Alexander Monro of Auchenbowie ('Primus'), 1697 - 1767

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Alexander Monro of Auchenbowie ('Primus'), 1697 - 1767
  • Scottish Art
After being trained by his surgeon father and assisting him in treating the wounded on the battlefield of Sherrifmuir after the 1715 rebellion, Alexander Monro was sent to complete his medical education in London, Paris and Leiden. He returned to Edinburgh in 1719 and within four months, aged only twenty-three, he became the first Professor of Anatomy at the University. Under Monro’s direction student numbers increased steadily. Whilst there had been just over a thousand students in the 1730s, thirty years later that figure had almost doubled and Edinburgh had become one of the most important centres for medical teaching. Monro’s two sons, Alexander ‘Secundus’ – the second – and Donald, both followed in their father’s footsteps, and so did his grandson, Alexander ‘Tertius’ – the third.

Glossary Open


Jacobitism was a movement to restore the descendants of the Stuart King James VII and II to the British throne. The first claimant, Prince James Francis Edward (known as 'the Old Pretender') was exiled first in France, then Italy, from where he planned unsuccessful attempts to claim the throne. His son Prince Charles Edward (known as 'Bonnie Prince Charlie' or 'the Young Pretender') famously invaded Britain in 1745, but after some military successes was finally defeated at Culloden in 1746.



  • Acc. No. PG 2843
  • Medium Oil on canvas
  • Size 75.80 x 63.50 cm (framed: 93.00 x 81.00 x 5.00 cm)
  • Credit Purchased 1990