Search just our sites by using our customised search engine

Unique Cottages | Electric Scotland's Classified Directory

Click here to get a Printer Friendly PageSmiley

The Scottish Nation

ROBERTSON, the name of a Highland clan, called in Gaelic the clan Donachie, of which Robertson of Strowan in Perthshire is the chief. Tradition claims for the clan Donachie a descent from the great sept of the Macdonalds, their remote ancestor being said to have been Duncan the Fat, son of Angus Mor, lord of the Isles, in the reign of William the Lion. Skene, however, in his History of the Highlanders, traces them from Duncan, king of Scotland, eldest son of Malcolm III., their immediate ancestor being Conan, second son of Henry, fourth and last of the ancient Celtic earls of Atholl. This Conan, in the reign of Alexander II., received from his father the lands of Glenerochy, afterwards called Strowan, in Gaelic Struthan, that is, steamy. His son, Ewen, had several sons, one of whom was the progenitor of the family of Skene (see SKENE, surname of).

Ewen’s grandson, Andrew, was styled of Atholl, de Atholia, which was the uniform designation of the family, indicative of their descent from the ancient earls of Atholl.

Andrew’s son, Duncan, gave the clan their distinctive appellation of the clan Donachie, or the children of Duncan. He married, 1st, a daughter of a certain Callum Rua, or Malcolm the red-haired, who, being styled Leamnach, is supposed to have been connected with the earls of Lennox, and by his wife he acquired a considerable accession of territory, including the southern division of the glen or district of Rannoch. The clan Donachie were adherents of Bruce, and on one of the two islands in Loch Rannoch a Macdougal of Lorn, taken prisoner in one of their clan battles, was confined for some time, but contrived to make his escape. By his first wife he had a son, Robert de Atholia. Duncan married, 2dly, the co-heiress of Ewen de Insulis, thane of Glentilt, and got the east half thereby. By her he had, 1. Patrick de Atholia, first of Lude. 2. Thomas de Atholia of Strowan. 3. Gibbon, who had no legitimate issue.

Duncan’s eldest son, Robert de Atholia, married a daughter of Sir John Stirling of Glenesk, and obtained with her part of her father’s property, which their daughter, Jane, received on her marriage with Menzies of Fothergill. Robert took for his second wife one of the daughters and co-heiresses of Fordell, and had an only son, Duncan. In the celebrated foray which the Highlanders made into Angus in 1392, the clan Donachie acted a conspicuous part. It was on this occasion that it appeared for the first time as a distinct tribe.

Thomas, the 2d son of the 2d marriage, had a daughter, who obtained part of her father’s possessions on marrying Alexander, 2d son of Patrick of Lude, but the estate of Strowan went, probably by marriage of an elder daughter of Thomas, to Duncan, the son of Robert, who is mentioned in the Rotuli Scotiae as Duncanus de Atholia, dominus de Ranagh, or Rannoch. From his son, Robert Riach (grizzled), who succeeded him, the clan derive their name of Robertson.

This Robert was noted for his predatory incursions into the Lowlands, and is historically known as the chief who arrested and delivered up to the vengeance of the government, Robert Graham and the master of Atholl, two of the murderers of James I., for which he was rewarded with a crown charter, dated in 1451, erecting his whole lands into a free barony. He also received the honourable augmentation to his arms of a naked man manacled under the achievement, with the motto, Virtutis Gloria merces. He was mortally wounded in the head near the village of Auchtergaven, in a conflict with Robert Forrester of Torwood, with whom he had a dispute regarding the lands of Little Dunkeld. Binging up his head with a white cloth, he rode to Perth, and obtained from the king a new grant of the lands of Strowan. On his return home, he died of his wounds. He had three sons, Alexander, Robert, and Patrick. Robert, the second son, was the ancestor of the earls of Portmore, a title now extinct, (see PORTMORE, Earl of).

The eldest son, Alexander, was twice married. By his first wife, a daughter of the third Lord Glammis, grandson of Lady Jane Stewart, daughter of Robert II., he had four sons and a daughter. The sons were, Duncan, who predeceased his father, leaving a son, William; Robert; Andrew, progenitor of the Robertsons of Ladykirk and other families of the name; and James, ancestor of the Robertsons of Auchleeks, &c. The daughter married Moray of Ogilvy and Abercairnie. His second wife, a daughter of the earl of Atholl, bore to him two sons and one daughter. The sons were, Alexander, progenitor of the Robertsons of Faskally, and John, of whom sprung the Robertsons of Muirtown, Gladney, &c. The daughter, Margaret, married the earl of Errol.

Alexander Robertson of Strowan died in, or shortly prior to, 1507, and was succeeded by his grandson, William. This chief had some dispute with the earl of Atholl concerning the marches of their estates, and was killed by a party of the earl’s followers, in 1530. Taking advantage of a wadset or mortgage which he held over the lands of Strowan, the earl seized nearly the half of the family estate, which the Robertsons could never again recover. William’s son, Robert, had 2 sons, William, who died without issue, and Donald, who succeeded him.

Robert, the son of Donald, was the tenth laird of Strowan. He sold a considerable part of the estate, but the sale was reduced by a decreet of recognition, and a grant thereof given to John Robertson, merchant in Edinburgh, a near relation of the family. The latter got a charter under the great seal, dated Aug. 7, 1606, but he reconveyed the same, under a strict entail, to the said Robert Robertson of Strowan, and his heirs male. This Robert, by his wife, a daughter of Macdonald of Keppoch, had 4 sons and 1 daughter, who married Macintosh of Strone. The sons were, Alexander, Donald, tutor of Strowan, Duncan Mor of Drumachune, and James.

The eldest son, Alexander, married a daughter of Graham of Inchbraikie, and died in 1636, leaving an infant son, Alexander, in whose minority the government of the clan devolved upon his uncle, Donald. Devoted to the cause of Charles I., the latter raised a regiment of his name and followers, and was with the marquis of Montrose in all his battles. Montrose’s commission to him as colonel of his regiment is dated June 10, 1646. From Montrose, from Charles II. in his exile, and from General Middleton and others, he received several letters which are still preserved. After the Restoration, the king settled a pension upon him.

His nephew, Alexander Robertson of Strowan, was served heir to nine of his predecessors, 22d February, 1681, namely, up to the Duncan de Atholia designed Dominus de Rannoch before mentioned. He was twice married, but his son, Robert, by his first wife, a daughter of Drummond of Machany, predeceased him. By his second wife, Marion, daughter of General Baillie of Letham, he had two sons and one daughter, and died in 1688. Duncan, the 2d son by the 2d marriage, served in Russia, with distinction, under Peter the Great.

