Record

CodeNA6668
Dates1874-1936
Person NameRait; Sir; Robert Sangster (1874-1936); historian
SurnameRait
ForenamesRobert Sangster
PreTitleSir
Epithethistorian
ActivitySir Robert Sangster Rait (1874-1936), historian, was born at Narborough, the elder son of David Rait, who worked for the Inland Revenue, and his wife, Elizabeth Sangster. The family moved back to Aberdeen and Sangster was educated at Oldmeldrum village school, Aberdeen Grammar School and King's College, Aberdeen, graduating MA in 1894. He then assisted the Professor of Logic, while attending classes in the Free Church Divinity Hall. He won an exhibition in history at New College, Oxford, 1896 and the Stanhope essay prize, 1899. He gained a First Class in Modern History, 1899 and in 1900 was elected a Fellow of his college at Oxford. Rait married Ruth Bridge in 1908 and they had two daughters.

Rait was appointed as the first Professor of Scottish History and Literature at Glasgow University, 1913-1929, a period broken by service with the War Trade Intelligence department, 1915-1918. He was appointed Historiographer-Royal for Scotland, 1919-1929 and was Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Glasgow from 1929 until becoming ill in 1935. Rait was awarded a CBE, 1918 and was knighted, 1933. He received honorary doctorates from the universities of Aberdeen, 1921, Glasgow, 1930, Edinburgh, and Lyons, 1933, and was elected an honorary fellow of New College in 1933. Rait's publications include: 'Life and Campaigns of Hugh, First Viscount Gough, Field-Marshal' (1903); 'The Parliaments of Scotland' (1924).
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