Dictionary of National Biography

Updated: May 31, 2019

Thousands of thorough and very interesting biographies were published in The National Dictionary of Biography, founded in 1882 by George Smith. These books were compiled and edited by various writers and noted in each volume. Scroll down to easily access the volume(s) you need, free of charge!

These volumes are sorted alphabetically. Find the volume that would contain the surname you are researching. For example, the surname "Adams" would be found in Volume 1 since it contains the surnames from Abbadie to Anne. Note also, the supplemental volumes below, which may also contain the name.


Volume 1 (1885) Abbadie - Anne [Link]

Volume 2 (1885) Annesley - Baird [Link]

Volume 3 (1885) Baker - Beadon [Link]

Volume 4 (1885) Beal - Biber [Link]

Volume 5 (1886) Bicheno - Bottisham [Link]

Volume 6 (1886) Bottomley - Brownell [Link]

Volume 7 (1886) Brown - Burthogge [Link]

Volume 8 (1886) Burton - Cantwell [Link]

Volume 9 (1887) Canute - Chaloner [Link]

Volume 10 (1887) Chamber - Clarkson [Link]

Volume 11 (1887) Clater - Condell [Link]

Volume 12 (1887) Conder - Craigie [Link]

Volume 13 (1888) Craik - Damer [Link]

Volume 14 (1888) Damon - D'Eyncourt [Link]

Volume 15 (1888) Diamond - Drake [Link]

Volume 16 (1888) Drant - Edridge [Link]

Volume 17 (1889) Edward - Erskine [Link]

Volume 18 (1889) Esdaile - Finan [Link]

Volume 19 (1889) Finch - Forman [Link]

Volume 20 (1889) Forrest - Garner [Link]

Volume 21 (1890) Garnett - Gloucester [Link]

Volume 22 (1890) Glover - Gravet [Link]

Volume 23 (1890) Gray - Haighton [Link]

Volume 24 (1890) Hailes - Harriott [Link]

Volume 25 (1891) Harris - Henry [Link]

Volume 26 (1891) Henry - Hindley [Link]

Volume 27 (1891) Hindmarsh - Hovenden [Link]

Volume 28 (1891) Howard - Inglethorp [Link]

Volume 29 (1892) Inglis - John [Link]

Volume 30 (1892) Johnes - Kenneth [Link]

Volume 31 (1892) Kennett - Lambart [Link]

Volume 32 (1892) Lambe - Leigh [Link]

Volume 33 (1893) Leighton - Lluelyn [Link]

Volume 34 (1893) Llwyd - MacCartney [Link]

Volume 35 (1893) MacCarwell - Maltby [Link]

Volume 36 (1893) Malthus - Mason [Link]

Volume 37 (1894) Masquerier - Millying [Link]

Volume 38 (1894) Milman - More [Link]

Volume 39 (1894) Morehead - Myles [Link]

Volume 40 (1894) Myllar - Nicholls [Link]

Volume 41 (1895) Nichols - O'Dugan [Link]

Volume 42 (1895) O'Duinn - Owen [Link]

Volume 43 (1895) Owens - Passelewe [Link]

Volume 44 (1895) Paston - Percy [Link]

Volume 45 (1896) Pereira - Pockrich [Link]

Volume 46 (1896) Pocock - Puckering [Link]

Volume 47 (1896) Puckle - Reidfurd [Link]

Volume 48 (1896) Reilly - Robins [Link]

Volume 49 (1897) Robinson - Russell [Link]

Volume 50 (1897) Russen - Scobell [Link]

Volume 51 (1897) Scoffin - Sheares [Link]

Volume 52 (1897) Shearman - Smirke [Link]

Volume 53 (1898) Smith - Stranger [Link]

Volume 54 (1898) Stanhope - Stovin [Link]

Volume 55 (1898) Stow - Taylor [Link]

Volume 56 (1898) Teach - Tollet [Link]

Volume 57 (1899) Tom - Tytler [Link]

Volume 58 (1899) Ubaldini - Wakefield [Link]

Volume 59 (1899) Wakeman - Watkins [Link]

Volume 60 (1899) Watson - Whewell [Link]

Volume 61 (1900) Whichcord - Williams [Link]

Volume 62 (1900) Williamson - Worden [Link]

Volume 63 (1900) Wordsworth - Zuylestein [Link]


Errata (1904) [Link]

Index to 1911 [Link]

Supplement 1901-1911 Vol. 1 Abbey - Eyre (1920) [Link]

Index 1912-1921 [Link]

