[This page consists of a lot of disparate glimpses of memories which are still too unorganized so please don't read this with harsh intent until I can edit it.]

Table of contents-just click to go to that part of this page.

The first name I adopted was at the age of four and it was Stallion. Everyone had to call me by that name.

I was born Ursula (Halsall) Stanley daughter of the Earl of Derby. I officially died once in 1591 and I also officially died a second time in 1636
When it got too hot for me because of assassins I died as Ursula Stanley (the first time in 1591). 
Both of those deaths are very well documented as is my position in the royal line of succession here

Throughout my life I also used a more 'maidenish name' Dorothy Halsall based on my mothers name and it is even found in ciphers in much of my work including my plays and poetry.
I used another name when I wrote the plays but I don't recall what it was.

Then as Ursula Stanley I became Ursula Salusbury by marriage to John Salusbury but he was really Robert Cecil. 
I used the name Anne Vavasor when I started working for the queen but then it changed.
That was perhaps when I  adopted the name Mary Rogers, AKA the Persian Lady and the spy mistress of England.
  At the time I was married to the 17th Earl of Oxford and I had so much fun writing absurd fiction about my husband that it often became part of the plays as well as Englands history.
Strangely this allegory of my life that I wrote in to the official record of Elizabeth's Royal court when I was her personal secretary (proven beyond a doubt on the 'cartoon' page) explains my relationship with the great men of England at the time, including Sir Francis Drake.
Again I changed my name in order to evade assassasins.
Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury,
and I were married and I used at least two aliases each.
One was Elizabeth Brooke. Another was Anne Pope.
Again I got stalked and shot at, so Anne Pope 'died' (so did Robert Cecil's wife). Then I became Elizabeth Pope. To confuse assassins even more my daughter Jane then wore the mantle of Lady Anne Pope. That's was O.K. because Robert's father had long ago adopted me as his fake daughter Anne Cecil when I needed a fake father so that I could marry the Earl of Oxford. Then she 'died' about the same time as many of my aliases did in 1588.
I also used the name Anne Vaux when working as an undercover agent on assignments such as a government agent within the Gunpowder Plot' and before that I even acted as her father William Vaux.
 Anne Vavasor out lived all my other lives since she retired and never officially died. My soul seems to have hung on forever (at least until now).

one page sideshows about:
My family
The Earl of Oxford
Sir Henry Lee
The Persian Lady


Henry Stanley
I was Ursula Stanley the daughter of
Henry Stanley the 4th Earl of Derby

My grandmother on my mothers side was the daughter of the dowager Queen of France and the oldest daughter of Henry VII of England. I once asked my mother at dinner what it meant. She said that 'wherever we were living, if war broke out between France and England both sides would race to get to us first just to imprison and hold us for ransom. However, neither side would pay a copper to free us so there we would rot. Now eat your dinner.'

From then on I aspired not to power. However, I and later my children, had almost as strong a claim to the throne of England as King James I did.

According to the will of Henry VIII, Ferdinando (my brother) was second-in-line heir to Elizabeth I following after his mother. But he predeceased his mother by two years and the queen by nine years. Wikipedia

I was right after my brother Ferdinando in the order of being heir to the throne of England. However, that was only according to the wishes of Henry VIII. That meant that thousands of other men would have challenged it. One did by killing my brother Ferdinando in 1594. I would have been on that same short list unless my identity was kept a secret, which it w
It became completely essential to hide my real identity from others. Every alias who I became was invented or borrowed. 

How did they make me disappear from that insane contest. It was done by simply changing my birthdate to reflect that I was born after my parents separated and my father was with Jane Halsall. Google Ursula Stanley and look through the records. You will see that there are two official birthdates listed for Ursula Stanley. You will perhaps notice that there are also two official dates of my death. This is because I kept changing my name and killing off previous versions of my self.

To learn more about my family and my position in the royal line of succession please go to
my one page sideshow here.


Anne Vavasor
Anne VavasourThe most fun I had was as Anne Vavasor
when I got to be one of Queen Eizabeth five Lady's of the bedchamber. (See how I became one in my QE section). and read about the fun I had in my official capacity as the Queen's personal secretary.

I was at the same time the queen's protector (I could fire16 arrows a minute and was an expert with the sword), one of her many psychic advisers, her personal scribe and the bard. Later, as I said earlier, I added to this menagerie of jobs when I became her spy mistress and acting Secretary of State. 

I was so protective of my freedom that I almost did not accept the position even though it was the highest position a women could ever hope for in England without being either born or married into it. I almost turned it down because I would lose some of my freedom. To make it totally understood what my feelings were I adopted the name of Vavasour (Vavasor) which means vassal or a servant of an aristocrat. The middle english dictionaries and encyclopedias all define 'Vavasour as a 'the servant of a Baron'. However it wasn't just limited to Barons but included royalty as well.

That is exactly what I had become as a Lady of the Bedchamber to Queen Elizabeth - a servant.

Another thing about Anne Vavasor is that I never officially died, which I like a lot. It's also very Buddhist.

You can read
an account of my first day here in my Queen Elizabeth section.

You can find me in many paintings from the 16th & 17th century. Since I was a bit of a ham I put myself in lots of paintings. Such as in the background of this painting of Queen Elizabeth my head in a red dress and talking of course. Of course I am in my own sketch
of the queen. my head Just look for that nose.

