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The majority of the following article contains the fictional portrayal of one or more historical figures. Details in this article may differ from real world facts. For more information on the historical figure(s), consult the links provided within or at the bottom of the article.

Elinor on the cover of the second edition of Anne Boleyn and Me

All of the characters that appear in Alison Prince's Anne Boleyn and Me.

Main characters[]

Elinor Valjean[]

Main article: Elinor Valjean

Elinor Freeman[1] (née Valjean; born 20 February 1514)[2] was the youngest daughter of Eva De Puebla and Michel Valjean, and the sister of Rosanna, Daniel, and William. Her mother worked in the English court as Catherine of Aragon's lady-in-waiting and her father as Henry VIII's court jester. When she was thirteen, Elinor became a lady-in-waiting to Catherine. She was later transferred to Anne Boleyn's household. Elinor remained her lady-in-waiting for many years but never grew to like Anne. In 1530, she married a blacksmith named Tom Freeman. They had two children, before deciding to leave court for a peaceful life.

Supporting characters[]

Anne Boleyn[]

Main article: Anne Boleyn

Anne Boleyn (c. 1501[3] – 19 May 1536)[4] was the second wife of King Henry VIII. She caught his interest around 1525 when she was a lady-in-waiting to his first wife Queen Catherine. Anne refused to become Henry's mistress, instead aiming to be his wife. Several years of turmoil followed as Henry attempted to obtain a divorce. They secretly married in early 1533 when Anne was showing signs of pregnancy. They had their daughter, Elizabeth, later that year. Anne's subsequently pregnancies were miscarriages. This and her jealousy of Henry's mistresses led to their relationship becoming strained. In May 1536, Anne was beheaded after being falsely accused of adultery.

Catherine of Aragon[]

Main article: Catherine of Aragon

Catherine of Aragon (16 December 1485[5] – 7 January 1536)[6] was Henry VIII's first wife and the Queen of England. She had only one child, a daughter named Mary. Henry desired a son and asked Catherine for a divorce so he could marry Anne Boleyn. Catherine steadfastly refused and declared that she was his true wife. In 1531, Henry abandoned Catherine. She was forced to live in poor conditions and many of her household were dismissed. Nevertheless, Catherine continued to love her husband and prayed for his soul. Her health slowly deteriorated and she passed away in January 1536.

Eva Valjean[]

Main article: Eva De Puebla

Eva Valjean ("Mama;" née De Puebla; born 10 June 1486)[7] was the wife of Michel Valjean, and mother of Rosanna, Elinor, Daniel, and William. Eva was a lady-in-waiting and lifelong friend of Catherine of Aragon. Her husband passed away in 1528 and she never remarried. After Catherine was cast aside by Henry, Eva stayed in her court until Catherine's death in January 1536. Eva then went to live with Elinor and reluctantly continued working at court as an embroideress. Despite her disliked of Anne Boleyn, Eva was disturbed by her execution. She later left court to live with her daughter, Elinor, and her family.

Henry VIII[]

Main article: Henry VIII

Henry VIII (1491 – 1547)[8] was the King of England. He was first married to Catherine, whom gave birth to their daughter, Mary. Henry, whom greatly desired a son, later fell in love with Anne Boleyn. He began seeking an annulment for his marriage with Catherine, when Anne refused to be his mistress. He was unable to receive permission from the Pope and eventually decided to make himself the head of the Church of England. In 1533, he married Anne and they had one daughter, Elizabeth. She was unable to give him a son, resulting in Henry setting his eyes on Jane Seymour. After Catherine died, Henry had Anne executed on charges of adultery and married Jane.

Rosanna Valjean[]

Rosanna de Frontera (née Valjean; born 13 August 1509)[9] was the first child of Eva De Puebla and Michel Valjean. She was the elder sister of Elinor, Daniel, and William. She fell in love with and married Diego Luiz de Frontera, the son of one of Catherine's Spanish attendants. In 1530, they had a son named John after her father. Like her mother, Rossana was a lady-in-waiting to Catherine until her death in 1536. By this time, she and Diego had grown disillusioned with the English court. They decided to move to Granada, Spain, where Diego's parents lived. Rosanna was pregnant at the time.

