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Berenson, Bernard (26 June 1865–06 October 1959), art historian, was born Bernhard Valvrojenski in Butrimonys, Lithuania, the son of Alter (later Albert) Valvrojenski and Eudice (later Julia) Mickleshanski (or Michliszanski). Many different spellings of his hometown have been recorded, including Biturmansk, Butrymanz, and Butremancz. After immigrating to Boston in 1875, the family changed their surname to Berenson. Berenson completed his undergraduate degree at Harvard University in 1887 with honorable mention in Semitic languages and English composition....

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Laffan, William Mackay (22 January 1848–19 November 1909), newspaper editor, publisher, and art connoisseur, was born in Dublin, Ireland, the son of Michael Laffan and Ellen Sarah FitzGibbon. He attended Trinity College of Dublin University and St. Cecilia’s School of Medicine. He did not graduate from either institution. Laffan became adept at modeling in clay, etching, and painting in oils and watercolors and was an artist for the Pathological Society of Dublin....

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Okakura Kakuzo (23 December 1862–02 September 1913), art historian, connoisseur, and author of The Book of Tea, art historian, connoisseur, and author of The Book of Tea, was born in Yokohama, Japan, the son of Okakura Kanemon, a silk merchant and former samurai, and his wife, Kono. His eclectic upbringing and gift for languages fitted “Tenshin” (or “heart of heaven,” the honorific name by which Okakura is known to the Japanese) for the role of cultural ambassador to the West. Okakura and his younger brother Yoshisaburo (later a professor of English and for a time a translator for ...