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Beauclerc, Marie Bethell (1845–1897), shorthand reporter and teacher of shorthand, was born Maria Bethell at 24 Crescent Street, Somers Town, London, on 10 October 1845, the daughter of Richard Bethell, merchant, and his wife, Elizabeth, née Sayer (1809–1885). As an infant, and in the absence of her parents who had been compelled to go abroad, she was left in the care of a nurse. Later in life, in an account of her childhood, she recollected being taken at the age of four from ...

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Marie Bethell Beauclerc (1845–1897) by A. Marlow reproduced with the permission of Birmingham Libraries & Archives

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John Davies (1564/55–1618) by unknown engraver, pubd 1633 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Davies, John (1564/5–1618), poet and writing-master, was born at Hereford (his birthplace was always noted on his title-pages—'John Davies of Hereford'—apparently to distinguish him from the prominent contemporary poet Sir John Davies). He was probably born a Roman Catholic and was certainly identified as one in 1611 (...

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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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Mason, William (d. 1719?), stenographer and writing-master, is of unknown origins. He wrote that from his youth he 'delighted in the Art of Short-Hand' (W. Mason, La plume volante, 1707, To the reader). In 1736 it was noted, 'As for Mr. Mason...

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Tomkins, Thomas (1743–1816), writing-master, of whose birth, upbringing, or early life nothing is known, eventually kept a boarding-school in Foster Lane, Cheapside, London, where he taught writing and accounts to 'Young Gentlemen for Trades, Merchts. for Counting Houses and the Public Offices' (...