Alexander, the elder son of the second marriage, was the celebrated Jacobite chief and poet. Born about 1670, he was destined for the church, and sent to the university of St. Andrews; but his father and brother by the first marriage dying within a few months of each other, he succeeded to the family estate and the chiefship in 1688. Soon after, he joined the Viscount Dundee, when he appeared in arms in the Highlands for the cause of King James, but though he does not appear to have been at Killiecrankie, and was still under age, he was, for his share in this rising, attainted by a decreet of parliament in absence in 1690, and his estates forfeited to the crown. He retired, in consequence, to the court of the exiled monarch at St. Germains, where he lived for several years, and served one or two campaigns in the French army. In 1703, Queen Anne granted him a remission, when he returned to Scotland, and resided unmolested on his estates, but neglecting to get the remission passed the seals, the forfeiture of 1690 was never legally repealed. With about 500 of his clan he joined the earl of Mar in 1715, and was taken prisoner at the battle of Sheriffmuir, but rescued. Soon after, however, he fell into the hands of a party of soldiers in the Highlands, and was ordered to be conducted to Edinburgh, but, with the assistance of his sister, he contrived to escape on the way, when he again took refuge in France. In 1723, the estate of Strowan was granted by the government to Margaret, the chief’s sister, by a charter under the great seal, and in 1726 she disponed the same in trust for the behoof of her brother, substituting, in the event of his death without lawful heirs of his body, Duncan, son of Alexander Robertson of Drumachune, her father’s cousin, and the next lawful heir male of the family. Margaret died unmarried in 1727. Her brother had returned to Scotland the previous year, and obtaining in 1731 a remission for his life, took possession of his estate. In 1745 he once more “marshaled his clan” in behalf of the Stuarts, but his age preventing him from personally taking any active part in the rebellion, his name was passed over in the list of prescriptions that followed. He died in his own house of Carie in Rannoch, April 18, 1749, in his 81st year, without lawful issue, and in him ended the direct male line. A volume of his poems was published after his death. An edition was reprinted at Edinburgh in 1785, 12mo, containing also the ‘History and Martial Achievements of the Robertsons of Strowan.’ He is said to have formed the prototype of the Baron of Bradwardine in Waverley.

The portion of the original estate of Strowan which remained, devolved upon Duncan Robertson of Drumachune, a property which his great-grandfather, Duncan Mor (who died in 1687), brother of Donald the tutor, had acquired from the Atholl family. As, however, his name was not included in the last act of indemnity passed by the government, he was dispossessed of the estate in 1752, when he and his family retired to France. His son, Colonel Alexander Robertson, obtained a restitution of Strowan in 1784, and died, unmarried, in 1822. Duncan Mor’s second son, Donald, had a son, called Robert Bane, whose grandson, Alexander Robertson, now succeeded to the estate.

The son of the latter, Major-general George Duncan Robertson of Strowan, C.B., passed upwards of thirty years in active service, and received the cross of the Imperial Austrian order of Leopold. He was succeeded by his son, George Duncan Robertson, born 26th July 1816, at one time an officer in the 42d Highlanders.

The force which the Robertsons could bring into the field was estimated at 800 in 1715, and 700 in 1745. The principal seat of Robertson of Strowan was formerly the castle of Invervack; it is now Mount Alexander in Rannoch. The badge of the clan is the fern or bracken.


Of the branches of the family, the Robertsons of Lude in Blair-Athol are the oldest, being of contemporary antiquity to that of Strowan.

Patrick de Atholia, eldest son of the 2d marriage of Duncan de Atholia, received from his father, at his death, about 1358, the lands of Lude. He is mentioned in 1391, by Wyntoun (Book ii. p. 367) as one of the chieftains and leaders of the clan. He had, with a daughter, married to Donald, son of Farquhar, ancestor of the Farquarsons of Invercauld, 2 sons, Donald and Alexander. The latter, known by the name of Rua or Red, from the colour of his hair, acquired the estate of Strathloch, for which he had a charter from James II. in 1451, and was ancestor of the Robertsons of Strathloch, Perthshire. His descendants were called the Barons Rua. The last male heir of the family was General John Reid, who left his large fortune to found a music chair in the university of Edinburgh.

Donald, the elder son, succeeded his father. He resigned his lands of Lude into the king’s hands on Feb. 7, 1447, but died before he could receive his infeftment. He had two sons; John, who got the charter under the great seal, dated March 31, 1448, erecting the lands of Lude into a barony, proceeding on his father’s resignation; and Donald, who got as his patrimony the lands of Strathgarry. This branch of Lude ended in an heiress, who married an illegitimate son of Stewart of Invermeath. About 1700, Strathgarry was sold to another family of the name of Stewart.

By his wife, Margaret, daughter of Sir John Drummond, ancestor of the earls of Perth, John Robertson of Lude had two sons, Donald, his successor, and John, ancestor of the Robertsons of Guay. “Robertson of Guay” who joined the insurgents in 1715, was taken prisoner, and confined in Newgate in 1716, when the estate was forfeited.

Donald, the elder son, the next laird of Lude, died in 1476.

Charles, his son, married Lilias, daughter of Sir John Lamont of Lamont, chief of the name. This lady brought with her a curious old harp, called the “Lamont Harp,” which has been in the possession of the family for several centuries, and is mentioned in Gunn’s historical work on the Performance of the Harp. He had a son, John, called M’Charlick, son of Charles, and a daughter, Marion, who married Alexander Red, eldest son of Alexander Red of Strathloch.

The son, John M’Charlick, also called Tarloson, married Margaret, daughter of Sir James Ogilvie of Inchmartin, of the family of Findlater.

His son, also named John, succeeded while still a minor, and was afterwards induced, by his mother and her brother, Sir Patrick Ogilvy of Inchmartin, to resign the barony of Lude in favour of the latter, reserving his liferent. The estate was not entirely recovered from the Ogilvies till the time of his grandson, and then only by the payment of a large sum of money. IN 1563, Queen Mary presented John’s wife, Beatrix Gardyn, widow of Finla More, ancestor of the Farquharsons of Invercauld, with her own harp, which has been carefully preserved as a family heirloom. John had, with one daughter, Marjory, married to Farquharson of Invercalud, 2 sons; Alexander, and John, of Monzie.

