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Person: Mackay (2), James Peter Hymers
James Mackay is a Scottish mathematician and lawyer. As Lord Mackay of Clashfern he served 10 years as Lord Chancellor.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Mackay attended George Heriot's School in Edinburgh and then entered the University of Edinburgh where he studied mathematics and natural philosophy (as physics was known in the university at that time).
- At this stage, rather than take up the scholarship in Cambridge, Mackay took a lectureship in the Mathematics Department of the University of St Andrews.
- The classes at this time were small, and in 1948-49 Mackay taught a final year honours class of six mathematics students (one of whom went on to become a university lecturer researching in algebra).
- After these two years teaching mathematics at St Andrews, Mackay went to Trinity College, Cambridge to take up the scholarship he had been awarded to study mathematics there.
- In 1965 Mackay was appointed Queen's Counsel and he was Sheriff Principal, Renfrew and Argyll, from 1972 to 1974.
- In 1979, Mackay was appointed Lord Advocate, the senior law officer in Scotland, and was created a life peer becoming Baron Mackay of Clashfern, of Eddracchillis in Sutherland.
- Mackay was Lord Advocate until 1984 when he became a Senator of the College of Justice in Scotland for 1984-85, then Lord of Appeal in Ordinary until 1987.
- Margaret Thatcher, the Prime Minister, appointed Mackay as Lord Chancellor on 27 October 1987.
- As Lord Chancellor, Mackay was the Speaker of the House of Lords, the head of the judiciary, the custodian of the great seal, and the chief administrator of the legal system and courts.
- In 1986 Lord Mackay became headline news in the British Press for very unfortunate reasons.
- The Synod reviewed the action that the Church had taken against Mackay in 1989, and upheld its punishment.
- On St Andrews day (30 November) 1991, Lord Mackay was installed as Chancellor of Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh.
- Lord Mackay has received a great many honours in recognition of his outstanding achievements.
- The Queen attended the installation of Lord Mackay of Clashfern as Knight of the Order of the Thistle in a ceremony at St Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh.
- The Queen approved that the Right Honourable the Lord Mackay of Clashfern KT be appointed Lord High Commissioner to the 2005 General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, and he was reappointed by the Queen to the 2006 General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.
- Lord Mackay has walking and travel as his recreations but, in keeping with his religious upbringing, never works or travels far on Sunday.
Born 2 July 1927, Edinburgh, Scotland.
View full biography at MacTutor
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Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive