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William Cunningham

1805-1861. Scottish theologian. One of the leaders of the Disruption* in 1843, and later Thomas Chalmers's successor as principal of New College, Edinburgh, he was a man of massive theological learning and an able controversialist both in theology and in the ecclesiastical affairs of his day. Judged by Historical Theology, a posthumously published set of lectures (2 vols., 1862), Cunningham's gifts as a teacher lay in his judicious summings-up of the chief features of theological systems, from one who had an unswerving commitment to the Westminster Standards. He was a theological heir both of the Westminster Divines and of the continental Reformed theologians of the seventeenth century, in whom he was widely read. Cunningham was a close friend of Charles Hodge* of Princeton.