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Adams, William George Stewart (1874–1966), political scientist and college head, was born on 8 November 1874 at Hamilton, Lanarkshire, the second son and youngest of the four children of John Adams, headmaster of St John's Grammar School, Hamilton, with Aberdonian farming ancestors, and his wife, ...

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James Anderson (1739–1808) by Samuel Freeman, pubd 1809 (after J. Anderson) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Anderson, James (1739–1808), agriculturist and political economist, born at Hermiston, near Edinburgh, inherited the tenancy of a large farm there at the age of fifteen when his parents (whose names are unknown) died. He had already prepared himself for the position by attending ...

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Belsham, William (1752–1827), political writer and historian, was born in Bedford, the fourth son of the Revd James Belsham (d. 1770), dissenting minister, and Ann(e) Woodward (d. 1780), daughter of Thomas Woodward, a Bedford brewer. His eldest brother, Thomas Belsham, later became a prominent Unitarian minister. Keenly interested in politics, ...

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Callender, James Thomson (1758–1803), political writer and radical, was born in Scotland, the son of a tobacconist, though further details of his early years are obscure. The poet James Thomson may have been a relative. Callender was raised as a Presbyterian of the strongly Calvinist variety, possibly in ...

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George Chalmers (bap. 1742, d. 1825) by Henry Edridge, 1809 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Chalmers, George (bap. 1742, d. 1825), antiquary and political writer, was born in Fochabers, Moray, and baptized there on 26 December 1742, the son of James Chalmers, postmaster at Fochabers, and his wife, Isabella Ruddock. He attended the parish school of Bellie and later appears to have studied at ...

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R. C. Christie

revised by Alexander Du Toit

Christie, Thomas (1761–1796), political writer, was born in October 1761 at Montrose. His father, Alexander Christie (brother of the Unitarian writer William Christie), was a merchant, who for several years was the town's provost. A man of intelligence and culture, Alexander Christie...

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Elder, John [Jhone Eldar] (fl. 1533–1565), cartographer and propagandist, was a native of Caithness—a ‘redshank’, as he styled himself. He was educated on Skye and Lewis before continuing his studies at the universities of St Andrews (where he matriculated in 1533), Aberdeen...

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Henrisoun, James (d. before 1570), merchant and propagandist, was apparently a native of Edinburgh and by 1527 owned land on the south side of the High Street. He made his living principally by trading to the Low Countries, where he bought military supplies for the crown. In this he co-operated with ...

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Hunton, Philip (bap. 1602, d. 1682/3), polemicist, was baptized at Andover, Hampshire, on 12 September 1602, the son of Philip Hunton, yeoman. He was admitted as a batteler or servitor at Wadham College, Oxford, in 1622; he matriculated on 31 January 1623, graduated BA in 1626, and proceeded MA in 1629. He was ordained priest at ...

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Johnston, Gabriel (1698–1752), political writer and colonial governor, was born in Southdean, Roxburghshire, Scotland, where he was baptized on 28 February 1698, the son of the Revd Samuel Johnston and his wife, Isobel Hall. His father, a minister of the Church of Scotland...

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Lauder, Sir John, second baronet, Lord Fountainhall (1646–1722), judge and political commentator, was born at Edinburgh on 2 August 1646, the eldest son of Sir John Lauder (1595–1692), an Edinburgh merchant and bailie who was raised to the Nova Scotia baronetcy in 1688, and his second wife, ...

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Leone Levi (1821–1888) by Elliott & Fry, 1873 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Levi, Leone (1821–1888), jurist, political economist, and statistician, was born on 6 June 1821 in Ancona, later part of the kingdom of Italy. He came from a middle-class Jewish family. His father, Isaac, and his elder brother were both merchants. Leone received a practical, commercial education and began working for his brother at the age of fifteen. He travelled to ...

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William Livingston (1723–1790) by John Wollaston Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York, Inc.; © Fraunces Tavern Museum, New York City

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Livingston, William [pseud. the American Whig] (1723–1790), lawyer, political writer, and colonial governor, was born in Albany, New York, on 30 November 1723. He was the son of Catherine Van Brugh (1689–1756) and Philip Livingston (1686–1749), second lord of the Livingston Manor...

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Macartney, (William John) Allan (1941–1998), political scientist and politician, was born on 17 February 1941 at the Scottish mission house, Christiansborg, Accra, Gold Coast, the second of three children of the Revd William Macleod Macartney (1912–1999), minister of religion of the Church of Scotland...

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Mackenzie, William James Millar (1909–1996), political scientist, was born in Edinburgh on 8 April 1909, the only child of Laurence Millar Mackenzie (d. 1933), writer to the signet, and his wife, Anna Marion née McClymont (1879–1958). His parents adopted a daughter when he was nineteen. He was educated at ...

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Sir James Mackintosh of Kyllachy (1765–1832) by Sir Thomas Lawrence, exh. RA 1804 © National Portrait Gallery, London