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Annesley, Richard, sixth earl of Anglesey (bap. 1693, d. 1761), kidnapper and bigamist, was baptized on 26 November 1693 at St Peter's Cathedral, Exeter, Devon, the third son of Dr Richard Annesley (1654/5–1701), dean of Exeter, from c.1700 third Baron Altham, and his wife, ...

Article

Crofts, Elizabeth (b. c. 1535), impostor, is of unknown origins. Nothing is known of her before 1554, when she was involved in a cause célèbre that led to her being accused of attempting to undermine the church and the crown. The episode is reported in both Catholic and protestant sources, with no significant variation in detail. On 14 March that year, aged about eighteen, ...

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Robert Feilding (1650/5151–1712) by Jan van der Vaart, c.1678-79 (after Sir Peter Lely) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Feilding, Robert (1650/51–1712), rake and bigamist, was born at Solihull, Warwickshire, the son of George Feilding, landowner, a kinsman of the earl of Denbigh. Nothing is known about his mother. He was admitted to the Middle Temple in 1673, but upon inheriting £600...

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Rudd [née Youngson], Margaret Caroline (b. c. 1745, d. in or before 1798?), courtesan and accused forger, was born in Lurgan, co. Armagh. Much was written of her life and exploits but little can be verified. Her father, Patrick Youngson, was reported to have been an apothecary; her mother, ...

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(Lillias Irma) Valerie Arkell- Smith (1895–1960) by unknown photographer, 1926 by permission of the E. O. Hoppé Trust, Curatorial Assistance, Inc., Los Angeles

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Smith, (Lillias Irma) Valerie Arkell- [née Lillias Irma Valerie Barker] (1895–1960), sexual impostor and perjurer, was born on 27 August 1895 in St Clements, Jersey, the daughter of Thomas William Barker (1857–1918), gentleman farmer and architect, and his wife, Lillias Adelaide Hill (1868–1923)...

Article

Warner, Samuel Alfred (1793/4–1853), charlatan, was born at Heathfield, Sussex, the son of William Warner, a carpenter. His own fanciful account of his early years was contradicted by information later confided to Sir Robert Peel when Peel was becoming convinced of Warner's deceit (...