My face became gaunt whenever I got stressed out and lost a few pounds but it's still easy to recognize me. I'm the one with the prominent pointed nose, prominent widows peak (when not hidden by hair combed over it), recessed hair line above my ears, small mouth and fairly small hazel eyes.


Note: I had assumed that I had actually married Edward DeVere, The Earl of Oxford, but, that may have been wishfull thinking. My affair with him as Anne Vavasour (see below) may have been nothing more than what it seems, a tawdry and shameless love affair. I guess it was officially a common law marriage which was fully respected at the time. For awhile I recall that I was a ward of or sponsored by William Cecil. It may have also been wishfull thinking that I was his real daughter who was named Anne. I do not recall Anne Cecil but to pretend that she did not exist at all may have been a normal woman's reaction to a lovers wife. If you are a woman and are having an affair with a married man do you pretend that he doesn't have a wife? I do know that the parts concerning Anne Vavasour (see above) were about me.

Please don't dismiss everything that I say because of my faulty 400 year old memory or a rich fantasy in that lifetime (self deception). [I recall now that I did marry Edward after all and then later divorced him. If I am not mistaken it was quite a torrid and short lived affair.]

I had too many men after me and I lived a life of high drama in the exact same nature as in my plays.
 Does the following excerpt from a PBS special sound like my life as the ultimate Elizabethan drama queen that I professed to have been and is in evidence on all the other pages of this web site? By the way, I (Anne Vavasour, the queen's personal secretary) wrote the account in the court record you are about to read.

 The case, however, turned slightly farcical as well as tragic. Apparently Oxford was somehow later convinced he had slept with his wife, when drunk, under the false impression that she was another woman. The situation was arranged by Burghley, so the story goes, to produce a child and help heal the foundering marriage. This is reminiscent of the plot device that brings Bertram to bed with his wife, Helena, in All's Well that Ends Well. In real life, however, it was many years before Anne and Oxford were reconciled.

Estranged from his wife, [the Earl of] Oxford took up with another Anne, this one Anne Vavasor, a woman who managed to have three husbands, two of them at once. When she had a son by Oxford, the outraged Queen had the lovers clapped in the Tower of London; whether because of the scandal or out of jealousy nobody could be sure. After his release, Oxford was severely wounded in a sword fight with one of Anne Vavasor's relatives in a London street. There were other set-tos between family retainers, a kind of serialized English version of the Capulets and Montagues. PBS 

I'll share with you the truth. I was using the alias Anne Cecil (yes, I later married my non-brother Robert Cecil) in my private life when I was the Earl of Oxford's wife. We had a saying that went something like this: 'a man never marries his wife, he marries the person he thinks she is'. So I extended it to the obvious, 'a man never sleeps with his wife but the woman he thinks she is' or 'that he wants her to be'. The conflict between the woman he thinks his wife is and the person she really is cause's about one fourth of all impotency among men (and women too). The fantasy creates a conflict which can block trust and hence the proper response. When the Earl got drunk he thought he was the worlds greatest lover but he was almost always a failure in bed. All that was combined to became this one line 'Apparently Oxford was somehow later convinced he had slept with his wife, when drunk, under the false impression that she was another woman.' It took a long time for Oxford to accept me for who I really was rather than the person he wanted me to be hence that became it was many years before Anne and Oxford were reconciled.

I thought it was too good to just leave in the court records so I put it in All's Well that Ends Well. I'll have to locate it. The rest of his moral downfall was to help him catch spies but that I will go into below the box.

I expanded the royal court records to explain better about the Earl of Oxford and our break up using allegory. The real drama was with me in the middle and the Earl of Oxford and several others including Robert Cecil vying for me. 

In 1591 Richard Warburton was involved in a dispute with the copyholders of the manor of Over Whitley (Whitley Superior), a duchy of Lancaster manor in Cheshire, recently granted to him by the Queen. Robert Cecil was probably his patron at this time, and he certainly was in 1595, when, in Sep, Warburton wrote from Plymouth excusing his sudden return from a voyage, the purpose of which is not known. It is likely that it was Cecil who brought Warburton in for Bridport in 1601. Thomas Howard, 3rd Viscount Bindon, received nominations at several Dorset boroughs for this Parliament, offering them to Cecil. Warburton was named to one committee, concerned with the order of business, 3 Nov 1601. In 1602 Cecil secured Warburton a command at Brill under Sir Francis De Vere, who in 1605 urged Salisbury to allow him to return quickly to the Low Countries. The remainder of Warburton's career lies outside this biography. His widow was granted administration of his estate on 27 Jan 1610, and the new election return was dated 1 Feb 1610. The heir was his only child Cecil, so named after the godfather. HereBetter if I explain it as much as I can recall...for now. Richard Warburton was actually a play on words for the 'Richer Warrior' who was Sir Francis Drake who lived in 'Plymouth' and who went on secret voyages to plunder the Spanish main and so was always 'suddenly returning from a voyage' and since they were done in secret we never knew where or what he did so it was always said ' the purpose of which is not known'.  Drake was married but he was ready to dump his new wife of about two years for me! Queen Elizabeth (nor I) approved of it since she had set him up in marriage to Elizabeth Sydenham who was written above as ' a duchy of Lancaster manor in Cheshire, recently granted to him by the Queen.' but you could never tell Drake anything when it involved his heart. (Note: Elizabeth Sydenham was not her real name. It was an alias since the Spanish were trying to kill anyone who was related to Drake.)The Earl of Oxford and I were separated. By then it had become obvious that the Oxford only wanted me for sex, my 'Low Countries'.  He even tried to pressure me and then he threatened my protector John Salusbury (Salisbury) over it and John almost killed him.

