Famous British Historical Personalities

Vote for Your Favourite British Historical Personalities

Right IconThis ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

 1 
Henry VII of England
(Monarch of England (1485-1509))
Henry VII of England
36
Birthdate: January 28, 1457
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Pembroke Castle, Pembrokeshire, Wales
Died: April 21, 1509

Henry VII of England played an important role in popularizing the House of Tudor by becoming the first monarch of the house; he ruled as the king of England from 1485 until his death in 1509. He is credited with several economic, diplomatic, and administrative initiatives.

 2 
King James I
(King of Scotland)
King James I
16
Birthdate: June 19, 1566
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Edinburgh Castle, Scotland
Died: March 27, 1625

King James I of England and Ireland was also the king of Scotland as James VI. Son of Mary, Queen of Scots, he believed in royal absolutism. He had major conflicts with the Parliament and its ever-growing powers, which eventually led to revolts against his successor, Charles I.

 3 
Queen Elizabeth II
(Queen of the United Kingdom from 1952 to 2022)
Queen Elizabeth II
152
Birthdate: April 21, 1926
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Mayfair, London, England
Died: September 8, 2022

The Queen of the United Kingdom and 15 other Commonwealth realms, Queen Elizabeth II was the longest-reigning British monarch in history. The first child of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother , she ascended to the throne in 1952. Despite the media criticism of the royal family, she continued to be a popular figure in the UK.

Recommended Lists:
 4 
Queen Victoria
(Queen of the United Kingdom (1837-1901))
Queen Victoria
76
Birthdate: May 24, 1819
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Kensington Palace, London, United Kingdom
Died: January 22, 1901

The Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland for over six decades, Queen Victoria reigned for longer than any of her predecessors. Her rule witnessed the vast expansion of the British Empire and ushered in a period of industrial, cultural, political, scientific, and military changes. Her Golden and Diamond Jubilees were celebrated with great pomp and show.

 5 
Henry V of England
(King of England (1413 – 1422))
Henry V of England
15
Birthdate: August 9, 1386
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Monmouth Castle, Monmouth, Principality of Wales
Died: August 31, 1422

One of the most renowned kings in English history, Henry V ascended the throne at the age of 26 in 1413 and ruled England till his death in 1422. Though his reign was short, it was marked by great successes in the Hundred Years' War against France which established England as one of the strongest kingdoms in entire Europe.

 6 
Alfred the Great
(King of the West Saxons)
Alfred the Great
38
Birthdate: 0849 AD
Birthplace: Wantage, England
Died: October 26, 0899

Alfred the Great, king of Wessex, cemented his place in history as a legendary ruler who led his kingdom to victory in wars that seemed hopeless. He is known for his brilliant strategies and defensive measures. He prevented England from falling to the Danes during his rule from circa 871 to 886. He’s also credited with promoting learning and literacy and curbing corruption.

Recommended Lists:
 7 
William the Conqueror
(Former King of England (1066 - 1087))
William the Conqueror
37
Birthdate: 1028 AD
Birthplace: Falaise, France
Died: September 9, 1087

William the Conqueror was the first Norman King of England who ruled from 1066 to 1087. William's conquest had a profound impact on England; his government merged elements of the Norman and English systems that laid the foundations of the medieval English kingdom. He is credited with building castles, mottes, and keeps, including the White Tower and Tower of London.

 8 
Elizabeth I of England
(Queen of England)
Elizabeth I of England
33
Birthdate: September 7, 1533
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Palace of Placentia
Died: March 24, 1603
Elizabeth I, daughter of King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, ruled as the Queen of England and Ireland from 1558 to 1603. She had been declared illegitimate after her mother’s execution. Nicknamed The Virgin Queen for her unmarried status, she established an English Protestant church and served as its governor.
 9 
Anne Boleyn
(Queen Consort of England from 1533 to 1536)
Anne Boleyn
45
Birthdate: 1507 AD
Birthplace: Hever Castle, Kent, England
Died: May 19, 1536

The queen of England from 1533 to 1536, Anne Boleyn played an important role in the political and religious upheaval that led to the beginning of the English Reformation. She is widely regarded as the most important and influential queen consort of England. She was charged with adultery, incest, and treason and was executed by beheading in 1536.

 10 
Boudica
(Queen of the Iceni Tribe of Celtic Britons)
Boudica
16
Birthdate: 0030 AD
Birthplace: Britannia
Died: 0061 AD

Boudica served as a queen of the Iceni tribe. She is regarded as a British folk hero for leading an uprising against the Roman Empire, which wanted to conquer her land. She has remained a prominent cultural symbol in the UK. A bronze statue named Boadicea and Her Daughters is located in London, facing the Palace of Westminster.

