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Elizabeth Anson, Lady Anson (1725–1760) studio of Thomas Hudson National Trust Photographic Library / John Hammond

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Anson [née Yorke], Elizabeth, Lady Anson (1725–1760), political correspondent and political manager, was born in August 1725, the sixth child and eldest daughter of Philip Yorke, subsequently first Baron and first earl of Hardwicke (1690–1764), lord chancellor, and his wife, Margaret Lygon (...

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Dame Sara Elizabeth Barker (1904–1973) by Brian Worth by permission of the People's History Museum

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Barker, Dame Sara Elizabeth (1904–1973), political agent, was born on 15 February 1904 in Siddall, near Halifax, Yorkshire, the daughter of George Barker, grocer, and his wife, Ethel Brier.

Sara Barker was educated at Siddall elementary school before going on at the age of eleven to ...

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Blain, Sir Herbert Edwin (1870–1942), safety campaigner and political agent, was born at 341 Upper Parliament Street, Liverpool, on 14 May 1870, the son of Arbuthnot Harrisson Blain (1830/31–1912), a chemist and druggist, and his wife, Elizabeth, née Stalker. He attended the Liverpool Technical School...

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Bonham, Francis Robert (1785–1863), political party agent, was born in London on 6 September 1785, he and an older sister Susan being the only surviving children (two sons and a daughter having died in infancy) of Francis Warren Bonham, landowner of Ballintaggart, co. Kildare...

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Bruce, Robert (d. 1602), political agent and spy, was 'the son of a poor gentleman and a merchant's daughter' (CSP Scot., 1597–1603, 609), and a brother of the laird of Bynnie. He acted for some time as secretary to ...

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Albert Nicholson

revised by H. C. G. Matthew

Coppock, James (1798–1857), election agent, was born at Stockport on 2 September 1798, the eldest son of William Coppock, a mercer of that town. He was educated at the school of the Revd Mr Higginson, Unitarian minister of Stockport. After serving an apprenticeship in his father's business, he was placed as a clerk with a wholesale haberdasher in ...

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William Dickinson (bap. 1756, d. 1822) by William Holl, pubd 1801 (after William P. Sherlock) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Dickinson, William (bap. 1756, d. 1822), antiquary and political manager, was baptized William Dickinson Rastall at St Mary's, Newark-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire, on 15 June 1756, the only son of the Revd Dr William Rastall (1724–1788) and his wife, Mary Allgood of Branton, Northumberland. His father, who in 1774 became vicar-general of the chapter of ...

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Dicsone [Dickson], Alexander (bap. 1558, d. 1603/4), philosophical writer and political agent, was baptized at Kirkton, Errol, Scotland, in December 1558, as the son of Alexander Dickson and Margaret Hay. He was educated at St Leonard's College, St Andrews (graduating 1577). He may have spent part of the next few years on the continent (perhaps in ...

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Gray, William (1751–1845), lawyer and political agent, was born on 27 April 1751 at Hedon, near Hull, in the East Riding of Yorkshire, the only child of William Gray (1719–1793), linen weaver, and his second wife, Margaret Thompson (1706?–1761), who was described in the family papers as '...

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Horn, Alexander [name in religion Maurus] (1762–1820), Benedictine monk and political agent, was born in north-east Scotland on 28 June 1762, the son of Alexander Horn and Jeanette, his wife (d. 1807). His father was descended from the Horns, lairds of Westhall...

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Horne, Donald (1787–1870), lawyer and political agent, was born on 20 May 1787 at Stanstill in Caithness, the second son of John Horne (c.1753–1823), of Stirkoke. If, as is likely, he was the Donald Horne baptized at Halkirk, Caithness, on 26 May, his mother was named ...

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Ingram [née Shepheard, Gibson], Frances, Viscountess Irwin (1734?–1807), landowner and political manager, may have been born on 8 August 1734, the illegitimate daughter and heir of the wealthy speculator Samuel Shepheard (c. 1676–1748) [see under Shepheard, Samuel (c. 1648-1719)]. Her mother's name was probably ...

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Keck [née Hamilton], Lady Susanna [Susan] (bap. 1706, d. 1755), political manager, was baptized on 26 September 1706 at Canongate, Edinburgh, the seventh and youngest child of James Hamilton, fourth duke of Hamilton and first duke of Brandon (1658–1712), and his second wife, ...

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Lowther [née Thynne], Katherine, Viscountess Lonsdale (1653–1713), electoral patron, was born on 21 September 1653 at Caus Castle, Shropshire, the daughter of Sir Henry Frederick Thynne, first baronet (1614–1680), landowner, of Kempsford, Gloucestershire, and his wife, the Hon. Mary (b. 1618)...

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Macleane, Lauchlin [formerly Laughlin McLean] (1728/9–1778), political agent and speculator, was born some time between 30 May 1728 and 29 May 1729, at either Ballymoney or Rasharkin, both in co. Antrim, Ireland. He was the eldest of four children of the Revd John McLean (1699–1765)...

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Richard William Evelyn Middleton (1846–1905) by Elliott & Fry © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Middleton, Richard William Evelyn (1846–1905), political agent, was born in Putney, Surrey, on 16 February 1846, the younger son of Alexander Middleton (d. 1846), Admiralty clerk, and his wife, Elizabeth, daughter of Richard Neave, secretary to the Royal Hospital, Chelsea; they had two sons and one daughter. After a private education ...