On the other hand Robert Cecil was willing to actually promote Sir Frances Drake, his major rival for my affections, for the good of the country. That impressed me to no end. Robert Cecil's willingness to make his self interests second place for the good of the country is one of the main things that won my heart and eventually I married him.

statement about me being 'a woman who managed to have three husbands, two of them at once. All three husbands were in fact the same man but two of his names were aliases. Queen Elizabeth could never have had a lady in waiting who was breaking any law openly, especially a moral one such as marriage. The Catholics insisted that protestant marriages were not legal anyway. The Catholic Church would have used a bigamist in Queen Elizabeth's court to threaten and likely declare war.

By the way there was never any child. Adding a child made the story much more interesting I thought. That is why there was only this one reference to a child. He was never heard of again. He completely disappeared from history as if he had never existed.

All told in that life I had eight children, two of which died very young.


On 16 December 1580 Oxford informed on three of his former dining companions, who in turn accused Oxford of murder, pederasty, necromancy, athiesm, lying, drunkenness, and sedition. On 21 March 1581 Anne Vavasor, one of the queen's maids of honor, gave birth to an illegitimate son and was thrown into the Tower. Oxford, the child's father, took French leave, but was captured and placed under arrest before 29 April. Here

The three former dinner companions were 'me', 'myself' and 'I'. Since it was his fault that I had to fake my death and change my identity as Oxford's wife Anne Cecil
(you will read about that on the 'sideshow' page in one minute) so he was guilty of murder and while I was at it I lowered my official age and that meant when we first got married I was only 12 years old so he was guilty of pederasty. Since I was officially dead when we made love he was guilty of necromancy The atheism was when he was a young child, the lying was when he was 'lying' down to sleep after he got so drunk he was impotent.

And here:

The birth of this child led to a long-running feud with Sir Thomas Knyvett, uncle of Anne Vavasour, which resulted in the deaths of three followers of De Vere and Knyvett as well as injury to both men.

That who thing with the Earl of Oxford went on endlessly and you can read a lot more about it in my one page sideshow here if you wish.


This is supposedly what happened when my alter ego Anne Vavasour left the queens court thoroughly disgraced:

...after a succession of illicit love affairs, had married a sea captain named John Finche, but left him about 1589 for the redoubtable Queen's Champion, Sir Henry Lee, then nearly sixty years old and on the point of retiring. HERE

It's not true. I was still in the queens employ 20 years later as many paintings show and then I became another  person 15 years after that in this photo. I remained one until her death of a brain hemorrhage.

However this invented relationship had a humorous outcome which becomes an excellent sub-plot you can read in my one page sideshow here.


Then I married Robert Cecil. Among other things he was the spy master so I became the spy mistress of England (I wasn't about to allow him to have all the fun). I was put in charge of all spying inside of England except for the ports facing France (why not I don't remember yet) and some of northern area of England. Robert was in charge of all of England's overseas spying. So in effect the head of MI5 and MI6 got married. I ran most of the government for a short while after Queen Elizabeth died on March 24, 1603 although the history books say that my husband Robert Cecil did. At first nobody wanted to take orders from anyone but another worman so I took charge of England until we could get James to come from Scotland and take over as king. He arrived about a month later and did not believe that I was running the government. (He had always thought that I pretty much a court jester/courtesan and a no-brained bit of fluff that Queen Elizabeth had kept around for entertainment, to spice up the court and to make funny drawings.) Then he was appauled when he arrived and found out I was successfully running England. He asked me a few very pertinant questions, thought about it for a few seconds, was suddenly satisfied and promptly took off to go hunting! Consequently James was not coronated for over four months after Queen Elizabeth died (on July 25, 1603).

When I married Robert my name was Elizabeth Brooke.

Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury (b 01.06.1563, d 24.05.1612)

m. (31.08.1589) Elizabeth Brooke (d 24.01.1596-7, dau of William Brooke, 10th Lord Cobham)

Notice how uncertain the date of my 'death' was? That was because it was faked. Also, there are no paintings of Elizabeth Brooke and her bio is virtually non existant. As the wife of the most important man in England (during the reign of Elizabeth) these things would have existed. That would be akin to the birthday and bio of the wife of the President of the United States not being known and there not being one photograph or painting of the First Lady in existence. Another thing that never would have happened at that time was for a widower with three children to remain unmarried (for 15 years until his death) after his wife died. It was considered a virtual obligation to the children to give them a mother.
As far as court records are concerned:

The ancient English monarchs always had in attendance a learned ecclesiastic, known at first as their clerk, and afterwards as "Secretary", who conducted the royal correspondence; but it was not until the end of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I
(reigned 15581603) that these functionaries gained the title "Secretaries of State". Wikipedia

And you can probably read between the lines of my husbands bio and tell that I was doing at least some of the work for which he has been credited including: 

After the death of Queen Elizabeth's secretary of state, Francis Walsingham, in 1590, Cecil gradually took over the work of secretary of state, although he was not formally appointed to the office until Jul 1596.Here

During this period Francis was a minor secretary, I was the main one. In case you doubt that I was the Principle Secretary go briefly to this page and tell me who had the biggest (most important) pen in England during that time period. A pen was the symbol of the position of the principal secretary at the time. Robert and I shared the job of  'Lord High Treasurer of England' (though previously his father William Cecil and then a Thomas Sackville took the credit). During this time Robert and I shared the responsibilites although Robert generally took all the credit.

