Share your Fanciable Historical Figures (& win a book!)

Let’s be honest. We all take a bit of a liking to the odd inappropriate person every now and again, and as anyone interested in historical research will (probably..?) testify, sometimes it just so happens that that person died hundreds of years before you were born. [You can’t get much more inappropriate than two of the historical hotties brought to my attention in recent months – would-be assassin Lewis Powell and a young Joseph Stalin. Yikes.]

But who do you think is the most fanciable historical figure?

It being the season of love and all, in return for your confessions I’m giving away a few free copies of my most recent book – the rather silly (but painstakingly researched..!) ‘Mr Darcy’s Guide to Courtship’. Just post your man or woman of choice in the comments below (with a link to a pic, if possible… just because I’m nosey) and I’ll choose a winner on Friday 14th Feb.


ps. Probably Joseph Banks, in case you were wondering.

NPG 5868; Sir Joseph Banks, Bt by Sir Joshua Reynolds

22 thoughts on “Share your Fanciable Historical Figures (& win a book!)

Add yours

  1. Wellington, always Wellington. I’m not sure we would actually get on, it’s all about that power and command I think. Also I love swishing around the Waterloo gallery at Apsley house!

  2. Joseph Banks is very swoonsome, but for me, it’s got to be the Merry Monarch himself, King Charles II. No. 1 in an England already full of blokes with long curly hair and baggy white shirts (my personal historical heaven), tall, dark, flowing locks and not bad in the sack either by all accounts? A keen astronomer, we could use his telescope to gaze at stars together. Sigh.

  3. Sir James Douglas: dark haired, olive skinned, aquiline features … though a bit headstrong if you take the Douglas Larder into consideration … So, for utter gallantry, and derring do James Graham, 1st Marquis of Montrose – he could write a fine verse or two as well.

  4. Definatly Richard Lovelace. Don’t let the overplucked eyebrows of the portrait fool you, he was apparently a real dashing cavalier, with those gorgeously cliched tortured black eyes and high leather boots. Also seems like he’d have been great fun to hang out with, judging from his poems, he was a real fan of drinking and dancing and laughing.

  5. Difficult one but Colonel Sir William Howe De Lancey is definitely up there (he was played by Ian Ogilvy in the 1970s film “Waterloo”). Although born in America he joined the British army in the 1790s and was at many memorable Peninsula battles including the siege of Ciudad Rodrigo and the Battle of Vittoria. He was Quartermaster General to Wellington in the Waterloo campaign … unfortunately, he died of wounds sustained during the battle (he was 37). If the 1813 sketch is taken as a really true likeness he was a handsome devil (!) and very much a man of his times

  6. Captain Sir Richard Francis Burton, adventurer, discovered the source of the Nile, translator of the Arabian Nights (leaving in the naughty bits) and the Kama Sutra. What’s not to like?

  7. Difficult to choose! I have always liked Rupert Brooke but I am also drawn to the self portrait of Samuel Palmer.

  8. Current squeeze: John Gerard (the maverick priest, not the herbalist).

    Past amours/old faithfuls/bad boys: Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Lord Byron, Earl of Rochester.

    (love this blog, Emily!)

  9. Thanks all for sharing! The discussion could go on forever… Luci & lisemcnally have been randomly selected as the winners! Please email me at with your postal addresses so I can send your book… E x

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