 11 
Edward I of England
(King of England from 1272 to 1307)
Edward I of England
19
Birthdate: June 1, 1239
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: London, England
Died: July 7, 1307

Edward I of England ruled England as its king from 1272 to 1307. During his reign, Edward I reformed common law and royal administration. He is also credited with setting up Parliament as a permanent institution. He is also criticized for issuing the Edict of Expulsion, which expelled Jews from England. The Edict was not overturned for almost 350 years.

 12 
Eleanor of Aquitaine
(Queen Consort of France (1137 - 1152) and Queen Consort of England (1154 - 1189))
Eleanor of Aquitaine
12
Birthdate: 1122 AD
Birthplace: France
Died: April 1, 1204
Eleanor, the duchess of Aquitaine, became the queen of France after marrying King Louis VII. Their marriage was annulled later. She then married the Duke of Normandy, who became King Henry II of England. Eleanor was imprisoned for supporting a revolt against Henry, and was freed after his death.
 13 
Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
(Queen Consort of Great Britain and Ireland (1761 - 1818))
Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
10
Birthdate: May 19, 1744
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Mirow, Germany
Died: November 17, 1818
Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, wife of King George III, reigned as the queen of Great Britain and Ireland from 1761 to 1818, and her reign saw the two kingdoms unite into the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. An amateur art lover and botanist, she also expanded the Kew Gardens.
 14 
Elizabeth of York
(Forme Queen Consort of England (1486 - 1503))
Elizabeth of York
24
Birthdate: February 11, 1466
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: February 11, 1503
Elizabeth of York, daughter of King Edward IV and wife of Henry VII of the Tudor Dynasty, was the queen consort of England from 1486 until 1503. She and Henry got married after Henry won at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1486, thus ending the Wars of the Roses
 15 
Lady Jane Grey
(Queen of England and Ireland from 10 July 1553 to 19 July 1553)
Lady Jane Grey
16
Birthdate: 1537 AD
Birthplace: Leicestershire, United Kingdom
Died: February 12, 1554
Lady Jane Grey, the Nine Days' Queen, was the Queen of England and Ireland from July 10 to 19, 1553. Jane, a Protestant, was nominated to the Crown, owing to Roman Catholic Mary’s opposition to the Reformed Church of England. However, Jane was deposed, convicted of high treason, and executed.
 16 
Catherine Howard
(Queen Consort of England from1540 to 1541)
Catherine Howard
13
Birthdate: 1521 AD
Birthplace: London, England, United Kingdom
Died: February 13, 1542
Catherine Howard, England’s queen consort from 1540 until 1541, was Henry VIII’s fifth wife. She was a cousin of Henry VIII’s second wife, Anne Boleyn. In November 1541, Catherine was stripped of the queen’s title and imprisoned. She was later beheaded on charges of adultery with her cousin Thomas Culpeper.
 17 
Henry IV of England
(King of England)
Henry IV of England
12
Birthdate: April 15, 1367
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bolingbroke Castle
Died: March 20, 1413

Henry IV of England reigned over England from 1399 until his death in 1413. Apart from spending much of his reign fighting against rebellions, Henry IV of England also established foreign relations; during his reign, Manuel II Palaiologos visited England, becoming the only Byzantine emperor to do so.

 18 
Catherine Parr
(Queen of England & Ireland)
Catherine Parr
10
Birthdate: 1512
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London
Died: September 7, 1548
Catherine Parr, the most-married English queen, was the queen of England and Ireland from 1543 to 1547, as the last wife of King Henry VIII. She influenced the passing of the 1543 Third Succession Act. She was also the first English queen to publish a book using her own name.
 19 
Elizabeth Woodville
(Former Queen of England (1464 - 1483))
Elizabeth Woodville
9
Birthdate: April 28, 1437
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Grafton Regis, England
Died: June 8, 1492

Elizabeth Woodville was the queen of England from 1464 until her husband King Edward IV's death in 1483. Elizabeth Woodville remained politically influential even after the demise of her husband. She also played a major role in Henry VII's accession to the throne in 1485. Her life and work have inspired several books, films, and TV series.

