1764-1842. Scottish evangelist, writer, and philanthropist. Born in London of an ancient Scottish family, he lost both parents by the time he was ten years old. Educated in schools at Dundee and Edinburgh, he joined the navy in 1780, but soon abandoned that career to return to his Stirlingshire estate, where he gained a reputation as a farmer and landscape gardener. Converted in 1795, he resolved to devote life, talents and fortune to the Christian cause. He sold his estate, determined to finance and participate in missionary work in India, but that door was closed through opposition from the East India Company. The 1796 [[Church of Scotland]] general assembly, controlled by Moderates,* also decided against foreign mission work, and much of Robert's money went into establishing preaching “tabernacles” and theological seminaries.