Was a Scottish divine and philanthropist, born at Brechin in Angus (at that time also called Forfarshire). He was one of the most popular preachers of his day in Scotland and was associated with many forms of philanthropy—especially temperance and Ragged Schools, of which he was a founder. Guthrie studied at Edinburgh University for both surgery and anatomy (under Dr Robert Knox) but then concentrated on Theology. He was licensed to preach from 1825 but having established a reputation as an evangelical he had difficulty securing a parish and instead spent two years studying medicine and science in Paris. Following his return from Paris and a period of varied employment, including as a bank manager, he was eventually offered the living of Arbirlot in Angus by the Hon William Maule in 1830. Guthrie served as Minister of Arbirlot for eight years. As well as his training for the Ministry, his medical knowledge and experience was called upon in particular during an outbreak of cholera in the parish. In 1837 Guthrie was called to the collegiate charge of Old Greyfriars Church, Edinburgh. In 1840 he planted a new church in Victoria Street called St. John's Parish Church Edinburgh. After the Disruption of 1843 his congregation worshipped for 2 years in the Methodist Hall in Nicholson Square before moving into the purpose-built Free St John's, Johnston Terrace (now St Columba's Free Church) in 1845. Possessed of a commanding presence and voice, and a remarkably effective and picturesque style of oratory, he became perhaps the most popular preacher of his day in Scotland and was associated with many forms of philanthropy. His hard work as a proponent and founder of Ragged Schools led him to be quoted by Samuel Smiles in his famous book Self Help. Guthrie was instrumental in bringing about the Licensing (Scotland) Act 1853 or the ‘Forbes Mackenzie Act’, as it is better known. This Act forced public houses to close at 10.00 pm on weekdays and all day on Sundays.