surname derived from two parishes of the same name, the one in Kyle,
Ayrshire, and the other in Lanarkshire. Both parishes acquired their
name, originally written Symonstoun, from Symon Loccard or Lockhart, who
held the lands of both under Walter, the 1st steward, and was the
progenitor of the Lockharts of Lee and other families of the same name.
The tradition among the Symingtons is that they were originally
Douglases, and from Lanarkshire, near Tinto.
William Symington, the
supposed inventor of the steam engine, born at Leadhills, Lanarkshire,
died at London, March 22, 1831. For his connection with steam navigation
see the memoirs of TAYLOR, JAMES, and MILLER, PATRICK, SUPPLEMENT.
SYMINGTON, ANDRES, D.D., an eminent divine, the son of a merchant
in Paisley, was born in that town, 26th June, 1785. At the university of
Glasgow, he carried off the first honours in several classes, in the
higher mathematics, in natural philosophy, and in divinity, and in 1803
he took the degree of A.M. Being intended for the ministry in the
Reformed Presbyterian Church, of which his father was a member, he
studied theology under the Rev. John MacMillan of Stirling, and soon
after being licensed to preach, he received no less than four calls, one
of which was from Paisley. He accepted the last, and was ordained in
In the year 1820, he was
chosen to succeed his old instructor, Professor MacMillan, in the chair
of theology in the Reformed Presbyterian Church. His lectures in that
capacity were described as being always solid and useful, rising
occasionally into a strain of devout eloquence.
In 1831, he received the
degree of doctor of divinity from the western university of
Pennsylvania, and in 1840 his own alma mater, the university of Glasgow,
conferred the same honour upon him. A few public sermons which he had
preached in behalf of important charities and societies were published
by request; and, besides preparing a Guide for Social Worship, a Book of
Discipline, and similar documents, at the request of his Synod, he
composed a new Doctrinal Testimony in adaptation to the existing state
of the church to which he belonged. He died Sept. 22, 1853, in the 69th
year of his age. His works are:
The God of Paul’s Fathers. A sermon. 1813.
The Dismission, Rest, and Future Glory of the Good and Faithful Servant.
A sermon preached on the death of the Rev. Archibald Mason, D.D. 1832.
The Blood of Faithful Martyrs precious in the sight of the Lord. A
The Child Jesus. A sermon. 1839.
Private Social Prayer. A sermon. 1840.
Death Swallowed up in Victory; a sermon preached on the death of the
Rev. William Goold, senior minister of the Reformed Presbyterian
Congregation, Edinburgh. Published by request. Third edition. Edinburgh,
The Martyr’s Monument. A Brief View of the Principles and character of
the Scottish martyrs. Paisley, 1847.
On Intemperance. A sermon.
Guide to Private Social Prayer.
Essay on the Unity of the Heavenly State.
Tract on the Sabbath.
Lecture on the Claims of the Church and Society on Young Men. Glasgow,
Memoir of the Rev. Thomas Halliday, Airdrie, Prefixed to his Discourses.
Elements of Divine Truth. A series of Lectures on Christian Theology to
Sabbath School Teachers. 8vo. Edinburgh. 1854. Posthumous.
Dr. Symington married, in 1811, Miss Jane Stevenson of Crookedholm, and
had a large family. Three sons and three daughters survived him. His
brother, the Rev. William Symington, D.D., minister of the first
congregation of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, Glasgow, succeeded him
as professor, and died in Jan. 1862. He was the author of several
standard works in theology.
Another brother, Robert
Brown Symington, was father of Andrew James Symington, merchant in
Glasgow, born at Paisley, 27th July, 1825, author of “Harebell Chimes,’
a volume of poetry, London, 1848; Genevieve, and other poems, printed
for private circulation; ‘The Beautiful in Nature, Art, and Life,’ 2
vols. Crown 8vo. London, 1857; and ‘Pen and Pencil Sketches of Faroe and
Iceland.’ London, 1862.