Later after Queen Elizabeth died and King James finally took over I no longer had a reason to be involved in the government. The court went 'very male' and they didn't like taking orders from a woman so Robert took over almost all the responsibilities for running the government.

Nobody ever suspected us since Robert Cecil was considered about the most unattractive man in all of England and I the most attractive woman. Not only did our marriage astound people but nobody believed that I was faithful and fully devoted to my husbands when I was married. Except I was.

William CecilmeWas I the mother of Robert Cecil's children Frances, Catherine and
William? Just look at William Cecil's prominent nose (right) and you tell me who he got it from? (Or see the large size full painting which is a Marcus Gheeraerts) Then there is that life long receding hair line over the ears and then there is that pointed chin and tiny eyes. My widows peak? It's there, he just shaved it regularly. 

William Cecil small There is almost nothing known about Robert's daughters including their birth date in spite of the fact that he was perhaps the most famous and the most important person in England at the time. Since
they were also descendants of King Henry VII of England and the Queen of France through me I wanted to give them a real life without the threat of assassination just as I had such freedom. I think they also had several other links to royalty by blood through Roberts side of the family which made living even more dangerous for them.  The closer you were to sitting on the throne the more likely you were to die one way or another (usually through poison or by faked accident) at a young age.

I'm certain that statistics would readily confirm this statement.

Mary RogersI think I also pretended to be Mary Rogers who was supposedly married to Sir John Harrington who was known as Queen Elizabeth I's 'saucy Godson'. He was actually my husband Robert CecilRcecilakaharrington and he was both fun and interesting. He remained fresh and saucy until he died.

Sir John Harrington's
bio is a hilarious invention along with those letters and books it tells about. It's one of my better created bios which was in my mind and is now in yours. And don't forget the toilet was actually Robert Cecil's invention though it was Queen Elizabeth's complaints about odors emanating from her privy which inspired him. 

Click on my Mary Rogers picture for a big version and compare it with my face in the other paintings. This is the 2nd of  the 3 Marcus Gheeraerts paintings of me on this page. The interesting thing that this one is right next to another of his painting of me on this
page yet nobody even seems to notice that they are the same person, me. Drop down to this painting he made of me when I was preggers.

Notice that the Harrington bio is mostly opinions. That's to lend the high drama of a Bard's play and to prevent boredom. In the queens court, the records had to be highly factual and without either opinion or gossip. Unless I invented them. Then in that case they are usually totally outlandish so nobody in their right mind would confuse them with reality.

You are not going to tell me that eveyone now believes those records, are you? And I had two husbands at once.

You might notice one important thing. There is not a single link in his bio to a single member of his family including me. Did you read this?

Born in 1561 at Kelston, near Bath, son of John Harrington
and his second wife, Isabella Markham. John Harrington, the elder, acquired considerable estates by marrying Etheldreda, a natural daughter. of Henry VIII, and after his wife's death he was attached to the service of the Princess Elizabeth. He married Isabella Markham, one of her ladies, and on Mary's accession he and his wife were imprisoned in the Tower with the princess. John the elder was fined £1,000 for conveying a letter to Elizabeth from one of her friends while they were in prison. When Elizabeth became Queen she never forgot the loyalty of Harrington and in recognition of it she became godmother to the young John.Here

Did you notice that his fathers first wife, Etheldreda, was the natural daughter of Henry VIII JUST LIKE QUEEN ELIZABETH WAS CONSIDERED ILLEGITIMATE? Since his father, John sr. and his new wife Isabella Markham were put in the tower with Princes Elizabeth that meant Isabella was Etheldreda (who had not died) and that Queen Mary was imprisonng the competition, her sisters, and she was one of them.
This was a smoke screen and a decoy. The spies realized that John, being the son of Etheldreda, made him the grandson of King Henry VIII. That put him in line for the throne (and ahead of me). Of course he wasn't because he didn't actually exist. His bio was invented but it was to draw any assassins toward him and away from me. That also made John the nephew of Queen Elizabeth, not her godson. So the assassins had to kill both John and all his siblings before they got to me since
John and all those invented children were in line for the throne of England. Also they were right at the very top of a suddenly much longer list of heirs to the throne of England.  

It was all to confuse spies and make problems for them if they wanted to murder all the heirs to the throne of England. They would have been in real trouble if they had ever managed to track those children down. Some of the 15 children listed as being his were real but many of them were not (listed here) and would have probably killed them first. There were actually over 30 'children' who were mainly English spies who were using the name Harrington as an alias and they were often quite deadly. They always looked over their shoulders often anyway so they were a trap for catching assassins and spies. Did it work? Devistatingly well. Completely destroyed the Netherland's network and Portugal's network in England.  Those were big spy networks that evaporated in one night.

