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Aberhart, William (1878–1943), politician and evangelist in Canada, was born in Hibbert township, near Seaforth, Perth county, Ontario, on 30 December 1878, the son of William Aberhart (who as a child had been brought from Germany) and his wife, Louisa Pepper, the daughter of an Englishman. He was educated at schools in ...

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Agnew, Sir Andrew, seventh baronet (1793–1849), promoter of Sabbatarian legislation, was born at Kinsale, Ireland, on 21 March 1793, into an ancient and distinguished family in Wigtownshire. He was a posthumous son, his father, Andrew Agnew, an army officer, having died on 11 September 1792. His mother, ...

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À Lasco [Laski], John (1499–1560), evangelical reformer, was born in Lask, Poland, the second of three sons and brother to four daughters of Jarslov Laski (d. 1521?), voivode of Sieradz, and Susanna Bak (fl. 1484–1510), daughter of the Bakova-Gora councilman Zbigniew Bak...

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Alline, Henry (1748–1784), evangelist and hymn writer, was born in Newport, Rhode Island, on 14 June 1748, the second son of William Alline and Rebecca Clark. His father, who was probably a miller, responded to the announcements of free land in Nova Scotia...

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Arthington, Henry (fl. 1569–1609), religious conspirator and writer, was a native of Yorkshire, but nothing is known about his family, education, and upbringing. He claimed to have been an anti-Catholic informer for the council of the north before the northern rising of 1569, and may still have been active in that capacity in the 1580s. He was granted a patent for life by the ...

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Arthur, Thomas (d. 1532/3), religious radical, is of uncertain origins, though he may have belonged to an Arthur family of Wisbech. He studied at Cambridge, graduating in 1513 and proceeding MA in 1516. In 1518 he became a fellow of St John's, and is recorded as principal of ...

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Austen, Ralph (c. 1612–1676), horticulturist and religious radical, was born into a yeoman family in Leek, Staffordshire; his mother was a cousin of Henry Ireton, the parliamentary leader, a connection Austen repeatedly stressed in his attempts to gain offices or land grants. Austen...

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Henry Wilfred Austin (1906–2000) by Edward G. Malindine, 1933 © reserved; collection Science & Society Picture Library; photograph National Portrait Gallery, London

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Austin, Henry Wilfred [Bunny] (1906–2000), tennis player and evangelist, was born at 11 Crescent Road, South Norwood, Croydon, on 26 August 1906, the son of Wilfred Austin, stock jobber, and his wife, Kate Leah Cock. He seems to have acquired the nickname Bunny...

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Bale, John (1495–1563), bishop of Ossory, evangelical polemicist, and historian, was born to parents of humble means at the village of Cove, near Dunwich in Suffolk, on 21 November 1495.

Throughout his life, despite wide travels, Bale continually proclaimed his identity as a ...

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Balfour, John, of Kinloch (fl. 1663–1683), covenanter, was the son of John Balfour (d. c.1652), portioner of Kinloch, in the parish of Collessie, and his wife, Grissel Hay (d. c.1653). Served heir to his grandfather Robert Balfour on 26 February 1663, he was described as a 'broad man' with 'farid dusk brown hair' (...

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Baro, Peter (1534–1599), Reformed minister and religious controversialist, was born at Étampes (Seine-et-Oise), France, the son of Étienne Baron and his wife, Philippe Petit; in his autobiographical notes Peter says he was one of many children, first mentioning brothers Jean and Florent, so he was perhaps the third to survive. The family is believed to have belonged to the rich ...

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Barrow, Henry (c. 1550–1593), religious separatist, was the third son of a Norfolk gentleman, Thomas Barrow of Shipdam, and his wife, Mary, daughter and coheir of Henry Bures of Acton, Suffolk. Through the Bures connection, Barrow was related to the family of Sir William Butts...

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Bennett, Robert (1605–1683), parliamentarian army officer and religious radical, was born in Hexworthy, Lawhitton, Cornwall, the eldest son of Richard Bennett esquire and his wife, Mary, daughter of Oliver Clobery of Bradstone, Devon. He matriculated from Exeter College, Oxford, on 13 December 1622 and left after taking his BA in 1624; during 1622 he was also enrolled at the ...

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Bertie, Richard (1517–1582), landowner and religious evangelical, was the eldest son of Thomas Bertie (d. 1555), of Bearsted, Kent, and his wife, a member of the Say family of Shropshire. In February 1534 he was admitted to Corpus Christi College, Oxford, aged sixteen. Having graduated BA in 1537, he became a probationary fellow of ...

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Bickersteth, Edward (1786–1850), Church of England clergyman and evangelical leader, was born in Kirkby Lonsdale, Westmorland, on 19 March 1786, the fourth of the five sons and seven children of Henry Bickersteth, a doctor, and his wife, Elizabeth Batty. Henry Bickersteth (1783–1851), later master of the rolls and ...

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Edward Bickersteth (1786–1850) by Samuel William Reynolds senior, pubd 1826 (after Alexander Mosses) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bilney, Thomas (c. 1495–1531), evangelical reformer and martyr, known as Little Bilney on account of his short stature, was born in Norfolk, most likely at Norwich. Of his parents nothing is known, except that they survived him. Sent up to Cambridge at an early age (...

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Blackadder, Adam (b. 1659, d. in or after 1696), merchant and writer on covenanting, was probably born in the parish of Troqueer, near Dumfries, the second son of John Blackadder (1615/1623?–1686), the minister there, and his wife, Janet Haining (d. 1688). Among his brothers were ...

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Blount, Edward (1769–1843), campaigner for Roman Catholic civil rights, was born on 18 July 1769, the second of the three children of Sir Walter Blount, sixth baronet (d. 1785), of Sodington, and his wife, Mary Aston, daughter of James, fifth Lord Aston of Forfar...