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William Barnes (1801–1886) by George Stuckey, c. 1870 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Barnes, William (1801–1886), poet and philologist, was born on 22 February 1801, in a cob and thatch cottage, Rushay Farm, on Bagber Common, near Sturminster Newton, Dorset, the sixth of seven children of John Barnes (bap. 1762, d. 1846), and his wife, ...

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Dafydd Ddu o Hiraddug (d. in or before 1371), grammarian and poet, was presumably a native of the township of Hiraddug in the parish of Cwm, which was part of the commote of Rhuddlan in the hundred of Tegeingl in north-east Wales. He may have been the boy '...

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Falconer, William (bap. 1732, d. 1770), poet and lexicographer, was baptized in Edinburgh on 11 February 1732, which was possibly also the day of his birth. He was one of three children of William Falconer, wig maker, and Agnes Shand of the Nether Bow, Edinburgh...

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Garland, John of (b. c. 1195, d. in or after 1258), grammarian, lexicographer, and poet, was born in England, in a place he calls by its Latin name Gingia, perhaps Ginge in the Wantage hundred in Berkshire.

Garland studied at Oxford University under one ...

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Higgins, John (b. c. 1544, d. in or before 1620), poet and linguist, was a student at Christ Church, Oxford (according to Thomas Hearne), though his name does not appear in the university register. From about the age of twenty he began to 'learne the tongues' (...

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See Kavanagh, Julia

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John Leyden (1775–1811) by Captain Elliot, 1811 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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T. W. Bayne

revised by Richard Maxwell

Leyden, John (1775–1811), linguist and poet, was born on 8 September 1775 at Denholm, in the parish of Cavers, near Hawick, Roxburghshire, the son of John Leyden and Isabella Scott. A year later his parents took over a farm 3 miles away in ...

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J. C. Hadden

revised by Douglas Brown

Longmuir, John (1803–1883), poet and lexicographer, was born on 13 November 1803 near Stonehaven, Kincardineshire, the son of John Longmuir and his wife, Christian Paterson. In 1814 his parents moved to Aberdeen, where he was educated at the grammar school, and at Marischal College...

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Métivier, Georges (1790–1881), Guernsey patois poet and philologist, was born on 29 January 1790 in Fountain Street, St Peter Port, Guernsey, the second of the five children of Jean-Carey Métivier (1757–1796), advocate, and his wife, Esther (1762–1839), daughter of Jean Guille. He came of a French Huguenot family. His grandfather had fled from ...

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Ransford, Teresa Mary (Tessa) (1938–2015), poet, editor, and library founder, was born on 8 July 1938 in Bombay, India, the daughter of Col. Sir Alister John Ransford (1895–1974), master of the mint in Bombay from 1931 to 1947, and his wife ...

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Charlotte Fell-Smith

revised by Elizabeth Haresnape

Sandford, John (c. 1565–1629), poet and grammarian, was the son of Richard Sandford, gentleman, of Chard, Somerset, where he was born. He entered Magdalen College, Oxford, as a commoner about 16 October 1581, and graduated BA from Balliol on 17 December 1586 and MA on 27 May 1595. In 1592 he acted as 'corrector Typograph' to the press at ...

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Seward [Seguarde], John (1364/5–1435/6), schoolmaster, grammarian, and poet, appears to have originated in the north of England and to have been educated there, perhaps at Norham, Northumberland, and Guisborough in the North Riding of Yorkshire, before studying at Oxford University of which he called himself 'an unworthy subject'; he also wrote respectfully of ...

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Vinsauf, Geoffrey of [called Galfridus Anglicus] (fl. 1208–1213), poet and teacher of grammar and rhetoric, also called Anglicus, is best-known as the author of the Poetria nova ('The new poetics'), the single most successful textbook on rhetorical composition written during the middle ages. It is not known what his name means. What little is known about his life comes chiefly from the ...

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Wedderburn, David (bap. 1580, d. 1646), poet and Latin grammarian, was baptized in the parish church of Aberdeen on 2 January 1580, the eldest son of William Wedderburn (1550?–1620), a burgess of the town, and Marjorie Annand. There is some confusion as to where ...

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Wilton, Serlo of (c. 1105–1181), grammarian and poet, was a Cluniac monk and Cistercian abbot. The epithet a Wiltunia (Walter Map) suggests that he came from Wilton, probably in Wiltshire. His birth date is inferred from his career and death. He has been gradually disentangled from other ...