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Charles Abbott, first Baron Tenterden (1762–1832) by Samuel William Reynolds senior, 1820 (after William Owen, exh. RA 1819) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Abbott, Charles, first Baron Tenterden (1762–1832), judge, was born in Canterbury on 7 October 1762, the second son of John Abbott (d. 1785), a hairdresser, with a shop opposite the western portal of the cathedral, and his wife, Alice, née Bunce (...

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A'Beckett, Sir William (1806–1869), judge, was born on 28 July 1806 in London, the eldest son of William A'Beckett (1777–1855), solicitor, and his wife, Sarah, née Abbott. After attending Westminster School and serving articles with his father, he determined on the bar and was called at ...

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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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See Babington, Anthony

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Abney, Sir Thomas (1690/91–1750), judge, was baptized on 3 April 1691 at Willesley, Derbyshire, the second son of Sir Edward Abney of Willesley and his second wife, Judith, daughter and coheir of Peter Barr, a London merchant. His father was member of parliament...

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Acherley, Roger (bap. 1662?, d. 1740), political writer and lawyer, was the son of John Acherley of Stanwardine, in the parish of Baschurch, Shropshire; he may have been Roger Atcherley, son of John and Mary Atcherley, who was baptized at Baschurch on 23 December 1662. He entered the ...

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Ackner, Desmond James Conrad, Baron Ackner (1920–2006), judge, was born at 90 Highbury New Park, Islington, London, on 18 September 1920, the son of an immigrant Viennese dentist, Conrad Ackner, who had a fashionable practice in Wimpole Street, and his wife, (Rosine) Rhoda, née Tuck...

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W. O. Hart

revised by Alec Samuels

Acton, Sir Edward (1865–1945), judge, was born at Stretford in Lancashire on 6 November 1865, the son of Henry Morell Acton (1828–1907) [see under Acton, Henry], one of the editors of the Manchester Guardian, and his wife, Anne Shaw, daughter of ...

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Adair, James (1743?–1798), judge and serjeant-at-law, whose place of birth remains unknown and whose date of birth is unconfirmed, was the first son of James Adair, a Belfast merchant, and Margaret Maxwell of co. Down where the younger Adair later inherited estates. While his early years remain somewhat obscure it is known that ...

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Adams, Fanny (1859–1867), murder victim and source of a colloquial expression, was born on 30 April 1859 in Tanhouse Lane, Alton, Hampshire, the fourth of seven children of George Adams (b. 1830), a labourer, later a bricklayer, and his wife, Harriet Mills (...

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Percy Hoskins

revised by Michael Bevan

Adams, John Bodkin (1899–1983), general practitioner and forger, was born on 20 January 1899 in Randalstown, co. Antrim, the elder son of Samuel Adams, watchmaker, and his wife, Ellen Bodkin (d. 1943), formerly of Desertmartin, co. Tyrone. The younger son was born in 1903 and died of pneumonia in 1916. Shortly after ...

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Adams, Sir Richard (1709/10–1774), judge, was the son and heir of John Adams of the parish of St Olave, Southwark. He was admitted to the Inner Temple on 23 October 1727. Called to the bar in 1736, Adams practised as one of the common pleaders of ...

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T. F. Henderson

revised by Jonathan Harris

Adams, William (1772–1851), lawyer and diplomatist, the youngest son of Patience Thomas Adams, filazer of the court of king's bench, and Martha, daughter of Thomas Marsh, was born at 39 Hatton Garden, London, on 13 January 1772. On his father's side he was connected with an old ...

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Francis Espinasse

revised by Richard Maxwell

Adolphus, John Leycester (bap. 1794, d. 1862), barrister and writer, was baptized on 28 August 1794 at St Martin-in-the-Fields, Westminster, London, the son of John Adolphus (1768–1845), barrister and historian, and Martha Elizabeth, née Leycester (d. 1843). He had a sister, Emily, later Henderson...

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Thompson Cooper

revised by J. Gilliland

Ady, Joseph (1775/6–1852), fraudster, was the son of John Ady (1743/4–1812), a recording clerk for the Society of Friends. He was a hatter, hosier, and accountant at various times, in premises at 11 The Circus, Minories, London, and 6 Charlotte Street, Wapping. Failing in business, he devised a means of extracting money from the credulous. He would look up the lists of unclaimed inheritances, dividends, and bequests, and then write, without stamping his letters, to any people of those names that he could find, offering to produce '...

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Aikenhead, Thomas (bap. 1676, d. 1697), freethinker and blasphemer, was baptized on 28 March 1676, the son of James Aikenhead (d. in or before 1683), apothecary and burgess of Edinburgh, and his wife, Helen (d. 1685), daughter of Thomas Ramsey, former minister of ...

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