Papers of the Very Rev. Professor William P. Paterson (1860-1939)

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 237 Coll-739
  • Dates of Creation
  • Name of Creator
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      circa 35 printed items, circa 15 manuscript items, 8 photographs. Access to records in a fragile condition may be restricted.
  • Location
      MSS PAT 01-05

Scope and Content

The collection is composed of: lectures, toasts, orations given by Paterson on e.g. John Knox and Sir Walter Scott; essays and sermons; notes and summaries; material in a tour of France; off-prints; orders of service; visiting cards; and, assorted photographs of Paterson.

Administrative / Biographical History

William P. Paterson was born in 1860, and he was educated at Edinburgh's Royal High School. He then studied at Edinburgh University, finishing in 1883, and at Leipzig, Erlangen, and Berlin, 1883-1885. Paterson became Parish Minister of Crieff, Perthshire, in 1887, and then in 1894 he was appointed to the Chair of Systematic Theology at Aberdeen University. In 1903 came his appointment to the Chair of Divinity at Edinburgh University where he remained until 1934. In 1919, Paterson carried out the duties of the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. His publications included St. Paul's teaching (1903), and The rule of faith (1912). He edited German culture (1915), and edited with Dr. D. Watson Social evils and problems (1918). His sermons and Gifford Lectures were also published, and he wrote articles for dictionaries and encyclopaedias. The Very Rev. Professor William P. Paterson died on 10 June 1939.


The collection has been arranged into five sections: PAT01 Books, PAT02 Theological Papers, PAT03 General Address, PAT04 Extracts from periodicals, and PAT05 Miscellaneous.

Access Information

Generally open for consultation to bona fide researchers, but please contact repository for details in advance.


The biographical/administrative history was compiled using the following material: (1) Who was who 1929-1940. London: Adam and Charles Black, 1941.

Compiled by Graeme D Eddie, Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections Division.

Other Finding Aids

Local lists.


Check the local Indexes for details of any additions.

Related Material

The local Indexes show other references to Paterson related material in the Sarolea Collection (check the Indexes for more details): letters to C. Sarolea, 1912, in Sar.Coll.30;letter to Sarolea, 1925, in Sar.Coll.138; and, letters to Sarolea, 1926, 1929, and undated, in Sar.Coll.227.