 20 
Edward III of England
(King of England and Lord of Ireland from 1327 to 1377)
Edward III of England
11
Birthdate: November 13, 1312
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Windsor, England
Died: June 21, 1377
Edward III, or Edward of Windsor, was the King of England and the Lord of Ireland from 1327 to 1377. He took to the throne after his father, Edward II, was deposed by his mother, Isabella, and Roger Mortimer. He strengthened the military and participated in the Hundred Years' War.
 21 
George III of the United Kingdom
(King of Great Britain and of Ireland from 1760 to 1801)
George III of the United Kingdom
21
Birthdate: June 4, 1738
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: London, England
Died: January 29, 1820

The King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland for almost six decades, George III had a reign that was longer than those of any of his predecessors. His reign was marked by a series of military conflicts. He suffered from mental illness in his later years.

 22 
Edward IV of England
(King of England from 1461 to 1470 and from 1471 to 1483)
Edward IV of England
14
Birthdate: April 28, 1442
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Rouen, France
Died: April 9, 1483

The King of England for several years from 1461 until his death in 1483, Edward IV of England was a central figure in the Wars of the Roses. He was a brave warrior and his contemporaries described him as handsome, affable, and energetic. He died at the relatively young age of 40. The cause of his death remains unknown. 

 23 
James II of England
(King of England, Scotland, and Ireland from 1685 to 1688)
James II of England
13
Birthdate: October 14, 1633
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: London, England
Died: September 16, 1701

James II of England reigned as the king of Ireland, Scotland, and England from 1685 to 1688. His deposition as king, caused by the Glorious Revolution of 1688, ended a century of civil and political strife by establishing the principle that Parliament would be preferred over the Crown as opposed to the principles of divine right of kings and absolutism.

 24 
Henry II of England
(Former King of England (1154 - 1189))
Henry II of England
16
Birthdate: March 5, 1133
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Le Mans, France
Died: July 6, 1189

Henry II of England reigned as the king of England from 1154 to 1189. During his long rule, Henry introduced many changes that had severe long-term consequences. Some of his legal changes are believed to have laid the foundation for English Common Law. Henry is often portrayed in films and plays; he has been played by actors like Peter O'Toole.

 25 
Alexandra of Denmark
(Former Queen Consort of the United Kingdom and British Dominions (1901 - 1910))
Alexandra of Denmark
11
Birthdate: December 1, 1844
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Copenhagen, Denmark
Died: November 20, 1925
Alexandra of Denmark was the queen of the U.K. and the empress of India from 1901 to 1910, as the wife of King Edward VII. Her style of dressing inspired English fashion back then. She supported her son George V’s campaign against Germany, with the Allies, during World War I.
Edward the Confessor
10
Birthdate: 1003 AD
Birthplace: Islip
Died: January 5, 1066
Edward the Confessor, son of Æthelred the Unready, was one of the last Anglo-Saxon rulers of England and reigned from 1042 to 1066. He restored the rule of the House of Wessex after the reign of Danish king Cnut. He was considered a national saint till Saint George replaced him.
 27 
Anne, Queen of Great Britain
(Queen of Great Britain and Ireland (1707 – 1714))
Anne, Queen of Great Britain
14
Birthdate: February 6, 1665
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: St James's Palace, Westminster, England
Died: August 1, 1714

Many biographers consider Anne, the Queen of Great Britain, a weak and irresolute woman. It is said that she lacked political astuteness and was easily influenced by others. Though she was troubled by poor health throughout her life, she became increasingly obese and ill during her 30s and eventually died at the age of 49.

 28 
Charles II
(King of England, Scotland and Ireland from 1660 to 1685)
Charles II
27
Birthdate: May 29, 1630
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: St James's Palace, London, England
Died: February 6, 1685
Charles II, son of King Charles I of England, ruled England, Scotland, and Ireland from 1660 to 1685. He was initially defeated by Oliver Cromwell and forced to go into exile, but returned to England after Cromwell’s death. He introduced the Clarendon Code and later sided with the Tories.
 29 
Victoria, Princess Royal
(German Empress and Queen of Prussia (1888))
Victoria, Princess Royal
8
Birthdate: November 21, 1840
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England
Died: August 5, 1901

Victoria, Princess Royal was the Queen of Prussia and German Empress from 9 March 1888 to 15 June 1888. Victoria, Princess Royal had an opportunity to influence the German Empire's policy, but the death of her husband German Emperor Frederick III, just 99 days after his accession, ruined her opportunity. Victoria has been portrayed in several movies and TV series.

