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He entered the ministry of the Free Church of Scotland and after serving as colleague in Free St John's, Glasgow (1866-1870), removed to Edinburgh as colleague and successor to Dr R. S. Candlish at Free St George's. In 1909 he succeeded Dr Marcus Dods as principal, and professor of New Testament literature, at New College, Edinburgh.
Whyte lived in a huge townhouse 7 Charlotte Square, in Edinburgh's First New Town. The house is now owned by the National Trust for Scotland and open to the public as The Georgian House, Edinburgh.
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- Edinburgh and Leith Post Office Directory 1889-90
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Whyte, Alexander". Encyclopædia Britannica. 28 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
- Macaulay, A. B.; Matthew, H. C. G. "Whyte, Alexander (1836–1921)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/36886. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
- G.F. Barbour. The life of Alexander Whyte. Hodder & Stoughton. London 1923. OCLC 1652290