Tom Freeman[]

Tom Freeman was a blacksmith whom worked at Hever for Anne Boleyn's family. He was skilled at making shoes for horses and was also able to treat their injuries and illnesses. In June 1529, he met Elinor and they fell in love. Tom was later hired as Anne Boleyn's personal blacksmith. He proposed to Elinor on Christmas Day in 1530 and they were married the following month after receiving the King's permission. They had two children together, Michael and Maria. He and Elinor shared a dream of leaving court for a peaceful life in their place. After Anne Boleyn's execution, they received permission to leave. Tom continued to work as a blacksmith.

Minor characters[]

  • Anne Savage, one of Anne Boleyn's ladies-in-waiting. She was present at Anne's wedding.
  • Arthur was the first husband of Catherine of Aragon, who died a few months after they married.
  • Bessie Blount was Henry VIII's mistress and mother of their son, Henry Fitzroy.
  • Dr. Butts was Henry VIII's personal physician whom he sent to Anne when she fell ill.
  • Catherine Carey was the daughter of Mary Boleyn with her first husband William Carey. During her final days, Anne wrote to Mary to send Catherine to her.
  • Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor and Catherine of Aragon's nephew. He was betrothed to Mary, but broke off the agreement. Catherine often entreated him for help.
  • Daniel Valjean (born c. 1518)[10] was Elinor's younger brother. He worked with Tom Freeman in the stables, starting in 1534. Two year later, he left court with his family.
  • Diego Luiz de Frontera was the husband of Rosanna Valjean and the father of John. After Catherine's death, he and his family moved to Spain where his parents lived.
  • Duke of Norfolk was Anne Boleyn's uncle. He often quarreled with his niece, whom he grew to resent. The Duke was involved with Anne's trial and was forced to sentence her to death.
  • Duke of Suffolk was a close friend of Henry.
  • Elizabeth (7 September 1533[11] – 1603)[8] was the daughter and only child of Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII. Following her mother's execution, she was declared illegitimate.
  • Elizabeth Barton (died 20 April 1534),[12] aka The Nun of Kent, was arrested several times for speaking against Anne Boleyn. He was eventually taken to the Tower and executed.
  • Elizabeth Boleyn (née Howard) was the mother of Anne and wife of Thomas.
  • Eustache Chapuys was the Spanish ambassador to England. He supported Catherine of Aragon and was greatly distressed by her ill treatment.
  • Felipez was one of Catherine's trusted servants, who delivered a letter to Charles V for her.
  • Francis I, the King of France who considered marrying Mary at one point. He later betrothed his third son to Henry's daughter, Elizabeth.
  • Francis Weston (died 17 May 1536)[13] was one of the men accused and convicted of committing adultery with Anne. He was found guilty and executed along with the others.
  • George Boleyn (died 17 May 1536)[13] was Anne Boleyn's brother. He was granted the title of Viscount Rochford. In 1536, he was convicted of committing incest with Anne and executed.
  • Henry Fitzroy (born c. 1519)[14] was Henry VIII's son by his mistress Bessie Blount. By 1536, he appeared to be in ill health.
  • Henry Norris (died 17 May 1536)[13] was a close friend of Henry. He was charged with adultery with Anne and executed at the Tower of London.
  • Henry Percy, later Earl of Northumberland, who was once betrothed to Anne Boleyn. The match was broken by Cardinal Wolsey supposedly on King Henry's orders.
  • James Boleyn was Anne's uncle whom was appointed chancellor of her household.
  • Jane Seymour was Anne's lady-in-waiting. Henry fell in love with her after his feelings for Anne waned. She, like Anne before her, coyly refused all of Henry's attempts to woo her.
  • John de Frontera (born September 1530)[15] was the son of Rosanna and Diego.
  • John Fisher (died 22 June 1535),[16] the Bishop of Rochester. He believed Catherine was Henry's lawful wife and opposed Henry declaring himself head of the Church. John was later executed.
  • John Seymour, the father of Jane. He allegedly had a long affair with one of his daughter-in-laws.
  • Little Purkoy (died December 1534),[17] Anne's beloved pet dog. He was named after the French word, "pourquoi." Everyone at court was afraid to tell her that he had died.
