|Intro||South African politician|
|Birth||21 June 1797, Cape Town|
19 May 1875, Cape Town
(aged 77 years)
Sir Christoffel Joseph Brand (21 June 1797 Cape Town – 19 May 1875 Cape Town) was a South African jurist, politician, statesman and first Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of the Cape Colony.
Early Life and Studies
After receiving his initial education in Cape Town, Brand attended the University of Leiden from 1815, where he obtained a doctorate in law in 1820 with a dissertation on the relationship that colonies have to the mother country – Dissertatio politico-juridica de jure coloniarum. He also earned a doctorate of letters with a thesis Quaestiones in Socratis sententiam de Deo.
He returned to South Africa and in 1821 established a law practice in Cape Town, before beginning to take an active interest in politics. He was one of the founders of the Zuid-Afrikaansch Athenaeum in 1828, and was one of the first advocates in the Supreme Court in 1829. A founder member of the newspaper De Zuid-Afrikaan, he was also its editor and championed the Dutch language in his editorials.
Together with John Fairbairn, he campaigned for representative government and supported the Anti-Convict Movement. Together with F.W. Reitz, Sr. (father of State President Francis William Reitz of the Orange Free State), Fairbairn and Stockenström, he agitated for an elected Legislative Assembly. When representative government was finally introduced, Brand became the first Speaker of the Cape House of Assembly – a position he held for 20 years. He was knighted in 1860.
He was also a prominent supporter of the movement for responsible government, and became the first Speaker of the Cape parliament under this new system, when it was instituted by the Molteno Ministry in 1872.
Sir Christoffel was a high-ranking Freemason and Deputy Grand Master National of the Grand Orient of the Netherlands (Het Groot Oosten der Nederlanden) in South Africa from 1847 to 1874.
Christoffel Brand was married to Catharina Fredrica Küchler. His son was Johannes Brand who became 4th State President of the Orange Free State. His second name “Joseph” was after the naturalist Sir Joseph Banks, a close friend of Christoffel’s grandfather.