Alexander Duff (missionary)

Alexander Duff, 1806 - 1878. Scottish missionary and educationalist
Alexander Duff
Rev Alexander Duff's grave, Grange Cemetery

Very Rev Dr Alexander Duff (26 April 1806 – 12 February 1878 in Sidmouth), was a Christian missionary in India; where he played a large part in the development of higher education. He was a Moderator and Convenor of the Church of Scotland and an unashamed scientific liberal reformer of anglicized evangelism across the Empire. He was the first overseas missionary of the Church of Scotland to India. On 13 July 1830 he founded the General Assembly's Institution in Calcutta, now known as the Scottish Church College. He also played a part in establishing the University of Calcutta. He was twice Moderator of the Free Church of Scotland in 1851 and 1873, the only person to serve the role twice.[1]

Early life

Alexander Duff was born in the heart of Scotland, at Auchnahyle, in the parish of Moulin, Perthshire. His parents were James Duff, gardener and farmer at Auchnahagh, and Jean Rattray.[2] After receiving his initial schooling at a local country school, he studied arts and theology at the University of St. Andrews.[3]

He then accepted an offer made by the foreign mission committee of the Church of Scotland's general assembly to become their first missionary to India, and was ordained in August 1829.