Colquhoun, Janet (DNB00)
|←Colquhoun, Archibald Campbell||Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 11
|Colquhoun, John (1748-1827)→|
COLQUHOUN, JANET, Lady (1781–1846), religious writer, was the second daughter of the Right Hon. Sir John Sinclair. of Ulbster, bart., by his first wife, Sarah, only child and heiress of Alexander Maitland of Stoke Newington. She was born in London 17 April 1781, but, together with her elder sister Hannah, passed her childhood at Thurso Castle with their grandmother, Lady Janet Sinclair, daughter of William, lord Strathnaven. This lady took the sisters to live in the Canongate of Edinburgh, whence they went to complete their education at a school at Stoke Newington. The younger of the two was about fifteen when they returned to be introduced into Edinburgh society. In June 1799 Janet was married to Major James Colquhoun, eldest son of Sir James Colquhoun of Luss, bart., on whose death, in 1805, her husband succeeded to the title, and Rossdhu, on Loch Lomond, became her home. Here she took a keen interest in all philanthropic and religious schemes, especially in the Luss and Arrochar Bible Society. In 1820 her health became enfeebled, and she was prevented from taking any active share in these or other benevolent objects, but she devoted herself to the composition of religious works, the first of which was published anonymously in 1822 under the title of 'Despair and Hope.' This was followed by 'Thoughts on the Religious Profession,' 1823 ; 'Impressions of the Heart,' 1825; 'The Kingdom of God,' 1836 ; and ' The World's Religion,' 1839. It was not until the death of her husband, in 1836, that her name was appended to her books. Dr. James Hamilton, her biographer, quaintly apologises for defects of artistic skill in Lady Colquhoun's books, but insists on their graceful ease and natural truthfulness. 'Like the conversation of their compiler, they are genuine and inartificial, spontaneous and heartfelt.' At the time of the disruption of the Scotch church in 1843, she took an ardent interest in the question at issue, throwing herself heart and soul into the Free church cause. She died at Helensburgh, on 21 Oct. 1846, and was buried on the 27th at Luss.
[Memoir of Lady Colquhoun, by James Hamilton, F.L.S., 1849; The Chiefs of Colquhoun and
their Country, by William Fraser, 2 vols. privately printed, Edinburgh, 1860.]