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Adams, William George Stewart (1874–1966), political scientist and college head, was born on 8 November 1874 at Hamilton, Lanarkshire, the second son and youngest of the four children of John Adams, headmaster of St John's Grammar School, Hamilton, with Aberdonian farming ancestors, and his wife, ...

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Anson, Sir William Reynell, third baronet (1843–1914), politician and college head, was born at Walberton, Sussex, on 14 November 1843, the eldest son of Sir John William Hamilton Anson, second baronet (1816–1873), and his wife, Elizabeth Catherine (d. 1903), daughter of Major-General Sir Denis Pack...

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Sir William Reynell Anson, third baronet (1843–1914) by Sir Hubert von Herkomer, 1895 All Souls College, Oxford

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See Fisher, Herbert Albert Laurens

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Sir Montagu Sherard Dawes Butler (1873–1952) by Walter Stoneman, 1932 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Butler, Sir Montagu Sherard Dawes (1873–1952), administrator in India and college head, born at Julian Hill, Harrow, on 19 May 1873, was the third son of Spencer Perceval Butler, barrister, of Lincoln's Inn, later conveyancing counsel to the High Court of Justice and the ...

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Cooper, Thomas (1759–1839), political writer and college head, was born in Westminster on 22 October 1759, the son of Thomas Cooper, who was entitled to bear heraldic arms. He matriculated from University College, Oxford, in February 1779, but did not take a degree; well known in later life as a freethinker, he is said to have refused to sign the ...

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Thomas Cooper (1759–1839) by Asher Brown Durand, 1829 (after Charles Cromwell Ingham) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Cowen, Sir Zelman (1919–2011), legal scholar, governor-general of Australia, and college head, was born Zelman Cohen on 7 October 1919 in St Kilda, Melbourne, the only son of Bernard Cohen, later Cowen (1892–1975), businessman, and his wife Sara, née Granat (1893–1989). In March 1922 his father changed his surname by deed poll. Both families were part of the mass exodus of Jews from tsarist ...

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Sir Zelman Cowen (1919–2011) by Wes Walters, 2000 © National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, Gift of Marc Besen AO and Dr Joseph Brown AO OBE 2000

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Dame Myra Curtis (1886–1971) by Charles Hewitt, 1948 Getty Images – Charles Hewitt

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Curtis, Dame Myra (1886–1971), civil servant and college head, was born on 2 October 1886 at 11 Belle Vue Road, Sunderland, co. Durham, one of three daughters of George Curtis, a telegraphist in the Post Office, and his wife, Annie Johnson, an elementary school teacher. Her forebears were north-country working-class, and she was brought up in a hard-working, close-knit family, which valued education. As a young girl she attended ...

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Hayter, Sir William Goodenough (1906–1995), diplomatist and college head, was born on 1 August 1906 in Oxford, the only son and eldest of the three children of Sir William Goodenough Hayter (1869–1924), a judge in the Anglo-Egyptian service, and his wife, Alethea, daughter of the ...

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Sir William Goodenough Hayter (1906–1995) by Walter Stoneman, 1953 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Hennessy, David James George, third Baron Windlesham and Baron Hennessy (1932–2010), politician, broadcasting executive, and college head, was born on 28 January 1932 at 32 Belgrave Square, Mayfair, London, the only son and second of the four children of James Bryan George Hennessy, ...

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Hughes [née Pestell], Catherine Eva (1933–2014), diplomatist and college head, was born on 24 September 1933 at 167 Westmount Road, Eltham, London, the younger daughter and youngest of three children of Edmund Ernest Pestell (1893–1965) and his wife, Isabelle Cummine, ...

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William King (1685–1763) by John Faber junior, 1751 (after John Michael Williams, 1750) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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King, William (1685–1763), college head and Jacobite sympathizer, was born at Stepney, Middlesex, on 5 March 1685 and baptized there six days later, the son of Peregrine King (1649–1714), a Church of England clergyman, and his wife, Margaret (c.1651–1692/3), daughter of ...

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Lee, Sir Frank Godbould (1903–1971), civil servant and college head, was born at Colchester, Essex, on 26 August 1903, the eldest of three children and the only son of Joseph Godbould Lee and his wife, Florence Brown. Both parents were schoolteachers, and they soon moved to ...

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Sir Frank Godbould Lee (1903–1971) by Walter Stoneman, 1951 © National Portrait Gallery, London