John Robison, a Scottish writer on natural philosophy, born at Boghall, Stirlingshire, in 1739, died in Edinburgh, Jan. 80, 1805. He graduated in 1756 at the university of Glasgow, and in 1758 went to London, became private tutor to the son of Admiral Knowles, and entered as midshipman on board the Royal William, his pupil being lieutenant, under whom he served two and a half years. He was then sent to Jamaica to test Harrison's chronometer. In April, 1763, he resumed his studies at the university of Glasgow, and in 1766 succeeded Dr. Black as lecturer in chemistry. In 1770 he went to St. Petersburg as secretary to Admiral Knowles, who had been invited thither to suggest reforms in the Russian navy, and in 1772 he was made inspector general of the corps of marine cadets at Cron-stadt. From 1774 till his death he was professor of natural philosophy in the university of Edinburgh. His works, including his contributions to the "Encyclopaedia Britannica," were published under the title "A System of Mechanical Philosophy," with notes by David Brewster (4 vols. 8vo, London, 1822); besides which he was the author of numerous scientific papers, and of "Proofs of a Conspiracy against all the Religions and Governments of Europe" (8vo, Edinburgh, 1797).