Robert Boog Watson

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Rev Robert Boog Watson BA FRSE (26 September 1823 – 23 June 1910) was a Scottish malacologist and minister of the Free Church of Scotland best known as the author of the report on the Scaphopoda and Gastropoda collected during the H.M.S. Challenger expedition to survey the world's oceans from 1873 to 1876.[1] Watson also described various Opisthobranchia from Madeira.[2]


He was born in Burntisland in Fife. He was educated at Edinburgh Academy. He served as Chaplain to the Highland Brigade during the Crimean War.[3]

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1862.

In later life he is recorded as living at 19 Chalmers Street on the south side of Edinburgh.[4]

He died in Edinburgh and is buried in the south-west section of Grange Cemetery with his wife Janet.


Robert was the son of the Rev Charles Watson of Burntisland and Isabella Boog. His brother, Sir Patrick Heron Watson was an eminent surgeon and a pioneer of modern dentistry.[5]

His daughter, Helen Brodie Cowan Watson, married Major General William Burney Bannerman FRSE (1858–1924), the son of Rev James Bannerman.[6]


  • Robert Boog Watson (c. 1897). On the marine mollusca of Madeira : with descriptions of thirty-five new species and an index-list of all known sea-dweling species of that island. 
  • George Dixon; Robert Boog Watson (1858). A Descriptive Manual of British Land and Fresh Water Shells, Containing Descriptions and Figures of All the Species.