  • Lorenzo Campeggio, a Cardinal sent from Rome to make a decision about "the King's great matter". However, a decision was never met and he returned home.
  • Madge Shelton, Anne's cousin and lady-in-waiting. She briefly became Henry's mistress at Anne's suggestion, though his interest waned when Anne became pregnant again.
  • Margaret Wyatt was the sister of Thomas Wyatt. She served as a lady-in-waiting to Anne Boleyn during her last days.
  • Maria de Salinas, later Lady Willoughby, was a lady-in-waiting to Catherine of Aragon. She was dismissed by Henry from the Queen's service, but returned for Catherine's last moments.
  • Maria Freeman (born 26 March 1534)[18] was the second child of Elinor and Tom Freeman. She was named after Maria de Salinas since they felt naming her "Catherine" would be too risky.
  • Mary (born 1516)[19] was the daughter of Catherine and Henry VIII. She was betrothed to Charles V, until he broke the agreement. Mary protested against her father divorcing her mother, which caused a strain in their relationship. She was later forbidden from seeing her mother.
  • Mary Boleyn was the sister of Anne. Her first husband, William Carey, died of the sweating sickness. She married a second time to the "undistinguished," William Stafford, leading to her being banished from court.
  • Mark Smeaton (died 17 May 1536)[13] was a court musician whom liked to brag. He was accused of committing adultery with Anne. Mark was tortured and subsequently confessed to the crime. He was later executed at the Tower of London.
  • Michael Freeman (born 26 June 1532)[20] was the son of Elinor and Tom. He was named after his grandfather, Michel Valjean.
  • Michel Valjean ("Papa;" died June 1528),[21] nicknamed Mr John, was Eva's husband and the father of Rosanna, Elinor, Daniel, and William. He was Henry's favorite court jester. In 1528, he died suddenly of the sweating sickness which devastated his family.
  • Pope Clement (died 26 September 1534)[22] was the head of the Catholic Church. Henry asked for his permission to annul his marriage to Catherine. The Pope took several years to make a clear decision. When he sent a demand for Henry return to Catherine, Henry simply ignored it.
  • Richard Rouse, a cook charged for allegedly poisoning John Fisher.
  • Rodrigo De Puebla was Elinor's great uncle whom was Spain's ambassador to England before he died.
  • Thomas Boleyn was the father of Anne. Henry gave him the title of Earl of Wiltshire.
  • Thomas Cranmer, the Archbishop of Canterbury and good friend of Henry. He advised Henry about procuring the annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon.
  • Thomas Cromwell, Henry's adviser whom previously worked with Cardinal Wolsey. He quickly stopped Henry's dissenters and arranged for Anne's to be accused of adultery.
  • Thomas More was the Lord Chancellor of England. He refused to support Henry's separation from the Catholic Church. He was sent to the Tower of London and executed.
  • Thomas Wyatt, a court poet who fell in love with Anne Boleyn. He was sent away, likely by the King.
  • William Brereton (died 17 May 1536),[13] another man accused and convicted of committing adultery with Anne. He was tried and executed with her other supposed lovers.
  • William Carey (died June 1528)[23] was the first husband of Mary Boleyn and father of Catherine Carey. He died of the sweating sickness.
  • William Kingston was the Constable of the Tower of London when Anne was beheaded.
  • William Peto was a friar that spoke out against Anne Boleyn. He made a prediction that dogs would lick King Henry's blood when he died.
  • William Somers was Henry's court jester after Michel Valjean's death. He made a joke about Elizabeth being a "bastard," which angered the King.
  • William Stafford, the second "undistinguished" husband of Mary Boleyn. Mary was banished from court, because of her marriage to William.
  • William Valjean (born c. 1521)[10] was Elinor's youngest brother. After leaving Catherine of Aragon's household, he worked in the kitchens at King Henry's court.
  • William Warham (died August 1532),[24] the Archbishop of Canterbury, who supported Catherine.
  • Cardinal Wolsey (died November 1530),[25] Henry VIII's trusted adviser. He was stripped of his title and later charged with treason, but died on the way to be executed.


