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Ever since I was a child, I have been fascinated by historical facts and archaeology. I think humans perceive the past as a series of events; something like a movie that we can’t really feel or touch. I believe the things that bring us closer to the past are those that truly humanize us - the bodies from Pompeii, the perfectly preserved Inca mummies, the personal objects of long-gone historical figures, and more.

I’ve always thought how incredible it would be to see historical events and the famous people the way they actually happened and the way they actually looked. I started Royalty Now in February of 2019, simply as a way for me to see my favorite historical figure, Anne Boleyn, as a woman of modern times. I wanted to know if she could come to life from the few pale, flat portraits we have of her. I started the account to satisfy my own curiosity about what those interesting people of the past would look like if they were standing right in front of me. I’m incredibly thankful for the support and interest the account has received, and can’t wait to see what happens next with other historical people.

More info: Instagram

#1

Nefertiti

Nefertiti

"This bust of Nefertiti (believed to have been sculpted during her lifetime) is famous for its grace and beauty. Nefertiti lived from approximately 1370 - 1330 BC. She was an Egyptian queen and the wife of Akhenaten, an Egyptian Pharaoh. Akhenaten is famous for his attempt to transition Egypt into a monotheistic society (worshipping only the sun god, Aten), instead of a polytheistic one."

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    #4

    Alexander The Great

    Alexander The Great

    "I did some research on his looks and it is recorded that he had curly golden hair and heterochromia (one eye blue and one eye brown or a combo of both), so he was definitely a striking figure."

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    #5

    Agrippina The Younger

    Agrippina The Younger

    "Agrippina the Younger is someone I only recently learned more about but she had a crazy life. She was the sister of Emperor Caligula and the mother of Emperor Nero. I highly recommend giving her a search if you’re interested in that era of Roman history!"

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    juhel avatar
    ju Hel
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    Her (I think 3rd) husband changed her birthplace, a small village, into a roman city in her name. The oppidum ubiorum became Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium, CCAA. Today known as Cologne (Köln)

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    #8

    Mary, Queen Of Scots

    Mary, Queen Of Scots

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    laurenmoss avatar
    Lauren Moss
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    Love that you can see the resemblence between Mary and her cousin Elizabeth I!

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    #9

    Madame De Pompadour

    Madame De Pompadour

    "Jeanne Antoinette Poisson, better known as Madame de Pompadour. She first caught the eye of Louis XV at a masked ball in 1745 (it was said that she was dressed as a domino, and he was dressed as a plant) and was his chief mistress thereafter until 1751. Even after she was no longer Louis' mistress, she was a trusted friend, confidante, and advisor, essentially becoming one of the most powerful women at the French court until her death in 1764."

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    #10

    Empress Elisabeth Of Austria

    Empress Elisabeth Of Austria

    "During her life, Elisabeth (known as Sisi), was known for being beautiful, smart, rebellious and passionate. Definitely worth some digging into if you are interested in late 1800s Europe."

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    #12

    Katherine Of Aragon

    Katherine Of Aragon

    "This portrait of Katherine of Aragon, wife of King Henry VIII and Queen of England from 1509-1533, has always been my favorite. There are several portraits of her that all range in looks, so it’s hard to tell her true likeness. I think this one captures her piety, meekness, and obedience as documented by historians."

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    #13

    Louis XV

    Louis XV

    "Louis XV is lesser known than his predecessor the Sun King and his heir, Louis XVI, but he was the second-longest reigning monarch in French history. I have always known him by his famous mistresses, Madame De Pompadour and Madame du Barry."

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    rhodabike6 avatar
    Seabeast
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    He loved working with his hands, apparently. He'd probably have been a mechanic, carpenter, or worked at some other trade in modern times. Maybe a mechanical engineer, if he did go white collar.

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    #14

    Catherine Parr

    Catherine Parr

    "She was the only wife to outlive the king, who was tyrannical in his last years."

