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Acland, Sir John (c. 1552–1620), politician and benefactor, was the younger son of John Acland (d. 1553) of Acland Barton in the parish of Landkey, north Devon, and Margaret, daughter and coheir of Hugh Radcliff of Stepney and the Middle Temple. He was born into an established gentry family which already bore heraldic arms and owned lands in five other ...

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Bateman [Norwich], William (c. 1298–1355), diplomat, founder of Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and bishop of Norwich, was probably born in Norwich (from which he was sometimes named), the third son of William and Margery Bateman. His father was many times bailiff of the city, and in 1326–7 its member of ...

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Bodley, Sir Thomas (1545–1613), scholar, diplomat, and founder of the Bodleian Library, Oxford, was born on 2 March 1545 in a house on the corner of High Street and Gandy Street, Exeter, the eldest son of John Bodley (c. 1520–1591), religious radical and publisher, of ...

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Borlase, Sir William (c. 1562–1629), politician and benefactor, was the only son of John Borlase (d. 1593) and his wife, Anne (d. 1622), daughter of Sir Robert Lytton of Knebworth, Hertfordshire. Although the family of Borlase or Burlace was Cornish in origin ...

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Boswell, Sir William (d. 1650), diplomat and patron of learning, was born in Suffolk. He matriculated from Jesus College, Cambridge, in 1600, graduating BA in 1604, becoming a fellow in 1606, and proceeding MA in 1607; he was incorporated at Oxford in 1608. In December 1614 he was granted a pass to travel abroad for three years but he remained absent from ...

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Brome, Adam (d. 1332), administrator and first founder of Oriel College, Oxford, was probably the son of Thomas of Brome, who took his name from Brome near Eye in Suffolk; according to the inquisition held after the death of Edmund, earl of Cornwall...

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Clare, Elizabeth de [Elizabeth de Burgh; known as lady of Clare] (1294/5–1360), magnate and founder of Clare College, Cambridge, was usually known as Elizabeth de Burgh, and was described by herself and others as lady of Clare. She was the youngest daughter of ...

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Drucker, Henry Matthew (1942–2002), political scientist and fund-raiser, was born on 29 April 1942 in Paterson, New Jersey, USA, the elder son of Arthur Drucker (1912–1980) and his wife, Frances (1915–2001), New Deal Democrat parents. He was at school in Rutherford where his father was the proprietor of a local department store. At ...

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Maker: unknown artist

William Elphinstone (1431–1514) by unknown artist, c.1505 University of Aberdeen

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Elphinstone, William (1431–1514), administrator, bishop of Aberdeen, and founder of the University of Aberdeen, was probably born in Glasgow. His father, also named William, was a younger son of Sir William Elphinstone of Pittendreich, Stirlingshire, but by 1430 had embarked upon an ecclesiastical career and had thereby committed his son to the illegitimate state. The ...

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Fox [Foxe], Richard (1447/8–1528), administrator, bishop of Winchester, and founder of Corpus Christi College, Oxford, was born at Pullocks Manor, Ropsley, near Grantham, Lincolnshire. He gave his age as seventy-nine in April 1527, indicating that he was born in 1447 or 1448.

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Heywood, James (1810–1897), politician, university reformer, and philanthropist, was born in Everton, Liverpool, on 28 May 1810, the fifth son of Nathaniel Heywood, a partner in the Manchester bank of Benjamin Heywood & Sons, and his wife, Ann, daughter of Thomas Percival, MD FRS...

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Hope, Henry Thomas (1808–1862), patron of the arts and politician, was born in London, probably in Duchess Street, on 30 April 1808, eldest of the three sons of Thomas Hope (1769–1831), of the Amsterdam banking family, and his wife, Louisa (d. 1851)...

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Keith, George, fourth Earl Marischal (1549/50–1623), magnate and founder of Marischal College, Aberdeen, was the eldest son of William, master of Marischal (c.1530–1580), and his wife, Elizabeth Hay (b. c.1530), daughter of George, seventh earl of Erroll. He was educated with his younger brother ...

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Lowndes, Thomas (bap. 1692, d. 1748), colonial official and benefactor, was baptized at Astbury, Cheshire, on 7 December 1692. He was the second son of William Lowndes of Overton, an estate at Astbury, and his wife and cousin Elizabeth, daughter of Ralph Lowndes...

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Walter of Merton (c. 1205–1277) seal The British Library

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Merton, Walter of (c. 1205–1277), administrator, bishop of Rochester, and founder of Merton College, Oxford, was the son of William Cook (le Kuk, le Keu) of Basingstoke, Hampshire, and in his early years was known as Walter of Basingstoke. His father, who died ...

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Sir Walter Mildmay (1520/2121–1589) by unknown artist, 1588 by permission of the Master, Fellows, and Scholars of Emmanuel College in the University of Cambridge

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Mildmay, Sir Walter (1520/21–1589), administrator and founder of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, was born in 1520 or 1521 (a portrait of him painted in 1574 states his age to be fifty-three), the youngest of five sons of Thomas Mildmay (c.1488/9–1551), a mercer of ...

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Mordan, Clara Evelyn (1844–1915), suffragist and benefactor, was born on 28 September 1844 at 2 Barkham Terrace, St George's Road, Southwark, London, the elder of the two daughters of Augustus Mordan (d. 1901), manufacturer of mechanical pencils, and his wife, Elizabeth Jane...