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Appleby, John (d. 1389), dean of St Paul's, London, and diplomat, exemplifies at once the excesses of careerism and the intellectual sophistication that characterized the upper ranks of the fourteenth-century English church. He was a native of Appleby, Westmorland, and the north of ...

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Bainbridge, Christopher (1462/3–1514), ambassador, archbishop of York, and cardinal, was born at Hilton, near Appleby, Westmorland, the eldest of six children of Reginald Bainbridge and Isobel Langton; he owed much in his education and early advancement to his maternal uncle Thomas Langton, bishop of ...

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Bateman [Norwich], William (c. 1298–1355), diplomat, founder of Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and bishop of Norwich, was probably born in Norwich (from which he was sometimes named), the third son of William and Margery Bateman. His father was many times bailiff of the city, and in 1326–7 its member of ...

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Benet, William (d. 1533), diplomat, from the diocese of Salisbury, was the younger brother of Dr Thomas Benet (d. 1558), a canon of Salisbury and of St Paul's, London, and nephew of John Benet, merchant taylor of the city of London. By 1521, when he was admitted to ...

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Benolt, Thomas (d. 1534), herald and diplomat, may have been born at Rouen; his mother's maiden name was Meautis, but his father's identity is not known. It was with Calais, however, that the family had its strongest links; Benolt is generally thought to have been a native of ...

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Blount, Sir Walter (d. 1403), soldier and diplomat, of Barton Blount, Derbyshire, was the third son of Sir John Blount (d. 1358) of Sodington, Worcestershire, and of his first wife, Iseult, daughter and heir of Thomas Mountjoy of Gayton, Staffordshire. Immortalized by ...

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Brandon, Sir Thomas (d. 1510), courtier and diplomat, was the third son of Sir William Brandon of Southwark (d. 1491) and his wife, Elizabeth Wingfield (d. 1497). With his eldest brother, William, who had been attainted for his part in the rebellion against ...

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Brian, Guy, Baron Brian (c. 1310–1390), soldier and diplomat, was the son and heir of Sir Guy Brian of Torbryan, Devon, and an unknown mother. He is first recorded during Edward III's Scottish campaign of 1327, when he was present at the surprise attack on the English by the ...

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Brugge, Lodewijk van [Louis de Bruges; Lodewijk van Gruuthuse], earl of Winchester (c. 1427–1492), courtier and diplomat, was the only son of Jan van Brugge and Margaretha van Steenhuyse. The name Gruuthuse, by which he is commonly known, refers to his family's property in and around ...

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Burghersh, Bartholomew, the younger, third Lord Burghersh (d. 1369), soldier and diplomat, was the eldest son of Bartholomew Burghersh the elder (d. 1355) and Elizabeth Verdon (1305/6–1364). He married first Cicily Wayland (or Weyland), the daughter of Richard Weyland, and second Margaret (...

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Campeggi [Campeggio], Lorenzo (1471/2–1539), diplomat and bishop of Salisbury, was born in Milan, the eldest of the five sons of Giovanni Zaccaria Campeggi and Dorotea di Tommaso Tebaldi. He took his doctorate in canon and civil law at Bologna in 1500, the same year in which he married ...

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Castellesi [da Castello, da Corneto], Adriano (c. 1461–1521), cardinal and English agent in Rome, was born in Corneto (now Tarquinia) to 'a modest and almost servile family' (Paschini, 88). Castellesi began a career in the papal bureaucracy, and in 1488 was sent by ...

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Caxton, William (1415x24–1492), printer, merchant, and diplomat, was the first Englishman to print books, bringing the printing press to England in 1475 or 1476.

Nothing is known of Caxton's family or his place of birth. He was born in the weald of Kent...

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Crosby, Sir John (d. 1476), merchant and diplomat, inherited from his father the manor of Hanworth, which had also been held by his grandfather. He was apprenticed to the prominent London grocer John Young, and became a freeman in 1454. By that date ...

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Giles Daubeney, first Baron Daubeney (1451/22–1508) tomb effigy © Dean and Chapter of Westminster

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Daubeney, Giles, first Baron Daubeney (1451/2–1508), administrator, soldier, and diplomat, was the elder son and heir of Sir William Daubeney (1424–1461) [see under Daubeney family] of South Petherton, Somerset, and his wife, Alice (b. 1432), third daughter and coheir of ...

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Docwra, Sir Thomas (d. 1527), prior of the hospital of St John of Jerusalem in England and diplomat, was descended from the Westmorland family of Docwra of Docwra Hall, Kendal, belonging to a cadet branch which had settled in Hertfordshire. His father, Richard Docwra...

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Fitzalan, Richard, third earl of Arundel and eighth earl of Surrey (c. 1313–1376), soldier, diplomat, and royal councillor, known as ‘Copped Hat’, was the son of Edmund Fitzalan, second earl of Arundel (1285–1326), and Alice, sister of John de Warenne, seventh earl of Surrey...

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Fitzhugh, Henry, third Baron Fitzhugh (1363?–1425), administrator and diplomat, was the son of Henry, second Baron Fitzhugh (d. 1386), and Joan, daughter of Henry Scrope, first Baron Scrope of Masham (Yorkshire), and sister of Archbishop Richard Scrope of York. The family seat was ...

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Forman, Andrew (c. 1465–1521), diplomat and archbishop of St Andrews, was probably the son of Nicholas Forman of Hatton, Berwickshire, and his wife, Janet Blackadder. He had at least two brothers. A determinant at St Andrews University in 1481, he graduated there two years later, when he was probably about eighteen; he does not appear to have proceeded MA. In the late 1480s he was employed by ...