"my townsman and fellow collegian, Mr L—t of C—d"

John Gibson Lockhart, 1856
Public DomainJohn Gibson Lockhart, 1856 - Credit: James Faed
John Gibson Lockhart of Chiefs wood (1794-1854). Married to Sir Walter Scott’s daughter Sophia, he is remembered today for the brilliant biography he wrote about his father-in-law, Life of Sir Walter Scott (1837-9). Lockhart and Hogg were fellow writers for Blackwood’s Magazine and their relationship, though not entirely free from professional friction, was largely friendly. Lockhart writes glowingly of Hogg - “the most remarkable man that ever wore the maud of a shepherd” - in his Life; Hogg, meanwhile, dedicates The Three Perils of Women (1823): “To John Gibson Lockart, Esq. Advocate, this work is respectfully inscribed by his affectionate and sincere friend, the Author”. This mutual goodwill was to end abruptly in 1834 when Hogg’s Familiar Anecdotes of Sir Walter Scott, originally published in America, came out in pirated form in Glasgow. For Lockhart, this represented an unacceptable trespass on his intellectual territory and he broke off all contact with his former friend. Interestingly, 19th century critics who were unable to entertain the idea that a shepherd might be capable of producing so psychologically intense a work often assumed that Lockhart was at least partly responsible for authoring the Private Memoirs.