Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Foulis, James (1714-1791)

FOULIS, Sir JAMES (1714–1791), fifth baronet of Colinton, eldest son of Henry Foulis, third son of the third baronet, was born in 1714. He succeeded his uncle, the fourth baronet, in July 1742. In his youth he was an officer in the army, but he retired from the service early, and devoted himself to the pursuits of a country gentleman and to literature. He dedicated much of his leisure to recondite researches, and in 1781 contributed to the 'Transactions of the Antiquarian Society of Scotland' a dissertation on the origin of the Scots, in which his proofs and conjectures were founded upon an intimate acquaintance with the ancient Celtic language. He also left among his papers for posthumous publication memoranda of a series of investigations into the origin of the ancient names of places in Scotland. Foulis died at Colinton, near Edinburgh, 3 Jan. 1791.

[Anderson's Scottish Nation; Gent. Mag. 1791.]

G. B. S.