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Aldington, Edward Godfree [Richard] (1892–1962), writer, was born on 8 July 1892 at 50 High Street, Portsmouth, the eldest among the two sons and two daughters of Albert Edward Aldington (1864–1921), bookseller and stationer, and later solicitor's clerk and amateur author, and Jessie May Godfree (1872–1954)...

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Allen, Ethan (1738–1789), revolutionary army officer and politician in America, was born on 10 January 1738 in Litchfield, Connecticut, the eldest of the seven children of Joseph Allen (1708–1755) and Mary Baker (1708–1774), farmers. The Allen family lived in what was then a frontier region of ...

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Raymond Asquith (1878–1916) by Malcolm Arbuthnot, c. 1915 Raymond Asquith

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Asquith, Raymond (1878–1916), scholar and army officer, was born on 6 November 1878 in John Street, Hampstead, the eldest of the five children of Herbert Henry Asquith (1852–1928), later prime minister and first earl of Oxford and Asquith, and his first wife, Helen (...

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Caesar [Gaius Julius Caesar] (100–44 bc), politician, author, and military commander, was born on 13 Quinctilis (July) 100 bc, probably at Rome, the son of Gaius Julius Caesar, a patrician of old but recently undistinguished family whose brother-in-law was Gaius Marius, and Aurelia...

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Calgacus [Galgacus] (fl. c. ad 83/4), chieftain in Caledonia, was the British war leader whom Tacitus represents as exhorting the confederate host which opposed a Roman army under Cn. Julius Agricola at the battle of 'Mons Graupius'. The site of this conflict, in which upwards of (reportedly) 30,000 native troops united to defend ...

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Edward Marcus Despard (1751–1803) by John Chapman, pubd 1804 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Despard, Edward Marcus (1751–1803), army officer and revolutionary, was born into a military family in Queen's county, Ireland, on 6 March 1751; the youngest of six sons of William Despard and his wife, Jane. John Despard (1743/4–1829) was his brother. He joined the army as an ensign in 1766 and was promoted lieutenant in 1772, while stationed in ...

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Robert von Ranke Graves (1895–1985) by John Aldridge, 1968 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Graves, Robert von Ranke (1895–1985), poet and novelist, was born on 24 July 1895 at Red Branch House, Lauriston Road, Wimbledon, Surrey, the third of the five children of Alfred Perceval Graves (1846–1931), poet and educationist, and his second wife, Amalie Elizabeth Sophie (Amy; 1857–1951)...

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Hongi Hika (1772–1828), Maori tribal leader and war chief, was, by his own account, born in the year of the death of the French explorer Marion du Fresne, 1772, near Kaikohe in central Northland in the North Island of New Zealand. He was the second of several children of ...

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Hongi Hika (1772–1828) by unknown artist, c. 1820 [centre, with Waikato (left) and the missionary Thomas Kendall (right)] Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Matauranga o Aotearoa (G-618)

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Lee, Charles (1732–1782), revolutionary army officer in America, was born on 26 January 1732 in Chester, the youngest of seven children of Colonel John Lee (d. 1750), army officer, and his wife, Isabella Bunbury (d. 1766), niece of Sir Thomas Hanmer...

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Makoni, Mutota (c. 1835–1896), anti-colonial warrior, is believed to have been born in the Maungwe region, later overlapping with the Makoni district, some 50 miles north-west of Mutare in Mashonaland. Centred on a succession of stone-built villages, whose complex fortifications impressed the British hunter ...

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Mante, Thomas (bap. 1733, d. c. 1802), army officer and historian, was baptized Thomas Mant on 3 December 1733 at St Faith's parish church, Havant, Hampshire, the eldest of the eight children of Thomas Mant (1702–1768), an estate manager, and his wife, Mary (...

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Mapondera, Kadungure (1840s–1904), warrior chief in Africa, was born at Nyota, a mountain stronghold of the Negomo dynasty, in what is now northern Mashonaland, Zimbabwe. Mapondera's mother, Mwera, was a mhondwa, a slave wife, but there is no agreement as to who his father was. Some accounts favour ...

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Moorosi [Morosi] (c. 1795–1879), ruler of the Ngwe (Putili) and warrior, was born, oral evidence suggests, at Mohale's Hoek in the south of what became Lesotho. His father, Mokuoane, Ngwe (Putili) ruler, became a vassal of the Sotho leader Moshoeshoe in the late 1820s. When ...

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Read, Sir Herbert Edward (1893–1968), poet, literary critic, and writer on art, was born on 4 December 1893 at Muscoates Grange, near Kirkby Moorside, in the North Riding of Yorkshire, the eldest of the four children of Herbert Edward Read (1868–1903), tenant farmer, and of ...

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Richards, Frank (1883–1961), soldier and author, was born on 7 April 1883 at Upper Machen Farm, Machen, Newport, Monmouthshire, according to his birth certificate the son of Mrs Mary Ann Woodruff, née Richards, and Francis Augustus Woodruff, colliery proprietor; however, his parents may not then have been married. According to ...