Alexander, the elder son, the first of the family who ceased to add the Christian name of his father to that of Robertson, the family surname, was served heir in 1565. He married Agnes, daughter of Alexander Gordon of Abergeldie, and died in 1615. With 5 daughters he had 3 sons. 1. Alexander, his successor. 2. Donald, who got from his father the lands of Kincraigie, and was ancestor of that family. 3. John, who got the lands of Inver. The latter, with his brother, Donald, greatly assisted Montrose in bringing the Atholl men to the royal standard in 1644. By Montrose, John of Inver was made captain and keeper of Blair Castle. Numerous letters to him from the great marquis are printed in Napier’s Memoirs of Montrose. His son, Donald, acquired the estate of Tullybelton, and from him descends, in a direct line, Major-general Richardson Robertson, C.B., of Tullybelton, Perthshire (1862). Isabel, 3d daughter of Alexander Robertson of Lude, married Alexander Forbes of Newe.

The eldest son, Alexander, a zealous protestant, assisted, in 1627, in raising 3,000 men for the service of Gustavus Adolphus, king of Sweden. He married Beatrix, daughter of George Graham of Inchbraco, new Inchbraikie, and had, with a daughter, 2 sons, Alexander, his successor, and John, of Fowlis, afterwards tutor of Lude. He died, suddenly, in 1639, at Dulcaben, the seat of the earl of Portmore.

The elder son, Alexander, was a minor at his father’s death, and his uncle, Patrick Graham of Inchbraikie, known as “Black Pate,” became his guardian, and commanded the Atholl Highlanders under Montrose. Though quite a youth, Alexander Robertson of Lude also joined Montrose, in ‘Highland weed,” and was with him at Tippermuir. His house was burned by Cromwell’s troops, and a fine levied on the estate. He died in 1673. He was three times married. By his 1st wife, Jean, daughter of Sir Alexander Menzies of that ilk, he had a daughter, wife of Alexander Robertson of Faskally. By his 2d wife he had no issue. By his 3d wife, Catherine, sister of the first earl of Breadalbane, he had 3 sons and a daughter.

His eldest son, John, in 1716, gave up part of his lands to save the life of a brother who was taken prisoner for having been engaged in the cause of the Stuarts.

He was succeeded by his only son, also John, served heir in Nov. 1730. He was only a few years in possession, and at his death left 2 sons and a daughter.

His eldest son, James, succeeded when only 4 years old, and was served heir to his father in 1758. He married his cousin-german, Margaret Mercer of Aldie, eldest daughter of Hon. Robert Nairne and Jean Mercer, heiress of the ancient family of Aldie and Meikleour, in the counties of Kinross and Perth (see SUPPLEMENT), and had 6 sons, of whom five entered the army, two were killed in actions, one at Seringapatam, and the other in India, and one died in the West Indies. He himself died in 1802. This laird was 62 years in possession.

He was succeeded by his eldest son, General William Robertson of Lude. This gallant officer entered the army at 15 years of age, served in the American war, and in Holland, and also at the taking of St. Lucia, and several of the West India Islands. In 1794 he raised a regiment of infantry called the Perthshire Fencibles, and in 1804 a corps of volunteers. In 1805 he accompanied the expedition to the coast of Spain under Sir James Murray Pulteney, was subsequently appointed to the staff in Scotland, and served in that capacity, as a commanding officer in the Channel Islands and in various districts in England, until the end of 1813, when he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant-general. He married, 1st, Margaret, eldest daughter of George Haldane of Gleneagles, Perthshire (represented by the earl of Camperdown), and Hon. Margaret Drummond, eldest daughter of James, viscount of Strathallan; issue, 2 sons, of whom the younger died in 1814, at a very early age. General Robertson married, 2dly, Miss Menzies of Culdares; without issue.

His eldest son, Colonel James Alexander Robertson, formerly of the 82d regiment, is now the representative of the family. IN 1860 he printed, for private circulation, an account of the ‘Comitatus de Atholia, the Earldom of Atholl. Its boundaries stated. Also, the extent therein of the Possessions of the family of De Atholia, and their Descendants, the Robertsons. With Proofs and a Map.’ The estate was sold, in 1821, to a gentleman of the name of M’Inroy.


The Robertsons of Inshes, Inverness-shire, are descended from Duncan, second son of Duncan de Atholia, dominus de Ranagh, above mentioned. One of this family, John Robertson, burgess of Inverness, called, from his great strength and courage, “Stalwart John,” was standard-bearer to Lord Lovat at the battle of Loch-Lochy in 1544. From William, his third son, sprung the Robertsons of Kindeace, Ross-shire, which branched off about 1544, and from James, William’s younger brother, came the Robertsons of Shipland. Another of the family, William Robertson, the second styled of Inshes, was bred to the law, and studied at Leyden with the celebrated Sir George Mackenzie of Rosehaugh. He was employed in several confidential political negotiations by the government of his time. A letter from him to the duke of Hamilton, led, it is stated, to the terms of Union.

Arthur John Robertson of Inshes, the fifth in descent from him, possesses in Upper Canada and the United States an extensive territory, derived through marriage with a Canadian lady, his first wife. By her he had two sons and two daughters. Arthur Masterton, the elder son, was born January 9, 1826; Thomas Gilzean, the 2d son, in 1827. By a second marriage he had a daughter. His estates in Upper Canada are held under a singular old original grant, signed by the hieroglyphics of 18 Indian chiefs, March 15, 1796, and certified officially May 12, 1797. Captain A. Robertson, 4th dragoon guards, is the son of Robertson of Inshes.


The Robertsons of Kindeace descend from William Robertson, 3d son of John, ancestor of the Robertsons of Inshes, by his wife, a daughter of Fearn of Pitcullen. He obtained from his father, in patrimony, several lands about Inverness, and having acquired great riches as a merchant, purchased, in 1615, the lands of Orkney, Nairnshire, and in 1639, those of Kindeace, Ross-shire; the latter becoming the chief title of the family.

Charles Robertson, Esq. of Kindeace, Greenyards, and Glencabre, born July 26, 1790, lieutenant-colonel in the army, formerly in the 78th and 96th regiments; a justice of the peace and deputy lieutenant of Ross-shire; succeeded his father in 1844; married, in 1816, Helen, 4th daughter and co-heir of Patrick Cruikshank, Esq. of Stracathro, Forfarshire, issue, William Cruikshank, born May 17, 1817, two other sons and two daughters.


The family of Robertson of Auchleeks, Perthshire, descend from James Robertson of Calvine, 2d son of the 5th baron of Strowan, who died in 1505, Donald, the first of Auchleeks, being his 2d son.

Charles, an ancestor of this family, called Charlich nan Jead, that is, “Charles of the Strings,” from his great skill as a harper, married Beatrix Robertson, of the family of Lude.

