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Addy, William (bap. 1618?, d. 1695?), stenographer and writing-master, has been plausibly, although on entirely circumstantial evidence, identified as the William Addy who was baptized in Wath upon Dearne, West Riding of Yorkshire, on 13 September 1618, the third son of John Addy (...

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Angell, John (d. 1764), stenographer, of Chichester, Sussex, was possibly the son of John Angell (d. 1754). He became a feltmaker or hatter in St Clement Danes parish, Westminster, London. Like Thomas Gurney, official reporter to the Old Bailey, Angell learned the shorthand system of ...

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See Angell, John

Article

Arkisden, Thomas (1608/9–1682), Church of England clergyman and writer of shorthand, was probably born in Essex or Suffolk, one, probably the elder, of the two children of Thomas Arkisden, a minor landowner, and his wife, Francis, née Durrant. After his father's death, his guardian was his 'father-in-law' ...

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Austin, John (b. 1752, d. before 1838), music stenographer and inventor of a power-loom, was born at Craigton, near Glasgow, on 17 April 1752, the son of the gardener to John Baird, esquire. Nothing is known of Austin's early life or education. On 30 May 1777 he married ...

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Blanchard, William Isaac (bap. 1741?, d. 1796), stenographer and legal writer, was the grandson of a French refugee and is probably the William Blanchard baptized on 20 December 1741 at St Martin-in-the-Fields, Westminster, London, son of Isaac Blanchard and his wife, Ann Mary Delpeuch...

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Botley, Samuel (1640/41–1677), stenographer, was a son of Robert Botley, citizen of London and cordwainer. The year of his birth has been calculated from the engraved portrait by William Dolle in the first edition of the shorthand manual for which Botley is chiefly remembered, ...

Article

Thompson Cooper

revised by H. K. Higton

Bridges, Noah (fl. 1643–1662), stenographer and mathematician, was educated at Balliol College, Oxford, and acted as clerk of the parliament which sat in that city in 1643 and 1644. He was created bachelor of civil law on 17 June 1646, 'being at that time esteemed a most faithful subject to his majesty' (...

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Bright, Timothy (1549/50–1615), physician and writer on shorthand, was the son of William Bright (d. 1592), possibly the William Bright who was mayor of Cambridge in 1571. Sheffield, Yorkshire, has been given as his birthplace, but Bright himself stated that he was born and educated in ...

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Byrom, John (1692–1763), poet and creator of a system of shorthand, was born on 29 February 1692 at Kersall Cell, Broughton, near Manchester, the second son of Edward Byrom (d. 1711), merchant, and his wife, Sarah Allen. The Byrom family were well known in the district: the ...

Image

John Byrom (1692–1763) by Dorning Rasbotham © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Coles, Elisha (c. 1640–1680), lexicographer and stenographer, the son of John Coles (1623/4–1678), schoolmaster of Wolverhampton grammar school, and his wife, Joyce, was probably born about 1640 in Northamptonshire. He was the nephew of Elisha Coles the Calvinist, and has been often confused with his uncle's son, also ...

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Gibbs, Philip (1696–1752), Presbyterian minister and historian of shorthand, was born at Trowbridge, Wiltshire, on 15 February 1696, the son of James Gibbs, a clothier, and his wife, Anne Bailey. His family were prominent presbyterians and lived in Duke Street. Nothing is known of his education except that he began the study of divinity under 'Calvinistical Tutors'....

Article

Thompson Cooper

revised by Joanna Hawke

Gurney, Joseph (1804–1879), shorthand writer and biblical scholar, was born in Bartlett’s Buildings, Holborn, London on 15 October 1804, the eldest son of William Brodie Gurney (1777–1855), the philanthropist, and his wife, Ann née Benham (1781-1827). He acted as secretary to his first important committee of the ...

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See Gurney, Thomas

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Gurney, Thomas (1705–1770), stenographer, was born at Woburn, Bedfordshire, on 7 March 1705, the son of John Gurney, a miller, and his wife, Hannah Young. The young Gurney, more interested in scholarly and mechanical arts than in agriculture, twice ran away from home. About 1720 he bid successfully at auction for a book on astrology. The lot also included a popular treatise on the art of shorthand, ...

Article

G. C. Boase

revised by M. Clare Loughlin-Chow

Gurney, William Brodie (1777–1855), shorthand writer and philanthropist, grandson of Thomas Gurney (1705–1770) and brother of Sir John Gurney (1768–1845), was the younger son of Joseph Gurney (1744–1815) [see under Gurney, Thomas] and his wife, a daughter of William Brodie of ...

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Hopkins, William (fl. 1674), stenographer and writing master, wrote The flying pen-man, or, The art of short-writing by a more easie, exact, compendious, and speedy way (1674), using a system related to those of Thomas Shelton, Jeremiah Rich, and especially Theophilus Metcalfe. Beautifully engraved with ornamental borders and a frontispiece portrait of ...

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Lewis, James Henry (1786–1853), stenographer, was born in the parish of King's Stanley, near Stroud, Gloucestershire, probably on 20 August 1786, the son of James Lewis, a cloth manufacturer and owner of oil mills, of Ebley, near Stroud, and his wife, Sarah. Little is known of his early years, but it is believed that he learned ...

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Lyle, David (fl. 1755–1762), maker of mathematical instruments and stenographer, was the author of a treatise entitled The art of short hand improved, being an universal character adapted to the English language, whereby every kind of subject may be expressed or taken down in a very easy, compendious, and legible manner...