 30 
Lady Godiva
(11th-century Anglo-Saxon noblewoman)
Lady Godiva
9
Birthdate: 0980 AD
Birthplace: Mercia
Died: 1067 AD

Lady Godiva was the wife of Leofric, Earl of Mercia. A 13th-century legend stated how she rode naked through Coventry to reverse an oppressive tax imposed by Leofric. Everybody stayed indoors, except a tailor named Thomas, who watched her, giving rise to the name Peeping Tom associated with voyeurs.

 31 
Richard I of England
(King of England)
Richard I of England
21
Birthdate: September 8, 1157
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Beaumont Palace, Oxford, England
Died: April 6, 1199
Richard I of England, the king of England from 1189 to 1199, was known as Richard the Lionheart, for his military prowess. He also reigned over Normandy, Aquitaine, Gascony, Cyprus, Poitiers, Anjou, Maine, and Nantes. The third son of King Henry II, he fought actively in the Third Crusade.
 32 
Henry I of England
(King of England)
Henry I of England
11
Birthdate: 1068 AD
Birthplace: Selby, United Kingdom
Died: December 1, 1135
Henry I, fourth son of William the Conqueror, seized the throne of England after his brother William II’s death, and ruled as the King of England from 1100 to 1135. He was strict but efficient, and is known for his conquest of Normandy following the Battle of Tinchebray.
 33 
John, King of England
(King of England (1199-1216))
John, King of England
13
Birthdate: December 24, 1166
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Oxford, England
Died: October 19, 1216

John, King of England reigned over England from 1199 to 1216. His inability to retain the French lands, which was acquired by King Philip II of France, contributed to the subsequent growth of the Capetian dynasty; this is widely regarded as a turning point in the history of Europe.

 34 
Edward II of England
(King of England and Lord of Ireland from 1307 to 1327)
Edward II of England
13
Birthdate: April 25, 1284
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Caernarfon, Wales
Died: September 21, 1327
Edward II was the king of England from 1307 till his deposition in 1327. His relationship with Piers Gaveston caused the English barons to revolt against Edward, leading to the passage of the Ordinances of 1311. Edward lost to Robert Bruce at Bannockburn. Edward inspired Christopher Marlowe's play Edward II.
 35 
William IV of the United Kingdom
(King of the United Kingdom (1830 - 1837))
William IV of the United Kingdom
10
Birthdate: August 21, 1765
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: June 20, 1837
William IV, the third son of George III, was the king of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and that of Hanover, from 1830 to 1837. His stint in the Royal Navy earned him the nickname “Sailor King.” He introduced electoral reforms, abolished slavery, and restricted child labor.
 36 
Charles I of England
(King of England, Scotland & Ireland from 1625 to 1649)
Charles I of England
15
Birthdate: November 19, 1600
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dunfermline Palace, Dunfermline, Scotland
Died: January 30, 1649

Charles I, the King of England, Scotland and Ireland from 1625 to 1649, was said to be authoritarian and was in constant battle with the Parliament over the issue of royal prerogative. The friction led to a civil war from 1642 to 1645 between him and the English and Scottish Parliaments. He was defeated and executed in 1649 for treason.

 37 
Mary II of England
(Queen of England, Scotland and Ireland (1689 - 1694))
Mary II of England
10
Birthdate: April 30, 1662
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: December 28, 1694

Mary II of England was Queen of England, Ireland, and Scotland from 1689 to 1694. Although she co-reigned along with her husband William III of England, she also took major decisions by herself whenever William was abroad. Mary has been portrayed in films, such as Orlando and England, My England.

 38 
Isabella of France
(Former Queen Consort of England (1308 - 1327))
Isabella of France
11
Birthdate: 1295 AD
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: August 22, 1358

Isabella of France, also known as the She-Wolf of France, was the Queen of England as the wife of King Edward II. She was known for her diplomatic skills, intelligence, and beauty. Her marriage was a troubled one and she probably had an affair with Roger Mortimer. It is believed that Isabella then arranged the murder of Edward II.

 39 
Athelstan
(King of England)
Athelstan
9
Birthdate: 0894 AD
Birthplace: Wessex
Died: October 27, 0939
Æthelstan, or Athelstan, son of Edward the Elder, was an Anglo-Saxon king who ruled from 924 to 927. He was also the King of the English from 927 to 939. Æthelstan is known for his victory at the Battle of Brunanburh and for his significant contribution to European politics. 
 40 
Henry VI of England
(King of England)
Henry VI of England
15
Birthdate: December 6, 1421
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England, United Kingdom
Died: May 21, 1471

The only child of Henry V, Henry VI of England served as the king of England for almost 40 years. He also served as the disputed king of France between 1422 and 1453, becoming the only English monarch to serve as the king of France. He founded educational institutions like Eton College, All Souls College, Oxford, and King's College, Cambridge.