In 1661 Duncan Robertson of Auchleeks was a commissioner of supply for Perthshire.

In 1821 Duncan Robertson of Auchleeks sold the estate to his cousin, Robert Robertson, 9th proprietor, born Feb. 7, 1777. In 1827 this gentleman purchased the estate of Membland, Devonshire. In 1836 he was high sheriff of Devon. A justice of the peace and deputy lieutenant. He married, in 1816, Bridget, daughter of George Atkinson, Esq. of Temple Sowerby, Westmoreland; issue, 5 sons and 6 daughters.


The Robertsons of Kinlochmoidart, Inverness-shire, are descended from John Robertson of Muirton, Elginshire, 2d son of Alexander Robertson of Strowan, by his wife, Lady Elizabeth, daughter of the earl of Atholl.

The fifth is succession, the Rev. William Robertson, one of the ministers of Edinburgh, was father of Principal Robertson, a memoir of whom follows, and of Mary, who married the Rev. James Syme, and had an only child, Eleanora, mother of Henry, Lord Brougham. The principal had three sons and two daughters.

David, the eldest son, born in 1764, a lieutenant-colonel in the army, raised the first Malay regiment in Ceylon. He married, in 1799, Margaret Macdonald of Kinlochmoidart, sister and heiress of Lieutenant-Colonel Donald Macdonald, governor of Tobago, and assumed the name of Macdonald. By her, he had 3 sons, and was succeeded by his eldest son, William, of whom below.

William, the second son of Principal Robertson, was a judge of the court of session. Born in December 1754, he passed advocate in 1775. In 1779 he was chosen procurator of the Church of Scotland, and in 1805 was appointed a lord of session, when he took the title of Lord Robertson. He retired from the bench in 1826, and died 20th Nov. 1835. He was twice married, but left no children by either of his wives.

For James, the 3d son, and the two daughters of Principal Robertson, see end of the memoir of the Principal’s life below.

William Robertson of Kinlochmoidart, born May 26, 1802, the eldest son of Col. David Robertson, married, in 1828, Sarah Adams, daughter of James Beck, Esq. of Prior’s Hardwick, Warwickshire, issue 3 sons. William James, the eldest, born June 10, 1829, married, in 1857, a daughter of Frederick Sydney Crawley, Esq.


The Robertsons of Ladykirk, Berwickshire, descend from a branch of the Robertsons of Strowan. David Marjoribanks, youngest son of Sir John Marjoribanks of Lees, Bart., married in 1834, Mary Sarah, eldest daughter of Sir Thomas Haggerston, Bart. Of Ellingham, Northumberland, and co-heir of her mother Margaret, only child and heir of William Robertson of Ladykirk, with issue, and assumed the name of Robertson, on succeeding to the estates of his wife’s maternal grandfather. Born April 2, 1797, elected M.P. for Berwickshire in May 1859.

The family of ROBERTSON-GLASGOW of Mountgreenan, Ayrshire, traditionally claims descent from the Robertsons of Strowan, Perthshire, and in the female line, represents the Setons of Monkmylne, Haddingtonshire, lineally descended from Sir Christopher Seton and Christian Bruce, sister of Robert I.

In 1624, William Robertson purchased from Alexander Meirns certain lands and heritages in the parish of Eyemouth, Berwickshire. Dying in 1638, he was succeeded by his eldest son, John Robertson. The latter died before 1668.

His eldest son died previous to Sept. 10, 1686. His son, William, married Margaret Seton, heiress of Robert Seton of Monkmylne, and was, in consequence, designated of that place. His sister, Margaret, married Andrew Home of Fairneyside, and had an only daughter, Elizabeth, of Fairneyside.

William Robertson of Monkmylne died in 1720. He had two sons, William, who succeeded him, and Robert, of whom afterwards, and a daughter, Isabella, wife of William Graeme, Esq. of Jordanstown.

The elder son of William Robertson of Monkmylne, also named William, died, without issue, Aug. 7, 1738.

He was succeeded by his brother, Robert Robertson of Prenderguest and Brownsbank, born Nov. 4, 1713, married, 1st, in 1743, Margaret, daughter of Rev. George Hume of Chrinside, 2d son of Alexander Hume of Kennetsidehead, one of the martyrs of the Covenant. This lady was cousin-german of David Hume, the historian. He married, 2dly, in 1761, Anne Martin of Headrigg, Berwickshire, and 3dly, in 1778, his cousin-german, Elizabeth Home of Fairneyside. (See HOMES of Kimmerghame and Redhaugh.) He died July 30, 1788, having had issue only by his first wife, 2 sons, Alexander, born in 1748, and William Robert, of Eyemouth, born in 1761, died July 7, 1833. The latter married in 1801 Margaret, daughter of John Jameson, Esq., sheriff-clerk of Clackmannanshire, issue, 3 sons and 6 daughters. Sons, 1. Robert, born in 1802, passed advocate in 1823; sheriff-substitute of Stirlingshire; married, in 1827, Alicia Catherine, eldest daughter of Rev. Charles Eustace of Robertstown, co. Kildare, heir-male and representative of the ancient viscounts of Baltinglass, issue, 2 sons and 2 daughters. 2. John James, of Gledswood, co. Dublin, born in 1804, issue, 4 sons and 3 daughters. 3. Rev. William, minister of New Grayfriars parish, Edinburgh, born in 1805, married, in 1834, Georgiana Touchet, daughter of John Cossins, Esq. of Weymouth, by his wife, Hon. Elizabeth Susanna, a daughter of George, 18 Lord Audley, issue, 4 sons and a daughter. Jean, the 3d daughter of Robert Robertson of Prenderguest and Brownsbank, married Thomas Potts, Esq., grandson maternally of Haig of Bemersyde, issue, a son, Thomas, of the Daison, Torquay, Devonshire.

Alexander Robertson of Prenderguest, the elder son of Robert Robertson of Prenderguest and Brownsbank, died in 1804.

The eldest of his six sons, Robert Robertson of Prenderguest, Brownsbank, and Gunsgreen, married, in 1804, Anne, daughter of Robert Glasgow, Esq. of Mountgreenan, Ayrshire, and having thereby acquired that estate, and also the property of Glenarback, Dumbartonshire, he assumed the name of Glasgow only. He died January 27, 1845.

He was succeeded by his only surviving son, Robert Robertson-Glasgow of Mountgreenan, born in 1811, died Sept. 20, 1860. By his wife, Mary Wilhelmina, daughter of John Campbell, Esq. of Stonefield, Argyleshire, he had two sons and a daughter.

His elder son, Robert Bruce Robertson-Glasgow, born April 3, 1842, succeeded; an ensign in the 27th reg. of foot.


