Thomas Tullidelph ~ Minister and University Principal

Thomas Tullidelph – minister and university principal; he was known as an eloquent speaker and preacher. Born in Dunbarney Parish to the local Minster, Thomas Tullidelph became the founder and first principal of United College, St Andrews University. He spent some 50 years as an academic and religious figure in Perthshire and Fife. He was ordained to Dron on 2 November 1727 then moved to Markinch after four years. On 17 October 1734, he obtained a chair in divinity at St Mary’s College, St Andrews which was followed by a period as principal of St Leonard’s College. Tullidelph became moderator of the general assembly of the Church of Scotland on 6 May 1742. He also was appointed a chaplain to the king (June 1744). After involvement in the establishment of the United College, St Andrews University, Tullidelph became its first principal. This newly unified college was involved in reform and modernisation of the curriculum. As a principal, Tullidelph was very strict and aloof; he was not popular amongst the student body. Within the general assembly of the Church of Scotland, Tullidelph was a frequently heard voice in debate. He married Alison Richardson in 1772 and together they had five daughters. Thomas Tullidelph died in 1777.