The Spanish spies that followed any of them kept having one accident after another, and then after another but they kept on until we nabbed them all but I won't say how. (It could be used now so I won't expose it except by the request of MI5.)

Bringing down the spy rings was the main purpose for their almost queen mother and for them as well. The fact that there are no links to Mary Roger's family. She is just a 'cardboard cutout'. That should give it away.  All their lives are dead ends. Another give away is that
there are 11 boys and only 4 girls since the spies were mostly men.All this deception was intended to be confusing to assassins and kidnappers. I hope I am recalling it all correctly. 

As Ursula Stanley I was also pretending to be married to John Salusbury who was another name for John Harrington. Salusbury's mother was listed as Catherine Tudor who was also of descent from King Henry VII except that he was royalty through both parents. (In fact that means that he should have been king.)


More about John Salusbury.

During the time that I was married to The Earl of Oxford and before then I had another alias. Officially under my birth name of Ursula Stanley my husband was John Salusbury. John Salusbury has everyone confused and is a mystery person that people try to answer on this web page.

Let me solve the mystery now. John Salusbury was my 'pretend' husband when I was a chamberlady to the queen. They give you a bodyguard as part of the deal. John was a guard or a warder who I knew from early childhood when I lived next to the Tower and he was stationed there. He had been a good friend of mine for at least twenty years. Some of the queen's men were previously stationed at the tower, not just warders as there are now. Or he may have changed jobs.

By the time I had grown up he did not have to take the job as he had 'graduated' to second in charge and was also in charge of maintaining 3 of the Queens large estates. He took on the job of keeping me out of trouble just as a patriot.

The main way we invented titled people (using John Salusbury as an example):

We took a person who was the last in the lineage of a title who had been found a traitor and had been executed years before. In this case it was Thomas Salusbury who was executed for organizaing and paying for a failed rescue attempt of Mary Queen of Scots when Elizabeth was holding her in prison. 

He became heir of his brother Thomas, who was executed, in 1586, for conspiring to deliver Mary, Queen of Scots, from imprisonment. Here

Then since Thomas had no brother or son and nobody claimed that title (nor was anyone ever likely too want to be associated with that family)
we bought the unused title from the crown (secretly) and gave it to John.  

Then we changed his last name to Salusbury. Then we made all the records appear as though John was Thomas' brother. Later, his family got to keep the title as a bonus.

We did this a lot. Hence all the names that I went by.

When we first started playing pretend house together, for about a year, John had
a different surname. He was also known under that surname for work and it is probably in the tower records. Of the guards he had the second most distinguished position at the tower. His orginal name may have been John Harrington who was also said to be royalty. Then the name John Harrington may have then been used by my 'new' husband Robert Cecil.

Actually John used a different name before Harrington but I can't remember what it was.

It also states in his bio that John Salusbury was an esquire of the body guard to Queen Elizabeth which was true but falls far short of all the responsibilities he avidly took on voluntarily.  He essentially performed almost all of the day to day chores that a king normally performed. 

He had access to everywhere in the queen's residences. If he wanted to go into a room and close the door behind himself, such as the queens bedchamber or where secrets were kept, then that was his right. He could write draft to pay out up to 1,000 pounds sterling for things such as ships or to pay for furs which was a monopoly of the queens.

He was that trusted of an individual. I don't know if any other man ever held that position.
It was what the king normally did so after her reign there was no need for another person like him. It was complex work and needed absolute honesty.

The truth was that he was the man that Queen Elizabeth trusted the most.

It's stated that John was born in 1561 and died in 1613 and served two terms in Parliament in 1597 & 1601. I'm not certain about that part but since he was in charge of those properties he knew the issues in the area and he might have been. When I remember I'll update this.

Since I was related to King Henry VII we made the records show that John was also related to him  except on both his father and his mother's side. 

Catherine Tudor was daughter and heiress of Tudor ap Vychan of Berain. She was beautiful, rich, and of a royal race; the ward, companion, friend and relative of Queen Elizabeth. “Catherine Tudor, being great-grand-daughter of Henry VII, in female descent; and also descended from Sir Owen Tudor on her father's side.”

He was made to be a decendant of Henry VII on both sides so any assassins would want to kill him before me. However we had the records set up so that any assassin would look into it first and run right into our previously alerted clerk at the records office who would have him picked up and deported or else tried.

I often became John when I needed to dress and pretend to be 'a man'. Often publishers would never talk with a woman since very few were educated.

Sir John was admitted a student of the Middle Temple in London in March 1595, Here

I even enrolled in Middle Temple to learn law as him. Then I went back to being his wife when I had to attend classes and take notes for him when he supposedly got kicked by a horse which broke his hip and could not attend classes for three years.

If you think this is confusing to you, then it is easy to imagine what it did to assassins and spies.

Here is a connection between me as Ursula Stanley and my poetry which is usually attributed to Shakespeare including the famous, 'The Phoenix and the Turtle'. It's from the book Love’s Martyr which I wrote and dedicated to my husband John Salisbury (Robert Cecil). The poem was about us and I guess you can figure out which of us was the turtle and which kept rising from the ashes like a phoenix.