Index 1921-1930 [Link]

The Concise Dictionary (from beginnings to 1921) [Link]

The Concise Dictionary Part II (1982) [Link to borrow based on availability]


The following are supplements to the earlier volumes, edited by Sidney Lee:


Volume 1 Supplement (1901) Abbott - Childers [Link]

Volume 2 Supplement (1901) Chippendale - Hoste [Link]

Volume 3 Supplement (1901) How - Woodward [Link]


The following are other supplements to the earlier volumes, edited by Sir Leslie Stephen and Sir Sidney Lee in the early 1900s:


Volume 1 (1901) Memoir of George Smith; Also Abbadie - Beadon from 1885 Vol. 1-3 [Link]

Volume 2 (from 1885-1886 Vol. 4-6) Beal - Brownell [Link]

Volume 3 (from 1886-1887 Vol. 7-9) Brown - Chaloner [Link]

Volume 4 (from 1887 Vol. 10-12) Chamber - Craigie [Link]

Volume 5 (from 1888 Vol. 13-15) Craik - Drake [Link]

Volume 6 (1908, from 1888-1889 Vol. 16-18) Drant - Finan [Link]

Volume 7 (from 1889-1890 Vol. 19-21) Finch - Gloucester [Link]

Volume 8 (from 1890 Vol. 22-24) Glover - Harriott [Link]

Volume 9 (from 1891 Vol. 25-27) Harris-Hovenden [Link*] *borrow based on availability

Volume 10 (1908, from 1891-1892 Vol. 28-30) Howard - Kenneth [Link]

Volume 11 (1909, from 1892-1893 Vol. 31-33) Kennett - Lluelyn [Link]

Volume 12 (1909, from 1893 Vol. 34-36) Llwyd - Mason [Link]

Volume 13 (1909, from 1894 Vol. 37-39) Masquerier - Myles [Link]

Volume 14 (1909, from 1894-1895 Vol. 40-42) Myllar - Owen [Link]

Volume 15 (1909, from 1895-1896 Vol. 43-45) Owens - Pockrich [Link]

Volume 16 (1909, from 1896 Vol. 46-48) Pocock - Robins [Link]

Volume 17 (1909, from 1897 Vol. 49-51) Robinson - Sheares [Link]

Volume 18 (from 1897-1898 Vol. 52-54) Shearman - Stovin [Link]

Volume 19 (1909, from 1898-1899 Vol. 55-57) Stow - Tytler [Link]

Volume 20 (1909, from 1899 Vol. 58-60) Ubaldini - Whewell [Link]

Volume 21 (from 1900 Vol. 61-63) Whichcord - Zuylestein [Link]

Volume 22 Supplement (1909, from 1901 Vol. 64-66) [Link]


Other editions:


Volume 1 Second Supplement (presumably 1912, by Sidney Lee) Abbey-Eyre [Link]

Volume 2 Second Supplement (1912, by Sidney Lee) Faed - Muybridge [Link]

Volume 3 Second Supplement (1912, by Sidney Lee) Neil - Young [Link]


Dictionary of National Biography Vol I (A-D) by N.R. Ray, 1986 [Link]

Dictionary of National Biography Vol II (E-L) by S. P. Sen, 1973 [Link]

Dictionary of National Biography Vol III (M-R) by S. P. Sen, 1974 [Link]

Dictionary of National Biography Vol IV (S-Z) by S. P. Sen, 1974 [Link]


Contributors' Index [Link]


The Dictionary of National Biography 1931-1940, by L.G. Wickham Legg, 1949. [Link]

The Dictionary of National Biography MISSING PERSONS, by C.S. Nicholls, 1993. [Link]

The Dictionary of National Biography 1941-1950, by E.T. Williams and L.G. Wickham Legg, 1959 [Link]

The Dictionary of National Biography 1951-1960, by E.T. Williams and Helen M. Palmer, 1971 [Link]

The Dictionary of National Biography 1961-1970, by C.S. Nicholls and E.T. Williams, 1981. [Link]

The Dictionary of National Biography 1971-1980, by C.S. Nicholls and Lord Blake, 1986. [Link]

The Dictionary of National Biography 1981-1985, by C.S. Nicholls and Lord Blake, 1990. [Link]

The Dictionary of National Biography 1986-1990, by C.S. Nicholls, 1996. [Link]


The Biographical Treasury; A Dictionary of Universal Biography, by Samuel Maunder, 1855 [Link]


Volume 112 ??? - Series B - Papers of Biological Character [Link]



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