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Agard, Arthur (1535/6–1615), archivist and antiquary, was born at Foston, Derbyshire, the second of the three sons of Clement Agard of Foston and his wife, Eleanor, daughter of Thomas Middlemore of Edgbaston. He matriculated from Queens' College, Cambridge, at Michaelmas 1553, but nothing further is known of his education, and there is no doubt that the greater part of his learning came by his study of the records of which he had charge. His knowledge of the common law may have been acquired first in one of the inns of court. ...

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Astle, Thomas (1735–1803), archivist and collector of books and manuscripts, was born on 22 December 1735 at Yoxall, on the edge of Needwood Forest, Staffordshire, the eldest son of Daniel Astle (d. 1775), keeper of the forest, who was of a family long established at ...

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Thomas Astle (1735–1803) by William Skelton, pubd 1803 (after Henry Howard) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Blakiston, Hugh Noel (1905–1984), archivist and author, was born on 8 December 1905 at Baumber vicarage, Lincolnshire, the second child of the vicar, the Revd Felix Milburn Blakiston (1874–1941), and his wife, Mary Augusta Fox (1880–1962), who were married on 23 April 1903 at ...

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Charite, William (1422–c. 1502), compiler of monastic records and prior of Leicester, embraced the religious life at the age of eighteen, in 1440 entering the large Augustinian abbey of St Mary de Pratis in Leicester, where he was subsequently to become prior. By 1482, when the abbot and convent ordained an episcopal daily service in his honour, ...

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Cok [Coke], John (c. 1393–c. 1468), Augustinian canon and compiler of the cartulary of St Bartholomew's Hospital, London, came of unknown parentage. Autobiographical interjections in his writings provide most information on his life and work, the main source being the cartulary, in which he states that it was 'Compiled and written by brother ...

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Ellis, Roger Henry (1910–1998), archivist, was born on 9 June 1910 at Garsdale, Mansfield Woodhouse, Nottinghamshire, eldest of the four children of Francis Henry Ellis (1882–1953), managing director and chairman of the Sherwood Colliery Company, and his wife, Sybil Mary (1881/1882–1969), daughter of ...

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Emmison, Frederick George [Derick] (1907–1995), archivist, was born at 35 Sandhurst Road, Bedford, on 28 May 1907, son of George Emmison, a telegraph clerk with the London, Midland, and Scottish Railway, and his wife, Kate Ann, née Field (d. 1967). A bright boy, inspired by his father with a love of history, he gained a scholarly reputation at ...

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Sir Samuel Ferguson (1810–1886) by unknown photographer by permission of the Royal Irish Academy © Royal Irish Academy

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Ferguson, Sir Samuel (1810–1886), poet and archivist, was born on 10 March 1810, in High Street, Belfast, the youngest of the six children of John Ferguson (d. 1845) and his wife, Agnes, née Knox (d. 1861), daughter of John Knox, a clockmaker, in whose house the birth took place. His father, whose Scottish forebears had settled in ...

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Fergusson, Sir James, eighth baronet (1904–1973), archivist and scholar, was born on 18 September 1904, the eldest son of Sir Charles Fergusson, seventh baronet (1865–1951), of Kilkerran, Ayrshire, and his wife, Lady Alice Mary Boyle (1877–1958), second daughter of the seventh earl of Glasgow...

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Flower, Sir Cyril Thomas (1879–1961), record scholar, was born on 31 March 1879 at Warminster, Wiltshire, the only child of Thomas Flower, who practised medicine there, as his father had done. Thomas Flower, cousin of Henry Fawcett, the blind politician, married Jessie Susan...

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Fraser, Sir William (1816–1898), genealogist and archivist, was born at Links of Arduthie, by Stonehaven, Kincardineshire, on 18 February 1816. Though his father, James (d. 1834), and grandfather William were stonemasons, Fraser's paternal forebears came of farming stock in Strathspey and Stratha'an...

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Gairdner, James (1828–1912), archivist and historian, was born in Edinburgh on 22 March 1828, the second son of John Gairdner MD (1790–1876) and Susanna, née Tennant (d. 1860). A maternal great-grandfather was William Dalrymple (1723–1814) and Sir William Tennant Gairdner was his brother. ...

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W. A. Greenhill

revised by Simon Bailey

Griffiths, John (1806–1885), college head and archivist, was born on 27 July 1806 in the parish of St Margaret, Rochester, Kent, the only son and second of three children of the Revd John Griffiths (1772–1832), vicar of the parish and master of the ...

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Hardy, Sir Thomas Duffus (1804–1878), historian and archivist, was born at Port Royal, Jamaica, on 22 May 1804, the third son of Thomas Bartholomew Price Hardy (d. 1813), then a captain-lieutenant of the Royal Artillery, and his second wife, Frances Duffus (...

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Hardy, Sir William (1807–1887), archivist, was born in Jamaica on 6 July 1807, the fourth son of Captain Thomas Bartholomew Price Hardy (d. 1813), of the 1st battalion, Royal Artillery, and his second wife, Frances Duffus (b. 1776), of Kingston, Jamaica...

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Haydon, Frank Scott (1822–1887), record scholar, was born on 12 October 1822, the eldest son of Benjamin Robert Haydon (1786–1846), the painter, and his wife, Mary Cawse Hyman. He was baptized at Paddington, Middlesex, on 13 July 1829, Sir Walter Scott being a godfather (whence came his second name) and ...

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Sir Edward Hertslet (1824–1902) by Elliott & Fry, pubd 1902 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Hertslet, Sir Edward (1824–1902), librarian and archivist, was born on 3 February 1824 at 16 Great College Street, Westminster, the youngest son of Lewis Hertslet (1787–1870) and his wife, Hannah Harriet, known as Jemima (d. 1828), the daughter of George Cooke. Educated at private schools in ...