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William Bedloe (1650–1680) by Robert White, pubd 1681 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bedloe, William (1650–1680), informer and adventurer, was the second son of Isaac Bedloe (d. 1656). William Bedloe was born in Chepstow on 20 May 1650 and spent his early life both there and in Bristol. Much of his early life was deliberately clouded in obscurity. His own published account of his parentage and ancestry remains dubious. He claimed that his father had been a gentleman soldier who had served the king in the civil wars and whose own father was ...

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Thomas Blood (1617/1818–1680) by unknown artist The Pepys Library, Magdalene College, Cambridge

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Blood, Thomas (1617/18–1680), adventurer and spy, was born at Sarney, co. Meath. His early life is obscure, but it was later claimed that his father (who was possibly Neptune Blood) was a blacksmith and ironworker, 'serious, honest and of no inferior credit' (...

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Bond, Martin (1558?–1643), merchant, was the third or fourth son of William Bond (d. 1576), an alderman of London and merchant adventurer, who was sheriff in 1567. It is unclear whether he was the Martin Bond who, in 1572, was admitted to ...

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J. T. Gilbert

revised by S. J. Skedd

Bradstreet, Dudley (1711–1763), adventurer and spy, was born in Tipperary, where his father had obtained considerable land under the Cromwellian grants. His father's wealth was much reduced by debts, and Dudley, who was the youngest son, was looked after by a foster father in ...

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Browne, Maurice (1555/6–1583), adventurer and courtier, was the fourth son of John Browne, merchant, of London, and his third wife, Christian, daughter of William Carkett of London. He was thirteen at the time of the visitation of London in 1568. John Browne died in September 1570, leaving ...

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Champion de Crespigny, Sir Claude, fourth baronet (1847–1935), military adventurer and sportsman, was born in Chelsea on 20 April 1847, the eldest son of Sir Claude Champion de Crespigny, third baronet (1818–1868), of Wivenhoe Hall, Essex, and his wife, Mary, second daughter of ...

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Coxe, Daniel (1640–1730), physician, natural philosopher, and colonial adventurer, was the son of Daniel Coxe (d. 1686), gentleman, of Stoke Newington, Middlesex. He matriculated at Jesus College, Cambridge, in 1659, becoming a scholar in 1661. Coxe first came to the fore in the mid-1660s as an associate of ...

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Cumming, (Felicity) Anne (1917–1993), writer and sexual adventurer, was born on 14 December 1917, at Thames Cottage, Thames Street, Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, the daughter of Howard Cumming (1885–1957), captain in the Royal Flying Corps, timber merchant, and later a company director, and his wife, ...