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The New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
Volume XII - Aberdeen
Account of the University and King's College of Aberdeen


[Drawn up by William Gregory, M, D., Professor of Medicine and Chemistry in King's College, Aberdeen.]

There appears to have existed in Old Aberdeen, from a very early period, a Studium Generate, or University, attached to the Episcopal Chapter of the See of Aberdeen. It is said to have been founded in 1157 by Edward, Bishop of Aberdeen, and although, according to Boece, it still existed at the period when King's College was founded, it is probable that it had in some way ceased to answer the purposes which it must have been designed to serve, since King James IV., in his letter to Pope Alexander VI., requesting him to found a University in Old Aberdeen, mentions as the chief motive for the undertaking, the profound ignorance of the inhabitants of the north of Scotland, and the great deficiency of properly educated men to fill the clerical office in that part of his kingdom.

Foundation of the University In 1494, William Elphinston, Bishop of Aberdeen, and Chancellor of Scotland under James III., persuaded James IV. to make the above application to the Pope, who was then considered the only source of the universal privileges which were desired for the projected institution, the power of the king extending only to his own dominions, while that of the Roman pontiff embraced the whole of Christendom. The result of this application was a Bull dated 10th February 1494, instituting a University in Old Aberdeen or Aberdon, which was to include every lawful faculty, namely, those of Theology, Canon and Civil Law, Medicine, and the Liberal Arts. Masters were appointed to read in all the faculties, and were empowered specifically to confer all the lawful degrees of Baccalaureate Master and Doctor, in like manner as these degrees are granted in any the most highly privileged University. It was also provided in this Bull, that the degrees thus conferred should carry with them all the usual privileges and immunities that are attached to such degrees in other Universities ; and that, not only within the University itself, but in all other Universities, ubique terrarum, without further examination of the graduates. It is particularly mentioned, that the University of Aberdeen was to possess all the privileges enjoyed by those of Paris and Bologna, two of the most highly favoured in Europe. This Bull of institution has been printed in the Report of the University Commission of 1826, along with all the charters of King's College, and may be referred to by those who wish to ascertain the precise terms in which the very ample privileges of King's College were conferred. By a mandate dated on the same day, but not executed till 1496, Bishop Elphinston, with two coadjudators, was directed to publish the Bull, to defend and protect the doctors, masters, and scholars in all their immunities, &c, and to cause the statutes to be inviolably observed. By a second Bull dated in 1495, the Pope annexed to the University the church of Aberbuthnot, now Marykirk, and the revenues of the Hospital of St Germains in Lothian.

King James IV., by a charter of confirmation dated 22d May 1497, ratified all the enactments of the papal Bull, and empowered Bishop Elphinston to found a college within the University. Accordingly, the bishop in 1505 published what is called the first foundation of the college, which was confirmed by a Bull of Pope Julius II. in 1506. By this deed he formed and endowed a college, to be called that of Sancta Maria in Nativitate. The members were thirty-six in number; but by a second foundation, prepared by Bishop Elphinston during his life, but published after having been proved by Bishop Gavin Dunbar in 1581, seventeen years after the death of Elphinston, the number was raised to forty-two; namely, four doctors in the faculties of Theology, Canon Law, Civil Law, and Medicine, the first to be Principal of the College; eight Masters in Arts, the first to be Sub-Principal, the second Grammarian, and the other six Students in Theology; three Students of Law; (all the above, except the Mediciner, to be ecclesiastics); thirteen poor scholars; eight prebends for the service of the College church, the first to be cantor, the second sacrist, and six singing boys.

Such is a brief sketch of the original constitution of the College, which has been repeatedly and fully confirmed by numerous Papal Bulls, royal charters, and Acts of Parliament. The mode of election, salaries, and duties of all the members are minutely detailed in the two foundations published by Bishop Dunbar in the form of a solemn instrument, and which are printed in the Commissioners' Report above referred to. These important documents, especially the second foundation, have always been considered as the binding laws of the University; but although, up to the period of the Reformation in Scotland, they were literally obeyed, the change which then took place in religious matters rendered it impossible subsequently to pursue the same course. All those offices, therefore, which were only intended for the better performance of divine service after the Romish form were either from time to time abolished, or fell into disuse; till at last the university assumed the present form, consisting of ten members of senatus or masters, besides the chancellor, the rector, and his assessors.

Bishop Elphinston liberally endowed the university during his life, and at his death left to it the sum of L. 10,000 Scots,—in those days a very large sum of money. He also provided all the members with manses either in the college or close to it. He built, about the time of the first foundation, the original handsome fabric, of which a considerable part yet remains. But in the progress of the Reformation, and especially at the period of the abolition of Episcopacy in Scotland, the greater part of the funds of the university, which chiefly consisted of ecclesiastical property and tithes, was alienated, and what remained was so much diminished by various causes, especially by the augmentation of ministers' stipends out of the tithes belonging to King's College, that, at the beginning of the last century, the university funds were in a most miserable condition. They have since been somewhat improved, partly by a sale of certain superiorities belonging to the college, which produced about L. 3000 Sterling, partly by grants from the Crown in aid of the masters' salaries. This statement refers to the property belonging to the college itself. But the members are also trustees of a large amount of property, bequeathed at various periods by benevolent persons, for the foundation of bursaries or scholarships, of which the number attached to King's College is now very large.

In this slight sketch of the history of King's College, it is necessary to mention that King Charles I. in 1641, after the abolition of Episcopacy in Scotland, granted a charter incorporating this University with the Marischal College of New Aberdeen under the name of the Caroline University. This charter was ratified by Parliament in the same year, and confirmed by Cromwell in 1654; and the union continued till after the Restoration; but Charles II., when he re-established Episcopacy, rescinded all the acts passed from 1640 to 1648, by which means the union was annulled and the two colleges have ever since continued distinct and independent. At different periods during the last century, namely, in 1747, 1754, 1770, 1786, and still more recently within the last ten years, attempts have been made in different quarters to effect a union of the two colleges. The advocates of this measure were few in number, and in general interested parties, the public have ing on all occasions expressed a determined hostility to every scheme of union.

