Biography of Duncan MacFarlan
Duncan Macfarlan (1771-1857) was University Principal from 1823 until his death in 1857. David Murray wrote in 1927 that he was "an excellent Principal. Indeed it may be questioned whether any Principal has performed the duties of the office more efficiently and to the advantage of the University than Dr Macfarlan".
Born in Drymen, Macfarlan was educated at the University and graduated MA in 1788. He became a minister and graduated DD in 1806. He served as the University's Dean of Faculties from 1806 to 1807 and 1810 to 1811.
In 1824, the year after he was appointed Principal, Macfarlan became Minister of Glasgow's High Church. He was elected Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 1843, soon after 450 ministers left to form the Free Church of Scotland.