Robert Wallace (Edinburgh MP)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Robert Wallace
Robert Wallace.jpg
Taken from the frontispiece of his biography: Robert Wallace: Life and Last Leaves.
Born (1831-06-24)24 June 1831
Kincaple, St. Andrews, Scotland, UK
Died 6 June 1899(1899-06-06) (aged 67)
London, UK
Occupation Writer, biographer, teacher, minister, editor, barrister, politician
Nationality Scottish
Genre Non-fiction, biography, theology
Spouse Margaret Robertson
Children six sons and one daughter
Robert Wallace c1895

Robert Wallace (24 June 1831 – 6 June 1899) was a Scottish writer who had a remarkably varied career as a classics teacher, minister, university professor, newspaper editor, barrister and finally a member of parliament. He was born on 24 June 1831 at Kincaple near St. Andrews, Fife, and was the second son of Jasper Wallace, a gardener, and Elizabeth Archibald. He was educated at the Geddes Institution, Culross, Fife, and at the University of St. Andrews where he graduated M.A. in 1853. He was awarded the degree of D.D. by Glasgow University in 1869. He married Margaret Robertson (died 1898) on 10 March 1858 and they had six sons and one daughter. While he was minister at Old Greyfriars Church in Edinburgh, he was involved in attempts to reform and modernise the Church of Scotland. As a result, his fitness to be a minister was questioned[1] and presumably this controversy influenced his decision to leave the clerical profession. He died in London on 6 June 1899.[2]


  • 1854 – Appointed classical master at Cupar Academy.[3]
  • July 1857 – Licensed as a minister by the Presbytery of Edinburgh.
  • Dec. 1857 – Ordained at Newton-on-Ayr Church of Scotland.
  • Dec. 1860 – Transferred to Trinity Parish Church, Edinburgh.
  • Dec. 1868 – Transferred to Old Greyfriars, Edinburgh.
  • Aug. 1876 – Left the clerical profession and was appointed editor of the Scotsman newspaper.
  • Nov. 1880 – Resigned from the editorship.
  • Nov. 1883 – Studied law and called the English Bar at the Middle Temple, London.
  • 1886 – Elected as Liberal M.P.for the Edinburgh East.
  • 1892 – Re-elected as M.P. for Edinburgh East.
  • 1895 – Re-elected as M.P. for Edinburgh East and remained so till his death in 1899.[4]



  • Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanae: the Succession of Ministers in the Church of Scotland from the Reformation, edited By Hew Scott, D.D., Volume I, The Synod of Lothian and Tweeddale. Edinburgh: Oliver and Boyd, 1915, pp. 43–44.
  • Who Was Who entry, A & C Black, 1920–2008; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2007 [1]
  • Robert Wallace: Life and Last Leaves. Edited by J. Campbell Smith and William Wallace. London: Sands & Co., 1903. (William Wallace was the brother of Robert Wallace.)
  • Library catalogues at


  1. ^ Cf. The Church of Scotland and the clerical scandals in Old Greyfriars' Church, Edinburgh: Ought the Rev. Dr Robert Wallace to remain, or to be allowed by the General Assembly to remain, a minister of the Church of Scotland? Evidence for the prosecution. by "Free Lance" [Alexander Richardson]. (Edinburgh : Maclachlan & Stewart, 1871).
  2. ^ Entry in Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanae, Volume One, pp. 43–44, and also his biography, Robert Wallace: Life and Last Leaves.
  3. ^ Cf. 'Leading events in Mr. Wallace's life' in Robert Wallace: Life and Last Leaves, also his entry in the Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanae, Volume One, pp. 43–44.
  4. ^ This career list is adapted from Wallace's Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanae entry.
  5. ^ This appears in the site but nowhere else.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
George Goschen
Member of Parliament for Edinburgh East
Succeeded by
Sir George McCrae