Our space will not permit us to enter into a detailed account of the various changes to which the university was subjected during the troubled period from the Reformation to the Revolution. We must here observe, however, that King's College, since its foundation, has never ceased actively to perform its proper functions whether in the education of youth or in the conferring of degrees and that it has generally been in a flourishing condition, a proof of the necessity of the institution, and of the wisdom of its founder. It can boast, moreover, of a very large number of distinguished names both among its office-bearers and its alumni at all periods of its existence.

We shall now briefly describe the present constitution of the university, the nature of its offices, and the system of education pursued in it; and we shall conclude by mentioning those benefactors who have so greatly contributed to its usefulness, and those alumni who have distinguished themselves.

Office-Bearers.—The office-bearers of King's College are, the Chancellor, the Rector, with four Assessors, ten Masters, including the Principal and Sub-Principal, and the factor or Procurator, The Chancellor is the supreme authority in the University, and an appeal lies to him from the Rectoral Court.

During the Roman Catholic and Episcopal periods, the Bishop of Aberdeen was, ex officio, chancellor. Bishop Elphinston was the first chancellor, and among his successors may be named Bishop Gavin Dunbar and Bishop Patrick Forbes, the former of whom may be called the second founder of the University, and the latter of whom was one of its greatest benefactors ; also, Bishop Scougall, and George, Marquis of Huntly, who was Chancellor of the Caroline or United University. The present Chancellor is the Right Honourable George Earl of Aberdeen, who succeeded the late Alexander Duke of Gordon. The Chancellor is elected by the Senatus, and retains his office for life. He admits to certain offices in the College, and if any vacancy be not filled up within a month, he presents to the vacant office, jure devoluto.

The Rector is next in authority to the Chancellor. He is elected annually by the Senatus, along with four Assessors. An appeal may be made from the decision of the Senatus to the Rector and Assessors. It is his duty to visit the College, and to correct what may be found amiss. Among those who have been Rectors may be mentioned Dr John Forbes, son of Bishop Forbes, a man of great learning; Dr William Guild, Sir William Forbes of Craigievar, and Sir John Macpherson. The present Rector is the Right Honourable Lord Francis Egerton, M.P.

By the foundation, the Doctor of Theology was to be Principal of the College, and, with the aid of the six students of theology to teach divinity. When, at a later period, the students of theology were reduced in number, and made Regents, or Masters in Philosophy, the duty of teaching divinity devolved on the Principal alone. But, after the foundation of the Professorship of Divinity, the Principal gradually ceased to act as a teacher, and since 1730 or 1740 has not performed this duty. Of late years, an attempt has been made by the late Chancellor, Alexander Duke of Gordon, aided by the then Rector, Lord Aberdeen, and his Assessors, and supported by a majority of the Senatus, to restore efficiency to this branch of the Principal's duties; but nothing has yet been done. The remaining duties of the Principal are, to preside at college meetings, to confer degrees in the various faculties, and generally to govern (regere et gubernare) the college. Originally, the salary of the Principal was the largest in the College. It now consists of about L.110, derived from royal grants, bestowed on the college in compensation of the losses sustained by the various causes above alluded to ; of L.35 of fixed money salary from the college property ; of victual salary, varying with the fiars of grain, and amounting to from L.80 to L.90; and lastly, of one-tenth part of the balances, namely, that of the procuration account or college revenue, which balance is very variable ; and that of the account of money derived from the sale of superiorities, which is kept separate, under the name of the superiority fund, and which varies little, the tenth part averaging about L.23. The Principal's salary for 1836 amounted to L.300. He has also a house and garden.

The first Principal of King's College was the celebrated Hector Boece, who was invited from Paris, where he was Professor of Philosophy, by his friend, Bishop Elphinston. The most distinguished of his successors in office were Alexander Anderson, Alexander Arbuthnot, Dr William Leslie, Dr William Guild, Alexander Middleton, and his son, Dr George Middleton, [Dr George Middleton was the father of Sir Charles Middleton, first Lord Barham.] George Chalmers, and the late Dr Roderick Macleod. The present Principal is Dr William Jack.

The office of sub-principal is peculiar to this university, and is held by one of the Regents, who, in addition to his duties as Professor, must supply the place of the Principal in his absence. The first Sub-Principal was William Hay, who accompanied Boece from Paris, where he had also taught Philosophy. A large proportion of the Principals have passed through the office of Sub-Principal.

There is no salary attached to the office, but there is a house and glebe which belongs of right to that Regent who may be Sub-Principal.

Originally, each of the Regents carried his own class of students through all the branches of philosophy in the curriculum of arts and this system continued till a comparatively recent period. But at present, each Regent confines himself to one subject, out of the four principal courses in arts, namely, Greek, Mathematics, Natural Philosophy, and Moral Philosophy.

The present Sub-Principal is Dr Hugh Macpherson, who is also Professor of Greek. The salary of this chair is made up of L.80, 15s. from Royal grants, of fixed money, and victual salaries; and of his share, one-tenth of the balances above described. From all these sources, it amounted in 1836 to L.220; to which is to be added the amount of fees from students attending the Greek class, which in 1836 was L.250, but has diminished considerably since that time. In the above salary is included about L.20 derived from the Sub-Principal's share of a glebe or College croft.

The first Regent is at present Mr John Tulloch, A.M., Professor of Mathematics. The salary of this chair, derived from sources similar to those above-described, amounted in 1836 to about L.195, and the class-fees to about L.150. He has a house and garden close to the College, with a share of the College croft, the latter included in the above salary.