It was said to have been written or edited by
a person that never existed named Robert Chester (that name was a play on words or maybe a cypher but I forgot the details). Salusbury was closely connected to William Stanley by marriage. Stanley grew up with Salusbury's wife and her sister and mother, literally in the same house. Salusbury's wife was Ursula Stanley, and in a surviving letter of William Stanley's, he addresses them as his "lovinge brother" and "good sister". She was the daughter of Joan Halsall, and fathered by William's father, Henry. Henry openly acknowledged his extra-marital relationship with, and children by, Joan Halsall. Derby and his wife visited Salusbury in 1597, at his home in Lleweni, where they were "very royally entertained". [2] This is embarrassing since I also used my mothers name sometimes. Of course I had to invent a first name to go with it so I was also known as Dorthy Halsall as it kind of explains here: but they think I am a different daughter of Henry Stanley.

the name that most frequently appears in the acrostics is that of Dorothy Halsall. Brown writes:

in the lyrics addressed to [Dorothy Halsall] a warmth of passion appears which suggests that Sir John found her a thoroughly fascinating person. Dorothy was the natural daughter of Henry Stanley, fourth earl of Derby, by Joan Halsall of Knowsley [Stanley's home], and was accordingly a sister-in-law of Sir John Salusbury.

Dorothy Halsall was another daughter by Joan Halsall and Henry Stanley, who also lived at the Derby estate of Knowsley (she kept the Halsall name while her sister Ursula adopted her father's). [4]

I did have a sister but her name was not Dorothy. Dorothy Stanley was also me.  You can prove it yourself since there is not a Dorthy Stanley listed as a daughter in my father bio.

This next person got pretty close to the truth: 

Gwyn Williams, "Shakespeare's Phoenix," National Library of Wales Journal 22.3 (Summer 1982): 277-81, identifies the turtledove as Sir John Salusbury and his phoenix as Dorothy Halsall, his sister-in-law, on the basis of acrostic poems in MS Christ Church 184 . Here

They just read the account and assumed Dorthy was my sister and not me. This is what started my using other names besides Ursula Stanley. Not quite.

First I called myself Stallion when I was four and everyone else had to call me that until I found out what a stallion was and that there was a difference between them and mares. Then my name became horse for a long time. 

By the way I wrote the above poem and guess who signed their poetry by encrypting their name in the poems?

Where my name (Dorthy Halsall) can be found in my work is in cryptography here:William F. Friedman in his Shakespearean Ciphers Examined discusses an acrostic similar to what John Davies had performed [1]:

    We have already remarked that acrostics were popular in Elizabethan literature; it should also be stressed that spelling in those days was erratic. Sir John Salusbury, 1566-1612 who was as devoted to acrostics as he was to a lady called Dorothy Halsall, enfolded her name in poem after poem [citing Bryn Mawr College Monographs, vol. XIV, 1913]. One of them runs [with critical letters shown as underlined]:

Tormented heart in thrall, Yea thrall to love,
Respecting will, Heart-breaking gaine doth grow,
Ever DOLOBELIA, Time will so proue,
Binding distress, O gem wilt thou allowe,
This fortune my will Repose-lesse of ease,
Vnlesse thou LEDA, Over-spread my heart,
Cutting all my ruth, dayne Disdaine to cease,
I yield to fate, and welcome endles Smart.

 This, with occasional irregularities, conceals the name CUTBERT (Dorothy s husband) reading the initial letters upwards from the seventh line, and the two parts of the name DOROTHY HALSALL as the letters on either side of the break in the middle of each line; the initials I.S. (for John Salusbury) appear as the first letter of the first word and the first letter of the last word in the final line. . .In all, Salusbury uses six different versions of his own name in various acrostic signatures; spells the name Francis as Fransis wherever it suits him; regards I and IE as interchangeable with Y; and replaces J's with I's or I's with J's according to whim.

I'll try to recall which plays I put my name in using ciphers.

Here is the proof that I changed my identity. This account says that Ursula Stanley died in 1591 but this one says her death was in 1636. The second date of 1636 is when I actually died and that date comes from this:

The record of administration of her (Ursula Stanley) estate, as of the town of Denbigh, is dated 9th May 1636. They had four sons and three daughters. Henry, the eldest and only surviving son, was created a baronet, as of Lleweni, 10th November 1619, and died 2nd August 1632. His only surviving son was Sir Thomas Salusbury, author of “Joseph," a poem (1636)—who died in 1643 [n3The Bibliographers overlook that Sir John Salisbury has a longish poem prefixed to Eromena, 1632, folio..  Here

When I died the second time (and not like the first time) it was no longer necessary to keep my identity a secret so my real name was made public. The other listing of my death as being in 1591 is from when I had to change my identity because the Spanish wanted to murder me for writing the play The Tempest.  It was about the defeat of the Spanish Armada and it was said by most including Sir Francis Drake that the play was so humiliating that it alone is what kept the Spanish from ever coming back (so I guess writing it was worth changing my name for). It was so important that we made certain that I 'died' by killing off 'Ursula' and two other of my aliases.


Peersian LadyOther names I have been known as the Persian Lady and was painted by Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger.

In 1977, historian Janet Arnold expanded on Yates' work, and concluded that the sitter was most likely Anne Vavasour, mistress to both Oxford, and then Sir Henry Lee. However, another painting by Gheeraerts that was originally Lee's is the famous painting of Anne Vavasour that we have seen in Oxfordian books. That painting is considered to be an authentic likeness, so Janet Arnold reasoned that perhaps the sitter was modeled after Anne's sister, Frances Vavasour. Here

The 'famous painting of Anne Vavasour' they refer to is the above one and is now attributed to de Critz, no longer Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger. Here (Both of these painting were of me.)

