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John Henry Muirhead

(1855—1940) philosopher


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John Henry Muirhead was born in Glasgow on 28 April 1855 and died in Rotherfield, Sussex on 24 May 1940. He graduated from Glasgow University in 1875, where he studied under Edward Caird, and afterwards won a scholarship to Balliol College, Oxford, where Jowett, Green and Nettleship all taught, and where he studied classics. But graduating in 1879 with only a second class degree, he failed to obtain a fellowship, becoming instead assistant in Latin to George Gilbert Ramsay at Glasgow University. In 1885 he left to study philosophy and theology at Manchester New College in London, where James Martineau was Principal, with the idea of perhaps becoming a Unitarian minister. But this was not to be, and in 1888 he was appointed lecturer in mental and moral science at the newly founded Royal Holloway College. He also lectured for Bedford College and the London Society for the Extension of University Teaching at the same time. In 1896 he was appointed Professor of Philosophy and Political Economy at Mason College in Birmingham. When in 1900 this became the University of Birmingham the chair was split, Muirhead remaining Professor of Philosophy until his retirement in 1922. Muirhead married twice, in 1892 and again in 1927, but had no children.

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From The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Philosophy in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Philosophy.


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