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Ainslie, Sir Robert, first baronet (1729/30–1812), diplomatist and numismatist, was the third son of George Ainslie (d. 1773), merchant, and his wife, Jean, daughter of Sir Philip Anstruther of Anstrutherfield, Fife. He grew up with his two brothers and five sisters in ...

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Aston, William George (1841–1911), diplomatist and Japanese and Korean scholar, was born on 9 April 1841 near Londonderry, one of the five children of George Robert Aston, minister of the Unitarian Church of Ireland and schoolmaster. He was educated at Saintfield national school...

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William George Aston (1841–1911) by Minnie Agnes Cohen, 1911 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Baker, Beatrice May (1876–1973), headmistress and internationalist, was born at 2 High Street, Hereford on 4 May 1876, the third daughter and youngest child in the family of three daughters and a son of Edward Joseph Baker, a gentleman's tailor in Hereford, and his wife, ...

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Barker, Sir William (1909–1992), diplomatist and Russian scholar, was born on 19 July 1909 at 3 Plank Lane, Leigh, Lancashire, the eldest of the three children of Alfred Barker, master baker and later licensed victualler, and his wife, Annie, formerly Arden (née...

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Bateman [Norwich], William (c. 1298–1355), diplomat, founder of Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and bishop of Norwich, was probably born in Norwich (from which he was sometimes named), the third son of William and Margery Bateman. His father was many times bailiff of the city, and in 1326–7 its member of ...

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Bell, Gertrude Margaret Lowthian (1868–1926), traveller, archaeologist, and diplomatist, was born at Washington Hall, co. Durham, on 14 July 1868, the elder child and only daughter of (Thomas) Hugh Bell (1844–1931), an ironmaster, who succeeded his father as second baronet in 1904, and his first wife, ...

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Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell (1868–1926) by unknown photographer, c. 1900 Getty Images

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Benolt, Thomas (d. 1534), herald and diplomat, may have been born at Rouen; his mother's maiden name was Meautis, but his father's identity is not known. It was with Calais, however, that the family had its strongest links; Benolt is generally thought to have been a native of ...

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Bodley, Sir Thomas (1545–1613), scholar, diplomat, and founder of the Bodleian Library, Oxford, was born on 2 March 1545 in a house on the corner of High Street and Gandy Street, Exeter, the eldest son of John Bodley (c. 1520–1591), religious radical and publisher, of ...

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Boswell, Sir William (d. 1650), diplomat and patron of learning, was born in Suffolk. He matriculated from Jesus College, Cambridge, in 1600, graduating BA in 1604, becoming a fellow in 1606, and proceeding MA in 1607; he was incorporated at Oxford in 1608. In December 1614 he was granted a pass to travel abroad for three years but he remained absent from ...

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John Bourchier, second Baron Berners (c. 1467–1533) attrib. Ambrosius Benson, c. 1521–6 Galerie Jan der Maere

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Bourchier, John, second Baron Berners (c. 1467–1533), soldier, diplomat, and translator, was the son of Sir Humphrey Bourchier (d. 1471) and Elizabeth (d. 1497), daughter and sole heir of Frederick Tilney of Boston, Lincolnshire. His father, a Yorkist, was killed at the battle of ...

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Bunsen, Christian Karl Josias von, Baron von Bunsen in the Prussian nobility (1791–1860), diplomatist and scholar, was born on 25 August 1791 in Korbach, in the German principality of Waldeck, the only child of Heinrich Christian Bunsen (1743–1820), a regimental officer, and his second wife, ...

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Edward Hallett Carr (1892–1982) by Elliott & Fry © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Carr, Edward Hallett (1892–1982), historian and diplomatist, was born at 62 Gladsmuir Road, Upper Holloway, London, on 28 June 1892, the first of three children, to Francis Parker Carr (d. 1945), who worked in the family business of Carr's Inks, and Elizabeth Jessie, ...

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Charlesworth, Lilian Edith (1897–1970), headmistress and promoter of international understanding, was born on 15 March 1897 at 110 Stockwell Park Road, Stockwell, London, the daughter of Jonathan Charlesworth, a schoolmaster for the London school board, and his wife, Sarah Elizabeth, née Bragg. The family, who were Presbyterians, lived in ...

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Cunningham, Alexander (1654–1737), historian and diplomat, has often been confused with the critic and jurist of the same name (c.1650–1730), especially as they in some ways had parallel lives, and knew the same people. His parentage is uncertain: Alexander was a favourite Christian name among several branches of the house of ...

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Dethick, Sir Gilbert (1499/1500–1584), herald and diplomat, was the grandson of Robert Derrick (d. 1525) of the king's armoury at Greenwich, a German armourer brought to England by Erasmus Kyrkener, and Agatha, daughter of Matthis Leyendecker, a barber of Aachen. His grandparents had three sons, ...

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Dickinson, Goldsworthy Lowes (1862–1932), scholar and advocate of a league of nations, was born on 6 August 1862 at Langham Chambers, near Oxford Circus, London, the third of the five children of Lowes Cato Dickinson (1819–1908) and his wife, Margaret Ellen (d...