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Baker, Sir Richard (c. 1568–1645), religious writer and historian, was born at Sissinghurst, Kent, the elder son of John Baker (b. in or before 1531, d. 1604×6), MP in 1554–5 and lawyer, and Catherine, daughter of Reginald Scott, of Scots Hall, Ashford, Kent...

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Bale, John (1495–1563), bishop of Ossory, evangelical polemicist, and historian, was born to parents of humble means at the village of Cove, near Dunwich in Suffolk, on 21 November 1495. In his Illustrium maioris Britanniae Bale names his parents as Henry and Margaret...

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Bedford, Thomas (1707–1773), nonjuring Church of England clergyman and historian, was the second son of Hilkiah Bedford (1663–1724), nonjuring Church of England clergyman, and his wife, Alice (1667–1728), daughter of William Cooper. He was born in Westminster, where his father kept a boarding-house for the scholars of ...

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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 ...

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Bower, Archibald (1686x8–1766), religious controversialist and historical writer, was born either on 17 January 1686 or on 17 January 1687 or in September 1688, at or near Dundee. His parents' names are unknown. According to his own account he was descended from an ancient family that had for several hundred years been possessed of an estate in ...

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Gilbert Burnet (1643–1715) by Sir Godfrey Kneller, 1693 Wimpole Hall, The Bambridge Collection (The National Trust). Photograph: Photographic Survey, Courtauld Institute of Art, London

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Burnet, Gilbert (1643–1715), bishop of Salisbury and historian, was born in Edinburgh on 18 September 1643, the youngest child of Robert Burnet (d. 1661), a judge of the court of session as Lord Crimond, and Rachel Johnston, sister of Archibald Johnston, Lord Wariston...

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Copeland, William John (1804–1885), historian and Church of England clergyman, was born at Chigwell, Essex, on 1 September 1804, the elder son of William Copeland, a surgeon. He entered St Paul's School, London, in 1815 and Trinity College, Oxford, in 1824, where he held a scholarship but was prevented by ill health from entering for honours and, like ...

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George Gordon Coulton (1858–1947) by Walter Stoneman, 1930 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Coulton, George Gordon (1858–1947), historian and controversialist, was born at Tower Place, King's Lynn, Norfolk, on 15 October 1858, the third son and sixth child of John James Coulton, a solicitor of Yorkshire origins, and his wife, Sarah Radley. After early schooling at a dame-school at ...

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Coxe, William (1748–1828), historian and Church of England clergyman, was born on 6 March 1748 in Dover Street, Piccadilly, London, the eldest son of William Coxe (c.1710–1760), physician to the king's household, and his wife, Martha, daughter of Paul D'Aranda. His younger brother was the writer and poet ...

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Cramer, John Antony (1793–1848), dean of Carlisle and historian, was born at Mittoden, Switzerland, the son of John Antony Cramer and his wife, Henrietta Courtet. He was a king's scholar at Westminster School from 1807 until 1811, when he was elected to a studentship at ...

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Mandell Creighton (1843–1901) by W. & D. Downey, pubd 1893 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Creighton, Mandell (1843–1901), bishop of London and historian, was born in Carlisle on 5 July 1843, the elder son of Robert Creighton (d. 1878), who built up a family business in Carlisle, and Sarah Mandell (d. 1850/51), of a farming family in ...

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D'Auvergne, Edward (1665–1737), historian and army chaplain, belonged to the ancient D'Auvergne family of St Ouen, on the island of Jersey. He was the third son of Philip D'Auvergne (d. 1690) and Madeleine le Maistre (d. c.1712). At his baptism on 17 February 1665 he was presented by ...

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Dimock, James Francis (1810–1876), Church of England clergyman and historian, second son in the family of three sons and five daughters of John Giles Dimock (1773–1858), rector of Uppingham, Rutland, and his wife, Sarah (1781/2–1851), daughter of William Humphries of Baldock, Hertfordshire, was born at ...

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Falle, Philip (1656–1742), historian and Church of England clergyman, was born in St Saviour, Jersey, the son of Thomas Falle (1629–1673), farmer, centenier or parish constable of St Saviour from 1658 to 1660, and his wife, Marie Dumaresq (d. before 1670). The eldest of four surviving brothers and half-brothers and two sisters descended from an old ...

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Farrar, Adam Storey (1826–1905), Church of England clergyman and historian, was born in London on 20 April 1826, the son of Abraham Eccles Farrar, president of the Wesleyan Methodist conference, and his second wife, Elizabeth née Storey, of whom little is known. Educated at the ...

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Francis Godwin (1562–1633) by unknown artist, 1613 [copy?] Christ Church, Oxford