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University of Edinburgh (Scottish University)

 Organization

Dates

  • 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 12 Collections and/or Records:

Clinical cases of Dr. Rutherford and Dr. Gregory, November 1793

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-1326
Scope and Contents An index at the beginning of this substantial volume of clinical case notes lists 28 women and 31 men with their symptoms and treatment recorded in manuscript notes over more than 600 pages. The manuscript offers much information on the methods of these two leading 18th century Scottish physicians.

Collection of Library slips relating to Edinburgh University theses, 1844

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-1288
Scope and Contents The 5 x slips (fragments) were discovered by cataloguing staff inside earlier Edinburgh University theses. They are handwritten in ink. The fragments are: - a note of page references with some remarks relating to a medical text - a list of theses sent either by or to Prof. Christison, Edinburgh College, 26 July 1844 - with the names Vass, Anderson, Chepmell, Etherington, Fleming, Jones ...

Diaries of Dr. S. W. Carruthers

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-1134
Scope and Contents The collection is composed of notes and news cuttings at Dc.2.76/17, a dissertation at Gen. 1931, and three manuscript diaries at E2008.14. The material at Dc.2.76/17 consists of a notebook (circa 17 pages) with notes accompanying several newspaper cuttings on various University activities. The front cover is noted 'Edinburgh University / Various Student Activities / 1887-1888'. It contains clippings relating to: the Rectorial Elections 1887 and 1888 and from theScottish Leader28...

Graduates in Medicine, 1833-1989

 Series
Identifier: EUA IN1/ADS/STA/8
Scope and Contents Graduation schedules including examinations taken. Began as 'Medical Examinations' and retitled 'Medical Graduates' in 1903.

Letter to James Cossar Ewart from James Richard Ainsworth-Davis, 06 January 1904

 Item
Identifier: Coll-14/9/10/2
Scope and Contents Ainsworth-Davis states that he is interested in the proposed developments in Veterinary Science at the University of Edinburgh and that he has written a letter about certain points raised in the Draft Ordinance relating to Veterinary Degrees. He invites Ewart to show the letter to his colleagues and goes on to outline his experience in the field and his opinions on the state of veterinary studies.

Letter to James Cossar Ewart from Professor W.S Greenfield, 26 June 1903

 Item
Identifier: Coll-14/9/9/65
Scope and Contents Greenfield provides notes concerning the costs of expanding the staff and facilities in Pathology and Medicine at the University of Edinburgh.

Material relating to Charles A. Anderson

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-1240
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).

Material relating to James S. Robson

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-1293
Scope and Contents The material in the collection is composed of: a list of candidates selected for Rockefeller Medical Studentships, 1942; a letter dated 3 June 1942 from the Universities Bureau of the British Empire indicating that travel arrangements had been made for passage to the USA; a typescript copy of the thesis entitled Fluid retention in patients with chronic liver disease by James S. Robson, M.B., Ch.B. (Hons), and with tables and figures to the thesis; and, a summary of...

Material relating to the University studies of James K. Watson

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-1321
Scope and Contents The scrapbook or album (commonplace book) contains class cards, class certificates, notes and other printed matter relating to the study period of James Kenneth Watson at Edinburgh University - covering 1888-91, and subjects such as Chemistry, Practical Chemistry, Anatomy, Practical Anatomy, Anatomical demonstrations, Botany, Natural History, Institutes of Medicine, Practical Physiology, Practical Pathology, Practical Materia Medica, including Pharmacy, Materia Medica, General Pathology,...

Notes of lectures given by Alexander Monro (secundus), taken down by unknown person(s)

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-1325
Scope and Contents This volume of notes is based on Monro's surgical lectures at Edinburgh Medical School, 1774-1775. The manuscript lectures are sub-headed Lectures 1-13 and are in two distinct hands - the first two lectures in one, and the rest in another. The paper is watermarked with a crown and the initials GR, undated, but this L.V.Gerrevink paper commonly used throughout much of the 18th century. Both hands are clear and legible, with just a few corrections, and occasional additions written on the verso of...