Adam Gifford

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Lord Gifford.

Adam Gifford, Lord Gifford FRSE (/ˈɡɪfərd/; 29 February 1820, Edinburgh – 20 January 1887) was a Scottish advocate and judge.

He was a Radical in politics, and expected no appointment from Government, until he was made an advocate depute in 1861, under Palmerston; he prosecuted Jessie McLauchlan in the 1863 Sandyford murder case. He was appointed Sheriff of Orkney and Man in 1865, but delegated his duties to a resident sheriff-substitute.

His lucrative private practice as an advocate made him a fortune, which he bequeathed towards the endowment of the four Gifford Lectureships on natural theology in connection with each of the four universities in Scotland then extant (Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh and St. Andrews); he was a man of a philosophical turn of mind, and a student of the works of Spinoza. He held office as a judge from 1870 to 1881, despite symptoms of paralysis from 1872 onwards.

He was the uncle of Sir Walter Raleigh (1861–1922), the professor of English at the University of Glasgow.

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