to the period
of the Union of the two Crowns. Edin. 1823, 8vo.
Life of John Wickliffe, published anonymously. Edin. 1826.
The History of Scotland, in nine volumes imperial octavo. Edin.
Lives of Scottish Worthies, 3 volumes, 12mo. In the Family Library.
London, 1831-33. Published separately, 3 vols. 12mo. London, 1855.
Historical View of the Progress of Discovery on the more northern coasts
of America, one vol. 12mo. In Edinburgh Cabinet Library, 1832.
Life of Sir Walter Raleigh, 12mo. In the same. 1833.
Memoirs of the War carried on in Scotland and Ireland in 1689-91, by
Major-general Hugh Mackay, 4to. Edited, in conjunction with Mr. Hog of
Newliston and Mr. Adam Urquhart, advocate, for the Bannatyne and
Maitland Clubs, 1833.
Life of King Henry the Eighth. London, 1837.
England under the Reigns of Edward Vi. and Mary, with the contemporary
History of Europe; in a series of original Letters never before
published; with Historical Introductions, &c. 2 vols. 8vo. London, 1839.
To the seventh edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica he contributed the
article Scotland, afterwards published in a separate form as a History
of Scotland for the use of schools.
TYTLER, JAMES, an industrious and laborious, but eccentric and
unfortunate miscellaneous writer, the son of the Rev. Mr. Tytler,
minister of Fern, in the presbytery of Brechin, was born about 1747. He
w3as instructed by his father in classical learning, and attained an
extensive acquaintance with historical literature and scholastic
theology. Having shown an early predilection for the study of medicine,
he was put apprentice to Mr. Ogilvie, a respectable surgeon in Forfar,
and afterwards attended the medical classes in the university of
Edinburgh. He was at one time, it is said, destined for the ministry,
but some peculiarities in his religious opinions were the means of his
becoming connected with a society of Glasites, to a female member of
which sect he was married at an early period of his life. During the
college vacations he made two voyages to Greenland in the capacity of
surgeon, which partly supplied him with the means for defraying the
necessary expenses at the university. After a fruitless endeavour to get
into practice as a surgeon in Edinburgh, he opened an apothecary’s shop
in Leith, in the hope of being patronized by his religious connections;
but his separation from the society, which happened shortly after,
disappointed his expectations; and having contracted some debts which he
was unable to pay, he was under the necessity of removing, first to
Berwick, and subsequently to Newcastle. In both places he was employed
in preparing chemical medicines for the druggists, but the remuneration
he received being insufficient to provide for the necessities of an
increasing family, he returned to Edinburgh in 1772, in extreme poverty,
and took refuge from his creditors within the precincts of the sanctuary
of Holyrood-house, where debtors are privileged from arrest.
His first attempt in
poetry was a humorous ballad, entitled ‘The Pleasures of the Abbey.’ He
also wrote two popular Scottish songs, ‘The Bonnie Brucket Lassie,’ with
the exception of the first two lines, and ‘I canna come ilka day to
woo.’ In 1772 he issued from his sanctuary of Holyrood a volume of
‘Essays on the most important subjects of Natural and Revealed
Religion,’ which had the singular merit of having been set up in types
by his own hand, as the idea arose in his mind, without any manuscript
before him, and worked off by himself, at a press of his own
construction. The work was to have been completed in two volumes 8vo,
but the author turned aside to attack the opinions of a new religious
sect, called the Bereans, in ‘A Letter to Mr. John Barclay, on the
doctrine of Assurance,’ in which he again performed the functions of
author, compositor, and pressman. He next published a monthly
periodical, entitled ‘The Gentleman and Lady’s Magazine,’ which did not
go on long; and afterwards issued ‘The Weekly Review,’ a literary
miscellany, which came out in 1780, and, in its turn, was soon
discontinued. He is also said to have, in the same ingenious manner,
commenced the printing of an abridgment of the Universal History, of
which, however, he only completed one volume. His publications, though
unavoidably disfigured with numerous typographical blunders, made him
known to the booksellers, from whom he afterwards found constant
employment in compilations, abridgments, translations, and miscellaneous
literary work of almost every description, for which he was remarkably
well adapted, having a general knowledge of nearly every subject, and of
most of the sciences.
He was employed by a
surgeon to compile for him a ‘System of Surgery,’ which made its
appearance in 3 vols. 8vo, in 1793. This work he had not completed when
he was compelled to quit Scotland, but he finished it at Belfast before
crossing the Atlantic. He was also an occasional contributor to the
“Medical Commentaries,’ and other periodical publications of the time.
It is stated by Dr. Watt, in his ‘Bibliotheca Britannica,’ that he
conducted a weekly paper called ‘The Observer,’ comprehending a series
of Essays, published at Glasgow in 1786, and extending to 26 numbers,
folio. Of these, the first number was the only one literally penned by
this singular individual, the rest being printed by him without the aid
of a manuscript, according to his usual practice.