The third Regent, at present, is Dr John Fleming, Professor of Natural Philosophy. The salary of this chair in 1836 was about L.195, the class-fees about L.160. This Professor likewise has a house and garden, with a share of the College croft, the latter being included in the salary.

The present second Regent is Mr Hercules Scott, A. M., Professor of Moral Philosophy. His salary, including his share of College croft, was, in 1836, about L.195, and the class-fees in that year amounted to L.180, including the fees for graduation in Arts. To this regent belongs a house in the College, where he alone of all the members now resides, and a garden.

The Humanist or Professor of Humanity is not one of the Regents, and his course was formerly not included in the curriculum of Arts, Latin being in those days more or less completely taught at school, and Greek being left for college study. For a long time past, however, Latin has formed an essential part of the curriculum. The Humanist is the Grammarian of the original foundation, and this office has been held by many men of great learning. The first was John Vaus, and among his successors was Andrew Cant. Of late years, Mr Thomas Gordon and Mr William Ogilvy have held this chair with great credit. The present Professor is Dr Patrick Forbes, one of the ministers of the parish of Old Machar.

The salary of this chair, in 1836, amounted to about L.210, and the class-fees to nearly L. 240. The Professor has a house and garden.

It ought here to be mentioned, that Dr Forbes for a long period officiated as Lecturer on Chemistry and Natural History, in addition to his other duties, and that attendance on these lectures was rendered imperative, as it now continues, on candidates for the degree of A.M.; a circumstance without a parallel, in any other British university. The class of chemistry has been found to excite considerable interest among the students, and must be considered as a most important and valuable addition to the curriculum in arts. At the commencement of the session of 1840-41, Dr Forbes relinquished this part of his duties, some additions being at the same time made to the amount of Latin in the curriculum; and since that time chemistry has been taught by the present Professor of Medicine.

The original foundation contained a Canonist or Professor of the Canon Law, and a Civilist or Professor of the Civil Law. The former office was abolished at the Reformation, but the latter continues to exist. Among the holders of the former office must be mentioned John Lesley, afterwards Bishop of Ross, so celebrated for his fidelity to Queen Mary. A portrait of this prelate adorns the common hall of the university. Among the civilists were George Nicolson, Lord Kemnay, James Scougall Lord Whitehill, and David Dalrymple, Lord Westhall, all three Judges of the Court of Session.

The salary of this chair, in 1836, amounted to about L.200. The fees are quite trifling. Indeed, the chair was long a sinecure, but of late has been rendered effective. The present civilist is Dr Patrick Davidson, who lectures once a-week during the winter session, without exacting any fee. The civilist derives a small and very uncertain emolument from the degrees of LL.D. occasionally conferred by the University. He has no house, but enjoys the rent of a small glebe.

The Mediciner or Professor of Medicine was- the only master on the original foundation who was not an ecclesiastic. Both Bishop Elphinston and King James IV. took great interest in medicine, in which the King was even a proficient. The first mediciner was Dr James Cuming, a man of great learning in his profession. Among his successors were Dr James Gregory (son of James Gregory, Professor of Mathematics in Marischal College, and afterwards in Edinburgh, inventor of the Gregorian or reflecting telescope,) and his two sons, James and John, the latter of whom became Professor of the Theory and Practice of Medicine in Edinburgh, and wrote " A Father's Legacy to his Daughters," and other works. This Dr John Gregory made repeated efforts to establish permanent medical lectures in Aberdeen, but failed, from the then limited number of medical students. More recently, a joint medical school was established, conducted by the Professors of Medicine in King's and Marischal Colleges, assisted by lecturers on the various branches of medical science, to be nominated alternately by the two colleges. Before 1839, however, this joint school ceased to exist; and since that period, the University has established an independent school of medicine, in which all the branches of medical study are taught by the present mediciner and eight lecturers, appointed by the Senatus. This school is flourishing, and a convenient building for the lecturers has just been erected by subscription.

The salary of the Mediciner, in 1836, amounted to about L.210. The class-fees and fees for graduation (of which latter a part accrues to the Mediciner, as Promoter to the degree of M. D.,) have amounted, since 1839, on an average, to about L.100 more. There is a house and garden attached to the chair.

The present Mediciner is Dr William Gregory, grandson of the Dr John Gregory above-mentioned. He lectures on chemistry, the other branches of medicine being taught by the lecturers. He also conducts the examinations for medical degrees, with the aid of three assessors, appointed by the Senatus from among the medical lecturers attached to the University.

Professor of Divinity.—-This Professorship, as already stated, was not in the original foundation, which entrusted the teaching of theology to the Principal and six students. When these latter were converted into three Regents in Philosophy, the Senatus, aided by contributions from the Bishop and clergy of the diocese, founded this chair, the patronage of which was vested, by royal charter, dated 1642, in the Synod of Aberdeen, with the Principal and two other members of the University. The fund subscribed was invested in lands, which were afterwards feued by the synod to the college for the benefit of the professor.

The salary of this chair is now the largest in the university, being composed of L. 265 from various royal grants; of the interest of two sums of L. 106 and L. 300, the former originally belonging to the chair, the latter bequeathed by Miss Teresa Lumsden; of a fixed money salary from the College of L.21, 15s.; of a victual salary, about L. 60 ; and of his share of the procuration and superiority balances. In 1836, the whole amounted to L.425. It is to be observed, however, that this includes a royal grant of L. 150, given to the present incumbent at his appointment, and not secured to the chair beyond his life. There are no fees attached to this chair. The professor has a house and garden.

This chair has been filled by many distinguished men, among whom may be mentioned Mr William Douglas (1644,) author of several works; Mr Henry Scougall, son of Bishop Scougall, well known by his theological writings, who was made Professor as soon as he had completed his studies at the University, and who died at twenty-eight; Dr Alexander Gerard, and Dr Gilbert Gerard, both men of high eminence in the literary world.

