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Sir George Edmond Brackenbury Abell (1904–1989) by Walter Bird, 1964 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Abell, Sir George Edmond Brackenbury (1904–1989), administrator in India, was born on 22 June 1904 in Sanderstead, Surrey, the eldest in the family of two sons and two daughters of George Foster Abell, director of Lloyds Bank, and his wife, Jessie Elizabeth Brackenbury...

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Abercromby, James (1707–1775), colonial agent and politician, was baptized on 24 August 1708 at Alloa, Clackmannanshire, the third son of Alexander Abercromby (d. 1753), MP for Clackmannanshire in the Scottish parliament, and Mary (b. c.1680), daughter of Alexander Duff of ...

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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. ...

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Abraham, Roy Clive (1890–1963), scholar of African languages and colonial administrator, was born on 16 December 1890 in Melbourne, Australia, the second son of Isaac Abraham (1849-1918) and his wife Amy nee Soloman (b. 1861). From a Jewish background, he studied at ...

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Adam, John (1779–1825), administrator in India, was the eldest son of William Adam (1751–1839) and Eleanora Elphinstone (1749–1808), second daughter of Charles, tenth Baron Elphinstone. His brothers included Charles Adam, naval officer, and Frederick William Adam, who served in the army. He was born in ...

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Adam, William Patrick (1823–1881), politician and administrator in India, was the elder son of Admiral Sir Charles Adam (1780–1853) of Blairadam, Kinross. His mother was Elizabeth (d. 1871), daughter of Patrick Brydone, FRS. Born at Ancrum, Roxburghshire, on 14 September 1823, Adam...

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William Patrick Adam (1823–1881) by John Moffat © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Agnew, Patrick Alexander Vans (1822–1848), East India Company servant, was born at Raipur in Chhattisgarh in central India on 21 April 1822, the second son of Patrick Vans Agnew (1783–1842), lieutenant-colonel in the Madras army and afterwards a director of the East India Company...

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Ainsworth, John (1864–1946), colonial administrator, was born at 29 Lyme Street, Chorlton upon Medlock, Lancashire, on 16 June 1864, the son of John Dawson Ainsworth, commercial traveller, and his wife, Margaret, née Bond. His eight years of formal education were meant to prepare him for commercial employment. At the age of twenty he visited the west African coast; this led to employment with an English trading company in the lower ...

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Aitchison, Sir Charles Umpherston (1832–1896), administrator in India, born in Edinburgh on 20 May 1832, was the son of Hugh Aitchison of that city, and his wife, Elizabeth, daughter of Charles Umpherston of Loanhead, near Edinburgh. He was educated at Edinburgh high school...

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Abdullah Yusuf Ali (1872–1953) by Lafayette, 1930 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Ali, Abdullah Yusuf (1872–1953), Indian civil servant and Islamic scholar, was born on 4 April 1872 in Surat, Gujarat, India. His father, Yusuf Ali Allahbuksh, otherwise Khan Bahadur Yusuf Ali, a Shi'i in the Dawoodi Bohra tradition, had abandoned the traditional occupation of his community, business, and entered instead the police force, being presented on retirement with the title of ...

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Anderson, David (1751–1825), East India Company servant, was born in Edinburgh on 10 February 1751, the second of the eight children of David Anderson (1707–1786), writer to the signet, and his wife, Mary (d. 1781), daughter of John Mitchelson of Middleton, Edinburghshire...

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A. M. Clerke

revised by Philip Carter

Anderson, George (1760–1796), colonial official and writer, was born at Weston Turville, Buckinghamshire, in November 1760, the son of William Anderson, labourer. George Anderson also worked on the land from an early age. At the same time he showed an interest in and a remarkable talent for mathematical studies; in 1777 he sent in a series of solutions to problems that had appeared in the ...

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Anderson, Sir George William (1791–1857), East India Company servant and colonial governor, was born in London, the son of Robert Anderson, a London merchant. He was educated at the East India College, Haileybury, and joined the Bombay establishment of the East India Company...

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Anderson, John (1795–1845), East India Company servant and author, was born in Scotland. In 1813 he obtained a writership in the East India Company's service at the small settlement of Penang (Prince of Wales Island) off the west coast of the Malay peninsula...

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Antonius, George Habib (1891–1942), colonial official, historian, and political activist, was born on 19 October 1891 in Dair al-Qamar, a small town in the Lebanese mountains, the third of five sons of Habib Antonius (d. 1931), a merchant, and his wife, Émilie Hobeika (...

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Antrobus, Sir Reginald Laurence (1853–1942), colonial official, was born on 5 September 1853 at Withyham, Sussex, the first of the four children of the Revd George Antrobus, vicar of Beighton, Derbyshire, and his wife, Henrietta, daughter of the Revd Robert Gream of Rotherfield, Sussex...

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F. H. Brown

revised by Robert Eric Frykenberg

Arbuthnot, Sir Alexander John (1822–1907), administrator in India, was born on 11 October 1822, at Farmhill, co. Mayo, the third son of Alexander Arbuthnot (d. 1828), bishop of Killaloe, and his second wife, Margaret Phoebe, daughter of George Bingham. General Sir Charles George Arbuthnot (1824–1899)...