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Bisse, Thomas (1675–1731), Church of England clergyman and founder of the Three Choirs festival, was baptized on 6 April 1675 at Oldbury on the Hill, Gloucestershire, one of two sons of John Bisse (c.1638–1686), rector of that parish, and his wife, ...

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Boyle, Richard, third earl of Burlington and fourth earl of Cork (1694–1753), architect, collector, and patron of the arts, was born on 25 April 1694 at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, the only son of Charles Boyle, second earl of Burlington and third earl of Cork...

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Richard Boyle, third earl of Burlington and fourth earl of Cork (1694–1753) by Jonathan Richardson the elder, c. 1717–19 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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James Brydges, first duke of Chandos (1674–1744) by Michael Dahl James Brydges, 1st Duke of Chandos, n.d., Michael Dahl / The Berger Collection at the Denver Art Museum, TL-17970 / © Denver Art Museum 2004

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Brydges, James, first duke of Chandos (1674–1744), politician and patron of music, was born at Dewsall, Herefordshire, on 6 January 1674, the eldest son of James Brydges, eighth Baron Chandos (1642–1714), who held estates in Herefordshire and Radnorshire, and Elizabeth Barnard (1643–1719), who came from a successful merchant family. Having inherited the attributes of both the landed gentry and of merchant bankers, the young ...

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Daly, John (1937–2008), film and music producer and promoter, was born on 16 July 1937 at Lambeth Hospital, London, one of five children of Thomas Daly, a dock labourer and manager of a boxing gym in Bermondsey, and his wife, Emily Louise, née...

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James Harris (1709–1780) attrib. Frances Reynolds, c. 1777 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Harris, James (1709–1780), philosopher and musical patron, was born on 24 July 1709, probably at the family home in the close, Salisbury, now called Malmesbury House. He was the eldest of three sons of James Harris (1674–1731) and his second wife, Elizabeth (...

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Charles Jennens (1700/0101–1773) by Thomas Hudson, 1747 private collection

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Jennens, Charles (1700/01–1773), patron of the arts and librettist, was born probably at Gopsall Hall, Leicestershire, the son of Charles Jennens (bap. 1662, d. 1747), gentleman and JP, son of the Birmingham ironmaster Humphrey Jennens, and his second wife, Elizabeth Burdett (1667–1707/8)...

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John Montagu, fourth earl of Sandwich (1718–1792) by Thomas Gainsborough, 1783 © National Maritime Museum, London, Greenwich Hospital Collection

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Montagu, John, fourth earl of Sandwich (1718–1792), politician and musical patron, was born in London on 13 November 1718, the eldest son of Edward Richard Montagu, Viscount Hinchingbrooke (1692–1722), and his wife, Elizabeth Popham (d. 1761). His grandfather had been insane for some time before he died in 1729, leaving his ten-year-old grandson very little but the earldom. His widowed mother had already remarried and effectively abandoned her sons; ...

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Anthony Howard Wilson (1950–2007) by Harry Goodwin, 1970s Harry Goodwin / Rex Features

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Wilson, Anthony Howard [Tony] (1950–2007), television broadcaster and music entrepreneur, was born at Hope Hospital, Salford, Lancashire, on 20 February 1950, the only child of Sydney Wilson (1917–1997), tobacconist, and his wife, Doris Emily, née Knupfer (1904–1975). Thirteen years older than her husband and a widow when they married in 1948, ...

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Wood, Henry Harvey (1903–1977), writer and a founder of the Edinburgh international festival, was born on 5 September 1903 in Edinburgh, the second of the three children of Henry Wood (d. 1934), paper maker, and his wife, Anne Cassidy. He was educated at the ...

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Henry Harvey Wood (1903–1977) by Sir William George Gillies, 1922 in the collection of the Royal Scottish Academy