Letter to Dr. Henderson

On the 14th December the community were startled by the unexpected intelligence of the death of Principal Cunningham, and on the same day Dr. Candlish wrote to Henderson—

"I have just got your note. I cannot almost think of this calamity. Probably it may be as well to wait till you come in on Tuesday. The funeral is on Wednesday. I will try to arrange meeting of the College Committee and the Senatus after the funeral.

I found the Professors to-day talking over matters. I have offered to read the lectures of one course three times a week, and I think Bannerman and Bruce-Cunningham, between them, will read the other course. I can easily do it, for I know well the writing, and I would like it. Strange to say that. Is it not! I am very sad."

RS Candlish

On the following Sabbath, after alluding to the loss the Church and the country had sustained by Dr. Cunnningham's death, he referred to his personal bereavement. He said " I call him friend, my earliest friend among my brethren here, whose associate I became nearly thirty years ago—my friend to the last. Most devoutly do I thank my God that I can say so. That which might have been to me the most overwhelming of all aggravations of this calamity has been averted; and without a single drop of bitterness mingling with my tears I can follow my friend's remains to his last earthly home. I thank the giver of all good, the healer of breaches, the author of peace, and the lover of concord, for this great mercy—that not yesterday, but some years ago, the darkest cloud that ever gathered over my happiness here below, in so far as that happiness lay in human fellowship, passed quite away, and we were to another as we had been before. You will pardon these personal allusions; you will sympathise with me as I have made them. I believe that you and the whole Church grieved for the estrangement, which, let me, in all sincerity, take to myself a full share of the blame; and you and the whole Church were glad when it took end,"

Home | Biography | Literature | Letters | Links | Photo-Wallet