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Anning, Mary (1799–1847), fossil collector and dealer, was born on 21 May 1799 in a seaside house in Lyme Regis, Dorset. She and her brother Joseph (1796–1849) were the only surviving children of Richard Anning (c.1766–1810), cabinet-maker and carpenter, and his wife, ...

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Mary Anning (1799–1847) by unknown artist, before 1842 © The Natural History Museum, London

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Arber [née Robertson], Agnes (1879–1960), botanist, was born at 26 Regent's Park Road, London, on 23 February 1879, the eldest child of Henry Robert Robertson (1839–1921), an artist, and Agnes Lucy Turner, a descendant of Robert Chamberlain (d. 1798), ceramicist, of ...

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Atkinson [married name Calvert], (Caroline) Louisa Waring (1834–1872), writer and naturalist, was born on 25 February 1834 at Oldbury, Sutton Forest, near Berrima, on the southern highlands of New South Wales, the third daughter and fourth child of Charlotte, née Waring (1796–1867)...

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Atwood [née South], Mary Anne (1817–1910), interpreter of alchemy, was born at Dieppe in 1817, the daughter of Thomas South (c.1785–1855), gentleman, of Bury House, Gosport, Hampshire, and his wife, Elise, née Maurice. She received no formal education but became proficient in Latin and Greek and developed a 'rare and extraordinary knowledge of the classics' (...

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Mary Anne Atwood (1817–1910) by unknown photographer, c. 1890 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Barber [née Bowker], Mary Elizabeth (1818–1899), poet and natural historian, was born at Manor Farm, South Newton, Wiltshire, on 5 January 1818, the ninth child and first daughter of Miles Bowker (1758–1839), woollen manufacturer and sheep farmer of Gateshead, and Anna Maria (...

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Beddington, Rosa Susan Penelope (1956–2001), developmental biologist, was born on 23 March 1956 at King's College Hospital, Denmark Hill, London, the second daughter of (Julian) Roy Beddington, artist and writer, of Esseborne Manor, Hurstbourne Tarrant, Andover, Hampshire, and his wife, Anna Dorothy, née...

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Bell [married name Sawyer], Florence Ogilvy (1913–2000), biophysicist and molecular biologist, was born at 47 Hanover Road, Brondesbury Park, London, on 1 May 1913, the daughter of Thomas Bell (1871–1952), a photographer for the Illustrated London News and advertising manager at ...

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See Bellamy, Frank Arthur

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(Elizabeth) Ruth Naomi Belville (1854–1943) by Samuel A. Walker, c. 1890 [Image of Maria Belville, Ruth Belville's mother, who was also a ‘time lady’] National Maritime Museum, London

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Belville, (Elizabeth) Ruth Naomi (1854–1943), horologist and merchant, was born on 5 March 1854 at 9 Hyde Vale Cottages, Greenwich, Kent, the only child of Belville, John Henry (1795?–1856), horologist and assistant astronomer at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, and his third wife, ...

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See Belville, (Elizabeth) Ruth Naomi

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Etheldred Benett (1775–1845) by unknown artist, 1837 Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery

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Benett, Etheldred (1775–1845), fossil collector and geologist, was born on 22 July 1775 at Pyt House, Tisbury, Wiltshire, the eldest daughter of Thomas Benett (c.1729–1797) and Catherine Darell (d. 1780). Her eldest surviving brother, John (1773–1852), was a deputy lieutenant and magistrate for ...

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Margaret Jane Benson (1859–1936) by Maull & Fox, c. 1911 by permission of the Linnean Society of London

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Benson, Margaret Jane (1859–1936), botanist and palaeontologist, was born on 20 October 1859 in London, the sixth of the nine children of William Benson, architect and civil engineer, and his wife, Edmunda, daughter of landscape painter James Bourne. The family moved to Norton House, Hertford...

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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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Berkeley [formerly Bergtheil; née Dunington], Edith (1875–1963), marine biologist, was born on 1 September 1875 in Tulbagh, Cape of Good Hope, the older daughter of Alfred Dunington, civil engineer, and his wife, Martha Treglohan (c.1837–c.1927). Having spent her early childhood abroad, and having had private tutors in the ...