My Adventures with the Duchess of Cleves!

by Heather R. Darsie

Dear Reader, thank you so much for your support and interest during my journey to write a biography about Anna of Cleves from the German perspective. My travels took me all over Europe and parts of the US. Below are pictures of me doing Anna-related things, which I would like to share with you.



Here I am at the Louvre, Paris, in October 2016 with Hans Holbein the Younger’s portrait of Anna of Cleves. Our train to Paris was a couple hours behind schedule, leaving a very tight window to see the portrait of Anna before a  visit to Versailles. I asked the docent in my very best French to please take a picture of me, and that I was writing a book about Anna. The docent was thoroughly unimpressed, but was kind enough to take the picture for me. A couple days before, I viewed Anna’s tomb in Westminster.



Outside the Louvre in October 2016 before scurrying off to Versailles. A landscape doesn’t get much more Parisian than this!

St John's.jpeg

While attending the Renaissance College: Corpus Christi College Oxford in Context, c. 1450 — c. 1600 conference in September 2017, I had the honor of viewing St John’s College, Oxford’s portrait of Anna of Cleves. This was my favorite portrait of her until I was able to hunt down the Rosenbach portrait.


Rosenbach 1.JPG

Here I am in February 2018 with the Rosenbach portrait of Anna of Cleves. I promised the PhD who helped at the Rosenbach that she would not have to be in any pictures if she didn’t want, hence her holding up the portrait of Anna. I was ecstatic to sort out where this portrait had been lurking the last almost 90 years, and even more delighted to learn that it was in my own backyard! I loved visiting Philadelphia, too.



I can be terribly American, at times! Here I am with the famous Rocky statue outside the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The victory stance seemed appropriate, given my visit to the Rosenbach the day before.


Schloss Burg Hall.jpg

Here I am, sitting in a window seat of Schloss Burg in the Great Hall back in September 2018. Anna and her family spent time at this castle. I liked to think that maybe Anna herself sat here!



My final viewing was of Hans Holbein the Younger’s miniature of Anna, held by the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. I went there in September 2018.

Thank you again for your interest and support!

Anna, Duchess of Cleves: The King’s ‘Beloved Sister’ by Heather R. Darsie is released 15 April in the UK and 1 July in the US. If you live in the US and cannot wait until July, you can order a hardcover from the UK Amazon. The book can be purchased here:

UK Hardcover:

UK Kindle:

US Hardcover:

US Kindle:



Categories: This and That

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6 replies


  1. Dorothea von Dänemark und Norwegen – Maidens and Manuscripts
  2. Il Politico: Niccolò Machiavelli – Maidens and Manuscripts
  3. Sibylle, the Other Daughter of Cleves – Maidens and Manuscripts
  4. Amalia of Cleves, Sister of Anne of Cleves – Maidens and Manuscripts
  5. The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Infatuation – Maidens and Manuscripts
  6. The Curious Case of a Misidentified Portrait of Anne Boleyn – Maidens and Manuscripts

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