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Adams, John Couch (1819–1892), astronomer, was born on 5 June 1819 at Lidcot, a farm near Launceston, Cornwall, the eldest of the seven children of Thomas Adams (1788–1859), a poor tenant farmer, and his wife, Tabitha Knill Grylls (1796–1866), a farmer's daughter who had received some education from her uncle ...

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Baldwin, Alfred (1841–1908), industrialist and politician, was born at Stourport, Worcestershire, on 4 June 1841, the youngest of twelve children of George Pearce Baldwin (1789–1840), a small-scale iron founder and businessman, and his second wife, Sarah Chalkley Stanley (1801–1874), the eldest daughter of the ...

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Benson, Joseph (1749–1821), Wesleyan Methodist minister, was born at Melmerby, Cumberland, on 25 January 1749, the son of John Benson (d. 1769), a landowner, and his wife, Isabella Robinson (d. 1779). His father, intending him to enter the church, placed him in the care of the local Presbyterian minister, from whom he received a classical education....

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Broadbent, Sir William Henry, first baronet (1835–1907), physician, was born at Lindley, near Huddersfield, Yorkshire, on 23 January 1835, the eldest surviving of the seven children of John Broadbent (1796–1880), woollen manufacturer and Wesleyan Sunday school superintendent, and his wife, Esther, née Butterworth (...

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Buller, Sir Walter Lawry (1838–1906), ornithologist, was born on 9 October 1838 at Newark Wesleyan mission station in Pakanae, Hokianga region, New Zealand, the second of the ten children of James Buller (1812–1884), Wesleyan missionary, and his wife, Jane Tonkin Martin (1808–1884), both of ...

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Clarke, Adam (1762–1832), Wesleyan Methodist minister and scholar, was born in Moybeg, Kilcronaghan parish, co. Londonderry. His father, an Anglican, was a village schoolmaster and farmer; his mother was a Presbyterian. His childhood consisted of a series of life-threatening mishaps. He was educated locally, fell under the influence of the Methodists in 1778, and met ...

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Etty, William (1787–1849), painter, was born at 20 Feasegate, York, on 10 March 1787, the seventh child of Matthew Etty (1743–1818) and Esther, née Calverley (1754–1829). His father was a baker and miller; Esther Etty was of gentle birth and a forceful character. ...

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Guest, Sir (Josiah) John, first baronet (1785–1852), ironmaster, was born at Dowlais, near Merthyr Tudful, on 2 February 1785, the eldest child of Thomas Guest, manager and part owner of the Dowlais ironworks, and Jemima Revel Phillips of Shifnal in Shropshire. He had one brother and three sisters. His grandfather ...

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Howell, George (1833–1910), politician and writer, was born on 5 October 1833 in Wrington, Somerset, the eldest of the eight children of Edwin John Howell (1809–1868) and Mary Welsh (1806–1891). He had four brothers and three sisters. Edwin Howell, a mason like his father before him, became a self-employed subcontractor for railway bridges and waterworks in ...

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Johns, Claude Hermann Walter (1857–1920), Assyriologist and Church of England clergyman, was born at Banwell, Somerset, on 4 February 1857, the eldest son of the Revd Walter Pascoe Johns, a Wesleyan minister, of a yeoman family settled for generations at Wendron, Cornwall, and his wife, ...

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Kirk, Kenneth Escott (1886–1954), bishop of Oxford, was born on 21 February 1886 in Sheffield, the eldest child of Frank Herbert Kirk, secretary and director of Samuel Osborn & Co. of the Clyde Steel and Iron Works, Sheffield, and his wife, Edith Escott...

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Lunn, Sir Henry Simpson (1859–1939), worker for ecclesiastical reunion and travel agent, was born on 30 July 1859 at Bridge Street, Horncastle, Lincolnshire, the eldest son of Henry Lunn, greengrocer and lay preacher, and Susanna, daughter of Simpson Green, of Horncastle. His parents were both Wesleyan Methodists. He was educated at ...

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Mather, Alexander (1733–1800), Wesleyan Methodist preacher, was born in February 1733 at Brechin in Forfarshire. His parents, of whom little is known, instructed him 'early in the principles of religion' and consequently he was 'an utter stranger to the vices common among men...

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Pitman, Sir Isaac (1813–1897), deviser of a system of shorthand writing, was born on 4 January 1813 at 3–4 Timbrell Street, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, the third of the eleven children of Samuel Pitman (1787–1863), manager of a weaving mill, and his wife, Maria Pitman, ...

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Shepstone, Sir Theophilus (1817–1893), politician in Natal, was born on 8 January 1817 at Westbury-on-Trym, on the outskirts of Bristol, Gloucestershire, the son of (John) William Shepstone (1796–1873), stonemason and Methodist missionary, and his wife, Elizabeth Brooks (1793–1833). In 1820 the Shepstone family joined one of the parties of English settlers recruited to establish farming settlements near the eastern frontier of ...

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Spencer, Sir Stanley (1891–1959), artist, was born on 30 June 1891 at Fernlea, High Street, Cookham-on-Thames, Berkshire, the seventh son in a family of eleven children, of whom two died in infancy, of William Spencer (d. 1928), music teacher and organist, and his wife, ...

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Streat, Sir (Edward) Raymond (1897–1979), cotton trade administrator, was born on 7 February 1897 at 2 Brunswick Terrace, Prestwich, Lancashire, the fifth of the six children of Edward Streat (1856–1918), a commercial traveller, and his first wife, Helen (Nellie) Wallis (1859–1908). His father, who was born in ...

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Thompson, Thomas Perronet (1783–1869), army officer and politician, was born on 15 March 1783 at 17 Lowgate, Hull, eldest of the four children of Thomas Thompson and his wife, Philothea Perronet Thompson, née Briggs (1753–1823). His father was a banker and merchant, MP for ...

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Warren, Samuel (1807–1877), lawyer and writer, was born on 23 May 1807 near Wrexham, Denbighshire, the elder son of Dr Samuel Warren (1781–1862), clergyman, and his first wife, Anne (1778–1823), daughter of Richard and Elizabeth Williams. Little is known about Samuel Warren's early education except his statement in the preface to ...