Another judge, who assumed the title of Lord Robertson, was Patrick Robertson, the son of James Robertson, writer to the signet. Born in Edinburgh in 1794, he passed advocate in 1815, and the clearness of his intellect, with the readiness and versatility of his powers, enabled him in a short time to attain considerable practice both in the court of session and at the bar of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. His real strength lay in his powers of wit and humour, united with acute perception and knowledge of human nature. In sheer power of ridicule no one approached him, and his convivial and social qualities were of the highest order. He was croupier at the famous Edinburgh Theatrical Fund dinner in 1827, when Sir Walter Scott announced himself the author of Waverley, and took his seat as chairman after Scott had left the room. In November 1842, Mr. Robertson was chosen dean of the faculty of advocates, and a year afterwards, on the resignation of Lord Meadowbank, he was promoted to the bench. In 1845 he astonished the literary world by the publication, at London, of a volume entitled ‘Leaves from a Journal, and other Fragments, in Verse,’ 8vo; and in 1847 appeared his ‘Gleams of Thought, reflected from the writings of Milton; Sonnets and other Poems,’ Edinburgh, 8vo. In 1848 he was elected by the students lord rector of Marischal college and university of Aberdeen, and in 1849 he published ‘Sonnets, Reflective and Descriptive, and other Poems,’ Edinburgh, 8vo. As a poet his attainments were not nearly so brilliant as were those he possessed as a lawyer and a judge. Lord Robertson died suddenly by a stroke of apoplexy, January 10, 1855. In Lockhart’s Life of Sir Walter Scott there will be found various interesting notices of his lordship.

ROBERTSON, WILLIAM, D.D., a distinguished historian, the son of the Rev. William Robertson, minister of Borthwick, in Mid-Lothian, was born in the manse of that parish, in 1721. His mother was Eleanor Pitcairn, daughter of David Pitcairn, Esq. of Dreghorn, and by his father’s side he was descended from the Robertsons of Gladney in Fifeshire, a branch of the Robertsons of Strowan. He received the first rudiments of his education at the school of Dalkeith, under Mr. Leslie, then a teacher of high reputation. His father having been appointed minister of the Old Greyfriars’ church, Edinburgh, he removed, in 1733, with the family to that city, and towards the close of the same year he entered on his course of academical study at the university there. From this period until 1759, when the publication of his ‘History of Scotland’ commenced a new era in the literary annals of his country, the habits and occurrences of his life offer but few materials for biography.

In 1741, he was licensed to preach by the presbytery of Dalkeith; and, in 1743, he was presented by the earl of Hopetoun to the living of Gladsmuir, in East Lothian. Not long after, his father and mother died, with a few hours of each other, leaving six daughters, and a younger son, Mr. Patrick Robertson, afterwards a jeweler in Edinburgh, almost entirely dependent on him for subsistence. Though his stipend was small, not exceeding sixty pounds a-year, he at once took his father’s family to Gladsmuir, and continued to educate and support his sisters until they were all respectably settled in the world. One of them, Mrs. Syme, was the grandmother of Henry Lord Brougham.

On the breaking out of the rebellion of 1745, he was induced, by the critical circumstances of the times, to lay aside his clerical character, and hasten to Edinburgh, where he joined the volunteers collected for the defence of the city. When, however, it was resolved to surrender the capital to the Highlanders, he was one of a small band who repaired to Haddington and offered their services to General Cope, who declined receiving them, on account of their not being properly disciplined. He then returned to the duties of his parish, by the faithful discharge of which he in a short time acquired the veneration and attachment of his people. He also soon became distinguished for his eloquence and good taste as a preacher, and made himself known as a powerful speaker in the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. His great talents for public business soon obtained for him an ascendancy in ecclesiastical matters, and he was for a long time the leader of the Moderate party in the church. In 1757 he ably defended his friend Mr. Home, the author of the tragedy of ‘Douglas,’ in the proceedings adopted against him in the church courts, and contributed greatly, by his persuasive eloquence, to the mildness of that sentence in which the prosecution at last terminated.

The earliest of Dr. Robertson’s publications was a Sermon preached in 1755 before the Society for Propagating Christian Knowledge. This sermon, the only one he ever published, passed through several editions, and was translated into the German language. In 1758 he received a call to the charge of Lady Yester’s church, Edinburgh, to which he was translated the same year. In February 1759 he published at London his ‘History of Scotland, during the Reigns of Queen Mary and James VI.,’ in two vols. 4to, which was received with such general approbation, that, before the end of the month, he was desired by his publisher to prepare for a second edition. He is said to have cleared by this work £600; and he was gratified by receiving congratulatory letters from the most eminent men of the time; among others, from David Hume, between whom and Dr. Robertson, notwithstanding religious and political differences, an uninterrupted friendship was maintained through life.

From this period the whole complexion of his fortunes was changed. The distinction which he acquired by the publication of his ‘History of Scotland’ led to his immediate preferment. In the same year he was appointed chaplain of Stirling castle, and in the following year one of the king’s chaplains for Scotland. IN 1761, on the death of Principal Goldie, he was elected principal of the university of Edinburgh, and translated to the Greyfriars’ church. Two years afterwards the office of historiographer for Scotland was revived, and conferred upon him by the king, with a salary of £200 per annum.

In 1769 appeared his ‘History of the Reign of Charles V.,’ in three vols. 4to, which fully maintained and extended his already high reputation. For the copyright of this work he received no less than £4,500, the largest sum then known to have ever been paid for a single book. It was translated into French by M. Suard, afterwards an eminent member of the French Academy. In 1777 he published, in two volumes 4to, his ‘History of America,’ which was received with the same success as his former works. On its publication he was elected, August 8, 1777, an honorary member of the royal academy of history at Madrid, one of its members being at the same time appointed to translate the work into Spanish; an undertaking, however, which was interdicted by the Spanish government. IN 1780 Dr. Robertson retired from the business of the Church courts, but still continued his pastoral duties. In 1781 he was elected one of the foreign members of the academy of sciences at Padua, and in 1783 one of the foreign members of the imperial academy of sciences at St. Petersburg. His last work came out in 1791, in quarto, under the title of ‘Historical Disquisition concerning the Knowledge which the Ancients had of India, and the Progress of Trade with that Country, prior to the Discovery of the Cape of good Hope;’ which took its rise, as he himself informs us, from the perusal of Major Rennell’s Memoir for illustrating his Map of Hindostan. It was commenced in the 68th year of his age, and concluded in less than a twelve-month.