The present incumbent is the Rev. Dr Duncan Mearns, at one time Moderator of the General Assembly.

Professor of Oriental Languages.— This chair was founded about 1674, at the request of Bishop Scougall. The salary is the smallest in the college. It is chiefly made up of royal grants, with the balances of the college accounts. In 1836, it amounted to about L.195, and the class-fees in that year to about L.45. No house is attached to this chair. The present Professor is Mr James Bentley, A. M.

The students are divided into students of arts and students of divinity. Most of the latter have previously obtained the degree of A. M., or, if not, have attended the necessary courses, and may obtain the degree when they require it.

The curriculum of study for the degree of A. M. occupies four winter sessions, each of five months' duration, viz. from the first Monday of November to the last Friday of March.

The students of the first year constitute the first class, or Bajans. They attend Greek about three hours a-day, and Latin one hour or one hour and a-half.

In the second year, they form the second or senior-class. In this they attend mathematics, the second or advanced Greek and Latin, and chemistry. The latter class, however, may be attended during any year but the first.

In the third year, the students form the third or tertian class, in which they attend Natural Philosophy, the second Greek and Latin, and Chemistry, if they choose to take that class in this year.

In the fourth year, the students constitute the Magistrand or fourth class, attending Moral Philosophy and Logic, the second Greek and Latin; and, if not previously attended, the Chemistry.

The second or advanced mathematical class may be attended either in the third or fourth year.

The Professor of Moral Philosophy graduates his class, that is, such of them as desire the degree of A. M., at the close of each session.

The number of students in Arts in the first class varies from 50 to 80 ; in the second, from 40 to 70; in the third, from 35 to 50 ; and in the fourth, from 35 to 45. This progressive diminution arises from the circumstance, that many leave the university to enter on professions before completing the course. The number of students attending the chemistry varies from 40 to 70, including a certain number of medical students, and of others who attend this class alone.

In all of these classes frequent examinations are held, in most of them daily; exercises are prescribed, and regular attendance is strictly enforced by calling the roll daily and fining absentees. At the end of each session, examinations on printed questions are held, the average duration of which, in each class, is about four hours. To the four or five best answers in each class, prizes are awarded, and these are publicly delivered by the Principal to the successful students on the last day of the session.

On Monday mornings, during the session, the whole students and professors meet in the public school; when the Sub-principal enforces the discipline of the college, by levying the fines for absence from prayers or misconduct, and reprimands such delinquents as may seem to him to require reproof. The students meet in the public school every morning under one of the regents, who, with the humanist, take this duty, styled that of Hebdomader, by turns, weekly. The roll is called and absentees marked, and the fines, as above stated, are levied on the Monday mornings. The fines for absence from the classes are inflicted and levied by the professors, each in his own class.

All students, except those of divinity and medicine (who have already completed the curriculum of Arts) wear a scarlet gown and a uniform cap, the latter lately adopted by order of the Senatus. Students of Arts are hence called gown students.

Bursars, or those students who enjoy bursaries or scholarships, formerly wore a black gown, and were made to perform menial services about the college. But for a long time past there has been no distinction in dress or duties between them and other students, with this exception, that the bursars in each class act by turns as censor, calling the roll and marking absentees, &c.

The fees paid by students in the four chief classes are L. 3, 3s. but the holders of the smaller bursaries pay much less, and these form generally about a-fourth of each class. The fee in the Latin class, and in that of oriental languages, is only L.1, 1s., and in the chemistry, L.1, 11s. 6d.; the holders of the smaller bursaries, as before, paying much less.

At the commencement of the session, all bursars who had attended during the preceding session are examined on printed questions, and if found deficient, the payment of the bursaries is suspended till the student shall prove, by his examination at the end of the session, that he has made the desired progress. No session passes without several bursaries being suspended in this manner.

Those presented to bursaries by lay patrons are also examined at the beginning of the session in which they produce their presentations, and are only admitted if found habile, that is, properly qualified. The rejection of unqualified presentees is by no means unfrequent. When once admitted, they are examined, with the other bursars, at the beginning of each Session.

All the bursaries in the gift of the Senatus are conferred after public competition, held a week before the commencement of the session. Of these there are now about twenty-four annually vacant. The Sub-principal collects the exercises, removes the names substituting numbers, and then submits them to the judgment of the other masters. The best exercises obtain the bursaries which are vacant; the order of merit in the exercises regulating that of the amount of the bursaries.

The entire number of bursaries attached to King's College now amounts to upwards of 140. Their amount is very various. A few are under L.4; a few more L.5; the majority range from L.10 or L.12 to L.20 or L.25; and, within the last three years the late Dr Simpson bequeathed to the university funds sufficient to provide six Bursaries of L.30 each, four of which are already in operation. There is one bursary of L.40 and one of L.50. Each bursary is enjoyed for four years, and if a vacancy occur during this period by death or resignation, the vacancy is not filled up till the four years have expired, and the vacant revenue is in the interim added to the proper fund of the bursary in question.

The following is a list of the foundations and bursaries attached to King's College, with the names of founders and patrons.

1. Founded Bursaries.—These belong to the original foundation by Bishop Elphinston. Their number was originally thirteen, but, from some cause or other now unknown, was long ago reduced to twelve. Three are presented annually, and decided by competition. Patrons, the Senatus. The value originally was L.40 Scots each, or L.3, 6s. 8d. Sterling; but for the last seventy years, the Senatus has raised it to L.5, at which sum these bursaries now remain.

2. Watt's Bursary.—Mr James Watt, Minister of Snaith, mortified, in 1625, a rigg or croft of land for the support of a bursar in theology of the name of Watt, Barclay, or Chalmers, failing whom, of one born in the city or chanonry of Old Aberdeen. Its value was for a long period L.5 ; but the property having much improved in value, the Senatus, in 1819, established on this fund two bursaries of L.20 each. Patrons, the Senatus.

