Arbuthnot, Alexander a Scotch divine, was born in 1538. He was educated in the University of St. Andrew's, and then went to France and prosecuted his studies under Cujacius. Being declared licentiate of laws, he came home in 1566 to follow that profession; but he soon left the bar for the pulpit. In 1568 he was made principal of the University of Aberdeen. He took an active part in the various controversies of the time, and was employed in the preparation of the "Book of Discipline." In 1583 he received a presentation to one of the churches of St. Andrew's, but was prohibited by a royal warrant, or "horning," from accepting it. The cause of the royal indignation against him is not exactly known; but while the controversy as to his appointment was pending he died, October 10,1583. He left behind him the character of a moderate and honest man, a man of learning, and a poet. — McCrie's Life of Melville, 1, 114; Biog. Britannica.