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Abercromby, Alexander, Lord Abercromby (1745–1795), judge and essayist, was born on 15 October 1745, probably at Menstrie, Clackmannanshire, the fourth and youngest son of George Abercromby of Tullibody, Clackmannanshire (1705–1800), who had trained as an advocate, and his wife, Mary (d. 1767)...

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Adam [Adams], Jean (1704–1765), poet, was born on 28 April 1704 in Cartsdyke, near Greenock, Renfrewshire, one of five children of John Adam, a mariner, and his wife, Jean Eddie, reportedly a woman of little common sense. Jean Adam's scanty education comprised reading, writing, and sewing, but after her father's death when she was still young she entered domestic service with the minister of ...

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Adamson, Henry (bap. 1581, d. 1637), poet and historian, was baptized in Perth on 11 November 1581, the son of the merchant James Adamson (d. after 1617), who served as dean of guild in 1600 and provost between 1609 and 1612, and ...

Article

T. W. Bayne

revised by Douglas Brown

Ainslie, Hew (1792–1878), brewer and poet, was born on 5 April 1792 at Bargeny Mains in the parish of Dailly, Ayrshire, only son of the three children of George Ainslie, a butler on the estate of Sir Hew Dalrymple Hamilton. His mother's name is unknown, but ...

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T. F. Henderson

revised by Douglas Brown

Ainslie, Robert (1766–1838), writer, was born on 13 January 1766, at Berrywell, near Duns, Berwickshire, the son of Robert Ainslie (1734–1795), factor to Lord Douglas, and his wife, Catharine Whitelaw. His younger brother was Sir Whitelaw Ainslie (1767–1837). In 1787, while apprenticed to ...

Article

Sidney Lee

revised by David Finkelstein

Aird, Thomas (1802–1876), poet, was born on 28 August 1802 at Bowden, Roxburghshire, the second son of James Aird, builder, and his wife, Isabella Paisley. He was educated at the parish school of Bowden, where he combined an enthusiasm for literature and sports. In 1816 he began undergraduate studies at the ...

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William Maxwell Aitken, first Baron Beaverbrook (1879–1964) by Walter Sickert, 1935 © The Beaverbrook Foundation; collection National Portrait Gallery, London

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Aitken, William Maxwell, first Baron Beaverbrook (1879–1964), newspaper proprietor and politician, was born on 25 May 1879 at the manse, Vaughan, Maple, Ontario, Canada. He was the third son and fifth member of a family of ten children, whose father, William Cuthbert Aitken (1834–1913)...

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Alexander, Peter (1893–1969), literary editor and scholar, was born on 19 September 1893, at 3 Great George Street, Hillhead, Glasgow, the only son of Robert Alexander (1844–1900) of Glasgow, schoolmaster and later head teacher, and Christina Cameron McDonald Munn (1863–1949), schoolmistress. After his father's death in 1900 ...

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William Alexander (1826–1894) by Sir George Reid Scottish National Portrait Gallery

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Alexander, William (1826–1894), novelist and journalist, was born on 12 June 1826 at the farm of Westerhouses, Rescivet, in the parish of Chapel of Garioch, Aberdeenshire. He was the eldest son of the ten children of James Alexander (1789–1856), blacksmith and tenant farmer, and his wife, ...

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Allan, Eliza MacNaughton Luke [Dot] (1886–1964), novelist, was born on 13 May 1886 at Headswood House, Denny, Stirlingshire, the only child of Alexander Allan, iron merchant, and his wife, Jean, daughter of John Luke, founder of the Vale paper works in Denny. She was educated privately and attended classes at ...

Article

Francis Espinasse

revised by Sayoni Basu

Alves, Robert (1745–1794), poet, was born at Elgin on 11 December 1745. His father's circumstances were humble, and he was one of a large family but as a promising student he was placed at the Elgin grammar school. At Marischal College, Aberdeen, he won the highest bursary of the year in which he competed. An ...

Article

David Patrick

revised by Sayoni Basu

Anderson, Alexander [pseud. Surfaceman] (1845–1909), poet, was born on 30 April 1845 in the village of Kirkconnel in Upper Nithsdale, Dumfriesshire, the sixth and youngest son of the seven children of James Anderson, a quarryman, and his wife, Isabella Cowan. When the boy was three, the household moved to ...

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See Campbell [married names Anderson, Telfer], Agnes

Article

Francis Espinasse

revised by Douglas Brown

Anderson, Robert (1749–1830), literary scholar and biographer, was born on 7 January 1749 at Carnwath in Lanarkshire, the son of William Anderson (1718/19–1759), a feuar, or copyholder, and his wife, Margaret Melrose (1720/21–1797). On the death of his father the family was left in straitened circumstances, but ...

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Arbuckle, James (d. 1742), poet and essayist, was probably born in Belfast, where he grew up. He belonged to an extended Belfast merchant family of Scottish descent and was perhaps the nephew of James Arbuckle (d. 1736), an international trader and a prominent lay elder in ...

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Arbuthnet [Arbuthnot], Alexander (d. 1585), printer, about whose background, parentage, place of birth, early life, and education nothing is known, is first heard of as a partner of the Edinburgh printer and bookseller Thomas Bassandyne in a production agreement between the two men in December 1574. Their partnership was specifically to produce ...

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John Arbuthnot (bap. 1667, d. 1735) by Sir Godfrey Kneller, 1723 © Hunterian Art Gallery, University of Glasgow

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Arbuthnot [Arbuthnott], John (bap. 1667, d. 1735), physician and satirist, was baptized on 29 April 1667 at Arbuthnott, Kincardineshire, on the north-east Scottish coast, near Stonehaven, the eldest son of Alexander Arbuthnott (c.1636–1691), minister of Arbuthnott, and Margaret, daughter of John Lammie (or Lamy)...