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JAMES PILLANS, Esq., M.A., F.R.S.E.,
PROFESSOR OF HUMANITY IN THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH,
THE FOLLOWING HISTORY
HIGH SCHOOL OF EDINBURGH,
TO THE CELEBRITY OF WHICH,
WHILE RECTOR OF THAT INSTITUTION,
HE SO LARGELY CONTRIBUTED,
IS RESPECTFULLY AND AFFECTIONATELY INSCRIBED
BY HIS GRATEFUL PUPIL,
OF the HIGH SCHOOL of EDINBURGH, this work comprises an historical account, founded on information derived from a careful examination of the Records of the Town-Council, and other authentic Documents. This Seminary, which existed in the beginning of the sixteenth century, was patronised by King James the Sixth, in whose reign it was styled Schola Regia Edinensis; and George the Fourth recognised its national importance by the bestowal of a handsome donation.
As the work embraces much that is new respecting the lives, peculiar modes of tuition, and literary labours of the most eminent teachers, as well as brief notices of persons of distinction and rank educated at the High School, it is hoped that it will prove useful to all engaged in the honourable and arduous task of instructing youth, and interesting to a large portion of the public.
The changes which have occurred in the Course of Study from the earliest period are embodied in the narrative. But in order to give information more decidedly of a practical character, a detailed account of the system of education at present pursued in the junior classes, prepared by Mr GUNN, one of the Masters, and a similar account of the highest class, furnished by Dr SCHMITZ, the Rector, occupy a distinct place. For these valuable contributions the Author has to express his
warmest thanks. Subjoined are specimens of School Exercises in Greek, Latin, French, German, and English, during the Rectorships of Mr Pillans, Dr Carson, and Dr Schmitz.
Dr WALTER ADAM, in the most liberal manner, submitted to the Author's inspection the papers which belonged to his father, the late Dr Alexander Adam, long Rector of the School, and a distinguished ornament of his profession. From that literary repository several letters and other documents have now been printed for the first time. WILLIAM FRASER, Esq., Writer to H. M. Signet, likewise communicated some MSS. of his father, the late Mr Luke Fraser, who, for nearly forty years, taught in the School with no small commendation and success.
To the present learned Rector and his colleagues, the Author's acknowledgments are more especially due, for the great trouble which they have taken in reference to this work; and he begs to assure them, that they have his best wishes for their continued success in those important labours to which, he knows the public is well aware, they are devoting their most strenuous exertions. He is also much indebted to Professor PILLANS and Dr CARSON, who were successively at the head of the seminary; as well as to Mr BENJAMIN MACKAY, one of the Classical Masters, who several years ago retired from public life.
Next to the pleasure which the Author derived in receiving literary communications, is the gratification which he experiences in now acknowledging, however inadequately, his sense of the obligation. He would farther particularly mention with respectful gratitude, the very handsome manner in which the Re