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Significant Scots
Lady Anne Halket


HALKET, (LADY) ANNE, whose extensive learning and voluminous theological writings, place her in the first rank of female authors, was the daughter of Mr Robert Murray, of the family of Tullibardine, and was born at London, January 4th, 1622. She may be said to have been trained up in habits of scholastic study from her very infancy, her father being preceptor to Charles I., (and afterwards provost of Eton college,) and her mother, who was allied to the noble family of Perth, acting as sub-governess to the duke of Gloucester and the princess Elizabeth. Lady Anne was instructed by her parents in every polite and liberal science; but theology and physic were her favourite subjects; and she became so proficient in the latter, and in the more unfeminine science of surgery, that the most eminent professional men, as well as invalids of the first rank, both in Britain and on the continent, sought her advice. Being, as might have expected, a staunch royalist, her family and herself suffered with the misfortunes of Charles. She was married on March 2d, 1656, to Sir James Halket, to whom she bore four children, all of whom died young, with the exception of her eldest son Robert. During her pregnancy with the latter, she wrote an admirable tract, "The Motherís Will to the Unborn Child," under the impression of her not surviving her delivery. Her husband died in the year 1679; but she survived till April 22d, 1699, and left no less than twenty-one volumes behind her, chiefly on religious subjects, one of which, her "Meditations," was printed at Edinburgh in 1701. She is said to have been a woman of singular but unaffected piety, and of the sweetest simplicity of manners; and these qualities, together with her great talents and learning, drew upon her the universal esteem and respect of her contemporaries of all ranks.

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