Murray, Andrew (1812-1878) (DNB00)

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MURRAY, ANDREW (1812–1878), naturalist, born in Edinburgh, 19 Feb. 1812, was son of William Murray of Conland, Perthshire. Murray was educated for the law, became a writer to the signet, joined the firm of Murray & Rhind, and for some time practised in Edinburgh. His earliest scientific papers were entomological, and did not appear until he was forty. On the death of the Rev. John Fleming, professor of natural science in New College, Edinburgh, in 1857, Murray took up his work for one session, and in the same year he became a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. On the foundation of the Oregon Exploration Society he became its secretary, and this apparently first aroused his interest in Western North America and in the Coniferae. In 1858-9 Murray acted as president of the Botanical Society of Edinburgh, and in 1860, abandoning the legal profession, he came to London and became assistant secretary to the Royal Horticultural Society ; in the following year he was elected fellow of the Linnean Society. In 1868 he joined the scientific committee of the Royal Horticultural Society, and in 1877 was appointed its scientific director. In 1868 he began the collection of economic entomology for the Science and Art Department, now at the Bethnal Green Museum. In the following year he went to St. Petersburg as one of the delegates to the botanical congress, and in 1873 to Utah and California to report on some mining concessions. This latter journey seems to have permanently injured his health. He died at Bedford Gardens, Campden Hill, Kensington, 10 Jan. 1878. His chief contributions to entomology deal with Coleoptera, the unfinished monograph of the Nitidulariae, in the Linnean 'Transactions' (vol. xxiv. 1863-4), undertaken at the suggestion of Dr. J. E. Gray, being perhaps the most important. His chief work on the Coniferae was to have been published by the Ray Society, but was never completed.

Among his independent works were : 1. 'Catalogue of the Coleoptera of Scotland,' in conjunction with the Rev. W. Little and others, Edinburgh, 1853, 8vo. 2. 'Letter to the Secretary of State ... on the Proper Treatment of Criminals,' Edinburgh, 1856, 8vo. 3. 'The Skipjack or Wireworm and the Slug, with notices of the Microscope, Barometer, and Thermometer, for the use of Parish Schools' (anon.), 1858, 8vo. 4. 'On the Disguises of Nature, being an Enquiry into the Laws which regulate External Form and Colour in Plants and Animals,' Edinburgh, 1859, 8vo. 5. 'The Pines and Firs of Japan,' London, 1863, 8vo. 6. The letterpress to Peter Lawson's 'Pinetum Britannicum,' 1866, fol. 7. 'The Geographical Distribution of Mammals,' London, 1866, 4to. 8. 'Catalogue of the Doubleday Collection of Lepidoptera,' South Kensington, 1876, 8vo. 9. 'Economic Entomology,' South Kensington, 1876, 8vo. 10. 'List of the Collection of Economic Entomology,' South Kensington, 1876, 8yo. 11. 'List of Coleoptera from Old Calabar,' London, 1878, 8vo. He also edited 'The Book of the Royal Horticultural Society,' 1863, 4to; 'Journal of Travel and Natural History,' vol. i. London, 1868-9 : and 'Paxton's Flower Garden,' 1873, 4to.

[Transactions of Botanical Society of Edinburgh, xiii. 379; Entomologists' Monthly Magazine, xiv. 215; Gardener's Chronicle, 1878. i. 86.]

G. S. B.