Gilfillan, James (DNB00)

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GILFILLAN, JAMES, D.D. (1797–1874), Scotch divine, son of the Rev. Samuel Gilfillan [q. v.], a rather notable minister of the secession body, and brother of the Rev. George Gilfillan [q. v.], was born at Comrie, Perthshire, on 11 May 1797, and, having received his early education at a school in his native village, entered Glasgow College in 1808, when only eleven and a half years old. After spending six sessions there he entered the divinity hall of the antiburgher synod in Edinburgh, and in 1821 was licensed by the Edinburgh presbytery of the united secession church. He was ordained on 24 Dec. 1822 in Stirling secession congregation. He was an excellent preacher of the old type, but is best known as author of ‘The Sabbath, viewed in the light of Reason, Revelation, and History,’ which was published in 1861, and rapidly gained favour. He had it in hand for twenty years, and expended on it an enormous amount of labour. In 1866 the university of Glasgow conferred on him the degree of D.D. In 1869 he demitted the charge of his congregation, and went to reside at Portobello, near Edinburgh, where he died on 28 Jan. 1874.

[Obituary notices; United Presbyterian Magazine, September 1874.]

T. H.