Side note: this list does not include figures from Ancient Greece/Rome or mythology because that’s a whole other ballpark.
This is a pretty random list with no discernible order as far as I can tell, and I missed a whole lot out to make it short and sweet. Here goes!
- Marie Antoinette – I really don’t know what is so fascinating about Marie Antoinette but I am instantly drawn to anything regarding her or history during the period she ruled. I just find her and the history/culture that surrounds her so wonderfully engaging (and I will admit that I simply adore the 2006 Coppola film and had to include the picture above!) Perhaps it’s because of the intrigue surrounding Versailles, also one of my favourite palaces of all time, which brings me on to:
- Louis XIV (and his brother Philippe, Duke of Orleans) – I recently binge-watched the BBC show Versailles over a course of two nights, and, while a lot of the show is probably over-exaggerated and it does mingle rumour and fact, its sheer opulence reminded me of why I have remained interested in Louis the Sun King and his brother. In fact, when studying Charles II A-level history, I spent most of my time waiting for Louis to pop up (sadly, he was only ever relevant to my course once.)
- Lord Bryon – Anything to do with the Romantic movement I love, and I was originally going to put John Keats/Percy Shelley on this list, as they were who introduced me to Bryon, but Bryon comes first because of the ultimate sensationalism that must have surrounded his name during his lifetime and the often hilarious dramatics that are recorded for people like me to read, enjoy and then steadily become obsessed with Bryon like so many people of his day were.
- William Shakespeare – I mean, he’s Will Shakespeare. I honestly don’t know why I am so interested in Will other than I have had to study so many of his plays and there is not much recorded information about him. The intrigue probably helps, but there is just something about Shakespeare that is so interesting and makes me want to find out more.