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The Scottish Nation

CURRIE, a surname which appears to have been derived from Koria or Coria, Roman station. The parish of Currie, in Mid Lothian is one of those districts which still retain their ancient Latin appellation.

      Piers de Currie, descended from the family of Currie of that ilk, in Annandale, is celebrated in the Norse Chronicle, as well as in old Scottish ballad, for his exploits at the battle of Largs, where he was slain in 1263.

      The elder branch of the Curries of that ilk merged in the Johnstones of Annandale, by the marriage of one of that family with the heiress of Currie about 1540. From a cadet, Cuthbert Currie, of Kirklands, Dunse, living about 1570, descended William Currie, (died in 1681), ancestor by a younger son, of the celebrated Dr. Currie, the biographer of Burns (of whom a notice follows); while from his eldest son was descended Sir Frederick Currie, baronet, (created 17th December 1846), one of the secretaries to the government in India; a member of the supreme council in India; and a director of the E.I.C. Thrice married: issue, 8 sons and 3 daughters.

[Electric Scotland Note:  Thanks to Ian for sending us in...

Information on Mark John Currie:
From the William Currie (died in 1681), mentioned in your website, descended Mark Currie (b. 13 May 1757, d. 1 March 1835) via a chain of eldest sons.
He married Elizabeth née CLOSE, whose portrait by Romney is in the Tate Gallery in London.
Their children were:
   William        b. 1 August 1791      d. 16 Dec 1860
   Mark John    b.  21 June 1795       d. 2 May 1874
   Frederick       b. 3 February 1799   d. 11 Sep 1875     created baronet 11 January 1847*
   Charles          b. 3 October 1800
   Edward          b. 2 February 1804
   Alfred Peter  b. 6 January 1806    d. 13 April 1900
   female (I don't know name)
   female (I don't know name)
* check - minor conflict with the date in your website - my source is Burke's Peerage and Baronetage
Mark John was promoted to Vice-Admiral in 1867
I have a lot of information about him, but I'll spare you.  Key points were:
1822-3 as Captain Currie RN he explored New South Wales, both by sea as commander of HMS Satellite and on foot, discovering an area 'ripe for settlement' which he named Isabella Plains (now part of Canberra).  He went on to map the southerly route of the Murrumbidgie River and discovered the area now called Monaroo.
1829-32 he was a founder settler and administrator of Western Australia, arriving with the Governor-elect James Stirling on the Parmelia on 31st May 1829.  He was the first Harbourmaster of the colony and, later, became the first Auditor and Clerk to the Legislative Council.
1854-57 he was secretary and personal assistant to Admiral Sir James Stirling, who was at that time C-in-C China and East Indies Station, and as such he assisted in the preparation of the first Anglo-Japanese Peace Treaty.]

CURRIE, JAMES, an eminent physician, the biographer of Burns, was the son of the Rev. James Currie, minister of Kirkpatrick-Fleming in Dumfries-shire, where he was born, May 31, 1756. After receiving the rudiments of education at the parish school of Middlebie, of which parish his father had become minister, he was sent at the age of thirteen to a seminary at Dumfries, conducted by Dr. Chapman, the author of a work on education. He afterwards went to Virginia with a view to the mercantile profession; but the dissensions between Great Britain and her American colonies, which soon put a stop to the trade of the two countries, and the ungenerous treatment of his employers, disgusted him with commerce, and turning his attention to politics, he published in an American paper, under the signature of ‘An Old Man,’ a series of letters in defence of the right of the mother country to tax her colonies. He returned to his native country in 1776, and studied medicine at Edinburgh till 1780. Having procured an introduction to General Sir William Erskine, he was appointed by him ensign and surgeon’s assistant in his own regiment. With the view of obtaining the situation of physician, or assistant physician, to the forces, with an expedition then going out to Jamaica, he took his degree of M.D. at Glasgow, and immediately proceeded to London. On his arrival in the metropolis, however, he found that the appointment had been given to another. By the advice of his friends, he was induced, in October 1780, to settle in Liverpool, where he was soon elected one of the physicians to the Infirmary, and obtained an extensive practice. In 1783 he married Lucy Wallace, daughter of a respectable merchant, the lineal descendant of the hero of Scotland; and by her he had a numerous family.

      In conjunction with Mr. Roscoe, and the late Mr. William Rathbone, Dr. Currie laid the foundation of a literary club, the first institution of the kind in Liverpool. He was chosen a member of the Literary Society at Manchester, to whose Transactions he contributed some ingenious papers. He was elected a member of the London Medical Society in 1790; and in 1791 a fellow of that Society. His various medical publications raised his name very high, but he was less successful in his miscellaneous political writings. These latter were invariably on the unpopular side; and a letter which he addressed to Mr. Pitt in 1793 raised him a host of enemies. During an excursion which he made into Scotland in 1792, on account of his health, he had become personally acquainted with Robert Burns. On the death of the poet, at the request of his old friend Mr. Syme of Ryedale, and for the benefit of Burns’ family, he undertook the superintendence of the first complete edition of his works, with an account of his life, and criticisms on his writings, which was published in 1800, in 4 vols. 8vo.

      In 1804 Dr. Currie was seriously attacked by a pulmonary complaint, to which he had been for many years subject; and having relinquished his practice at Liverpool, he spent the ensuing winter alternately at Bath and Clifton. In March 1805 he felt himself so far recovered, as to take a house at Bath and commence practice there. But all his complaints returning with increased violence, he went, as a last resource, to Sidmouth in Devonshire, where he died, August 31, 1805, in the 50th year of his age, leaving a widow and five children. His works are:

      A Letter, Commercial and Political, addressed to the Right Honourable William Pitt, by Jasper Wilson, Esq. 1793. Two editions.

      Medical Reports on the Effects of Water, cold and warm, as a Remedy in Fever and Febrile Diseases, whether applied to the surface of the Body, or used as a Drink, with Observations on the Nature of Fever, and on the Effects of Opium, Alcohol, and Inanition. Liverpool, 1797, 8vo. 2d edition, enlarged and corrected. 1801, 2 vols. 8vo. 3d edit. 1804, 2 vols, 8vo, 5th edit. 1814, 2 vols. 8vo.

      The Works of Robert Burns, with an Account of his Life, and a Criticism on his Writings. To which are prefixed, Some Observations on the Character and Condition of the Scottish Peasantry. Liverpool, 1800, 4 vols. 8vo. New edit. Edin. 1818, 4 vols. 12mo. Various editions.

      Of Tetanus, and of Convulsive Disorders, Mem. Med. iii. p. 147.

      Account of the Remarkable Effects of a Shipwreck on the Mariners; with Experiments and Observations on the Influence of Immersion in Fresh and Salt Water, Hot and Cold, on the Powers of the Living Body. Phil. Trans. Abr. xvii. 193. 1792.

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