RODGER, or ROGER,
a surname obviously of Norman origin. Among the immediate retainers of
William the Conqueror was a valiant captain of the name of Roger.
Camden affirms that Roger was mollified from Rodgerus or Rotgerus. The
name Roger is common in Normandy to this day, and it occurs in the
Russian dominions under the form of Rudiger. As a baptismal name, it
appears to have been frequent both in Scotland and England previous to
its being adopted as a surname.
It is of considerable
antiquity in Scotland. Roger, bishop of St. Andrews (1188-1202), the son
of the earl of Leicester, of the stock of the ancient earls of Mellent
in Normandy, and a cousin of William the Lion, was appointed by that
monarch lord-chancellor of Scotland (Balfours Annals, vol. i. p. 28).
His seal is given in Andersons Diplomata Scotiae. Roger, his nephew, is
witness to a charter of David I. There was also a Roger, prior of
The earliest notice of
any one bearing this surname in our annals is that of Sir William Roger,
an English musician (A.D. 1482), one of the favourites of James III.,
who was hanged over the bridge of Lauder by the incensed nobles of that
monarch. John Roger, a Black friar, was in 1544 confined in the castle
of St. Andrews by orders of Cardinal Bethune. A number of persons of the
name have, from time immemorial, been located in the parish of Galston,
Ayrshire. George Roger, a native of that county, and a merchant in
Glasgow, purchased in 1569, the farm of Marywell, part of the lands of
Coupar Grange, belonging to the abbey of Coupar Angus. From this family
was descended Ralph Roger some time minister of Ardrossan, afterwards of
the inner high church, Glasgow, and lord-rector of the university of
that city. He was ejected at the Restoration, but replaced at the
Revolution. From the Marywell family also descended Robert Roger,
provost of Glasgow in 1707, and M.P. for the Dumbarton burghs. His son,
Hugh Roger, was likewise provost of Glasgow.
RODGER, ALEXANDER, a minor poet, born at East Calder, Mid
Lothian, July 16, 1784, was the son of a farmer at Haggs near the
village of Dalmahoy, but when his son was about seven years of age, he
removed to Edinburgh, in which city Alexander was apprenticed to a
silversmith. On his father going the following year to Hamburgh, the
young poet was taken to his mothers relations in Glasgow, where he
spent the remainder of his days, and was styled The bard of the west.
IN 1797 he was sent to learn the weaving business, and in 1806 he
married. IN 1819 he was employed upon a paper published in Glasgow,
called The Spirit of the Union, which advocated radical reform, and on
7th April of that year, he and several others were apprehended and
confined in prison for several weeks. In 1821 he became reader and
reporter for the Glasgow Chronicle. He was subsequently employed upon
two other papers in Glasgow, and died in 1846. A small volume of his
poems and songs was published at Glasgow in 1827. IN 1838 a complete
edition of his pieces appeared in the same city, and a third and last
volume soon after followed. He was also the editor of Whistlebinkie, a
Glasgow publication of wit, humour, and song.
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