3. Ley's Bursaries.—In 1648, Sir Thomas Burnett of Leys disponed to the college four crofts of land, for the support of three bursars on the same footing as the founded bursars; the patronage to remain with Sir Thomas and his heirs, and the Senatus to present in the event of the patron failing to do so. The college accepted these conditions, and have strictly fulfilled them, increasing these bursaries from L.3, 6s. 8d. to L.5, along with their own founded bursaries. They also released Sir Thomas from arrears of feu-duties due to the College as superiors of the crofts. For a very long period, this transaction was a source of loss to the College, the revenue of the crofts being quite inadequate to the payment of the three bursaries. But at length the crofts were feued for building, and thus produced a large revenue, amounting now to upwards of L.300. It seems but just that the college, which has always, even at a loss, fulfilled the original contract, should now benefit by the improvement in value of the property which they took with the risk, which was actually for a long time fulfilled, of deterioration. But the present Sir T. Burnett has brought an action to compel the college to divide the whole produce of the lands among the bursars, apparently considering this contract as an ordinary mortification, from which, however, it differs in every particular. The college maintains, that, having received the property in fee, on condition of maintaining three bursars on the same footing as the founded bursars, having always done this, and having incurred great loss in fulfilling the contract, it is now entitled to the benefit of the improvement. The question is now in a court of law, for which reason we have given the above details, as the question has been very generally misunderstood by the public.

4. Redhyth Bursaries.— In 1678, Walter Ogilvie of Redhyth mortified his estate for the board and education of twenty poor boys, twelve at the school of Fordyce, and eight at King's College. At present, the number supported at the school of Fordyce is thirteen, and at King's College, thirteen. The former receive each L.1, 16s. 8d. in money, and 8 bolls of meal. The College bursars formerly received L.9 each, then L.11, and at present, L.16, 10s. each, their number being also increased from eight to seventeen. Patron, Earl of Seafield.

5. Melville Bursaries.— Three in number, founded by Mr G. Melville in 1679, of the value of L.3, 6s. 8d. each. They have been increased to L.3, 16s. 8d. Patrons, the Senatus.

6. Park's Bursaries,—Founded in 1691, for two bursars L.2, 15s. 6d. each, by James Park of Cranock. They have been increased to L.3, 18s. 10d. Patrons, the Senatus.

7. Adam's Bursaries—Founded in 1691, by Dr Alexander Adam, for three bursars, at L.3, 6s. 8d. This was increased before 1755, to L.5 ; and now, instead of three, there are thirteen bursars on this fund, four at L.20 each, and nine at L.15, 10s. each. Patrons, the Senatus.

8. Fullerton's Bursaries.—Founded in 1692, by Mr James Fullerton, for maintaining as many bursars as the revenue of the original sum, L.850, would support. There were, in 1704, ten at L.3, 6s. 8d. These are now twenty-six; six at L.14, 10s., eight at L.14, and twelve at L.12 each. Patrons, the Senatus.

9. Watson's Bursaries.—Founded in 1699, by the Rev. William Watson, for two bursars at L.2, 15s. 6d., since increased to L.3 18s. 10d. In this and several other cases, the mortification consisting of a fixed annual payment, it has not been in the power of the Senatus to improve the fund in the same proportion as where they were enabled, as trustees, to invest a capital sum in land or otherwise. The Senatus are Patrons.

10. Lady Braco's Bursary.—In 1706, Lady Braco mortified the interest of L.1000 Scots (L.83, 6s. 8d. Sterling,) for the support of one bursar. He receives at present L.12. Patron, Earl of Fife.

11. Glenfarquhar Bursaries.— Founded in 1716, by Sir Alexander Falconer of Glenfarquhar, who mortified the annual sum of L.320 Scots, about L.26 Sterling for the support of four bursars. The value of these four bursaries, for the reason mentioned above, has never changed, being still L.80 Scots, or L.6, 13s. 4d. Sterling each. Sir Alexander Ramsay of Balmain presents to two, and the Earl of Kintore to the other two.

12. Ogilvy's Bursary.—Founded in 1723, by Mr David Ogilvy for one bursar. L.200 were mortified, and for some time the interest of this sum amounted to L.10, but latterly has been reduced to L.9.

13. Greig's Bursary.—Founded in 1724, by Mr James Greig, who mortified 1500 merks Scots, to be invested by advice of Mr Robertson of Foveran and his heirs, and the interest applied to support one bursar. This fund has not been invested as the other funds over which the College has full power have been. For this reason, although its value at first was L.4, 3s. 4d. annually, it was reduced, in 1762, to the free produce of the mortification, viz. L.3, 18s. 4d. at which it has since remained. Patron, Mr Robertson of Foveran.

14. Mackintosh's Bursary.—In 1728, the Laird of Mackintosh and his lady mortified the interest of 2000 merks Scots for one bursar of the name of Mackintosh, or of some other tribe of Clan Chattan. Patron, the Laird of Mackintosh. Present value of bursary, L.5, 11s. 10d.

15. Dr Fraser's Bursaries.—In 1730, Dr James Fraser, one of the greatest benefactors to the College, founded two bursaries, one in theology, the holder to be librarian after he graduates for four years, with L.6 annually ; the other a bursar in philosophy, with L.5 annually. There are now on this fund two bursars in philosophy at L.15, and two in theology at L.11, with L.30 additional if one of them act as librarian. If not, the L.30 go to provide a substitute librarian. The bursars to be of the name of Fraser, and the magistrates and ministers of Inverness are patrons.

16. Moir's Bursaries.— In 1769, Dr Alexander Moir of Sante Croix bequeathed L.600 for the support of four poor students, each of whom at first had L.5. This sum having been with many others (also mortified for bursaries) judiciously invested by the Senatus in land, there are now on this fund thirteen bursars in all, four at L.17, and nine at L.15. Patrons, the Senatus.

