Heddle, Matthew Forster
HEDDLE, MATTHEW FORSTER (1828-1897), Scottish mineralogist, was born at Hoy in Orkney on the 28th of April 1828. After receiving his early education at the Edinburgh academy, he entered as a medical student at the university in that city, and subsequently studied chemistry and mineralogy at Klausthal and Freiburg. In 1851 he took his degree of M.D. at Edinburgh, and for about five years practised there. Medical work, however, possessed for him little attraction; he became assistant to Prof. Connell, who held the chair of chemistry at St Andrews, and in 1862 succeeded him as professor. This post he held until in 1880 he was invited to report on some gold mines in South Africa. On his return he devoted himself with great assiduity to mineralogy, and formed one of the finest collections by means of personal exploration in almost every part of Scotland. His specimens are now in the Royal Scottish Museum at Edinburgh. It had been his intention to publish a comprehensive work on the mineralogy of Scotland. This he did not live to complete, but the MSS. fell into able hands, and The Mineralogy of Scotland, in 2 vols., edited by J. G. Goodchild. was issued in 1901. Heddle was one of the founders of the Mineralogical Society, and he contributed many articles on Scottish minerals, and on the geology of the northern parts of Scotland, to the Mineralogical Magazine, as well as to the Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. He died on the 19th of November 1897.
See Dr Heddle and his Geological Work (with portrait), by J. G. Goodchild, Trans, Edin. Geol. Soc. (1898) vii. 317.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)