I was looking for some useful people to populate a story set in and around Elizabeth I's court. What I needed was someone who had reason to hate Elizabeth and in this lot there are loads of potential candidates. What I like about this set up is that people fell in and out of favour with the Queen and sometimes relatives of those executed for treason were her most trusted statesmen. The ambiguity and fluidity of the power relationships is rocket fuel for the engine of plot. God Bless you Queen Bess!Image via Wikipedia
Lord Chancellor - Nicholas Heath
William Cecil - principal secretary of state - stayed in the post for 40 years. Disliked by Dudley.
Robert Dudley - Master of the Horse. Disliked by Cecil. Was imprisoned with Elizabeth in the tower. He handled the plans for her coronation.
Robert Devereux - 2nd Earl of Essex. Guardian was William Cecil. Made Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. 34 years younger than the Queen. His relationship with the Queen deteriorated to such an extent that he tried to foment a coup.
Sir Philip Sydney - In and out of favour with the Queen. Uncle was Robert Dudley. Fought with Dudley in the Netherlands and was killed there in 1586.
Christopher Hatton - Captain of the Queen's bodyguard. A privy councillor and was made Lord Chancellor in 1587.
Sir Henry Lee - Master of the Armoury and the Queen's champion until 1590.
Edward de Vere - courtier, playwright and soldier. Fell out of favour with the Queen.
Lord Henry Howard, Charles Arundel, and Francis Southwell - catholics denounced to the Queen.
Thomas Radclyffe - 3rd Earl of Sussex. Arranged Mary's marriage with Philip II of Spain. Made Lord Chamberlain in 1572.
Francis Walsingham - Elizabeth's spymaster. Uncovered the Babington, Ridolfi and Throckmorton plots against Elizabeth.
Charles Paget - One of Mary's chief agents in Europe.
Thomas Morgan - Mary's cipher clerk, Welshman and involved in the Babington plot.
Admiral Sir John Hawkins - pretended to be part of the Ridolfi plot to entrap the conspirators.
Thomas Howard - Duke of Norfolk. Had a leading role in the Ridolfi plot and was executed for treason in 1572.
Roberto di Ridolfi - Florentine nobleman and conspirator.
Charles Baillie - Ridolfi's messenger.
Sir Anthony Babington - Catholic courier and one of 24 convicted of treason. The Babington plot takes its name from him.
Thomas Phelippes - forger and intelligence gatherer who worked for Walsingham.
Chidiock Tichborne - Babington plotter.
Sir Francis Throckmorton - Catholic courier found out by Walsingham. A minor plot against the Queen was named after him.