Academic Patronage in the Scottish EnlightenmentGlasgow, Edinburgh and St Andrews Universities

Academic Patronage in the Scottish EnlightenmentGlasgow, Edinburgh and St Andrews Universities

Roger L. Emerson

Print publication date: 2012

ISBN: 9780748625963

Publisher: Edinburgh University Press

Abstract

This book considers the politics of patronage appointments at the universities in Glasgow, Edinburgh, and St Andrews. The book explores the ways in which 388 men secured posts in three Scottish universities between 1690 and 1806; from the purge following the Revolution of 1688 to the end of Henry Dundas's political career. Most professors were political appointees vetted and supported by political factions and their leaders. This study explores the improving agenda of political patrons and of those they served and relates this to the Scottish Enlightenment. The book argues that what was happening in Scotland was also occurring in other parts of Europe where, in relatively autonomous localities, elite patrons also shaped things as they wished them to be. The role of patronage in the Enlightenment is essential to any understanding of its origins and course. This book is based on much archival study and adds substantially to what is known about the Scottish professorial during the period.