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Kirk, Robert, 1644-1692 (Folklorist and Church minister)

 Person

Dates

  • Existence: 1644-1692

The Gaelic scholar Robert Kirk was born, probably in Aberfoyle, Perthshire, in 1641. He studied at Edinburgh University graduating with an MA in 1661, and then at St. Andrews. In 1664 he became the Minister at Balquhidder, Perthshire, and then Minister at Aberfoyle in 1685. Kirk was the author of the first complete translation of the Scottish metrical Psalms into Gaelic. These were published as Psalma Dhaibhidh an Meadrachd, Edinburgh (1684). In 1689 he went to London to supervise the printing of the Gaelic Bible prepared under the direction of Bishop Bedell. This was published in 1690. Kirk was a believer in fairy superstitions and wrote The secret commonwealth; or an essay on the nature and actions of the subterranean (and for the most part) invisible people heretofoir going under the name of faunes and fairies, or the lyke, among the low country Scots, as they are described by those who have the second sight (1691). Robert Kirk died at Aberfoyle on 14 May 1692 and is buried in the churchyard there.

Found in 9 Collections and/or Records:

Ane eclogue of others writeings and my own thoughts intermixt, 1674

 Item — Volume: Dc.8.116
Identifier: Coll-394/3
Scope and Contents From the Fonds: These might be referred to loosely as commonplace books. Extracts of texts by others predominate alongside original notes by Kirk.

Miscellaneorum Liber, 1664-1669

 Item — Volume: Dc.8.115
Identifier: Coll-394/2
Scope and Contents From the Fonds: These might be referred to loosely as commonplace books. Extracts of texts by others predominate alongside original notes by Kirk.

Notebooks containing notes on the translators of the Gaelic Bible, 1895

 Item
Identifier: Coll-98/3/3/1
Scope and Contents Marked 'Mackinnon A9' and noted thus in previous historical records. These appear to be notes on the lives and motivations of various translators of the Bible to Gaelic. Not all the subjects have been found in the historical record. As well as those listed as agents on this record, there is mention of Alex Stewart (Alexander Stuart of Dingwall?), John Smith of Campbeltown, and Thjomas Ross of Lochbroom.

Notes of Sermons Preached by Andrew Cant, 1663

 Item — Volume: Dc.9.5
Identifier: Coll-394/4
Scope and Contents From the Fonds: These might be referred to loosely as commonplace books. Extracts of texts by others predominate alongside original notes by Kirk.

Papers of Robert Kirk

 Fonds
Identifier: Coll-394
Scope and Contents These might be referred to loosely as commonplace books. Extracts of texts by others predominate alongside original notes by Kirk.

Secret Commonwealth, 1692

 Item
Identifier: La.III.551
Scope and Contents 'The Secret Common-wealth', a treatise on fairy folklore, witchcraft, ghosts, fauns etc. 'Done for the satisfaction of his friends, by a modest inquirer living amoung the Scotish-Irish.'
Non-autograph copy; Possibly more than one hand; Marked, “This book belongs to Robert Campbell”

Summa Doctrinae Posterioristicae, 1660

 Item — Volume: Dc.8.114
Identifier: Coll-394/1
Scope and Contents From the Fonds: These might be referred to loosely as commonplace books. Extracts of texts by others predominate alongside original notes by Kirk.

The Secret Commonwealth

 Fonds — Volume: Gen.308D
Identifier: Coll-1840
Scope and Contents 18th century copy of Robert Kirk's 'Secret Commonwealth', a treatise on fairy folklore, witchcraft, ghosts, fauns etc, bound by William Henderson in 1814 (according to note on end paper).