1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Sibbald, Sir Robert

SIBBALD, SIR ROBERT (1641–1722), Scottish physician and antiquary, was born in Edinburgh on the 15th of April 1641. Educated at Edinburgh, Leiden and Paris, he took his doctor’s degree at Angers in 1662, and soon afterwards settled as a physician in Edinburgh. In 1667 with Sir Andrew Balfour he started the botanical garden in Edinburgh, and he took a leading part in establishing the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, of which he was elected president in 1684. In 1685 he was appointed the first professor of medicine in the university. He was also appointed geographer-royal in 1682, and his numerous and miscellaneous writings deal effectively with historical and antiquarian as well as botanical and medical subjects. He died in August 1722.

Amongst Sibbald’s historical and antiquarian works may be mentioned A History Ancient and Modern of the Sheriffdoms of Fife and Kinross (Edinburgh, 1710, and Cupar, 1803), An Account of the Scottish Atlas (folio, Edinburgh, 1683), Scotia Ulustrata (Edinburgh, 1684) and Description of the Isles of Orkney and Shetland (folio, Edinburgh', 1711 and 1845). The Remains of Sir Robert Sibbald, containing his autobiography, memoirs of the Royal College of Physicians, portion of his literary correspondence and account of his manuscripts, was published at Edinburgh in 1833.