Towards the end of 1791, Dr. Robertson’s health began to decline. Strong symptoms of jaundice suddenly displayed themselves, and laid the foundation of a lingering and fatal illness; in the concluding stage of which he removed to Grange House, in the neighbourhood of Edinburgh, for the advantage of the free air and sequestered scenes of the country. While he was able to walk abroad, he usually passed a part of the day in a small garden, enjoying the simple gratifications which it afforded with all his wonted relish. He died June 11, 1793, in the seventy-first year of his age. His portrait is subjoined:

[portrait of William Robertson, D.D.]

He married, in 1751, his cousin Mary, daughter of the Rev. Mr. Nisbet, one of the ministers of Edinburgh, and left three sons and two daughters. The eldest son was bred to the law, and became a lord of session. The two younger sons entered the army; one of them, Lieutenant-general James Robertson, distinguished himself under Lord Cornwallis in India; and the other, having married the heiress of Kinloch-Moidart, retired to reside almost entirely on his estate. His elder daughter married Patrick Brydone, Esq. of Lennel House, author of ‘A Tour through Sicily and Malta;’ and the younger became the wife of John Russell, Esq., writer to the signet.

ROBERTSON, JOHN PARISH, an enterprising South American merchant, was born either at Kelso or Edinburgh, in the year 1792, and educated at the grammar school of Dalkeith. His father was at one time assistant-secretary to the Bank of Scotland in Edinburgh, and his mother, Juliet Parish, was the daughter of an eminent Hamburgh merchant of Scottish extraction. While he was still a boy, his father was obliged, on account of bad health, to resign his situation in the bank, and enter a commercial house at Glasgow. IN 1806, on the news reaching England of a British force, under General, afterwards Viscount Beresford, having sailed up the river Plate and taken the city of Buenos Ayres, young Robertson, then fourteen years of age, became anxious, like other ardent youths, to go out to South America to push his fortune there. Accordingly, in December of that year, he sailed from Greenock in a fine ship called the Enterprise, commanded by Captain Graham. After a voyage of three months they reached the mouth of the river Plate, where they were hailed by a British ship of war, and informed that the Spaniards had regained possession of Buenos Ayres and made Beresford and his army prisoners. An expedition, under Sir Samuel Auchmuty, was, however, investing Monte-Video, and Captain Graham was directed to proceed with his ship to the roadstead of the besieged city, and there to place himself under the orders of the British admiral. The Enterprise soon took its station off Monte-Video, among hundreds of ships similarly situated, and those on board of them were eye-witnesses of the bombardment of that city. When it had been taken, after an obstinate resistance, by assault, young Robertson and the rest of the passengers in the different ships landed and found our troops in complete possession of the place. “In a week or two,” he says, “the more prominent ravages of war disappeared, and in a month after the capture, the inhabitants were getting as much confidence in their invaders as could possibly be expected, in the altered relative position in which they stood to each other.”

During the voyage from Scotland he had made himself pretty well master of the principles of the Spanish language; and, by hourly intercourse with the natives of Monte-Video, he soon acquired tolerable fluency in speaking it. He was invited into society; and availed himself of every opportunity of obtaining a knowledge of the habits and manners of the people. He was in Monte-Video when General Whitelock arrived from England with 8,000 men, to supersede Sir Samuel Auchmuty and attempt the recapture of Buenos Ayres. Whitelock’s attack on that city was repulsed, and his expeditionary force totally defeated. By the disgraceful capitulation which he then entered into, Buenos Ayres was abandoned, and Monte-Video restored to Spain, while the British residents and the remains of the army were “permitted” to leave the country. In a few days the whole fleet, consisting of two hundred and fifty ships, sailed out of the river Plate, and the youth Robertson was obliged, among hundreds of ruined and disappointed merchants and speculators, to return to Britain.

After a sojourn at home of only a few months he once more turned his thoughts to South America, an intercourse having been opened up with Brazil, in consequence of the emigration of the royal family of Portugal to Rio de Janeiro; and he sailed in the Ajax for that capital, arriving there on the 8th October 1808.

He did not long remain in Rio, as he liked neither the climate nor the people, and the succession of political events having once more opened up a free intercourse with the river Plate, he availed himself of a favourable offer made to him to proceed to Buenos Ayres. At the latter place he was introduced to the viceroy, General Liniers, the conqueror of General Whitelock. After remaining upwards of two years at Buenos Ayres, he undertook a mercantile expedition to the isolated province of Paraguay, then but little known. The ship engaged for the purpose being equipped and stored with all things necessary, commenced, in December 1811, the laborious navigation of the river Parana. She had twelve hundred miles alternately to sail and warp, against a stream which runs at the rate of three miles an hour, and as she was not expected to make the passage in less than three months, while the distance could be performed on horseback in fifteen or sixteen days, he determined to proceed by land. Attiring himself, therefore, in the traveling costume of a South American, with a huge straw-hat, and his carving knife and pistols stuck in his girdle, he set off on horseback, accompanied by his servant, Francisca, a complete Gaucho and old post-rider, and a guide, for the city of Assumption, called by the Spaniards Asuncion, the capital of Paraguay. He was the first British subject who had ever visited that country, except a Scottish serjeant, a deserter from Beresford’s army, whom he met with in Assumption.

The city of Assumption at this time contained only about 10,000 inhabitants, IN extent, architecture, convenience, or population, it did not rank with a fifty-rate town in England. Its largest buildings were the convents, and it took him nearly a month to find a house large enough in which to accommodate his limited establishment.

On the arrival of the ship with Mr. Robertson’s effects at Assumption, the government issued its edicts, imposing on him certain fiscal restrictions of a special and unusual nature. The whole cargo, contrary to general practice, was sent to the government stores; and, among other regulations, it was not only ordered that he should take out but a limited amount of property at a time, but that his supercargo, Gomez, should be sworn to deliver in a monthly account of his employer’s whole transactions. Mr. Robertson was forbidden to export specie, or to import more merchandise. Every package of that which he had brought was strictly examined, before it was allowed to be conveyed to his own house. Double guards were put on board the vessel, and all the precautions taken which suspicion could suggest, but nothing was found wrong. His transactions became extensive, both with the native merchants and with the cultivators of produce. The large amount of wealth which he controlled brought, by degrees, the usual concomitants attendant upon the influence of property. He paid large duties to the state. He became intimate with the assessor, Cerda, as well as with the individual members of the government. He visited and was visited by them; and at length he was told that although, in compliance with the lingering jealousies of the people, it was necessary to keep the existing decrees against him as if in literal force, he might consider the most obnoxious of them as virtually abolished. In less than three months from the time of his arrival he tells us that he became popular among all classes. He dealt liberally with the rich, gave employment to the poor, and intermeddled not either with politics or religion. At this time he was not twenty years of age.