If you like the sonnets then this Lady
should pretty much connect the dots and remove the doubts for you.  Here is a really big version of the entire painting. The Persian Lady is a mystery to most but to you it's now just going to be an amusing multimedia presentation of a sonnet. 

It was when I was dressed for a masque.
Of course they are wrong when they state: 'The painting is unique in its use of Persian costume.' Here because I dressed in a Persian costume again, about 20 years later, down below when I appeared in another Persian Lady costume for a masque I presented at Hatfield House.

To learn more about the Persian Lady please go to
my one page sideshow here


Here are two paintings I had made by the famous painter Marcus Gheeraerts. The first one is called the Pearly Queen but it's not known that the Pearly Queen is actually me.

unknown until nowThis is the 4th Marcus Gheeraerts painting of me and it is one of the two paintings that I had Marcus simultaneously make in 1596 when I was very pregnant with Jane.  

The man who wrote this next article is incredibly observant. I think he isn't being paid enough. Most people miss so many things but he caught every thing I was trying to project except how incredibly happy I was. He came very close on that too. 
Nothing in his oeuvre is more haunting than Portrait of an Unknown Lady. She is festooned unashamedly with pearls, which dance around her dark hair, dangle from her blanched forehead, curl round her neck and hang like plump white fruits from her ear-lobes.

Gheeraerts clearly intended an erotic frisson, and the lady’s smile may convey a tacit acknowledgment of her delight in display.

Truthfully, I felt that everything that I had done before my pregnancy and the birth of my child was nothing more than mediocrity.

Notice how blue my face is. Marcus experimented with paints and to make a better flesh tone he added organic colorants which were more lifelike than the inorganic pigments normally used. (The color of the rest of the painting was not considered that important so only inorganics were usually used.) However the organics faded out and left the blue hue on the pearly queen's skin.
Queen Elizabeth II's Coronation in 1953
The pigments only turned blue after about 20 years. Nobody had any idea anyone would be looking at these paintings after all this time. Portrait photographs are now like portrait paintings were then. Twenty years after they are taken, new photographs replace them. How many people are concerned if their photographs are going to have the correct color balance 400 years from now? How many photographs still have even a sembalance of the right color balance after even 80 years? Just take a look at the photograph at the right of Queen Elizabeth II's coronation of 1953 to see what I mean. That was using what was thought at the time to be the highest quality film and it is less than 55 years old. (larger version) There is not a bit of green, even in the plant leaves which means that both the yellows and blues are faded out. Even the reds have turned to brown and the details are washed out. Think of how it will look in another 345 years.

It's nutty to believe that after 400 years the colors in the paintings would not have changed.

Marcos did the same thing as DaVince did and that was experiment. Da Vince tried new formulas for his fresco 'The Last Supper' and some of it fell off. Marcus tried different pigments and some of them turned blue. I think I had him paint over the highlights with inorganic paints on the pearly queen painting as it began to fade after about 15 years. Then in the last 385 years the parts that were not painted over turned almost totally blue. That is probably why it has such an odd combination of colors.

Why I quit remembering this lifetime

When dealing with these paintings I had to stop remembering this past life for almost two years. My memories threatened to devastate my whole way of seeing everything in that life and perhaps in this one. Why?

I was analyzing the colors of old paintings and how they had faded when I realized that many of the colors were wrong. Reds and blues were pretty much ok but yellows were way off. I realized that what I saw as green was actually more of a yellow than green. Imagine all the grass and trese being a yellow-green instead of green. I said 'what is going on here?'

Then I spent some time researching anatomy and here is what I found. About one quarter of the women (3-50% say scientists) have not three but four receptors  (cones) in their eyes. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tetrachromats And the extra cones respond to off yellow color! So there are like two receptors for yellows.

It's probably evolutionary. Women were more the gatherers and what they gathered was usually yellow colored. Acorns, nuts and bugs are all yellow/brown in color. They needed to see the subtle variations in those colors in their gathering of food. Men needed to see movement when hunting so they are more often color blind.

I was one of those 25% of the women and I was seeing everything back then with a double dose of yellow in it! Suddenly every landscape, village scene, garden scene and painting, etc was a totally different color than I would see it now.

Talk about a confusing situation. I had to completely stop recalling that lifetime and only rarely have remembered since then. That was about two years ago and since then I have only thought about that life time for less than ten minutes a month.

I am finally trying to integrate that life time with this one again so that I can access it once again.

In case you wondered that is exactly how well I can recall a past life from 400 years ago. To the point where it is unnerving when the colors are different because the cones differ in number.

The reason it totally confused me is this. We don't actually see most of the color spectrum as it exists. As they say in wikipedia the red cones have their peak of sensitivity in the yellow range. That means you see more yellow than red with the red cones. So apparently to see the color red our brains somehow subtracts what the yellow cones sees from what the red cones see. That gives us red.

If you think this is confusing for you then you should see what I see when I remember that life. I have got yellows being subtracted from red and two types of yellow cones in order to see red. etc, etc. It's just way too much for my meager brain to deal with.

