Macfarlane, Duncan (DNB00)

MACFARLANE, DUNCAN (1771–1857), principal of Glasgow University, son of Duncan Macfarlane, minister of Drymen, Stirlingshire, was born at Auchingray, 27 Sept. 1771. He was educated for the church at the university of Glasgow, licensed 1791, and ordained to the charge of Drymen, in succession to his father, in 1792. In 1806 he was created a D.D. of his university. He contested unsuccessfully the chair of divinity and the ministry of the Tron Church, where Dr. Thomas Chalmers was elected, after a keen contest, in 1814. He was made one of his majesty's chaplains in 1815, served as moderator of the general assembly in 1819, and presented an address to George IV on his accession in 1820. While still at Drymen he was appointed dean of the Chapel Royal, but resigned both offices on being made principal of Glasgow University and minister of the High Church, Glasgow, in 1824. Opposition was raised to his holding the two offices conjointly, but the general assembly, by 165 to 80 votes, decided that he was acting legally. The colonial mission scheme was originated by him, and he continued its convener over twenty years. In the patron- age controversy he defended the established church of Scotland against the seceders, and as a moderator of the general assembly for the second time conducted the church business in the disruption year, 1843. He died at Glasgow, 25 Nov. 1857.

[Scott's Fasti Ecclesiæ Scoticanæ, 1868, vol. ii. pt. i. pp. 7, 235, 353; J. Smith's Our Scottish Clergy, 2nd ser. 1849, pp. 72-9; G. MacGregor's History of Glasgow, 1881, p. 454; Irving's Book of Scotsmen, 1881, p. 300.]

G. C. B.