17. Coll's Bursary.—Founded in 1791, by Maclean of Coll, who mortified L.200 for the support of one bursar, presented by him or his heirs, of the name of Maclean. In the event of a vacancy, the interest to be added to the capital. At first, the value of the bursary was L.9. It is now L.14.

18. Dr Murray's Bursary.—-In 1793, Dr Alexander Murray of Philadelphia, bequeathed to the College the residue of his estate, to found a lectureship in the College Chapel on Sundays ; the lecturer to receive three-fourths of the revenue, and one-fourth to be given to a bursar of the name of Murray, to assist in educating him for any secular profession. The present revenue is about L.200, of which one-fourth or L.50 forms the secular Murray Bursary, held for three years only. Of the remaining L.150, L.120 are divided between two licentiates of the church, who perform divine service on Sundays during the session in the College Chapel, both forenoon and afternoon. They are elected annually by the Principal and Regents. The balance is employed in the expenses incidental to the performance of divine service in the chapel, which had long been discontinued, and in keeping the chapel in repair, also in paying a small salary to a precentor The College is deeply indebted to Dr Murray for this very valuable foundation, which has restored Divine Service to the University, and is of the utmost advantage in every point of view.

19. Mrs Udny Duff's Bursaries.—Founded in 1794, for two bursars, who receive L.7, 14s. each. Patron, Earl of Fife.

20. Grant's Bursary.—Founded in 1795 by the Rev. James Grant, for one bursar of the name of Grant or Fraser. Value originally L.8, 5s.; at present, L.9, 1s. 6d.

21. Hutton's Bursaries.— Founded in 1801 by Mr George Hutton of Woolwich, who left a large amount of property, both landed and personal, for the support of forty-eight bursars. The act of mortmain defeated his intentions as to his real property, and the College at last only received the residue of the personal estate amounting to about L.5000, 3 per cent. red. ann., and yielding a revenue of about L.153. On this fund there are now four bursars at L. 18, and four at L. 16; and L. 15 are annually given by competition under the name of the Huttonian prize. In the amount of the bursaries and the arrangement of the prize, the College has adhered as closely as possible to the intentions of Dr Hutton. Patrons the Senatus.

22. Finlay's Bursaries.— Founded in 1804 by the Rev. Robert Finlay. The sum of L.600 was vested in the hands of Mr Moir of Scotstoun, who was to pay the interest to the bursars, three in number. These bursaries, of the value of L. 10 each, are now paid by Sir M. Bruce as husband of Mr Moir's heiress. Sir M. Bruce is also patron, in right of his lady.

23. MacLeod's Bursary.—Founded in 1806 by Dr Hugh Mac-leod of Glasgow College, for one bursar of the name of Macleod. Value, L.8, 15s. 6d. Patrons, the Senatus.

24. Milne's Bursary.—In 1808, Dr John Milne of Madras paid to the College L.600, to be invested at 4 per cent., for the assistance of a bursar studying medicine, after passing through the curriculum of arts. Value at first, L. 30 ; at present, owing to the fall of interest, L. 24. Patrons, the Principal and Regents.

25. Stuart's Bursaries.—Founded in 1809 by the Rev. James Stuart of George Town, South Carolina, who left L.1000, 3 per cents., to be sold, and the interest of the price applied to the promotion of education, by the Principal and other trustees named in the deed. On this fund are two bursars, at L. 14, 10s., who are, like all those of whom the college is patron, chosen by comparative trial. A preference is given, by the will of the founder, to those of the names of Stuart and Simpson.

26. Johnston's Bursaries.—Two bursars, at L. 4, 10s. each, to be chosen by competition, those of the name of Johnston and Forbes to be preferred, if found habile. The Senatus and the family of Caskieben are joint patrons.

27. Cruickshank's Bursary.— Founded in 1815 by Mr James Cruickshank of Touxhill, who ordered L. 400, deducting the legacy-duty of L. 40, to be lent on personal security, and the interest to be paid to one bursar of the name of Cruickshank or Jopp. For some time it yielded L. 18 per annum, but in consequence of the bankruptcy of the parties to whom the trustees had lent the capital, it has been much reduced, so that in future it cannot yield more than from L.10 to L.12, according to the rate of interest. Patron, the minister of Monquhitter.

28. Macpherson's Bursary. — Founded by the late Sir John Macpherson, Bart., for one Highland student. The founder directed the revenue of the bequest to be paid annually to a new bursar, but the Senatus found it more likely to promote the objects of the foundation, to appoint annually a new bursar for four years, and to pay him the annual revenue of the fund by four equal annual instalments, that is, during his curriculum of arts. As the revenue amounts to L.80, the annual value of the bursary is L.20, and the foundation thus yields four bursaries of that value, instead of one at L. 90; a sum considered by the Senatus much too large in proportion to the expense of living and of education in Aberdeen. Patrons, the Senatus.

29. Forbes's Bursaries.— Founded in 1821, by John Forbes, Esq. of New. The bequest consists of L.200 long annuities, expiring in 1860, to be applied to the support of eight bursars at King's and Marischal Colleges, at L. 25 each. Patron, Sir Charles Forbes of New, Bart.

30. Simpson Bursaries.—Founded in 1840, by the late Dr Simpson, an alumnus of King's College, who left upwards of L.11,000, 3 per cent, consols, for the purpose of founding six bursaries of L.30 each, and two annual prizes of L. 60 each, one for the best Greek scholar, the other for the best mathematician in the magistrand class of the year. The Senatus are patrons of this splendid bequest, and the bursars are chosen by public competition.

