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Cosmo Alexander (1724–1772) self-portrait, before 1745? Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museums Collections

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Alexander, Cosmo (1724–1772), portrait painter and traveller, was born probably in Aberdeen, the son and pupil of the Aberdonian painter and engraver John Alexander (1686–c.1766), who had worked in Rome from 1711 to 1719, and his wife, Isobel Innes. John Alexander...

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W. P. Courtney

revised by Christine North

Arundell, Francis Vyvyan Jago (1780–1846), antiquary and traveller, was born at Launceston, Cornwall, in July 1780, the only son of Thomas Jago, a solicitor in that town, and his wife, Catherine, née Bolt, daughter of a surgeon at Launceston. He was educated at ...

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Stanley Lane-Poole

revised by Elizabeth Baigent

Baikie, William Balfour (1825–1864), traveller and surgeon, eldest son of Captain John Baikie RN, was born in Kirkwall, Orkney, on 27 August 1825 and educated privately and at the grammar school there. After taking his degree in medicine at Edinburgh, he entered the ...

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Sir Samuel White Baker (1821–1893) by Maull & Co., 1860s © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Baker, Sir Samuel White (1821–1893), traveller and explorer in Africa, was born on 8 June 1821 in London, the second of the eight children of Samuel Baker (d. 1862) of Lypiatt Park, Gloucestershire, and his first wife, Mary, daughter of Thomas Dobson...

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William John Bankes (1786–1855) by Sir George Hayter, 1836 Kingston Lacy, The Bankes Collection (The National Trust). Photograph: Photographic Survey, Courtauld Institute of Art, London

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Bankes, William John (1786–1855), traveller and antiquary, was born on 11 December 1786, second son of Henry Bankes (1757–1834) of Kingston Lacy, Dorset, politician and author, and his wife, Frances (1760/61–1823), daughter of William Woodley, governor of the Leeward Islands, and the elder brother of ...

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Basire, Isaac, de Preaumont (bap. 1608, d. 1676), Church of England clergyman and traveller, the son of Jean Basire, advocate and minor noble, and his wife, Judith le Macherier (d. 1626), was baptized at the Huguenot church in Rouen, France, in 1608. Little is known of his early years, but he was a student at the ...

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Battye, Aubyn Bernard Rochfort Trevor- (1855–1922), traveller and naturalist, was born at Hever, Kent, on 17 July 1855, the second son in the family of two sons and three daughters of William Wilberforce Battye (1822–1890), rector of Hever, and his wife, Harriet Dorothea (1827–1904)...

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William Beard (1772–1868) by Samuel Griffiths Tovey, c. 1828–9 © Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge

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Beard, William (1772–1868), tourist guide and collector of bones, was born on 24 April 1772 at Woolvershill, Banwell, Somerset, the eldest of the eight children of John Beard (1738–1801), a farmer, and his second wife, Ann Poole (1760–1833). He was educated by John Tuckey...

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Maker: Maull & Fox

Charles Tilstone Beke (1800–1874) by Maull & Fox © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Beke, Charles Tilstone (1800–1874), traveller and geographer, was born on 10 October 1800 at Stepney, London, the son of James Beke (1779–1853), architect, and his wife Susannah Hindle (1778–1864). The family had ancestral connections to Bekesbourne in Kent, where ...

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J. K. Laughton

revised by Neil Rennie

Benbow, John (1681?–1708), traveller, was the son of Vice-Admiral John Benbow (1653?–1702) and his wife, Martha (d. 1722). On 29 June 1695 he was appointed a volunteer on board HMS Northumberland. He did not remain long in the Royal Navy and in February 1701 sailed as fourth mate of the ...

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Bernard [Bernard Sapiens] (fl. c. 865–870), cleric and traveller, was the subject of misidentifications in the early seventeenth century, being described as English by John Pits and as Scottish by Thomas Dempster; the latter asserts that Bernard had been abbot of Holywood in ...

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A. S. Bicknell

revised by Elizabeth Baigent

Bicknell, Herman (1830–1875), orientalist and traveller, was born at Herne Hill, Surrey, on 2 April 1830, the third son of Elhanan Bicknell (1788–1861) and his third wife, Lucinda Sarah (1801–1850), who was the sister of Hablot Knight Browne (‘Phiz’). Clarence Bicknell (1842–1918), archaeologist and botanist, was his brother. He was educated at ...

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Thomas Blood (1617/1818–1680) by unknown artist The Pepys Library, Magdalene College, Cambridge

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Blood, Thomas (1617/18–1680), adventurer and spy, was born at Sarney, co. Meath. His early life is obscure, but it was later claimed that his father (who was possibly Neptune Blood) was a blacksmith and ironworker, 'serious, honest and of no inferior credit...

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Sir Henry Blount (1602–1682) by Sir Peter Lely © National Portrait Gallery, London