 41 
George IV of the United Kingdom
(King of the United Kingdom and Hanover (1820 - 1830))
George IV of the United Kingdom
11
Birthdate: August 12, 1762
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: June 26, 1830

Regarded as the first gentleman of England, King George IV of the United Kingdom saw his empire consolidating its position as the global hegemon, particularly after the Napoleonic Wars. His regency during the illness of his father and then his 10-year reign were marked by royal extravagance. 

 42 
Empress Matilda
(Former Holy Roman Empress (1114 - 1125))
Empress Matilda
6
Birthdate: February 7, 1102
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sutton Courtenay, England
Died: September 10, 1167

Empress Matilda was the daughter of King Henry I of England and one of the claimants to the throne of England during the 'Anarchy'. Her participation in the civil war and tales of bravery have been the subject of historical fiction. She has also been depicted in films, stage shows, and TV series.

 43 
George VI
(King of the United Kingdom (1936-52))
George VI
35
Birthdate: December 14, 1895
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Sandringham, Norfolk, England
Died: February 6, 1952
The last Emperor of India and the first Head of the Commonwealth, King George VI was the King of the United Kingdom for fifteen years. He served in the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force before reluctantly inheriting the throne and becoming a symbol of courage during WWII. His determination also helped him in his struggle with stammering.
 44 
Edward VI of England
(King of England and Ireland from 1547 to 1553)
Edward VI of England
24
Birthdate: October 12, 1537
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: London, England
Died: July 6, 1553

Edward VI of England served as the King of England and Ireland from 1547 until his death at the age of 15 in 1553. Edward VI, who took interest in religious matters, allowed Protestantism to be established in England during his reign. His reign also witnessed the introduction of written works that formed the basis for practices of the English Church.

 45 
Richard II of England
(King of England, Lord of Ireland (1377 - 1399))
Richard II of England
10
Birthdate: January 6, 1367
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bordeaux, France
Died: February 14, 1400

Richard II of England was King of England from 1377 to 1399. Also known as Richard of Bordeaux, he was a firm believer in the royal prerogative. He was not popular as a king and was deposed in 1399 and is believed to have been starved to death in captivity. Modern historians believe he may have had a personality disorder.

 46 
Catherine of Valois
(Former Queen Consort of England (1420 - 1422))
Catherine of Valois
6
Birthdate: October 27, 1401
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: January 3, 1437
Catherine of Valois, daughter of Charles VI of France, was the queen of England from 1420 to 1422, as the wife of Henry V of England. Her marriage to Henry V was supposed to be a political stance to end the Hundred Years' War, but it was not successful.
 47 
Lady Margaret Beaufort
(Mother of King Henry VII of England, Noblewoman)
Lady Margaret Beaufort
5
Birthdate: May 31, 1443
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bletsoe Castle, Bedfordshire, England
Died: June 29, 1509
Lady Margaret Beaufort, descendant of King Edward III, was a significant figure during the Wars of the Roses. She laid the foundation of the Tudor Dynasty by helping her son, Henry Tudor, acquire the English throne. She also established the Cambridge institutes Christ's College and St. John's College
 48 
Edward VII
(King of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, Emperor of India (1901 - 1910))
Edward VII
21
Birthdate: November 9, 1841
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England
Died: May 6, 1910

Edward VII, the King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and Emperor of India from 22 January 1901 until his death, is said to have played a role in the reorganisation of the British Army after the Second Boer War. His main interests lay in the fields of foreign affairs and naval and military matters.

 49 
Olav V of Norway
(Former King of Norway (1957 - 1991))
Olav V of Norway
8
Birthdate: July 2, 1903
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sandringham, Norfolk, England
Died: January 17, 1991

Olav V of Norway served as the king of Norway from 1957 to 1991. Olav became heir apparent to the throne in 1905 when his father was crowned king of Norway. His leadership skills during World War II earned him the position of Norwegian Chief of Defence in 1944. Nicknamed The People's King, Olav was popular for his down-to-earth style.

 50 
Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley
(King Consort of Scotland (1565-1567))
Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley
9
Birthdate: December 7, 1545
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Temple Newsam, Yorkshire, England
Died: February 10, 1567
Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley was the great-grandson of King Henry VII of England. As the second husband of Mary, Queen of Scots, he reigned as the king of Scotland from 1565 till his murder in 1567. His son ruled as King James VI of Scotland and I of England.