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Abercromby, Sir Robert (1740?–1827), army officer and administrator in India, son of George Abercromby (1705–1800) of Tullibody and his wife, Mary, née Dundas (d. 1767), was baptized at his family's Scottish estate, Menstrie, near Tullibody, in Clackmannanshire, on 13 October 1740, which was possibly also the day of his birth. He came from one of those Scottish landed families that were to play an important role in British military and imperial history over the next two centuries. ...

Article

W. P. Courtney

revised by S. J. Skedd

Acland, John Dyke (1747–1778), army officer and politician, was born on 18 February 1747 and baptized the following day at North Petherton, Somerset, the elder of the two sons of Sir Thomas Acland, seventh baronet (1722–1785), a landowner and politician, and his wife, ...

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Ashburnham, William (1604/5–1679), army officer and politician, was the second son of Sir John Ashburnham (1570/71–1620) of Asburnham, Sussex, and Elizabeth (1577–1651), daughter of Sir Thomas Beaumont. His family were long settled in east Sussex and had first represented the county of Sussex...

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Barnwell, John (c. 1671–1724), colonial official and army officer in America, was born probably in Dublin, the son of Matthew Barnwell, alderman, and Margaret Carberry. Having lost his father, a captain in James II's Irish army, in the siege of Londonderry in 1690, ...

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Bastard, John Pollexfen (1756–1816), politician and militia officer, was born on 18 September 1756 at Kitley, near Plymouth, Devon, the eldest son of William Bastard (1727–1782), landowner, of Kitley, and his second wife, Anne (d. 1765), daughter of Thomas Worsley of Hovingham, Yorkshire...

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Lord William Henry Cavendish- Bentinck (1774–1839) by Sir Thomas Lawrence, 1804 private collection

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Bentinck, Lord William Henry Cavendish- [known as Lord William Bentinck] (1774–1839), army officer, diplomatist, and governor-general of India, was born on 14 September 1774 at Burlington House in London, the second son of William Henry Cavendish Cavendish-Bentinck, third duke of Portland (1738–1809)...

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Blackburne, Sir William (1764–1839), army and political officer in India, was appointed to the Madras army as a cadet of native infantry in 1782, arrived at Madras in June 1783, and in 1784 served with the force employed under Colonel Fullarton in the campaign against the ...

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Bladen, Martin (1680–1746), army officer and politician, was born possibly at Abbey Hatch, Essex, the third son of Nathaniel Bladen (b. 1642/3) of Hemsworth, Yorkshire, and his wife, Isabella, the daughter of Sir William Fairfax of Steeton, Yorkshire. He was thus a relation of ...

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Sir John Borlase (c. 1576–1648) by Michiel Jansz. van Mierevelt, 1625 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Borlase, Sir John (c. 1576–1648), army officer and politician, was born in Cornwall, the eldest son of Edward Borlase of London, mercer, and Suzannah Isham. He matriculated as a pensioner from King's College, Cambridge, about 1591 but did not graduate, being admitted to the ...

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Boustead, Sir (John Edmund) Hugh (1895–1980), army officer and colonial official, was born on 14 April 1895 on a tea estate above Nawara Eliya, Ceylon, one of the two sons of Lawrence Twentyman Boustead, whose family had a hundred-year connection with Ceylon, and his wife, ...

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Sir Robert Brownrigg, first baronet (1759–1833) by Sir Thomas Lawrence, c. 1809 courtesy of the Director, National Army Museum, London

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Brownrigg, Sir Robert, first baronet (1759–1833), army officer and colonial governor, was born at Rockingham, co. Wicklow, Ireland, the second of the four sons of Henry Brownrigg (d. 1793) and his wife, Mary Alcock (d. 1819). Gazetted as ensign in 1775, his progress in the army was at first slow, his family lacking both wealth and influence. However, on 8 April 1789 ...

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John Burgoyne (1723–1792) by Sir Joshua Reynolds, 1766 © The Frick Collection, New York

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Burgoyne, John (1723–1792), army officer, politician, and playwright, was born on 4 February 1723 at Park Prospect, Westminster, legally the son of Captain John Burgoyne (d. 1768) and his wife, Anna Maria, daughter of Charles Burneston of Hackney, but possibly fathered by ...

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James Butler, second duke of Ormond (1665–1745) by Sir Godfrey Kneller, c. 1695 by kind permission of the Examination Schools, Oxford

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Butler, James, second duke of Ormond (1665–1745), army officer, politician, and Jacobite conspirator, was born in Dublin Castle on 29 April 1665, the second and eldest surviving son of Thomas Butler, sixth earl of Ossory (1634–1680), soldier and politician, and his wife, Aemilia van Nassau (...

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Byerley, Robert (bap. 1660, d. 1714), racehorse owner, army officer, and politician, was baptized on 27 March 1660, the fourth (but second surviving) son of Anthony Byerley (bap. 1619, d. 1667), landowner, of Middridge Grange, Heighington, co. Durham, and his wife, Anne (...

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William Cadogan, Earl Cadogan (1671/22–1726) attrib. Louis Laguerre, c. 1716 © National Portrait Gallery, London