31. King William's Divinity Bursaries.—Besides the above, there are two divinity bursars, founded by King William III. out of the Bishop's rents, the patronage of which is in the Lords of the Treasury, who select from a leet sent up by the Masters of King's and Marischal Colleges. These bursaries are common to both colleges. At first, their value was L.20 each; but Queen Anne reduced them to L.10 each, and transferred L.20 in aid of the salary of the Principal of King's College. Although these bursaries are said to be paid partly by King's College and partly by Marischal College, they have never, in point of fact, been paid by either body, but always by the Exchequer.

32. Bruce's Bursaries.—Founded about 1827 (but the money not received till 1836,) by the Rev. George Bruce, for six bursars in divinity, who receive L. 10 each. Patrons, the Senatus.

33. Davidson's Bursary.—Founded in 1827, by Mr William Davidson, for one bursar, who receives L.14, 8s. Those of the name of Davidson to be preferred. Patrons, the Senatus.

By the above statement it appears that there are, on the thirty-three foundations, 150 bursaries, including those in medicine and theology, the aggregate annual value of which is above L. 2000. This is exclusive of the two Sunday preachers, who receive L. 60 each on Dr Murray's foundation, and of the 17 boys educated and supported at the school of Fordyce under Redhyth's foundation. There can be no manner of doubt that this large amount of scholarship, large in proportion to the whole number of students, is of the very greatest benefit in a country like Scotland, where the inhabitants, although poor, are yet intelligent, and very desirous of giving to their children a liberal education.

It has been thought right to give the details of the original and present state of these foundations, that the public may know how well the funds thus entrusted to the college have been managed. It will be seen, on referring to the above statement, that in every •case where the college has been at liberty to invest a capital sum according to their judgment, this has been so judiciously and conscientiously done, and also so fortunately, that in every such instance either the amount or the number, or both, of the bursaries on a special fund, have been augmented. In no case has the number been augmented without an addition to the value of the bursaries, and in no one such case has the value been diminished. It has been said that the multiplication of small bursaries produces bad effects; but it is to be observed that the College has uniformly raised the value where it had the power to do so. Besides, it is the opinion, formed on experience of all the members, that large bursaries, that is, above L.20 or L.30, are not favourable to studious habits, and that the inconvenience on this side is greater than on the other. No doubt, it is desirable, that no bursary should be under L.10 to L.15; and it may safely be said that, had the College been in all cases trustees of the capital sum, with full power, there would now be none under that value. But King's College has, at all events, reason to be proud of her management of the funds actually intrusted to her for the benefit of poor scholars, and may safely challenge the world to produce another example of equal skill and integrity in the management of so numerous and often individually small trusts. If we take the earlier bursaries, thus managed by the College, excluding one or two recent and large bequests, we shall find that the annual revenue of the trust-funds is not far from being equal to the original fee-simple of the funds. It is only just that the truth on this matter of the mortifications of King's College should be known, for it has often, and especially of late, been much misrepresented, and King's College has been accused authoritatively of malversation, and of acting contrary to the will of the founder, for acting as they have done. To take only one example, in Adam's mortification, at first designed to support three bursars at L.3, 6s. 8d. each, or to yield L.10 in all; this fund might have been kept in its original amount, say in the funds, and such a mode of management has not only been frequently practised elsewhere, but praised in others, as fulfilling the intentions of the founder, by the very parties who blame King's College. But King's College acted differently; invested the capital with caution and skill; and now maintains out of this fund twelve bursars instead of three, expending on them L.200 instead of L.10 annually. This is called acting contrary to the will of the founder, nay, it is actually affirmed to be contrary to the spirit, and not merely to the letter of that will. This is, moreover, what is stigmatized as multiplying small bursaries; twelve bursaries averaging L. 16, 13s. 4d. being substituted for three of L.3, 6s. 8d. It ought here likewise to be stated, that the masters have no personal interest in the gradual and slow improvement of these trust-funds. The only way in which they are personally benefited thereby is by the class-fees paid by the newly made bursars. But the increase under this head to any one individual during his incumbency is quite trifling; the bursars, besides, for the most part pay reduced fees, and the aggregate number of students is not now so large as it has been, nor larger than it often was in early periods, although there are more bursars, and the non-bur-sars always pay the full fees. Even if the masters, however derived a much greater benefit than they do from this source, they could not do so without a corresponding extension of university education; in other words, a great benefit to the country at large —and to this they are surely well entitled.

Exclusive of the Huttonian prize of L.15 and the two new Simp-sonian prizes of L.60 each, about L.80 is annually bestowed in prizes in the form of books. This money is made up by contributions from the surplus funds of the richer mortifications. The Professors also frequently add prizes at their own private cost.

A fund, called the Edilis fund, formerly existed for the necessary repairs in the College, and in the houses of the masters; but, owing to the dilapidation of the College property, this fund has long been merely nominal, it being now considerably in debt. Part of the public buildings was about twenty years ago repaired and rebuilt by a public subscription ; and one hundred years ago Dr James Fraser, formerly mentioned, built, at his own expense, the whole range of buildings now forming the south side of the College. The square tower in the north-east corner was built before the Restoration by subscription.

Owing to the decay of the Edilis fund, the houses of the Professors, intended by the founder to be free, are now all more or less in debt, for building or repairs. In most cases, the interest of this debt amounts to from L.10 to L.20, but in two it reaches L.35 and L.40; thus, in reality, forming a heavy house rent, where the house ought to be free. The masters pay to the College five per cent. for money expended on their houses, and of late one to one and a half per cent. of this has been devoted to a sinking fund, in each case intended gradually to diminish the debt.

The revenues of the College form three separate accounts. The mortification account includes all the trust-funds belonging to bursaries. The superiority account includes the sums received for superiorities and feu-duties sold by the College, and is kept separately; while the procuration account includes the proper annual revenue of the College from all other sources, such as land, tithes, feu-duties, &c. &c. After deducting from the two latter accounts the annual charge on each, the respective balances, which have been already alluded to, are equally divided among the ten members. The balance of the superiority fund hardly varies from L.230, while that of the procuration or general account varies from L.200 to L.500, or even more, according to circumstances. When money must be expended on permanent improvements of the College property, it is borrowed from the mortification funds, at the current rate of interest, and the debt thus incurred each year is paid off by ten annual instalments.

