Baillie, Robert

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Baillie, Robert (1599–1662). Cleric. Baillie was born in Glasgow and educated at the university there. Appointed to a living at Kilwinning in Ayrshire, he took part in the Glasgow Assembly, protested against Arminian innovations, and served with the army of the covenant. In 1642 he was appointed professor of divinity at Glasgow and rapidly became one of the leading presbyterian spokesmen. He represented the Scottish kirk at the Westminster Assembly and was dismayed at the Erastianism and tolerance of many of the English. Cromwell he thought lax and that his power should be broken: the independents, shockingly, ‘expressed themselves for toleration not only to themselves, but to other sects’. But, with the cunning of the righteous, Baillie wrote of the independents: ‘we purpose not to meddle in haste, till it please God to advance our army, which we expect will much assist our arguments.’ Later, Baillie became a leader of the resolutionists. In 1660 he declined a bishopric but was appointed principal of Glasgow University. His Letters and Journals have been much used.

J. A. Cannon