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Erskine, John (American educator, author, and musician)

John Erskine, 1879–1951, American educator, author, and musician, b. New York City, grad. Columbia (B.A., 1900; Ph.D., 1903). He taught first at Amherst (1903–9) and then at Columbia, becoming professor of English in 1916. Among his many works on literature and music are The Literary Discipline (1923), The Delight of Great Books (1928), and What Is Music? (1944); he also edited scholarly works and served as coeditor of The Cambridge History of American Literature. He is best known for his delightful, satiric novels based on legend, including The Private Life of Helen of Troy (1925) and Galahad (1926). In his late 40s he began appearing as a concert pianist and from 1928 to 1937 was president of the Juilliard School of Music.

See his autobiographical The Memory of Certain Persons (1947), My Life as a Writer (1951), and My Life in Music (1950, repr. 1973).

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Erskine, John (1509–91, Scottish reformer)

John Erskine, 1509–91, Scottish reformer, called Erskine of Dun. After several years on the Continent he returned to Scotland, where he introduced the study of Greek in Scottish schools. He was the friend and firm supporter of John Knox and George Wishart. Erskine was a witness at the marriage (1557) of Mary Queen of Scots to Francis II of France and a participant in the coronation (1567) of James VI at Stirling. As a member of a noble family and a person of gracious manner, he was a valuable intermediary between the reforming party and Mary and, later, James. Although a layman, he was several times moderator of the general assembly of the Scottish Reformed Church. In 1578 he took part in compiling the Second Book of Discipline and in 1579 became a member of the king's council.

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Erskine, John (1721?–1803, Scottish theologian)

John Erskine, 1721?–1803, Scottish theologian. A leader of the evangelical party in the Church of Scotland, he was minister successively at Kirkintilloch, Culross, and New Greyfriars Church, Edinburgh, until, in 1767, he became the colleague of Dr. William Robertson at Old Greyfriars. He corresponded with many representatives of foreign churches, including Jonathan Edwards, whose works he edited and published in Great Britain.

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Erskine, John (1695–1768, Scottish jurist and professor)

John Erskine, 1695–1768, Scottish jurist and professor (1737–65) of Scots law in the Univ. of Edinburgh. He is best known for his authoritative Institutes of the Law of Scotland (1754). His Principles of the Law of Scotland was published posthumously in 1773.

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