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Margaret Cavendish Bentinck [Lady Margaret Cavendish Harley], duchess of Portland (1715–1785) by Joseph Brown, pubd 1861 (after Christian Friedrich Zincke, 1738) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bentinck, Margaret Cavendish [née Lady Margaret Cavendish Harley], duchess of Portland (1715–1785), collector of art and natural history specimens and patron of arts and sciences, was born on 11 February 1715 in London, the only surviving child of Edward Harley, later second earl of Oxford...

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Mary Impey, Lady Impey (1749–1818) by Johan Zoffany, c. 1783–4 [The Impeys: , Sir Elijah Impey (1732-1809), and their three children] © Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid

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Impey [née Reade], Mary, Lady Impey (1749–1818), natural historian and patron of the arts, was born on 2 March 1749, the daughter of Sir John Reade (1721–1773) of Shipton Court, Oxfordshire, and his wife, Harriet, née Barker (d. 1811). She was the eldest of three children—the others, ...

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Lister [married name Knowler], Susanna (bap. 1670, d. 1738), natural history illustrator, and her sister Anne Lister (1671–1695x1704), who worked with her, were the first and second of the eight children of Martin Lister (bap. 1639, d. 1712), physician and naturalist, and his wife, ...

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Merrifield [née Watkins], Mary Philadelphia (1804–1889), writer on art and algologist, was born on 15 April 1804 in Brompton, London, the daughter of a conveyancing barrister, Sir Charles Watkins. In 1827 she married John Merrifield of Tavistock (1788/9–1877), who was called to the ...

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Pallis, Marietta (1882–1963), ecologist, painter, and author, was born on 26 October 1882 in Bombay, the first of the five children of Julia Ralli (1857–1940) and her scholar–poet husband, Alexander Pallis (1850–1935), a member of the Greek trading firm Ralli Brothers. The family left ...

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Plymley, Katherine (bap. 1758, d. 1829), diarist, naturalist, and painter, was baptized at Longnor, Shropshire, on 31 January 1758, the eldest child of Joseph Plymley (1716–1802), apothecary, of the Bank House, Longnor, Shropshire, and Diana, née Flint (1725–1779), a member of the Shropshire...