Chapman, George (1723-1806) (DNB00)


CHAPMAN, GEORGE (1723–1806), schoolmaster and writer on education, was born at the farm of Little Blacktown in the parish of Alvah, Banffshire, in August 1723. He was educated at the grammar school of Banff, and at King's College, Aberdeen, graduating M.A. in 1741, After acting for some time as master in the parish school of Alvah, he in 1747 became assistant master in an academy at Dalkeith. In 1751 he removed to Dumfries, to become joint master of the grammar school; shortly afterwards he became sole headmaster, and he held this office till 1774. On account of infirm health he relinquished it to take up a small private academy, but, finding that this was regarded as injurious to the grammar school, he removed to Banffshire, where he kept an academy at his native farmhouse. Some time afterwards, at the request of the magistrates, he undertook the superintendence of the Banff academy. Latterly he removed to Edinburgh, where he carried on business as a printer. He died at Rose Street, Edinburgh, 22 Feb. 1800. In 1773 he published 'A Treatise on Education, with a Sketch of the Author's Method of Instruction while he taught the school of Dumfries, and a view of other Books on Education,' which reached a fifth edition in 1792. In 1804 he obtained the prize offered by Dr. Buchanan for a poem and essay on the civilisation of India, and they were published at Edinburgh in 1805 under the title, 'East India Tracts, viz. Collegium Bengalense, a Latin Poem with an English Translation and a Dissertation,' &c. He was also the author of 'Hints on the Eduuation of the Lower Ranks of the People, and the Appointment of Parochial Schoolmasters; 'Advantages of a Classical Education;' and an 'Abridgement of Mr. Ruddiman's Rudiments and Latin Grammar.' He received the degree of LL.D. from the university of Aberdeen.

[Memoirs of his Life, 1806; Scots Mag. lxviii. 238, 404-5; Gent. Mag. lxxvi. pt. i. 285; Chalmers's Biog. Dict. ii. 128-9.]

T. F. H.