Millar was born in Lanarkshire, son of a minister. Educated at Hamilton Grammar School and Glasgow University, he became a lawyer and in 1761 accepted the regius chair at Glasgow, which he held for the rest of his life. The Glasgow Law School flourished under his supervision and his pupils included Lauderdale and Melbourne. Most influential was his The Origin of the Distinction of Ranks (1771). Heavily influenced by Montesquieu and Hume, it was a pioneering work in comparative sociology.
Subjects: Philosophy — History.