His principal friend in the place was the assessor, Don Gregorio de la Cerda, and, through his good offices, he was offered and took possession of spacious apartments in the country residence, at Campo Grande, of an old lady of the name of Dona Juana Ysquibel. Her numerous slaves and horses, her whole household establishment in short, with the produce of her estate, were at his command and disposal, and game of every kind abounded within a few hundred yards of the house. She was continually making him presents, and would accept of no refusal or return. As he had declared himself fond of the plaintive airs sung by the Paraguayans, especially when accompanied by the guitar, the old lady, at this time eighty-four years of age, straightway hired a master of that instrument, and set herself to learn how to play upon it. On his remonstrating with her, on her strange conduct, she acknowledged that it all proceeded through her intense love for him, and at once made him an offer of her hand and estate. He reasoned with her, and protested that he must leave her house, unless she solemnly promised to make him no more presents, and no longer to talk of love or play the guitar, and she reluctantly consented.

This incident is mentioned, as his residence at Campo Grande was the means of his first interview with Dr. Francia, then living in seclusion in a neat and unpretending cottage in the neighbourhood. He had gone out shooting one evening, and fired at a partridge, which at once fell to the ground. A voice from behind called out “Buen tiro” – “a good shot.” He turned, and beheld a gentleman whom he thus describes. He was “about fifty years of age, dressed in a suit of black, with a large scarlet capote, or cloak, thrown over his shoulders. He had a mâté-cup in one hand, a cigar in the other, and a little urchin of a negro, with his arms crossed, was in attendance by the gentleman’s side. The stranger’s countenance was dark, and his black eyes were very penetrating, while his jet hair, combed back from a bold forehead, and hanging in natural ringlets over his shoulders, gave him a dignified and striking air. He wore on his shoes large golden buckles, and at the knees of his breeches the same.”

This was the man who, when dictator of Paraguay, afterwards became terrible, the sanguinary despot, Dr. José Gaspar Rodriguez de Francia. Mr. Robertson apologized for having fired so close to his residence, but he politely assured him that his house and grounds were at his service, and he was welcome to amuse himself with his gun in that direction whenever he chose. He then invited Mr. Robertson to sit down under the corridor, and take a cigar and a cup of mate – the Paraguay tea.

In 1813, after a good deal of private intrigue, Francia was recalled to power. No one thought that the affairs of the country were safe in other hands than his, or that anybody but he had sufficient political sagacity to frame a treaty with a foreign state. Buenos Ayres, in consequence of the odium artfully excited against it by Francia, began to be considered not only as a foreign power, but as one of which the policy was at direct variance with the best interests of Paraguay. Mora, one of the members of the junta, was civilly dismissed. Don Gregorio de la Cerda, the assessor, was arrested, and ordered to quit the country in eight days. Francia filled up the vacancies thus created in the junta, by at once naming himself a member of it, and becoming its assessor.

On being informed of his friend Cerda’s arrest, Mr. Robertson immediately waited upon Francia, and requested to be allowed to visit him during the eight days of his confinement, and to furnish him with what assistance his comforts and wants required under the adverse circumstances which had overtaken him. Francia gave him permission to do both, saying that he did not consider Don Gregorio as a formidable rival of his. “Besides,” he added, “he is a Cordovez, and a charlatan; and the Paraguayans hate both. I think it proper to send him out of the way, because he had the impudence, on my leaving the government, to take the assessorship of it, knowing that I both hated and despised him. But go, in the meantime, and do what you will. Only let him beware how he ever again sets foot in Paraguay.

On the first meeting of the congress of deputies in Assumption called by Francia, he had the art to obtain the rejection of all proposals for an amicable intercourse with Buenos Ayres. Then, one of his colleagues in the government, Caballero, was dismissed, and Francia elected first consul, with Yegros as second, for one year. This was in October 1813. IN the following October Yegros retired from the government, in which latterly he had taken no part, and Francia was declared absolute dictator for three years. At the expiration of that time he took care to have his power confirmed for life. This extraordinary man died at Assumption, 20th September 1840, at the age of 83, retaining his dictatorship to t he last.

In the spring of 1814, Mr. Robertson had been joined by his brother from Edinburgh, Mr. William Parish Robertson, and having long meditated a voyage to England, he resolved upon now putting his design into execution. As, however, the port of Assumption was closed against all egress, in accordance with Francia’s policy of non-intercourse with the neighbouring provinces, and especially with Buenos Ayres, he sought and obtained from that personage a special license to leave the country. His motive for granting it was explained by Francia, in an interview with him, to be his desire to effect an alliance, offensive and defensive, with Great Britain. This, he thought, could be accomplished through Mr. Robertson’s good offices, and for this purpose he furnished him with several large packages of the productions of the soil of Paraguay, with some beautifully embroidered cloth made from Paraguayan cotton, and, in singular ignorance of diplomatic forms and ceremonies, as well as of the usages of the British constitution, as soon as he got to London, he was directed to present them and himself at the bar of the House of Commons, and, in his name, request that a treaty of commerce and political alliance should be entered into between the two countries!

In ascending the Parana, his ship and cargo were seized, and himself carried before a lawless adventurer, named Artigas, the leader of numerous bands of brigands, who made that part of South America the theatre of continued civil war and general depredation. This brutal marauder was about to shoot him, when his brother arrived, and successfully interceded for him. He had previously been stripped of everything, even his linen, by the soldiers of Artigas, and a soldier’s old coat thrown to him in place of all.

In 1815, he and his brother were compelled by Francia to leave Paraguay. Mr. Robertson, accordingly, sailed, with his property, for Buenos Ayres, but, on his way, stopped a Corrientes, whither his brother had preceded him. Although in a state of continual alarm lest at any moment a gang of Artigas’ robbers should break in upon him. Mr. Robertson was induced to remain for about a year at Corrientes, from the following circumstance: He was sitting one evening under the corridor of his house, when there came up to him, on horseback, a tall, raw-boned, ferocious-looking man, in Gaucho attire, with two cavalry pistols stuck in his girdle, a saber in a rusty steel scabbard pending from a besmeared belt of half-tanned leather, red whiskers and mustaches; unkempt, unwashed, and blistered to the eyes. He wore a pair of plain ear-rings, a foraging cap, a tattered poncho, blue jacket, with tarnished red facings; a large knife in a leathern sheath; a pair of potro boots and rusty iron spurs, with rowels an inch and a half in diameter. He was followed by an attendant, whom he called Don Edwardo, the very counterpart of himself, except that the hair of the latter was jet black. He took them for two of the most ferocious of Artigas’ banditti, and expecting them to be speedily followed by others, he gave himself up for lost. This, however, proved a friend, one Peter Campbell, or Don Pedro Campbell, as he was called there, one of the many deserters from Beresford’s army, who had remained in the country after it had been evacuated by the British. He had been bred a tanner in his youth, and making his way to Corrientes, had got employment there in a large tannery; but, when the revolution broke out, he offered his services to Artigas, and, having performed many daring exploits, he soon acquired the confidence of that powerful chieftain, and at this time held a command under him. His follower, Don Edwardo, was like himself from Tipperary.