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    viviane_katz avatar
    Viviane
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    Anne of Cleves outlived him as well. She got the best deal: Henry VIII annulled the marriage within a year, gave her some nice properties, a title, and honorary membership to the family as "the King's Beloved Sister" (invitations to court without the hassle of being married to someone toxic).

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    #17

    Queen Isabella Of Castile

    Queen Isabella Of Castile

    "Queen Isabella of Castile, partner to Ferdinand II of Aragon and the queen who sent Columbus on his way to the “new world” in 1492. "

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    #18

    Emperor Augustus

    Emperor Augustus

    "Emperor Augustus (born Octavius, the great-nephew of Julius Caesar) was the first emperor of Rome, ending 500 years of republic. He’s an incredibly controversial figure, especially due to the smart and ruthless way he came to power, but he ruled over a time of relative peace in the Roman empire."

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    #19

    Abraham Lincoln

    Abraham Lincoln

    "Abe Lincoln was the 16th president of the United States from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. Lincoln led the nation through the American Civil War, its bloodiest war and its greatest moral, constitutional, and political crisis. He preserved the Union, abolished slavery, strengthened the federal government, and modernized the U.S. economy."

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    #20

    Christina Of Denmark

    Christina Of Denmark

    "Christina of Denmark, seen here in an original Hans Holbein portrait, lived from 1521 - 1590. Christina was considered as a possible bride for King Henry VIII of England. Christina was not fond of the English King's reputation, given that he had divorced his first wife and beheaded his second wife. The originator of one of the greatest quotes about King Henry in history, Christina famously said: "If I had two heads, one should be at the King of England's disposal." What an amazing denial to a marriage proposal."

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    #21

    Katherine Howard

    Katherine Howard

    "Katherine Howard (c. 1523 – 13 February 1542) was Queen of England for only 16 months as the fifth wife of Henry VIII. Katherine was actually the cousin of Henry's second wife, Anne Boleyn. When they married, he was 49 and she only 16 or 17. Katherine was accused of adultery and executed by the King, ending her short reign as the Queen of England."

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    #22

    Eleanor Of Toledo

    Eleanor Of Toledo

    "Eleanor of Toledo was an astonishing woman. Originally from Toledo, Spain, she was a bride to a famous member of the Medici Family, Cosimo I de Medici. Her husband regularly consulted with her on matters of politics, and she even served as consort during his time away from Florence."

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    #23

    Madame Du Barry

    Madame Du Barry

    "This is Madame du Barry - the official mistress of Louis XV after his first love, Madame de Pompadour’s death."

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    #24

    Caligula

    Caligula

    "Caligula, infamous brat and Roman Emperor."

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    christophlindemann avatar
    Christoph Lindemann
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    You could have just postet a picture of Jack Gleeson (Joffrey Baratheon in Game of Thrones). They look pretty much alike.

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    #25

    Napoleon

    Napoleon

    "Did you know that Napoleon was most likely 5'7"? That's taller than King Louis XIV. Some say his perceived smaller stature was due to him looking small in comparison to his huge accomplishments. Others say there was an error when translating his true height from French to English. Who do you think he looks like here?"

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    #26

    Benjamin Franklin

    Benjamin Franklin

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    #28

    King Henry VII

    King Henry VII

    "Here we are with Henry VII, the first tudor monarch, a frequent request from you all. Henry was the last king of England to attain the throne in battle after defeating Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485."

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    gomoan4man avatar
    Sunny Hernandez
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    Thank God for Princess Di and Kate Middleton. Inbreeding leads to so much ugliness. 😁

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    #29

    Mona Lisa

    Mona Lisa

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    patrickobrien_1 avatar
    Patrick O'Brien
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    Close, but if I met the likeness, I'm not sure the first thing I would think of is Mona Lisa. The shape of the face is not quite right and her expression lacks the subtlety of the original.

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    #30

    Grace Kelly

    Grace Kelly

    "Grace Kelly, American film actress and Princess of Monaco."

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    tookangaro avatar
    Jim Kang
    Community Member
    4 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

    Look, she doesn't need you to "improve" her look. She was, and still is stunning.

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    Note: this post originally had 39 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.