The principal work on
which Tytler was engaged was the second edition of the ‘Encyclopaedia
Britannica,’ of which he was the principal editor, and furnished to its
pages a large proportion of the more considerable scientific treatises
and histories, and almost all the minor articles. On his leaving the
sanctuary at Holyrood-house, he took lodgings, first at Restalrig, or
Duddingstone, and afterwards within the town; but on becoming connected
with the ‘Encyclopaedia Britannica,’ an apartment was assigned to him in
the printing-office, where this extraordinary genius performed the
functions of compiler and corrector of the press, at the superb salary
of sixteen shillings per week! When the third edition was undertaken, he
was engaged as a stated contributor, upon more liberal terms, and wrote
a larger share of the early volumes than is ascribed to him in the
At one period of his
career he conducted a manufactory of magnesia for a Mr. Robert Wright of
Colinton; but after he had fairly established it, he was dismissed,
without obtaining either a share in the business or a suitable
compensation for his services. One of his most eccentric actions was his
attempt to ascend in a balloon, constructed on the plan of Montgolfier,
which, however, from some unforeseen defect in the machinery, proved a
failure. He was ever afterwards known in Edinburgh as “Balloon Tytler,”
Notwithstanding his acknowledged talents and industry, his intemperate
habits, and want of prudence and perseverance, kept him always poor and
dependent. Burns, in his Notes on Scottish Song, describes him as “an
obscure, tippling, but extraordinary body, who drudges about Edinburgh
as a common printer, with leaky shoes, a sky-lighted hat, and knee
buckles.” As a proof of the extraordinary stock of general knowledge
which he possessed, and the ease with which he could write on any
subject, almost extempore, the following anecdote is related of him. A
gentleman of Edinburgh, who had once occasion to apply to Tytler for as
much matter as would form a junction between a certain history and its
continuation to a later period, found him lodged in one of those
elevated apartments called garrets, and was informed by the old woman
with whom he lived that he could not be seen, as he had gone to bed
rather the worse of liquor. Determined, however, not to depart without
his errand, the gentleman was shown into Mr. Tytler’s apartment by the
light of a lamp, where he found him in the situation described by his
landlady. The gentleman having acquainted him with the nature of his
business, Mr. Tytler called for pen, ink, and paper, and in a short time
produced about a page and a half of letter-press, which answered the end
proposed as completely as if it had been the result of the most mature
Having joined the Society
of “Friends of the People,” Tytler published ‘A Pamphlet on the Excise,’
containing an exposition of the abuses of Government. In 1792 he
conducted a periodical publication entitled ‘The Historical Register, or
Edinburgh Monthly Intelligencer,’ in which he systematically advocated
parliamentary reform. About the close of that year he published ‘A
Handbill, addressed to the People,’ written in such an inflammatory
style as to render him obnoxious to the authorities. Learning that a
warrant was issued for his apprehension, he suddenly disappeared from
Edinburgh, leaving his family behind him, and finding his way to
Ireland, embarked from that country for America. He was cited before the
high court of justiciary, but failing to appear, was outlawed, January
7, 1793. On his arrival in the United States, he fixed his residence at
Salem, Massachusetts, where he established a newspaper, which he
conducted till his death in the end of 1803, in the 58th year of his
His known works are:
The Pleasures of the Abbey.
Essays on the most important Subjects of Natural and Revealed Religion.
Edin. 1772, 8vo.
Letter to Mr. John Barclay on the Doctrine of Assurance.
The Weekly Mirror; a Periodical Publication, begun in 1780.
The Observer; a Weekly Paper, comprehending a series of Essays,
published in Glasgow in 1786, and extending to 26 numbers, folio.
A System of Geography. 1788, 8vo.
A History of Edinburgh. 12mo.
The Edinburgh Geographical, Historical, and Commercial Grammar. 2 vols.
A Review of Dritchken’s Theory of Inflammation; with a practical
Remarks on Mr. Pinkerton’s Introduction to the History of Scotland. 8vo.
A Poetical Translation of Virgil’s Eclogues. 4to.
A Pamphlet on the Excise.
The Historical Register; a Periodical Publication.
The Gentleman and Lady’s Magazine; published monthly.
The Weekly Review; a Literary Miscellany. 1780.
TYTLER, HENRY WILLIAM, M.D., physician and translator, younger
brother of the preceding, was born at Fern, near Brechin, in 1752; being
the son of the minister of that place. Addicting himself to the
translation of classic poetry, the first work by which he made himself
known was ‘Paedotrophia, or the Art of Nursing and Rearing Children, a
Poem in three Books, from the Latin of St. Marthe, with Medical and
Historical Notes, and the Life of the Author,’ 8vo, published in 1797.
He died at Edinburgh, August 24, 1808. At his death he left in
manuscript, ‘The Works of Callimachus, translated into English Verse;
the Hymns and Epigrams from the Greek, with the Coma Berenices from the
Latin of Catullus; with the original Texts and Notes,’ said to be the
first English translation of a Greek poet by a native of Scotland. Its
publication was kindly edited by the earl of Buchan. Dr. Tytler was also
the author of a ‘Voyage from the Cape of Good Hope,’ and other poems,
published in 1804, and of some pieces in the Gentleman’s Magazine and
other periodicals. He completed a translation of the Seventeen Books of
the Poem on the Punic War, by Silius Italicus, with a Preface and