Edinburgh Bookshelf

Kay's Originals Vol. 1


Volume 8 Page 571
  Enlarge Enlarge     Pictures Pictures
BIOGRAPHICBL SKETCHES. 41 1 No. CLXII. MR. WILLIAM SCOTT, MR. JAMES SIBBALD, GEORGE FAIRHOLME, ESQ., AND JAMES KERR, ESQ. THE first figure in this group of amateurs is MR. WILLIAM SCOTT, plumber, who is represented looking through his glass at a print of the “ Three Graces.” Mr. Scott’s ancestors were considerable landed proprietors in the county of Northumberland, in England. His father, who had been bred a plumber-a business then little known in Scotland-settled in Edinburgh early in the eighteenth century, where the subject of our sketch was born in 1739. He received a regular academical education, and was intended for the army ; but, in consequence of greatly extended business, and his father having fallen into a delicate state of health, he was induced to abandon his views of a military life. He retired from business many years before his death. He was a man of domestic habits ; and, having a taste for the arts, amused himself in collecting engravings, of which he had an extensive and valuable collection, embracing many productions of the ancient masters: Being a member of hlary’s Chapel, he for some time held the office of Treasurer, and twice represented that incorporation as Deacon in the Town Council of Edinburgh. He was a member of the Kirk Session of Haddo’s Hole, now called the New North Church, for nearly half a century. He was Commandant of the Lieutenants of the Train Band, one of the Majors of the Edinburgh Defensive Band, and a member of the First Regiment of Royal Edinburgh Volunteers. He died in 1816. Mr. Scott was twice married, and had a family by each marriage. He had also a well-selected library. The next figure in the group is MR. JAMES SIBBALD, bookseller, holding in his hand the print of the “Three Graces,” which he is contemplating apparently with much satisfaction. It is said Mr. Scott’s propensity for collecting arose from his having learned that an immense aum had been got at the sale of a nobleman’s paintings and engravings. It immediately occurred to him that a large si1111 might be realised for his family in a similar manner. Some years prior to his death, he disposed of his collection of engravings to Mr. Vernon, a well-known picture-dealer then resident in Edinburgh, who, by extensive purchases, greatly increased it both as to extent and value, until it surpassed anything of the kind that has been seen in this country. The collection, however, NZIEsu bsequently taken to England, and disposed of by public suction.
Volume 8 Page 572
  Enlarge Enlarge