John Stuart Blackie

John Stuart Blackie

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John Stuart Blackie

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John Stuart Blackie (28 July 1809 – 2 March 1895) was a Scottish scholar and man of letters. He was born in Glasgow, and educated at the New Academy and afterwards at the Marischal College, in Aberdeen, where his father was manager of the Commercial Bank.

After attending classes at Edinburgh University (1825–1826), Blackie spent three years at Aberdeen as a student of theology. In 1829 he went to Germany, and after studying at Göttingen and Berlin (where he came under the influence of Heeren, Otfried Müller, Schleiermacher, Neander and Böckh) he accompanied Bunsen to Italy and Rome. The years spent abroad extinguished his former wish to enter the Church, and at his father's desire he gave himself up to the study of law.

He had already, in 1824, been placed in a lawyer's office, but only remained there six months. By the time he was admitted a member of the Faculty of Advocates (1834) he had acquired a strong love of the classics and a taste for letters in general. A translation of Faust, which he published in 1834, met with considerable success, winning the approbation of Carlyle. After a year or two of desultory literary work he was (May 1839) appointed to the newly-instituted chair of Humanity (Latin) in the Marischal College.

Difficulties arose in the way of his installation, owing to the action of the Presbytery on his refusing to sign unreservedly the Confession of Faith; but these were eventually overcome, and he took up his duties as professor in November...
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