Robert Beatson

Robert Beatson
Born 1742
Died 1818
Nationality Scottish

Robert Beatson, LL.D. FRSE FSA (1742-1818) was a Scottish compiler and miscellaneous writer.[1]


He was born in 1742 at Dysart in Fife, Scotland, the son of David Beatson of Vicarsgrange.[2]

He was educated for the military profession, and on one of his title-pages describes himself as 'late of his majesty's corps of Royal Engineers'. The Dictionary of National Biography states it was probably as a subaltern in this corps that he accompanied the unsuccessful expedition against Rochefort in 1757 (but he was only 15 years old and he is not listed by the Corps History as being an engineer on the expedition), and was present with the force which, reaching the West Indies early in 1759, failed in the attack on Martinique, but succeeded in capturing Guadaloupe. He is represented in 1766 as retiring on half-pay, and as failing, in spite of repeated applications, to secure active employment during the American War of Independence. [1] However, in 1784 Beatson was a first lieutenant in the Corps of Engineers and was stationed in Scotland.[3]

Afterwards he seems to have farmed in Scotland. He became an honorary member of the Board of Agriculture, of the Royal Highland Society of Scotland, and of the Royal Society of Arts. He died at Edinburgh on 24 January 1818. One obituary notice describes him as "late barrack-master at Aberdeen". It is uncertain whether Edinburgh or Aberdeen university conferred on him his degree of LL.D.[1]





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