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Amherst, William Pitt, first Earl Amherst of Arracan (1773–1857), diplomatist and governor-general of Bengal, was born on 14 January 1773 in Bath, the first of three children of Lieutenant-General William Amherst (1732–1781), aide-de-camp to the king, governor of St John's, Newfoundland, and adjutant-general of the army, and his wife, ...

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William Pitt Amherst, first Earl Amherst of Arracan (1773–1857) by Sir Thomas Lawrence, 1821 Toledo Museum of Art, Ohio; photograph National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bagot, Sir Charles (1781–1843), diplomatist and governor-in-chief of British North America, was born on 23 September 1781 at Blithfield Hall, Staffordshire, the second surviving son of William, first Baron Bagot (1728–1798), and Elizabeth Louisa (d. 1820), the eldest daughter of John St John, ...

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Baring, (Charles) Evelyn, first Baron Howick of Glendale (1903–1973), colonial governor and Commonwealth diplomat, was born in Manchester Square, London, on 29 September 1903, the third son of Evelyn Baring, first earl of Cromer (1841–1917), and his second wife, Lady Katherine Georgiana Louisa Thynne (1865–1933)...

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

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Carter, Sir John Gregorio (1919–2005), lawyer and diplomatist, was born on 27 January 1919 in Cane Grove, East Coast Demerara, British Guiana, the only son and youngest of five children of Kemp R. Carter, pharmacist, and his wife, Gertrude, née Humphrys. His parents were both from ...

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Charles Hardinge, first Baron Hardinge of Penshurst (1858–1944) by Sir William Orpen, 1919 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Hardinge, Charles, first Baron Hardinge of Penshurst (1858–1944), diplomatist and viceroy of India, was born at Dufferin Lodge, Highgate, Middlesex, on 20 June 1858, the second son of Charles Stewart Hardinge, second Viscount Hardinge (1822–1894) of South Park, Penshurst, Kent, and his wife, ...

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Howe, Sir Robert George (1893–1981), diplomatist and colonial governor, was born at 96 Carrington Street, Derby, on 19 September 1893, the son of Herbert Harry Howe, a railway fireman, and his wife, Minnie. He was educated at Derby School, and at St Catharine's College, Cambridge...

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Hunt, Sir Rex Masterman (1926–2012), diplomatist and colonial governor, was born at 3 Moore Street, Redcar, Yorkshire, on 29 June 1926, the third of four sons of Henry William Hunt (1893–1982), commercial clerk, and his wife, Ivy, née Masterman (1894–1959). He was educated at ...

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Sir Rex Masterman Hunt (1926–2012) by Tom Stoddart, 1982 © Tom Stoddart / Rex Features

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Lyttelton, William Henry, first Baron Lyttelton and first Baron Westcote (1724–1808), colonial governor and diplomat, was born on 24 December 1724 in London, the sixth son of Sir Thomas Lyttelton, fourth baronet (1685–1751), and of his wife, Christian (1688–1759), daughter of Sir Richard Temple...

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George Macartney, Earl Macartney (1737–1806) by Lemuel Francis Abbott, c. 1786–8 [[Left to right] and Sir George Leonard Staunton, first baronet (1737-1801)] © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Macartney, George, Earl Macartney (1737–1806), diplomatist and colonial governor, was born in co. Antrim or Dublin on 3 May 1737, the only son of the three children of George Macartney (d. 1779), a landowner, of Lisanoure, co. Antrim, and his wife, Elizabeth (...

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Rennie, Sir John Shaw (1917–2002), colonial governor and international civil servant, was born in Cathcart, Glasgow, on 12 January 1917, the only son of John Shaw Rennie, an electrical engineering draughtsman, and his wife, Sarah, née Dick. He was the great-grandson of Thomas Rennie...