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Adams, James (1737–1802), Jesuit and philologist, was born on 3 November 1737 to William Adams and Anne or Sarah Spencer; he refers to Bury St Edmunds as his 'native town' (Euphonologia Linguae Anglicanae, 1794, 7). He was educated at the Jesuit college in ...

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Richard Irvine Best (1872–1959) by John Butler Yeats, 1906 Courtesy of the National Gallery of Ireland

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Best, Richard Irvine (1872–1959), philologist and bibliographer, was born at 3 Bishop Street, Derry, on 17 January 1872, the son of Henry Best (who was of English descent), an excise officer, and his wife, Margaret Jane Irvine. He was educated at Foyle College...

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Bonaparte, Louis Lucien (1813–1891), philologist, was born at Thorngrove, a house in the parish of Grimley, Worcestershire, on 4 January 1813, the sixth child of Lucien Bonaparte, prince of Canino (1775–1840), who was the second surviving brother of the emperor Napoléon I, and his second wife, ...

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Bullokar, William (c. 1531–1609), spelling reformer and grammarian, belonged to a landed family from west Sussex, and in three surviving legal documents is styled gentleman. His parents were William Bullokar and Elizabeth Bowyer, of Broadwater, Sussex. William the younger may have been born at ...

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Dillon, Emile Joseph [pseud. E. B. Lanin] (1854–1933), journalist and philologist, was born in Dublin on 21 March 1854, the second son of Michael Dillon, a foundry and hardware merchant, and his wife, Mary Byrne. In accord with his father's wishes, Dillon...

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Emile Joseph Dillon (1854–1933) by Sir William Orpen National Gallery of Ireland

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Norman Moore

revised by John D. Haigh

Foley, Daniel (c. 1815–1874), philologist, was born at Tralee, co. Kerry, the son of Timothy Foley, a merchant. His parents were poor, and he never wore shoes until he was employed in the shop of Patrick Grey in Tralee. Under the influence of a local clergyman he left the ...

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John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892–1973) by John Wyatt, 1968 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Tolkien, John Ronald Reuel (1892–1973), writer and philologist, was born on 3 January 1892 in Bloemfontein, Orange Free State, the elder son of Arthur Reuel Tolkien (1857–1896) and his wife, Mabel (1870–1904), daughter of John Suffield. His father and mother both came from ...