Chapter

‘Professor of Things in General’

Wallace Stuart

in John Stuart Blackie

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print May 2006 | ISBN: 9780748611850
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748653386 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748611850.003.0008
‘Professor of Things in General’

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This chapter talks about John Stuart Blackie as a professor at Edinburgh. According to one of the students, Blackie had a good deal of external resemblance to the German historian Mommsen, but he was distinguished from his more typical continental brethren by the boisterous exuberance of his spirits. He was by far the most picturesque figure in the Edinburgh of his time. In the classroom, students adored Blackie and yet laughed at him. He encouraged liberties and then suddenly would flash into a rage and dismiss the whole class, and refuse to meet them until they apologised. He was an education and an inspiration to the raw country lads who knew nothing beyond their village school and village farm. The Edinburgh town councillors may not have realised they were getting a poet-professor, but they can have had no doubt that Blackie was a committed university reformer.

Keywords: John Stuart Blackie; Edinburgh; German historian; Mommsen; poet-professor; university reformer

Chapter.  10975 words. 

Subjects: Regional and Area Studies

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