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Robert Saunders Dundas


(2nd Viscount Melville)

1771 - 1851

Politician, lawyer and First Lord of the Admiralty. Dundas was the only son of Henry Dundas (1742 - 1811), the so-called 'uncrowned King of Scotland'. He was educated alongside Sir Walter Scott (1771 - 1832) at the High School of Edinburgh. Dundas began as private secretary to his father and continued in the family tradition of politics and the law. Elected to parliament in 1796, he became Keeper of the Seal of Scotland (1800) and First Lord of the Admiralty (1812-30). An able and innovative administrator, Dundas made his greatest contribution in the latter post. He succeeded his father as Governor of the Bank of Scotland, holding the post between 1812 and his death.

Melville Island in the Canadian Arctic was named after him.


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