Thomas Martin Lindsay was ordained in 1872 as Professor of Church History at the Free Church College, Glasgow, where he continued until his death in 1914, since 1902 having been Principal of what had become the United Free College.
Lindsay was born in 1843 in Lesmahagow, Lanarkshire, a son of the manse, and studied at Glasgow and Edinburgh, where he was assistant to Professor A. C. Fraser. Apart from a probationary period assisting Robert Candlish at Free St George’s, Edinburgh, he had no experience of pastoral ministry.
His wife was a daughter of Alexander Murray Dunlop, advocate and later MP for Greenock, who drew up the Claim of Right (1842) prior to the Disruption and was legal adviser to the Free Church of Scotland. Lindsay obtained a DD from Glasgow and an LLD from St Andrews (1906).
Professor D F Wright has described Lindsay’s two-volume A History of the Reformation as
one of the most substantial Scottish accounts of the Reformation, with a particular interest in its social and domestic aspects. Lindsay’s social concern was evident in his involvement in crofting agitation and with labour leaders (Dictionary of Scottish Church History and Biography).
The Trust publishes Lindsay’s The Reformation: A Handbook, originally published in 1882, a ‘condensed, scholarly account of the religious upheaval of the sixteenth century’ (Spurgeon).[Author image from a painting of Lindsay by George Fiddes Watt, © the artist’s estate. Photo credit: Hunterian Art Gallery, University of Glasgow.]