Campbell had previously seen Mr. Robertson when a prisoner in the camp of Artigas, and on his arrival at Corrientes, he conceived a plan of operations for their mutual benefit. “I know,” he said, “you have the control of large property here, and that you are endeavouring to convert it into produce to take to Buenos Ayres; but, in the present disturbed state of the country, you will never get all you want ill you employ my services, and command my humble abilities. There is not an estanciero that has the courage to go to his own estate, or to peep out of his own window, or slaughter one of his own animals, unless he knows that I am out to protect him; nor is there a gaucho amongst them who dares, knowing that I am out on your business, to interfere with it. Therefore, let me go out and scour the country with your money, carried by Edwardo (his follower), and I promise you that in a year the hides of fifty thousand bullocks and one hundred thousand horses shall be sent here or to Goya,” ( a port, or inlet of the river Parana, 150 miles nearer Buenos Ayres, where Mr. Robertson formed an establishment). “I don’t want much salary,” he continued; “I like the occupation. Give me twelve hundred dollars a-year (about £250 sterling), for myself and Edwardo, and I am your man. I want nothing for my expenditure either in food or horses; my friends are ever too happy to see me to admit of any remuneration for either.”

After some consideration, this agreement was entered into. Money to a large amount was from time to time advanced to this man, and he always faithfully accounted for it. He made many large purchases of hides for the Robertsons, so that they soon became not only the hide merchants but the carriers of the province, and for the transport of their merchandise, they put into operation three of the best-appointed troops of wagons, drawn by bullocks, that had ever been seen in that part of the world. The purchase and outfit of these cost about £5,000, and they worked them at a monthly expense of about £500. As the country people returned to their abandoned and dilapidated farm-houses, Campbell and his men assisted them in putting them and their corrales or pens for cattle into proper repair, and, under his protection, they were not long in resuming their former occupations. With unwonted industry they applied themselves to the furnishing the Messrs. Robertson with their produce, especially hides, so that in a very short time, through Campbell’s energetic exertions and the enterprise and liberality of his employers, the province of Corrientes was restored to active prosperity and to general security of life and property. After a year, however, the Robertsons were induced, by prudential considerations, to wind up their business, and retire to Buenos Ayres.

In 1817 Mr. Robertson made a voyage to Scotland, at once to revisit his native country and establish more extensive and intimate relations with it, leaving his brother and an English friend in charge of matters in Buenos Ayres. He in due time settled in Liverpool, for the purpose of forming connections there and at Manchester; to which he added Glasgow, Paisley, and London, IN the end of 1820 he sailed again for Buenos Ayres, but destined for Chili and Peru. In those countries he likewise effected settlements, and thus, as he states, in the last of his ‘Letters on South America,’ their connection extended “from Paraguay to Corrientes, from Corrientes to Santa Fe, from Santa Fe to Buenos Ayres, and round Cape Horn, and across the Andes, to Chili and Peru.”

In the autumn of 1824 Mr. Robertson returned to Scotland, landing at Greenock, whence he had originally sailed to enter upon his active and prosperous career in South America. He brought with him claims and assets to the value of £100,000, in a ship chartered for his sole use, and bearing the character of political agent and representative in this country of several of the South American republics. Soon after, he established himself in London, in connection with some of the first merchants there, and was prepared to carry on South American business with new spirit and new means, when the wide-spread ruin of 1826 seriously involved him, and he was compelled to return to South America to attempt the recovery of some part of his fortune. In this object, however, he was unsuccessful, owing to the unsettled state of the country. Even his estate of Monte Grande was almost devastated by the savage followers of the different political parties then contending for power; the trees on it being broken down for firewood, and the walls of the gardens and houses used as fortifications. IN 1830 he returned to England, comparatively an impoverished man.

Finding that he could not prosecute his usual business avocations, till he had better prospects of success, he quietly entered himself a student in Corpus Christi college, Cambridge, that he might acquire some scholarship, in which he felt himself very deficient. He was, at this time, approaching forty years of age, nevertheless he pursued his new studies with characteristic enthusiasm. Though under the middle size, Mr. Robertson was of a robust frame of body; but in the course of his adventurous career in South America he had undergone much fatigue and hardship. While still a youth he had made many long journeys on horseback across the Pampas and the Cordilleras, and in various other directions, in pursuit of business objects. With his constitution thus severely tried, three years’ close application to study, so different from his former course of life, soon began to affect his health, and he found it necessary to retire from college sooner than he intended, and seek for new vigour in a beautifully situated cottage in the Isle of Wight.

Here, for about a year, he was chiefly occupied with endeavours to obtain an arrangement of his business affairs. IN 1834 he returned to London, where for some years more his pursuits were almost solely of a literary kind. IN 1838, he and his brother published by subscription, at London, a work entitled ‘Letters on Paraguay; comprising an account of a four years’ residence in that Republic, under the government of the dictator Francia. By J. P. and W. P. Robertson,’ 2 vols, 8vo. They subsequently issued another work of an equally interesting kind, bearing the title of ‘Francia’s Reign of Terror.’ Besides these two works, which supplied new and valuable information on South America, as well as contained a graphically written account of his own adventures, Mr. Robertson contributed many papers on similar subjects to the magazines, and thus was enabled to realize some moderate gains. IN 1843 he and his brother published ‘Letters on South America; comprising Travels on the Banks of the Parana and Rio de la Plata.’ 3 vols. 8vo. London. He is said to have contemplated a third series of Letters on South America, but was prevented by death from carrying his purpose into execution. He died 1st November 1843, at Calais, whither he had gone for the benefit of a mild climate. He left a widow.

Return to The Scottish Nation Index Page


This comment system requires you to be logged in through either a Disqus account or an account you already have with Google, Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo. In the event you don't have an account with any of these companies then you can create an account with Disqus. All comments are moderated so they won't display until the moderator has approved your comment.

comments powered by Disqus