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Addison, Joseph (1672–1719), writer and politician, was born on 1 May 1672 at the rectory, Milston, a hamlet north of Amesbury in Wiltshire, the son of Lancelot Addison (1632–1703) and his wife, Jane, née Gulston (c.1635?–1684). His father was at that time vicar of ...

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Alexander, William, first earl of Stirling (1577–1640), poet and politician, was born probably at Menstrie Castle in Clackmannanshire, the only son (there were four daughters) of Alexander Alexander (d. 1581) and Marion, daughter of Gilbert Graham of Gartavertane. His descent has been traced from the lords of the ...

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Andrews, Charles Freer (1871–1940), author and campaigner for Indian independence, was born at Newcastle upon Tyne on 12 February 1871, the second son of John Edwin Andrews, minister in the Catholic Apostolic (or Irvingite) church, and his second wife, Mary Charlotte Cartwright (1840–1914)...

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Anson [née Yorke], Elizabeth, Lady Anson (1725–1760), political correspondent and political manager, was born in August 1725, the sixth child and eldest daughter of Philip Yorke, subsequently first Baron and first earl of Hardwicke (1690–1764), lord chancellor, and his wife, Margaret Lygon (...

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Arnold, Matthew (1822–1888), poet, writer, and inspector of schools, was born at Laleham-on-Thames, Middlesex, on 24 December 1822, the eldest son and second of the nine surviving children of the Revd Thomas Arnold (1795–1842) and Mary Penrose Arnold (1791–1873). Thomas Arnold had been a fellow of ...

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Ashley, (Anthony) Evelyn Melbourne (1836–1907), politician and biographer, born in London on 24 July 1836, was the fourth son of Anthony Ashley Cooper, seventh earl of Shaftesbury (1801–1885), politician and social reformer, and his wife, Emily (1810–1872), daughter of Peter Leopold Cowper, fifth Earl Cowper...

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Asquith [née Tennant], Margaret Emma Alice [Margot], countess of Oxford and Asquith (1864–1945), political hostess and diarist, was born on 2 February 1864, the sixth daughter and eleventh child of Sir Charles Tennant, first baronet (1823–1906), wealthy Scottish industrialist and Liberal MP, and his first wife, ...

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Bagehot, Walter (1826–1877), political commentator, economist, and journalist, was born on 3 February 1826 at Langport, Somerset, the second son of Thomas Watson Bagehot (1795–1881), banker, and Edith Stuckey (1786–1870), a niece of Samuel Stuckey, founder in 1772 of Stuckey's Bank, which issued its own banknotes and enjoyed considerable prominence and respect in the west country. The first born, ...

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Baxter, James Keir (1926–1972), poet and publicist, was born on 29 June 1926 at 97 Elm Row, Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand, the son of Archibald McColl Learmond Baxter (1881–1970), a small farmer descended from immigrant Scottish highlanders, and his wife, Millicent Amiel Macmillan Brown (1888–1984)...

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Blair, Eric Arthur [pseud. George Orwell] (1903–1950), political writer and essayist, was born in Motihari, Bengal, India, on 25 June 1903, the only son of Richard Walmesley Blair (1857–1938), a sub-deputy opium agent in the government of Bengal, and his wife, Ida Mabel Limouzin (1875–1943)...

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Alfred Cochrane

revised by H. C. G. Matthew

Bowles, Thomas Gibson (1842–1922), politician and newspaper proprietor, was born on 15 January 1842, the illegitimate son of Thomas Milner-Gibson (1806–1884) and Susan Bowles, of whom nothing else is known. His father's wife, Susanna, made him welcome with his eight stepbrothers and -sisters. He was educated at ...

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Bridgeman [née Weld-Forester], Selina Louisa, countess of Bradford (1819–1894), correspondent of Benjamin Disraeli, was born in London on 17 February 1819, the seventh and youngest child of Cecil, first Baron Forester (1767–1828), MP and landowner, and his wife, née Lady Katherine Manners (1779–1829)...

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Burges [later Lamb], Sir James Bland, first baronet (1752–1824), politician and poet, was born on 8 June 1752 in Gibraltar, where his father, George Burges (1725–1786), was deputy paymaster; his mother was Anne Whichnor Somerville, eldest daughter of the twelfth Baron Somerville...

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Burgoyne, John (1723–1792), army officer, politician, and playwright, was born on 4 February 1723 at Park Prospect, Westminster, legally the son of Captain John Burgoyne (d. 1768) and his wife, Anna Maria, daughter of Charles Burneston of Hackney, but possibly fathered by ...

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Canning, George (1770–1827), prime minister and parodist, was born in Marylebone, Middlesex, on 11 April 1770, the son of George Canning (1736–1771) and his wife, Mary Ann Costello (1747?–1827). His parents were both Irish; he described himself as 'an Irishman born in ...

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Carleton, Dudley, Viscount Dorchester (1574–1632), diplomat and letter writer, was born on 10 March 1574, the second son of Antony Carleton of Brightwell Baldwin, Oxfordshire, and his second wife, Jocosa, daughter of John Goodwin of Winchendon, Buckinghamshire. Educated first at Westminster School under ...

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Churchill, Randolph Frederick Edward Spencer (1911–1968), journalist and politician, was born at Bolton Street, Mayfair, London, on 28 May 1911, the only son and second of four children of Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill (1874–1965), later prime minister, and his wife, Clementine Ogilvy Churchill, ...

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Courtney, Leonard Henry, Baron Courtney of Penwith (1832–1918), journalist and politician, eldest son of the nine children of John Sampson Courtney (d. 1881), banker, of Alfreston House, Penzance, and his wife, Sarah (d. 1859), daughter of John Mortimer, was born at ...

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Creighton [née von Glehn], Louise Hume (1850–1936), social activist and writer of popular history and biography, was born on 7 July 1850 at Peak Hill Lodge, Sydenham, on the outskirts of London, tenth child of Robert William von Glehn (1801–1885) and Agnes Duncan (...

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Curtis, Lionel George (1872–1955), writer and public servant, was born at The Outwoods, near Derby, on 7 March 1872, the youngest of four children of the Revd George James Curtis (d. 1904), rector of Coddington church, Ledbury, Herefordshire, and his wife, Frances (...