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Abercromby, Alexander, Lord Abercromby (1745–1795), judge and essayist, was born on 15 October 1745, probably at Menstrie, Clackmannanshire, the fourth and youngest son of George Abercromby of Tullibody, Clackmannanshire (1705–1800), who had trained as an advocate, and his wife, Mary (d. 1767)...

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Aitchison, Craigie Mason, Lord Aitchison (1882–1941), judge, was born at the manse, Erskine, Falkirk, on 26 January 1882, the second son of the Revd James Aitchison, minister of the United Presbyterian church, and his wife, Elizabeth Mason Craigie. He was educated at Falkirk high school...

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Craigie Mason Aitchison, Lord Aitchison (1882–1941) by Stanley Cursiter, 1937 in the collection of the Faculty of Advocates; photograph courtesy the Scottish National Portrait Gallery

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Anstruther, Sir Alexander (1769–1819), judge and legal writer, was born on 10 September 1769, the second son of Sir Robert Anstruther, third baronet (1733–1818), of Balcaskie, Fife, and his wife, Lady Janet Erskine (d. 1770), youngest daughter of the fifth earl of Kellie...

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Anstruther, Sir William, of that ilk, Lord Anstruther (d. 1711), judge, was the eldest son of Sir Philip Anstruther of that ilk—whom he succeeded in 1702—and Christian, daughter of Sir James Lumsden of Innergelly. His father served with the royalist army defeated at ...

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Archibald, Sir Thomas Dickson (1817–1876), judge, was born at Truro, Nova Scotia, the sixth son of Samuel George William Archibald (1777–1846), a distinguished lawyer in Nova Scotia who fathered nineteen children in all, and his first wife, Elizabeth (d. 1830), daughter of ...

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Baird, Sir John, Lord Newbyth (bap. 1620, d. 1698), judge, was baptized in Edinburgh on 10 September 1620, the son of James Baird (d. 1655) of Little Fiddes and Byth, Aberdeenshire, advocate, and his wife, Bethia, daughter of John Dempster of Logiealton...

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Baker, Sir George Gillespie (1910–1984), judge, was born in Stirling on 25 April 1910, the only child of Captain John Kilgour Baker, of Stirling, and his wife, Jane Gillespie. Baker's mother, whom he did not remember, died in 1914. His father, a captain in the ...

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Sir William Macleod Bannatyne, Lord Bannatyne (1744–1833) by Sir Henry Raeburn Polesden Lacey (The National Trust) / NTPL / John Hammond

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Bannatyne, Sir William Macleod, Lord Bannatyne (1744–1833), judge, was born on 26 January 1744, perhaps in Edinburgh, the son of Roderick Macleod (d. 1784) of Sunbank, writer to the signet, and his first wife, Isabel (fl. 1736–1744), daughter of Hector Bannatyne...

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T. F. Henderson

revised by Eric Metcalfe

Barclay, Hugh (1799–1884), judge, was born on 18 January 1799 in the Gorbals, Glasgow, son of John Barclay, merchant, and Jean McKinlay. After serving his apprenticeship as a law agent he was admitted a member of the Faculty of Advocates in 1821. In 1829 he was appointed sheriff-substitute of ...

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Bellenden, Sir John, of Auchnoul [of Auchinoul] (d. 1576), judge and legal writer, was the eldest son of Thomas Bellenden of Auchinoul (d. 1546), director of the king's chancery and justice clerk; his mother's name is unknown. He had two brothers, Patrick Bellenden...

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Bellenden, Sir Lewis, of Auchnoll (1555x7–1591), administrator and judge, was the eldest son of Sir John Bellenden of Auchnoul (d. 1576) and his second wife, Barbara, daughter of Sir Hugh Kennedy of Girvanmains and Dame Jane Stewart, Lady Methven. Lewis was born between 1555 and August 1557, when he and his mother were granted a charter of certain lands in the ...

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Blackburn, Colin, Baron Blackburn of Killearn (1813–1896), judge, was born in Levenside, Dunbartonshire, on 18 May 1813, the second eldest son of John Blackburn (1756–1840) of Killearn, a Jamaican proprietor, and Rebecca Leslie (b. 1788), daughter of the Revd Dr Gillies. He was educated at ...

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G. F. R. Barker

revised by Michael Fry

Blair, Robert, Lord Avontoun (1741–1811), judge, was born at Athelstaneford, Haddingtonshire, Scotland, the third son of the minister of the parish, the Revd Robert Blair (1699–1746), author of The Grave, and his wife, Isabella (d. 1774), eldest daughter of William Law (...

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Boswell, Alexander, Lord Auchinleck (1707–1782), judge, was born at Auchinleck, Ayrshire, on 1 March 1707 ns, the eldest of three sons of James Boswell (c.1676–1749), laird of Auchinleck and advocate, and Lady Elizabeth Bruce, the youngest daughter of Alexander Bruce, second earl of Kincardine...

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Brackenridge, Hugh Henry [formerly Hugh Montgomery Breckenridge] (1748–1816), writer and judge, was born Hugh Montgomery Breckenridge, probably at Ballivulune, near Campbeltown, Argyll, the only son of William Breckenridge, a farmer. Impoverished following the Jacobite rising, the family emigrated to the Barrens, York county, Pennsylvania...

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Brodie [Brody], Alexander, of Brodie, Lord Brodie (1617–1680), politician and judge, was born on 25 July 1617, the eldest of the four children of David Brodie of Brodie (1586–1632) and his wife, Katherine (d. c.1664), daughter of Thomas Dunbar of Grange...

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Carmichael, James, first Lord Carmichael (1579–1672), judge and government official, was the third son of Walter Carmichael of Hyndford (d. 1625), and Grizel, daughter of Sir John Carmichael of Meadowflat. He was originally designated of Hyndford, but on purchasing the lands of ...

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Cockburn, Henry, Lord Cockburn (1779–1854), author and judge, was born in or near Edinburgh, on 26 October 1779, the son of Archibald Cockburn (d. 1820), and his wife, Janet Rannie. His father was one of the learned lairds who made up the country's ...