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Edward Spencer Beesly (1831–1915) by Barraud © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Beesly, Edward Spencer (1831–1915), positivist and historian, was born on 23 January 1831 in Feckenham, Worcestershire, the eldest son of the Revd James Beesly and his wife, Emily Fitzgerald, of Queen's county, Ireland. After reading Latin and Greek with his father, in the autumn of 1846 he was sent to ...

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Charles Booth (1840–1916) by George Frederic Watts, c. 1901 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Booth, Charles (1840–1916), shipowner and social investigator, was born on 30 March 1840 at 27 Bedford North Street, Liverpool. He was the third son of Charles Booth (1799–1860), a prosperous corn merchant, and his first wife, Emily Fletcher (1803–1853). Both his parents were Unitarians, and had wide connections among the commercial, dissenting, and philanthropic ‘aristocracy’ of ...

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Branford, Victor Verasis (1863–1930), sociologist and businessman, was born at 15 West Street, Oundle, Northamptonshire, on 25 September 1863, the eldest surviving son of William Catton Branford (1837–1891), a veterinary surgeon, and Ann Kitchen (1826–1871), the sister of his father's deceased first wife. His father spent two short periods as professor in the veterinary college in ...

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Bridges, John Henry (1832–1906), positivist and medical administrator, was born on 11 October 1832 at the vicarage, Old Newton, Suffolk. Slight, fair-haired, and fine-featured, he was the third of five children of the Revd Charles Bridges (1794–1869), a well-known evangelical, and his wife, ...

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Congreve, Richard (1818–1899), positivist, was born at Leamington Hastings, Warwickshire, on 4 September 1818, the third son of Thomas Congreve, a farmer, and his wife, Julia. After attending the school run by his uncle Walter Bury in Boulogne, he spent five years (1832–7) at ...

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Cotton, Sir Henry John Stedman (1845–1915), administrator in India and positivist, was born in Kumbakonam, Madras presidency, south India, on 13 September 1845, the first of two sons of Joseph John Cotton (1813–1867), East India Company servant, and his wife, Jessie Minchin, daughter of a ...

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Crompton, Henry (1836–1904), barrister and positivist, was born at Liverpool on 27 August 1836, the second of five sons and three daughters of Sir Charles John Crompton (1797–1865), judge of the queen's bench, and his wife, Caroline Fletcher. The eldest son, Charles Crompton (1833–1890), QC...

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Edwards, Matilda Barbara Betham (1836–1919), writer, was born on 4 March 1836 at Westerfield, Suffolk, the fourth daughter of Edward Edwards (c.1808–1864), a farmer, and Barbara (1806–1848) daughter of the Revd William Betham (1749–1839), antiquary. Her father was known as the best farmer thereabouts, and through her upbringing she coupled a deep understanding of farming with literary traditions from her mother's side, nourished from an early age by literary letters from her aunt and godmother ...

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Gould, Frederick James (1855–1938), educationist and secularist author, was born on 19 December 1855 at 17 Portland Street, Brighton, the last of the three children of William James Gould, a jeweller and part-time opera singer, and his wife, Julia, née Wilson, a dressmaker....

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Green, Joseph Frederick (1855–1932), peace campaigner and politician, was born on 5 July 1855 at 12A Myddelton Square, Clerkenwell, London, the son of Joseph Edwin Green JP (c.1830–c.1900), merchant and member of Lloyds, and his wife, Hannah Rosa, formerly How...

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Harrison, Ethel Bertha (1851–1916), positivist and essayist, was born at Highgate Hill, London, on 27 October 1851, the only daughter of William Harrison (1805–1883), a wealthy West India merchant, and his wife, Anne Tonge Lake (1819–1876), who had four older sons. Ethel grew up in ...

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Frederic Harrison (1831–1923) by unknown photographer © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Harrison, Frederic (1831–1923), positivist and author, was born at 17 Euston Square, London, on 18 October 1831, the son of Frederick Harrison (1799–1881), a stockbroker whose father was a prosperous builder from Leicestershire, and his wife, Jane, daughter of Alexander Brice, a Belfast...

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Hertz, Fanny (1830–1908), educationist, was born in Hanover, Germany, the elder of two daughters (there were also two sons) of Bram Hertz (1793/4-1865), and his wife Amelia (1808/9-1892). Her father was a diamond merchant, who settled in London in 1837, where he was a dealer and collector of pictures and objects of virtu at his premises in ...

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John Kells Ingram (1823–1907) by Sarah Purser, 1890 © Estate of Sarah Henrietta Purser. Photograph reproduced with the kind permission of the Trustees of the National Museums & Galleries of Northern Ireland

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[Anon.]

revised by R. D. Collison Black

Ingram, John Kells (1823–1907), scholar and economist, born at the rectory of Temple Carne, near Pettigo, Donegal, on 7 July 1823, was the eldest son of William Ingram (1771–1829), then curate of the parish, and his wife, Elizabeth Cooke. Thomas Dunbar Ingram was his younger brother. The family was descended from Scottish Presbyterians who settled in ...

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Lushington, Vernon (1832–1912), lawyer and positivist, was born on 8 March 1832 in London, the fourth son of Stephen Lushington (1782–1873) and his wife, Sarah Grace, née Carr, and twin to Sir Godfrey Lushington, whom he closely resembled in appearance, abilities, and temperament. After their mother's death in 1837, the twins were brought up by a maternal aunt at their father's seat in ...

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Leslie Stephen

revised by Nilanjana Banerji

Morison, James Augustus Cotter (1832–1888), author, was born in London on 20 April 1832, the only surviving child of James Morison (1770–1840) and his second wife, Clarinda Sharmer Cotter, known as Clara, only daughter of Captain Cotter. Morison's father lived in Paris from 1834 until his death, where he had many distinguished friends. His son thus learnt French in his infancy, and afterwards gained a broad knowledge of French history, life, and literature. After his father's death in 1840 he lived with his mother near ...