Broun, Richard (DNB00)

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BROUN, Sir RICHARD (1801–1858), miscellaneous writer, was the eldest son of Sir James Broun of Coalston Park, Lochmaben, Dumfriesshire, who resumed the baronetcy in 1826 (Burke's Peerage, Baronetage, &c., title 'Broun.' Doubts have been thrown on the correctness of parts of this pedigree, see British American Association and Nova Scotia Baronets, Edinburgh, 1846, and Notes and Queries, various notes under title 'Broun' in 3rd and 5th series). He was born at Lochmaben 22 April 1801, and succeeded to the title on the death of his father 30 Nov. 1844. Before 1834 he was resident in London, and there, till his death at Sphinx Lodge, Chelsea, 10 Dec. 1858, he was busily engaged in the projection of a number of schemes, most of them of a somewhat fantastic nature, and in the compilation of various pamphlets, articles, and letters regarding them. He describes himself in 1856 as 'The Honourable Sir Richard Broun, Knight, and (eighth baronet) of Scotland and Nova Scotia, feudal baron of Colstoun, Haddingtonshire, and chief of his race in North Britain; author of various works on heraldry, agriculture, colonisation, sanitation, &c.' His chief schemes were a plan for a 'line of direct elemental intercourse between Europe and Asia by route of the British North American possessions, and the systematic colonisation of the vacant crown territories over which it will pass' (1833); a plan for an 'Anglo-Canadian Company, which should outrival in the west the East India Company' (British and American Intercourse, London, 1852); attempts to revive certain supposed privileges of the baronets, in connection with which he was from 1835 honorary secretary of the Committee of the Baronetage for Privileges, and wrote the following works: 'Dignity, Precedence, &c., of the Honourable the Baronettesses of the Realm' (1839); and 'The Baronetage' for 1841, 1842, 1843, and 1844. He was also engaged in an effort to revive the 'illustrious and sovereign order of Knights Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem and of the Venerable Langue of England,' and he held various offices in the reconstituted 'langue' (synoptical sketch of the order, London, 1856). He rendered, however, real service by his projection in 1849 of 'The London Necropolis and National Mausoleum at Woking.' In connection with this scheme and with the general question of extramural interments he wrote 'Extramural Burial,' 1850; 'Extramural Sepulture,' 1850; 'Extramural Sepulture, Synopsis of the London Necropolis,' 1851; 'Extramural Interment and the Metropolitan Sanitary Association,' 1852; 'Metropolitan Interments,' 1852; 'Metropolitan Extramural Interments, Memorial to the Lord Mayor,' &c., 1852; 'Statement as to Progress of Necropolis Undertaking,' 1853; various Letters on the Necropolis Undertaking, 1853-5.

[British American Association; Scots Magazine for 1801, lxiii. 300 (Edinburgh, 1801); Dumfries and Galloway Courier, 21 Dec. 1858 (Dumfries, 1858); Foster's Peerage and Baronetage, p. 682, and the authorities there cited.]

F. W.-T.