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Arkisden, Thomas (1608/9–1682), Church of England clergyman and writer of shorthand, was probably born in Essex or Suffolk, one, probably the elder, of the two children of Thomas Arkisden, a minor landowner, and his wife, Francis, née Durrant. After his father's death, his guardian was his 'father-in-law' ...

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Bright, Timothy (1549/50–1615), physician and writer on shorthand, was the son of William Bright (d. 1592), possibly the William Bright who was mayor of Cambridge in 1571. Sheffield, Yorkshire, has been given as his birthplace, but Bright himself stated that he was born and educated in ...

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Ellis [formerly Sharpe], Alexander John (1814–1890), phonetician and mathematician, was born Alexander John Sharpe in Hoxton, London, on 14 June 1814, the elder of the two sons of James Birch Sharpe (bap. 1789) and his wife, Ann Ellis. They first sent him to a private boarding-school at ...

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Alexander John Ellis (1814–1890) by Naudin & Co., 1886 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Hart, John (c. 1501–1574), herald and phonetician, belonged to a family of tenant farmers long settled at Northolt, near London; his father, John Hart, died about 1500. There are no records of his baptism and education, but his writings demonstrate that he was a well-read man, acquainted not only with classical languages, but also with several contemporary vernaculars. He may have spent some time at the ...

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Tiffin, William (1695/6–1754), phonetician and stenographer, was born at Crimplesham, near Downham Market, Norfolk, the son of Roger Tiffin, gentleman, of a family long settled in that area. He was educated at Downham Market under Mr Robinson, and at Norwich under Mr Pate...