The Scotch Minister’s Assistant, or a Collection of Forms, Celebrating the Ordinances of Marriage, Baptism, and the Lord’s Supper, according to the Usage of the Church of Scotland, with suitable Devotions for Church and Family Worship.

  • [Robertson, Harry]
  • Inverness: Printed, and sold by Young and Imray 1802


SKU: 4453 Category: Tags: ,


FIRST EDITION, 8vo, pp. 320. Contemporary marbled calf by J. Forsyth of Elgin, spine divided by double gilt rules. A little minor spotting. Rubbed, extremities worn and endbands lost, joints cracking but sound. Binder’s ticket to front pastedown, gilt crest of Sir William Cumming Gordon-Cumming of Altyre, 2nd Baronet (1787-1854) to head of spine.


The scarce first edition, in a local binding, of the first handbook specifically for ministers of the Church of Scotland, providing 'forms' or sample texts for sermons, prayers, and celebrations of marriage and baptism. The Presbyterian tradition discouraging reading from the pulpit, it became clear that not all ministers were gifted at extemporary speech and a number of versions of this sort of guide were produced throughout the nineteenth century amidst arguments over how prayer was best conducted.
The 'Scotch Minister's Assistant' is attributed to Reverend Harry Robertson (1748-1815), born in Kincardine, later minister of Kiltearn. He was awarded a DD from Marischal College in 1802, perhaps as a result of the book. A number of sources mention that it was reprinted in 1822 under the title 'The Presbyterian Minister's Assistant', but we have not been able to trace a surviving copy of that version.

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