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James Bryce (1806 - 1877):
Teacher and geologist


James Bryce was born at Killaig, Coleraine, County Londonderry, and educated by his parents, both of whom were classical scholars, and by his elder brother Reuben. In 1826 he was appointed Master of the Mathematical and Commercial Department of Belfast Academy. He introduced the teaching of natural history and printed a catalogue entitled Tables of Simple Minerals, Rocks and Shells, with Local Catalogues of Species for use by the Students of Natural History in Belfast Academy. He was elected a Fellow of the Geological Societies of London and Dublin in recognition of his work on the fossils of Antrim. In the Geological Magazine he described the true origin of the Giant's Causeway, originally proffered by Nicholas Desmarest and William Hamilton but then erroneously discredited, and he produced a paper on the mineral resources of the north of Ireland. As secretary of the Natural History Society he gave a lecture on 'The Method of Supplying Large Towns with Water by Artesian Wells and on the Question of its Applicability to Belfast'. In 1846 he published a Cyclopaedia of Geography, and in 1877 he died in a fall from a cliff in the Highlands of Scotland. A memorial stone marks the spot at Foyers.



Born: 22 October 1806
Died: 11 July 1877
Kate Newmann