Papers of Donald M. Baillie

Scope and Content

The papers include engagement diaries, letters, early essays, chapel prayers, orders of service, lectures and addresses, notebooks, registers of students, a diary, memorial, photos, obituary, publications by and reviews of publications by DMB, and sermons, 1912-54.

There are 115 autograph notebooks, some with enclosures, which contain theological material (sermons, sermon notes, prayers, conference details, lectures, addresses) and non-theological matter (political thoughts, addresses of refugees, diaries).

The loose manuscript material includes sermons, lectures, essays, speeches, broadcasts and working notes; theological notes; works on political thought; correspondence, most of which is personal but which also refers to publications and the Baillie Memorial Fund; pamphlets and publications; press cuttings and ca. 35-40 portrait photographs.

Administrative / Biographical History

Donald Macpherson Baillie (1887-1954) was Professor of Systematic Theology at the University of St Andrews from 1934 to 1954, and an internationally renowned theologian. The obituary in the University's Alumnus Chronicle refers to him as 'one of the most distinguished scholars and the best beloved teacher in our University'.

He was born in the Free Church Manse, Gairloch, on 5 November 1887, a younger son of the Rev. John Baillie of Gairloch (1829-1891) and Annie Macpherson who had been married in 1885. He was educated at Inverness Royal Academy, and then studied at Edinburgh University where he followed an Arts course, 1905-1909. He was a Medallist in Ordinary and Honours Classes of Logic and Metaphysics and Moral Philosophy. He graduated M.A. with First Class Honours in Mental Philosophy, 1909. He also studied at New College, Edinburgh, and at Marburg and Heidelberg. From 1911 until 1914, he was Assistant to the Professor of Moral Philosophy. After his ordination in 1918 he was Minister of Bervie United Free Church, 1918-1923, and then of St. John's, Cupar, 1923-1930, and St. Columba's, Kilmacolm, 1930-1934. In 1934, Donald Macpherson Baillie became Professor of Systematic Theology at the University of St. Andrews. He died in post on 31 October 1954.

His best-known works are: God was in Christ, (London, 1948), J. Baillie (ed.), The Theology of the Sacraments, (London, 1957), The Christian faith in outline, by Friedrich Schleiermacher, translated from the German with the two editions on opposite pages by D. M. Baillie (Edinburgh, 1922), Faith in God and its Christian consummation: the Kerr lectures for 1926, (Edinburgh, 1927), I believe in God, (Edinburgh, 1937), Intercommunion: report of a Theological Commission of Faith and Order, (London 1951), The meaning of the Holy Communion, (Glasgow, [1948]), Out of Nazareth: a selection of sermons and lectures by Donald M. Baillie, (Edinburgh, 1958).


Sermons are arranged in chronological order.

Access Information

By appointment with the Archivist. Access to unpublished records less than 30 years old and other records containing confidential information may be restricted.


ms36304 is a typescript of transcribed lecture notes of Prof Baillie, duplicated for the use of students of St Mary's College after his death.

Description compiled by Rachel Hart, Archives Hub Project Archivist, with aid of Alumnus Chronicle, vol. 43 (1955), pp. 12-14.

Other Finding Aids

The collection features in the general index to manuscripts but is not listed in detail.

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the University Archivist. Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents.

Custodial History

The bulk of the material was transferred from St Mary's College, St Andrews in 1976.

Related Material

GB 237 BAI 01-08; BAI 18-19; E2000.29/1-12, papers of John Baillie (brother of D M Baillie) and Baillie family papers, 1872-1960


G. Newlands, John and Donald Baillie - Transatlantic Theology, (New York, 2002)

Additional Information

This material is largely original.

Geographical Names