The accounts are kept and the property managed by the common procurator or College factor. This office was formerly held by one of the masters ; but, of late years, a man of business has been appointed, who receives a small salary, and a very small commission on his intromissions with the trust-funds. The present procurator is William Gordon, Esq. Advocate.

Degrees are granted, as formerly mentioned, in all the faculties. Those of D.D. and LL.D. are commonly honorary degrees. The degree of M. D. is conferred after examination in presence of the Senatus, according to regulations adopted in 1839. Since that period, the average annual number of medical degrees conferred, exclusive of a few honorary degrees, has been seven. For many years previously, no degrees at all had been conferred in medicine. The cost of a medical degree, including the L.10 stamp, is L.26, 5s. 6d. Of the degree of A. M. mention has already been made. The expense of it is L.2, 16s. 2d.

The students in divinity are common to both Colleges, and attend alternately the Professors of Divinity in King's and Maris-chal College. They often amount to 150.

The Medical School of King's College includes the following classes:

besides Clinical Lectures at the Hospital. A building, as already stated, has lately been erected for the accommodation of the lecturers. The school is at present prosperous, and this notwithstanding the existence of another medical school in Aberdeen attached to Marischal College.

The Library of King's College is very extensive and valuable but sadly cooped for want of space. As one of the four universities of Scotland, King's College enjoyed, till lately, the Stationer's Hall privilege, and now receives, by Act of Parliament, the compensation granted in lieu of that privilege. By a decision of the Court of Session, in the exercise of their nobile officium or legislative power, the Marischal College has long been entitled to the use of the books derived from Stationer's Hall. But the custody of these books, as well as the choice of those to be purchased with the compensation fund, remain with the University of King's College.

The library possesses some other funds, partly derived*from bequests, partly from martriculation, and other fees paid by students. It is managed by a librarian with two bursars as assistants. The students attending College have the use of the books on deposit of L. 1 for each volume, to be returned when the book is restored. The Masters have the use of a certain number of volumes without deposit. One of them is annually named curator, and is aided by a Library Committee.

A very neat room in the newest part of the College was fitted up, in 1842, very beautifully for a Museum of Natural History. It is expected it will be opened in summer. There are no funds yet provided for the Museum. It has been fitted up by subscription.

The Natural Philosophy Class has a tolerable cabinet of apparatus, which the Professor is annually improving and extending, by means of a small fund set apart for the purpose. The class of Chemistry possesses a moderate stock of apparatus, the property of the College, and an excellent lecture room. The Professor has a considerable amount of apparatus of his own ; but there is no fund worth mentioning for the purchase of apparatus, materials, or specimens, for this class. It may here be mentioned, that in summer he gives a course of Practical Chemistry; average number of students, 10. There has for some years existed in the Natural Philosophy Class, an excellent class library, purchased chiefly by subscriptions from the students, aided by the Professors. A similar library has this session been instituted in the Chemistry Class.

There are a few astronomical instruments belonging to the College, but no regular Observatory.

The College Chapel is a very handsome building, being the quire of the old College Church, the nave of which is now the Library. The stalls for the members of the church in the quire are of beautifully carved black oak, and are surrounded by a screen of the same material, which, in point of beauty and delicacy of carving, far surpasses any similar remains in Scotland. The tomb of Bishop Elphinstone is in the middle of the chapel, and, although once highly ornamented, is now covered with a slab of black marble without inscription.

In the Senatus meeting-room is a fine portrait by Jameson, of Bishop Patrick Forbes; and in the Public Hall adjoining are. portraits of Bishops Dunbar, Elphinstone, Lesley, (of Ross), and Scougall, also of Hector Boece, and of Henry Scougall, of George Buchanan, and curious likenesses of many of the Stuart Kings.

The College is rendered conspicuous at a distance, by its fine square tower, surmounted by a beautiful imperial crown, which again is surmounted by a cross. The effect of this belfry is remarkably fine. In its present form it is said to have been built by Bishop Dunbar about 1530, the original tower or spire having been blown down or damaged by a storm. The old part of the College to which this belongs is ornamented with the arms of James IV., of several of the Bishops, and of some of the nobles. The tower and crown are faced with freestone from Moray.

It only now remains to mention, in addition to the eminent Professors formerly named, those distinguished men who were educated at King's College. Among these may be named James Cheyne, LL. D., who became Professor in Paris and Douay, about 1570; John Erskine of Dun, who assisted in promoting the Reformation in Scotland; Sir George Mackenzie, King's Advocate, 1674; Mr George Gordon of Haddo, Regent in the College, afterwards President of the Court of Session, 1681, Chancellor, 1682, and the first Earl of Aberdeen; Dr Thomas Bower, a distinguished mathematician; the celebrated Dr Thomas Reid, first Professor of Philosophy here, and afterwards in Glasgow; Lord Monboddo; Robert Hall; Charles Burney, the celebrated Greek scholar; the late Dr James Gregory of Edinburgh, author of the "Conspectus Medicinse Theoreticse," and long Professor of the Practice of Medicine; he was son of Dr John Gregory, formerly mentioned, and received part of his education at King's College, before his father was invited to Edinburgh; and lastly, the late Sir James Mackintosh, M. P.; George, Earl Marischall, the founder of Marischall College; and Arthur Johnston, the celebrated Latin poet, were also educated at King's College.

Such is a brief account of the University and King's College of Aberdeen. Attention has been chiefly devoted to its present state; and the writer trusts that it will appear that this Institution was never more flourishing than it is now. That it may long continue, as it has always been, a blessing and an ornament to the north of Scotland, is the wish of every true Scottish man who knows its history.


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