Mary Brunton (1778-1818), Scottish novelist, was born on the 1st of November 1778 in the island of Varra, Orkney. She was the daughter of Captain Thomas Balfour of Elwick. At the age of twenty she married Alexander Brunton, minister of Bolton in Haddingtonshire, and afterwards professor of oriental languages at Edinburgh. Mrs Brunton died on the 19th of December 1818. She was the author of two novels, popular in their day, Self-control (1810), and Discipline (1814; 1832 edition with memoir); and of a posthumous fragment, Emmeline (1819).