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Monson, Sir John, second baronet (1599–1683), politician and financier of fen drainage, was born in St Sepulchre, London, the eldest son of Sir Thomas Monson, first baronet (1563/4–1641), of South Carlton in Lincolnshire, and his wife, Margaret (1569–1630), daughter of Sir Edmund Anderson...

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Samuel Morley (1809–1886) by Lock & Whitfield, pubd 1882 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Morley, Samuel (1809–1886), businessman, politician, and philanthropist, born in Well Street, Hackney, on 15 October 1809, was the youngest child of John Morley of Sneinton, Nottingham, and his wife, Sarah, daughter of Richard Poulton of Maidenhead. The Morley family manufactured hosiery in Nottingham...

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Morrison, Walter (1836–1921), businessman, politician, and benefactor, was born in London on 21 May 1836, the fifth son of James Morrison (1789–1857), of the firm of Morrison, Dillon, & Co., and his wife, Mary (d. 1887), daughter of John Todd, of the same firm. ...

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Pike, (Irene) Mervyn Parnicott, Baroness Pike (1918–2004), businesswoman, politician, and voluntary worker, was born at Highmere, Whitwood Mere, Whitwood, Castleford, Yorkshire, on 16 September 1918, the second child and only daughter of Ivan Samuel Pike (1867–1934), managing director of Clokie and Co., a pottery works, and his wife, ...

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Michael Thomas Sadler (1780–1835) by William Robinson, in or before 1830 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Sadler, Michael Thomas (1780–1835), social reformer and political economist, was born on 3 January 1780 at the Old Hall, Doveridge, Snelston, Derbyshire. He was the youngest of the six children of James Sadler (d. 1800?), a gentleman farmer at Doveridge who claimed descent from ...

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Smith, Sir John Lindsay Eric (1923–2007), banker, politician, and philanthropist, was born on 3 April 1923 at 83 Sloane Street, Chelsea, London, the eldest of three sons and second of four children of (Evan Cadogan) Eric Smith (1894–1950), a captain in the 9th lancers...

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Stewart, Sir Halley (1838–1937), businessman, benefactor, and politician, was born at Barnet in Hertfordshire on 18 January 1838, the tenth child and fifth son of Alexander Stewart, Congregational minister, of Barnet, and his wife, Ann Kezia, née White. Like his brothers before him, he went to his father's school at ...

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Arnold Toynbee (1852–1883) by unknown photographer © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Toynbee, Arnold (1852–1883), social reformer and political economist, was born at 18 Savile Row, London, on 23 August 1852, the second son of Joseph Toynbee (1815–1866), an eminent aural surgeon, and his wife, Harriet Holmes. Toynbee owed much in his early years to the influence of his father, who, though he died when his son was only fourteen, had already inspired him with a love of literature and with the foundations of those social ideals which were afterwards the main interest of his life. ...

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Wakefield, Edward (1774–1854), philanthropist, land agent, and writer on political economy, was born in Tottenham, Middlesex. He was the elder son of Edward Wakefield (1750–1826), merchant, and the writer Priscilla Wakefield (1750–1832), daughter of Daniel Bell. Daniel Wakefield was his younger brother. Edward...