The compilation of the present volume has been undertaken with the view of supplementing, and, to a certain extent, providing a key to the ordinary dictionaries of biography, geography, mythology, etc. A person or place is often alluded to by means of a surname or nickname without any clue being given to the reader, who does not happen to be aware of the actual name of the person or place, and in such cases it is hoped that the necessary information will be found in these pages. Sometimes, too, some particulars are required concerning celebrated ships, race-horses, etc and a selection of the best known of these has been also included. Owing to the numerous headings, considerations of space prevent more than the briefest particulars being given, but these are perhaps usually sufficient, or at all events give the necessary clue to enable fuller details to be obtained elsewhere. Such additions to names as the Elder, the Younger, etc which usually form, as it were, part of the actual surname, have not been noticed here.