This issued from the Disruption of 1843, when those unable to accept the infringements of the Church of Scotland's right of self‐government which the Auchterarder case (1838–9) highlighted seceded under Thomas Chalmers (1780–1847). Under a powerful Edinburgh leadership, the church steadily moderated its theological conservatism. It affirmed its political liberalism, developed a centralized financial system new to presbyterianism, and united with other presbyterian secessions: the original seceders (1852), the Reformed Presbyterian Church (1876), and the United Presbyterians (1900), thus forming the United Free Church, which joined with the Church of Scotland in 1929. Inevitably each union bred its rump.
Subjects: British History.