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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 (1781–1855) and his wife, Emily Fitzgerald (1798–1868), of Queen's county, Ireland. After reading Latin and Greek with his father, in the autumn of 1846 he was sent to ...