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Abramsky, Chimen (1916–2010), bookseller and historian, was born on 16 September 1916 in Smalyavichy, near Minsk, Russia, the third of four sons of Yehezkel Abramsky (1886–1976), rabbinic scholar, and his wife, Reizel (d. 1965), daughter of the leading rabbinic figure Israel Jonathan Jerusalimsky...

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Sir Harold Mario Mitchell Acton (1904–1994) by John Ward, 1985 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Acton, Sir Harold Mario Mitchell (1904–1994), aesthete and author, was born at his parents' magnificent villa at La Pietra, a mile north of Florence, on 5 July 1904, the son of Arthur Mario Acton (d. 1953) and his wife, Hortense Mitchell (...

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Adams [née Bishop], Barbara Georgina (1945–2002), archaeologist and museum curator, was born on 19 February 1945 at Hammersmith Hospital, London, the only child of Charles Bishop, labourer, and his wife, Ellaline, née Cowdrey, cleaner, of 24 Lena Gardens, Hammersmith, London. She won a scholarship to ...

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Aglionby, William (1641–1705), diplomat and writer on art, was born in the summer of 1641, the second son of George Aglionby (d. 1643), who died shortly after being appointed dean of Canterbury by Charles I, and his wife, Sibilla Smith. George had previously been employed by the ...

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Aldred, Cyril (1914–1991), Egyptologist and art historian, was born on 19 February 1914 at 41 Beltran Road, Fulham, London, the fifth of the six children of Frederick Aldred, a civil servant, and his wife, Lilian Ethel Underwood. Educated at the Sloane School, Chelsea...

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Richard Garnett

revised by Heather M. MacLennan

Alexander, William (1767–1816), artist and museum curator, was born at Maidstone, Kent, on 10 April 1767, one of the three sons and one daughter of Harry Alexander, a coachbuilder. A pencil and watercolour sketch by Alexander of the street where he was born is in ...

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Alison, Archibald (1757–1839), Scottish Episcopal clergyman and writer on aesthetics, was born in Edinburgh, the son of Archibald Alison (1730–1794), lord provost of the city, originally of Newhall, Coupar Angus, and Margaret Harte (d. 1811), of Listerick, near Edinburgh. Alison was educated at ...

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Archibald Alison (1757–1839) by William Walker, pubd 1823 (after Sir Henry Raeburn) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Amherst [formerly Tyssen-Amherst], Alicia Margaret [married name Alicia Margaret Cecil, Lady Rockley] (1865–1941), garden historian, was born on 30 July 1865 at Didlington Hall, Didlington, near Mundford, Norfolk, fifth of the seven children (all daughters) of William Amhurst Tyssen-Amherst (1835–1909), landowner, and his wife, ...