Nan Saville

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Nan Saville as played by Serena Brabazon

Character's backstory: Although there is mention of an Anne Saville as lady-in waiting to Anne, not much is known about her, so this is a Fictional Character in the series possibly based on an amalgamation of several ladies-in-waiting such as :

Margaret Wyatt, Lady Lee. born c. 1506 - died c. 1543
Good friend & companion of Anne Boleyn and sister of Thomas Wyatt.She was known as Anne's chief lady-in-waiting who "she loves as a sister," However Margaret did not give testimony against Anne as portrayed in the series. Victorian tradition has it that she attended Anne in the tower and received her book of hours as a last gift from her. Anne had written a short farewell to Margaret inside the prayer book:"Remember me when you do pray, that hope doth lead from day to day." However this is disputed by Historian Eric Ives as a Victorian apocryphal tale.

Position: Mistress of the Queen's Wardrobe

Personality type: She was praised for her "blood, friendship, beauty, youth," in her funeral elegy

Other ladies:
Nan Cobham who it has been speculated could have been Anne Braye, wife of George Brooke, Lord Cobham (one of the peers who sat in Judgement on Anne Boleyn). Nothing much is known about her except t
hat she, along with two other ladies-in-waiting ( Elizabeth Browne, Lady Worcester & it is presumed Margery Horsman) gave evidence against Anne Boleyn. From their testimony, Cromwell would maintain that "The Queen's incontinent living was so rank and uncommon that the ladies of her privy chamber could not conceal it"

Anne (Nan) Gainsford (later Zouche) :When a poison pen drawing came into [[[Anne Boleyn]]'s] hands, showing a male figure labelled 'H' and two female figures 'K' & 'A' and with 'A' having no head, she called to Anne Gainsford.: " Come hither Nan, See here a book of prophecy; thus
he saith is the king, this the queen, and this is myself with my head off". The girl said sensibly. "If I thought it true, though he were an emperor, I would not myself marry him with that condition".
Anne responded: "Yes Nan, I think the book a bauble, yet for the hope I have that the realm may be happy by my issue, I am resolved to have him whatsoever might become of me", [contemporary source : George Wyatt's 'Wolsey']

Nan Saville Played by Serena Brabazon

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Nan Saville Played by Serena Brabazon


There were approximately 60 ladies-in-waiting in Anne Boleyn's household of 250 servants and following is a list of the known names:

Anne (Nan) Gainsford (Later Zouche)

Anne (Nan) Saville
Anne (Nan) Cobham
Margaret Dymoke
Honor Grenville
Elizabeth Holland (Bessie) The Duke of Norfolk's mistress
Mary Scrope
Elizabeth Wood, Lady Boleyn (wife of her uncle James Boleyn)
Margaret Wyatt, Lady Lee
Mary Wyatt

Jane Seymour

Margery Horsman

Jane Boleyn nee Parker, Lady Rochford (wife of her brother George Boleyn) did not give evidence at Anne's trial but Cromwell used some of her testimony.

Elizabeth Browne, Lady Worcester (sister of Sir Anthony Browne, a staunch supporter of Princess Mary Tudor, sister in law of William Brereton & step sister of Sir William Fitzwilliam who was heavily involved in the Boleyn enquiries) who Anne Boleyn had shown some concern for when she was pregnant and loaned her money. Alison Weir quotes her as saying [[[Anne Boleyn]]] "admitted some of her court to come into her chamber at undue hours", Although the full extent of her testimony was never made public because Cromwell said it was "so abominable", and it was used against Anne.

Bridget Wiltshire, Lady Wingfield - whose heresay deathbed (c.1534) knowledge of Anne Boleyn's early life & possible indiscretions were reported by her family to Cromwell. To whom Anne wrote a letter in 1532 after an argument:
"And, madam, though at all times I have not showed the love that I bear you as much as it was, yet now I trust that you shall know that I loved you a great deal more than I made feign for; and, assuredly, next to my own mother, I know no woman alive that I love better..."

John Spelman, one of the judges at Anne Boleyn's trial said: "Note that this matter was disclosed by a woman called the Lady Wingfield who was a servant of the said queen and shared the same tendencies. And suddenly the said Wingfield became ill and a little time before her death she showed the matter to one of her etc."

Elizabeth Browne was the daughter of Sir Anthony Browne (1443-November 19, 1506) and Lucy Neville (1468-March 1534) and married by 1527, as his second wife, Henry Somerset, 2nd earl of Worcester (1499-November 26, 1549). She was at court in the household of Queen Anne Boleyn and seems to have been a friend of Anne's. On April 8, 1536, she borrowed £100 from the queen, a debt that had not yet been repaid when Queen Anne was arrested and sent to the Tower. An unsubstantiated story has Elizabeth taken to task for immorality by her brother, Sir Anthony Browne (1500-1548) and responding that she was "no worse than the queen." One variation on this story identifies Elizabeth as King Henry VIII's former mistress and has her specifying that her brother should talk to Mark Smeaton and one of the queen's gentlewomen called Marguerite for details on the queen's misconduct.

Another version has Lady Worcester issuing the reprimand and an unidentified woman comparing herself to the queen. The source appears to be a poem dated June 2, 1536 and written by Lancelot de Carles, a member of the French embassy to England. Gossip prevalent at the time of Queen Anne's arrest did mention Lady Worcester as a source of some of the accusations against her, but specifics are elusive. Similarly, comments Queen Anne made during her imprisonment are open to various interpretations. One remark suggests that Lady Worcester had recently miscarried, but in fact, according to G. W. Bernard’s Anne Boleyn: Fatal Attraction, she gave birth to a daughter, Anne, in the year ending at Michaelmas 1536. If this is the same Anne Somerset whose birth date is usually given as 1538, she went on to marry the earl of Northumberland and help lead a rebellion against Queen Elizabeth in 1569 ... If Worcester thought the child might not be his, there is no indication of it in family records. Bernard, whose premise is that Anne Boleyn was guilty of at least some of the charges against her, theorizes that the countess of Worcester and others of Anne’s ladies were aware of her love affairs and only escaped prosecution for their complicity by giving evidence against the queen. As for the loan of £100, Elizabeth wrote to Thomas Cromwell on March 8, 1538, thanking him for his kindness in that matter and asking that he not mention it to her husband, since the earl did not know she had borrowed the money.

G. W. Bernard’s book includes the suggestion, originally made by T. B. Pugh, that the father of Elizabeth’s baby was Cromwell himself. Elizabeth’s children, all generally accepted as her husband’s, included William (1527-February 21, 1589), Jane (1535-1573+), and Anne (d. September 8, 1591). She died between April 20 and October 23 of 1565. Portrait: effigy, St. Mary's Church, Chepstow. " - Source : <a class="external" href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="A WHO’S WHO OF TUDOR WOMEN: Brooke-Bu compiled by Kathy Lynn Emerson">A WHO’S WHO OF TUDOR WOMEN compiled by Kathy Lynn Emerson</a>

For more on this see : <a class="external" href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="G.W. Bernard's paper">G.W. Bernard's paper in the English Historical Review titled "Fall of Anne Boleyn" 1991</a>



Nan Saville

Nan Saville Played by Serena Brabazon
Nan Saville played by Serenea BrabazonNan Saville played by Serene Brabazon
Nan Saville Played by Serena Brabazon
Nan & Anne
Nan and ANne
Nan & Anne
Nan & Anne Nan & Anne

Nan Saville Played by Serena Brabazon
Nan Saville Played by Serena Brabazon

Nan Saville - The Tudors Wiki
Margaret Wyatt, Lady Lee by Hans Holbein c. 1540