See also[]

My Story characters
Main characters

Nebka | Hatshepsut "Asha" | Claudia | Bran | Tor Scaldbane | Jenkin Lloyd | Eva De Puebla
Elinor Valjean | Lady Jane Grey | Matilda "Tilly" Middleton | Catherine "Kitty" Lumsden | Thomas Hobbs
Remember "Mem" Whipple | Thomas Adamson | Alice Paynton | Susannah Makepeace | Ignatius Sancho
Euphemia Grant | Mary Wade | Elizabeth "Lizzie" Harvey | Isabelle | James Grant | Mary Prince | Bob Jenkins
Dick Maybury | Eliza Helsted | Phyllis McCormack | Lily Hicks | Michael Pope | Hanuman Singh | Clotee Henley
Will Reed | Edith Lorrimer | Jabulani | Sophia Duleep Singh | Florence Finch | Flora Bonnington | Dollie Baxter
Margaret Anne Brady | Jack Fairfax | Daphne "Daffy" Rowntree | Billy Stevens | Noor Inayat Khan
Eleanor Rhys Davies | Rebecca "Becky" Mortkowicz | Harry Woods | Princess Margaret | Sophie Ridel
Peter Rogers | Kitty Langley | Edith "Edie" Benson | Tim Jackson | Andrew "Andy" Pope | Paul Lelaud
Violet Debuchy

Supporting characters

Henry VII | Henry VIII | Catherine of Aragon | Anne Boleyn | Jane Seymour | Anne of Cleves
Catherine Howard | Catherine Parr | Edward VI | Mary I | Elizabeth II

Lists of characters by book

Pyramid of Secrets | Princess of Egypt | Pompeii | Roman Invasion | Viking Blood | Agincourt | My Tudor Queen
Anne Boleyn and Me | Lady Jane Grey | Bloody Tower | The Queen's Spies | Armada | Mayflower | Civil War
The Great Plague | Highway Girl | Ignatius Sancho | The '45 Rising | No Way Back | Transported
The Fall of the Blade | Trafalgar | Mary Prince | Waterloo | Dodger! | Mill Girl | The Hunger | The Crystal Palace
Crimea | Indian Mutiny | Slave Girl | The Sweep's Boy | Victorian Workhouse | Zulu War | Princess Sophia Duleep Singh
Factory Girl | Twentieth-Century Girl | Suffragette | Titanic | The Trenches | Flying Ace | Road to War
Noor-un-Nissa Inayat Khan | Berlin Olympics | Nowhere to Run | The Storm to Come | Battle of Britain
Wartime Princess | Sophie's Secret War | U-Boat Hunter | War Nurse | Blitz | Desert Danger | D-Day
Spy Smuggler | Codename Céline | London Stories

My Royal Story characters

Cleopatra VII | Beatrice Townhill | Elizabeth I | Mary, Queen of Scots | Marie Antoinette | Victoria | Anastasia

Lists of My Royal Story characters by book

Cleopatra | Henry VIII's Wives | Elizabeth | Mary, Queen of Scots | Marie Antoinette | Victoria | Anastasia

My True Story characters

Dora Thewlis | John "Jack" Cornwell | Joe Read | Susan | Vera

Lists of My True Story characters by book

Give Us the Vote! | Standing Alone | Hero at Dunkirk | What If They Find Us?

Further reading[]