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Hugh Miller, stonemason turned writer, newspaper editor and geologist, became the young Archibald Geikie’s friend and geological mentor, encouraged his first research and presentation to a learned society, and recommended him to the Geological Survey, thus laying the foundations for a career that reached the top of British science. Geikie was deeply distressed when Miller died by his own hand. He helped deal with Miller’s posthumous publications. He modelled his early writings on those of Miller and wrote attractive and much-quoted pen-portraits of Miller, which are valuable to this day, although also reflecting Geikie’s perspective in biography and historiography, now seen as flawed.

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