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Arthur Elijah Trueman

Arthur Elijah Trueman

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Sir Arthur Elijah Trueman, FRS, (26 April 1894 – 5 January 1956) was a British geologist
Geology is the science comprising the study of solid Earth, the rocks of which it is composed, and the processes by which it evolves. Geology gives insight into the history of the Earth, as it provides the primary evidence for plate tectonics, the evolutionary history of life, and past climates...


Early life and career

Trueman was born in Nottingham
Nottingham is a city and unitary authority in the East Midlands of England. It is located in the ceremonial county of Nottinghamshire and represents one of eight members of the English Core Cities Group...

, son of Elijah and Thirza Trueman. He was educated at High Pavement School, Nottingham, leaving in 1911 to become student teacher at Huntington Street School, Nottingham. He entered University College Nottingham in 1912 with a grant as a teacher in training, studied geology under H.H. Swinnerton
Henry Hurd Swinnerton
Henry Hurd Swinnerton was a British geologist. He was professor of geology at University College Nottingham from 1910 to 1946. ....

, and graduated B.Sc.
Bachelor of Science
A Bachelor of Science is an undergraduate academic degree awarded for completed courses that generally last three to five years .-Australia:In Australia, the BSc is a 3 year degree, offered from 1st year on...

 with first-class honours in 1914. At the same school, an M.Sc degree was awarded to him in 1916 and D. Sc.
Doctor of Science
Doctor of Science , usually abbreviated Sc.D., D.Sc., S.D. or Dr.Sc., is an academic research degree awarded in a number of countries throughout the world. In some countries Doctor of Science is the name used for the standard doctorate in the sciences, elsewhere the Sc.D...

 in 1918.
In 1920, he married Florence Kate Offler.


Trueman's first post was as Assistant Lecturer at University College, Cardiff, from late 1917 until 1920. From 1920 on, he was lecturer and head of the Department of Geology at the newly established University College, Swansea, and was appointed Professor of Geology and head of the Department of Geography in 1930. In 1933, he was appointed Chaning Wills Professor of Geology at the University of Bristol
University of Bristol
The University of Bristol is a public research university located in Bristol, United Kingdom. One of the so-called "red brick" universities, it received its Royal Charter in 1909, although its predecessor institution, University College, Bristol, had been in existence since 1876.The University is...

, where he also served as Dean of the Faculty of Science for three years. Amongst his students at that time was the young future Professor L.R. Moore
Leslie Rowsell Moore
Professor L.R. Moore, , was Sorby Professor of Geology at Sheffield University, where under his leadership its geology department became one of the largest in the country. He also made significant advances in the study of palaeobotany and palynology. He was called as an expert witness at the...

. In 1937, he was invited chair of geology at the University of Glasgow
University of Glasgow
The University of Glasgow is the fourth-oldest university in the English-speaking world and one of Scotland's four ancient universities. Located in Glasgow, the university was founded in 1451 and is presently one of seventeen British higher education institutions ranked amongst the top 100 of the...

 until 1946, to be succeeded by his student Thomas Neville George
Thomas Neville George
Thomas Neville George FRS was a British geologist.-References:...


From 1946 until 1953 he served in the University Grants Committee
University Grants Committee (UK)
The University Grants Committee was an advisory committee of the British government, which advised on the distribution of grant funding amongst the British universities. It was in existence from 1919 until 1989...

, since 1949 as chairman. From 1945 to 1947, he was president of the Geological Society of London
Geological Society of London
The Geological Society of London is a learned society based in the United Kingdom with the aim of "investigating the mineral structure of the Earth"...

. He also served as chairman of the British Association
British Association for the Advancement of Science
frame|right|"The BA" logoThe British Association for the Advancement of Science or the British Science Association, formerly known as the BA, is a learned society with the object of promoting science, directing general attention to scientific matters, and facilitating interaction between...

 Committee on the Teaching of Geology in Schools, as president of the Geological Section of the Bristol Naturalists' Society, and president of the Glasgow Geological Society. He was knighted in 1951.


  • 1925 Murchison Fund, Geological Society of London
  • 1934 Gold Medal, South Wales Institute of Engineers
  • 1938 Fellow, Royal Society of Edinburgh
    Royal Society of Edinburgh
    The Royal Society of Edinburgh is Scotland's national academy of science and letters. It is a registered charity, operating on a wholly independent and non-party-political basis and providing public benefit throughout Scotland...

  • 1939 Bigsby Medal
    Bigsby Medal
    The Bigsby Medal is a medal of the Geological Society of London established by John Jeremiah Bigsby. It is awarded for the study of American geology and recipients must be under 45 years of age.-Bigsby Medalists:List of Medallists...

    , Geological Society of London
  • 1942 Fellow of the Royal Society
  • 1951 K.B.E.
    Order of the British Empire
    The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire is an order of chivalry established on 4 June 1917 by George V of the United Kingdom. The Order comprises five classes in civil and military divisions...

  • 1955 Wollaston Medal
    Wollaston Medal
    The Wollaston Medal is a scientific award for geology, the highest award granted by the Geological Society of London.The medal is named after William Hyde Wollaston, and was first awarded in 1831...

    , Geological Society of London

He received four honorary LL.D. degrees, from Glasgow, Rhodes
Rhodes University
Rhodes University is a public research university located in Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa, established in 1904. It is the province’s oldest university, and is one of the four universities in the province...

, Wales
University of Wales
The University of Wales was a confederal university founded in 1893. It had accredited institutions throughout Wales, and formerly accredited courses in Britain and abroad, with over 100,000 students, but in October 2011, after a number of scandals, it withdrew all accreditation, and it was...

, and Leeds
University of Leeds
The University of Leeds is a British Redbrick university located in the city of Leeds, West Yorkshire, England...



  • An Introduction to Geology. London, Thos. Murby & Co, 1938.
  • The Scenery of England and Wales. London, Gollancz, 1938.

Subsequently revised by Whittow J.B. & Hardy J.R. and republished as:
  • Geology and Scenery in England and Wales. Harmondsworth, Penguin books, 1971. ISBN 0-14-02-0185-8