University of Edinburgh (Scottish University)
- Existence: 1583-present
The University of Edinburgh was established by Royal Charter in 1582. It was originally called Tounis College, when part of a legacy left by Robert Reid, Bishop of Orkney in 1558 had established a college of which the Town Council had gained control to establish a College of Law on the South side of Edinburgh. The inception of the University took place in 1583. In 1617 when King James VI of Scotland (I of England) visited the College it was decreed that the College should change its name to King James' College, although the College continued to use the older title. The first change in the corporate body of the University was not until 1935 when the first merger took place. This was between the Faculty of Divinity of the University of Edinburgh and New College. This was due to the re-union of the Church of Scotland in 1932.The next merger was in 1951 when the Royal (Dick) Veterinary School was reconstituted as part of the University of Edinburgh. The Royal (Dick) Veterinary School achieved full faculty status in 1964. In 1998 Moray House Institute of Education became the Faculty of Education.
The first classes of the university were held in Hamilton House known as the Duke's Lodge. In 1582 a site that included St Mary in the Fields was acquired. Many new buildings and extensions were made to the site of Hamilton House after 1616. Two prominent stages of building for the University were those undertaken by Robert Adam and William Playfair. In 1869 the site next to the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary was acquired. Building on this project was completed by the end of the 19th century. The University today is situated around these areas in the centre of Edinburgh and Kings Buildings and there are also campuses at Holyrood and elsewhere.
Teaching began in 1583 under Robert Rollock, with a four year course in arts to gain a masters of arts. When Rollock was appointed as the first principal of the University, there were four Philosophy regents and one regent of Humanity, whilst Rollock specialized in Divinity. Until the beginning of the 18th century the University remained essentially an Arts College, with a Divinity School attached. Throughout the 17th century the Chairs of Divinity, Oriental Languages, Ecclesiastical History and Mathematics had been created. By the end of the 17th century there was also regular teaching in Medicine, and sporadic teaching in Law. The University was at the centre of European Enlightenment in the 18th century. By 1722 a Faculty of Law had been established. The first medical Chair had been established in 1685 and was closely followed in the first half of the 18th century by six more. Four more medical Chairs were created in the 19th century. New Chairs in other Faculties were not established after 1760 until the latter half of the 19th century when they followed in rapid succession, continuing in the 20th century, which include those produced by the mergers with New College, the Royal (Dick) Veterinary School and Moray House Institute of Education.
The University was governed by the town council until the Universities (Scotland) Act of 1858, when it received self governing status. The archaic teaching and management system of regents was abolished in 1708. The 1858 act dramatically changed the constitution of the University. A University Court and General Council were introduced which decided on matters and management pertaining to the whole University. The Senatus Academicus was already in place before 1858and this managed academic matters, but answered to the Court and Council. This system is still used.
The University of Edinburgh provides validation for a Master of Fine Arts that has run jointly with Edinburgh College of Art since 1943. A joint chair, the Hood Chair of Mining Engineering was established in 1923 with Heriot-Watt College which became Heriot-Watt University.
In 2002, the structure of the university was altered substantially, with the abolition of Faculties and the creation of the College of Humanities & Social Science, the College of Medicine & Veterinary Medicine and the College of Science & Engineering. Departments were replaced by Schools within each Faculty.
Found in 11 Collections and/or Records:
Fonds — Box: EUA-A-10
Identifier: EUA GD67
Scope and Contents 2 matriculation cards (1862 and 1864); class cards - Greek (1862), Law of Scotland (1862/3), Scots law (1862/3), Criminal law (Summer session, 1863).
Item — Box: CLX-D-72
Scope and Contents Class photograph mounted on board of Honours Classics Graduates, 9 April 1901, Edinburgh University. The students' names are given under the photo and on the back, Alexander F. Giles is at the bottom right. Photography studio: signature illegible - '25 North Bridge, Edinburgh'.
Dates: 9 April 1901
Content Description This fonds consists of 25 technical drawings produced by John McKay Campbell for his engineering degree, which he started in 1934 at the University of Edinburgh, and completed in June 1939 after the war. Titles of drawings include: "D.C. Machine", "Light Country Bridge", "Proposed road", "Grouped flange-place splice", "Survey of pasture fields", "Survey of drill fields", and "Non-concurrent coplanar forces".
Item — Box: CLX-A-309
Scope and Contents One issue of Euragonna Charities Week magazine, dated 1949. Euragonna was a magazine published by the Students' Representative Council of the University of Edinburgh to raise money for charities - in 1949, these were The British Empire Research Fund, The Lady Provost's Fund, and the University Settlement. The magazine contains articles, poems, illustrations, and caricatures from students, as well as advertisements. It also...
Fonds — Box: CLX-A-375
Scope and Contents Graduation certificate, on vellum, of William Kerr Smith, who graduated from Edinburgh University in 1771 with a Master's in Liberal Arts. A red wax seal in a metal case is appended to the certificate. It represents a castle surrounded with the words 'S.[IGILLUM] COMMUNITATIS. BURGI. DE EDENBURGH. AD. CAUSAS.', and was appended by the City of Edinburgh to confirm the authenticity of the diploma.This collection also includes William Smith's ordination certificate, as he became the Episcopal...
Scope and Contents The collection comprises an Edinburgh University medal (bronze) awarded to Charles A. Anderson session 1888-1889, for the Senior Surgery class. The medal is mounted in a small case (Alex'r Kirkwood and Son, Medalists, 9 St. James Square, Edinburgh).
Scope and Contents Two bronze medals - University of Edinburgh:
1927-1928 - Economic Geography - Marion D. Wishart
1928-1929 - Banking - Marion D. Wishart M.A.Both medals are in presentation cases: black leatherette, with dark blue inset for medals, and silk-lined hinged lids. The name: Alexander Kirkwood & Son / Medalists / St. James Square / Edinburgh
Scope and Contents 1 x silver medal - Annual Prize - Perth Academy - awarded to William A. Knowles 1882-1883 - 1st student Senior Mathematical and Physical Class 1 x silver medal - Annual Prize - Perth Academy - awarded to William D[sic]. Knowles 1884-1885 - 1st student Senior Latin Class 1 x bronze medal -Edinburgh University - awarded to William A. Knowles 1885-1886 - Junior Mathematics ...
Fonds — Multiple Containers
Scope and Contents This fonds consists of the lectures notes, photographs and slides of Rev. George Hastie, student at the University of Edinburg in the late 1960s. The lecture notes were taken by Hastie for his MA course at Edinburgh Univertsity between 1967 and 1970. The slides show photographs taken by Hastie in 1966, 1967 and 1968. Also includes a rectorial election leaflet entitled 'The Making of a Rector', printed for the Tom Hutton Campaign in 1968.1. The lecture notes include a complete set of MA...
Scope and Contents The papers at shelfmark Gen. 2044-2073 consist of notebooks of notes from lectures at Edinburgh University and in India, 1878-1890.At MSS 2592-2593 there are personal papers including correspondence, a school notebook of handwriting dated 1875, and a school fees receipt dated 1869; photographs; notes of Natural Philosophy classes, 1879; and, essays, 1879. There is material marking celebrations of Edinburgh University Tercentenary; material of the Dialectic Society and the Diagnostic...
Dates: circa 1869-1930