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Alexander Christison

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Name  Alexander Christison

Alexander Christison

Prof Alexander Christison FRSE (1753-1820) was a Scottish educator and mathematician of influence during the Scottish Enlightenment.



He was born in 1753, at Redpath House, Longformacus, Berwickshire. After a local education he began employment as the local schoolteacher before being inspired to attend Edinburgh University to study Classics, graduating in 1775. This background gave him access to teach at a higher calibre of school and he taught both at George Watson’s College, Dalkeith Grammar School and the High School in Edinburgh. In the 1780s he lived at Alexander's Land in the Bristo area.

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1800 his main proposer being the eminent physician, James Gregory. Edinburgh University granted him a further degree (MA) in 1806, and from that date he served as Professor of Humanity at the university, a role he continued until death.

At the end of his life he is listed as living at 4 Argyll Square with his son James Christison, advocate. Argyll Square was demolished in the mid 19th century to build the Royal Scottish Museum.

He died in Edinburgh on 25 June 1820 and is buried in Greyfriars Kirkyard in the city centre. He is buried in the plot of Prof George Dunbar at the north-west section of the western extension. He is also memorialised on Robert Christison's grave at New Calton.


Alexander’s son was the noted Scottish toxicologist Sir Robert Christison.


Alexander Christison Wikipedia

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