But I am trying.


my sonTo the right is my little son which I found here at Compton Verney, who posed for another painting by Marcus Gheeraerts. At only two years of age he has my widows peak, nose, eyes and mouth. It's eerie when you compare his features closely to my own (above left). Though he appears to be me in minature he was all Robert Cecil inside. He seemed to be far more akin to Robert in personality, demeanor and both his likes and dislikes. He weaned himself at such a young age that it worried me until I found out that Robert had weaned himself at the same age to within a couple of days!  His stalwart nature shines through in this painting. In real life his presence combined with his much older gaze, of at least a 4 year old, often gave people chills they could never explain. Those who had the greatest chills were those who had known King Henry VIII. I have my own opinions about whose soul inhabited that body but I won't get into it.

His soul was that of a born leader. It was quite imposing, without being even the least threatening. There is no telling where he would have taken England or should I say 'taken the world'?

Marcus painted this during 1608-9 when he was staying at Hatfield House during a major plague outbreak which devastated England which I write more about here. I think that this son died just after Marcus had finished the painting. Marcus then added a couple of items and made it a memorial to honor our son.  I recall that even ten years later Marcus would not take the money for the painting and I kept trying to pay him. 

Since Robert Cecil was right at the top of England's ruling class and hired the best painter don't you find that the non representation of his wife's face anywhere might just indicate that something is amiss?

Well It's not. I just did a good job of hiding my real identity.  I can probably link me (Ursula Stanley) to me (Lady Cecil) by an intermediate identity.

This is more difficult than I thought it would be. It's going to be next to impossible. Every possible location there might be a 'leak' that I can think of which would connect Ursula Stanley to Robert Cecil I thought of 400 years and closed it up. Since my thinking is very similar to my thinking in that previous life it's like trying to move faster than my shadow. It's one of the strangest things I have ever tried to do.

What happened is that someone ended up with this portriat in the 18th or 19th century and it had the name 'Lady Pope' written on the back. Since the artist had become famous with the passage of time the painting was worth lots of money so the owners probably just made up a story about the sitter.

I seem to be more able to shoot holes in my aliases so I'll feed you some more of those. 


Lady Elizabeth PopeThis is Lady Elizabeth Pope of Wroxton 
(me) Why did my husband Robert Cecil and I use the name Pope? We did a lot of overseas trading and since it was largely a Catholic world us English Anglicans were at a disadvantage. Our shipments often got 'lost' (actually stolen) and people just refused to deal with us. Using the name 'Pope' cleared all that up and got us great service. In Asia the name Pope worked differently. Their titles often preceded names when shipping. So you had invoices an shipping directions addressed to Raja of Calcutta and the Emperor of Madras, etc. To steal their property meant a possible war and invasion by that potentate so they treated their shipment with the greatest respect. When they saw the name of Pope on an invoice they thought the shipment belonged to the Pope and since they did not want to risk an invasion by the Holy Roman Empire they treated it with the greatest respect. Once a large shipment of textiles got delivered to the wrong dock and it sat unguarded and unmolested for over three months until the paperwork got straightened out. 

Do you notice anything about this 1615 painting of me which seems unusual to you? I mean besides the fact that she is the same Mrs. Pope as above (and that she is a dead ringer for an older Anne Vavasor)?

Yes, it is highly unusual for a corpse to look that great for 24 years since Ursula Stanley (my real name) was supposed to have died twice, once in 1591? Other than that? Come on, I wore a couple of things in the painting that makes it easy for you to figure out. Think the Bard, double entendres and the word 'masque'.

This is also an updated version of the above Persian Lady painting and an older me. In both of them I am dressed as a Persian Lady (notice the paisley design in this painting which at that time was very rare and only came from Persia).
This is an enormous proof.

Also read the text for this picture as written by the Tate:

She may be wearing a costume that relates to a masque – a court entertainment participated in by aristocrats. Her draped black cloak, or mantle, embroidered (like her hat) with pearls in a pattern of ostrich feathers, has classical precedents. The Tate

The clothing was a double entendre. Though dressed as an actor for one of the King's masque performance the other meaning of the word masque is a device that is worn for hiding your identity from others. I had this painting made in part to hide my identity. It was disinformation' claiming that I was someone else. 

I'm am also partially nude and this was not usually done to matronly aristocrats in English paintings of the time. I'll tell why I was partly nude. I was very famous for my breasts. (In my first husband's trading company I was known as two ton Anne.) My large breasts had migrated south in 35 years of breast feeding my own and wet nursing other's children but they were not nearly to the equator as they appear to be in this painting. The five extra inches of sag was added to hide my identity. I was pretending to be my own younger sister, and for awhile also my own niece but my breasts never slipped to that latitude. This proved to any spy that I could not possibly be the same woman as the one in this painting. Proof positive they were about to assassinate the wrong person.

I think this painting was hung either in our London shipping office or else our house in London. 

To partially repeat myself: 'What happened is that someone ended up with this portriat in the 18th or 19th century and it had the name 'Lady Pope' written on the back. Since the artist had become famous with the passage of time the painting was worth lots of money so the owners probably just made up a story about the sitter.'

This was done when the plays made it too hot for me again about 1615. So I became Lady Elizabeth Pope and played the part of the sister of Sir William Pope of Wroxton.

Who took my place as Lady Anne Pope the wife of Sir William Pope when I supposedly died?

To confuse spies and assassins...

 ..my daughter became me complete with pearls which I was often covered with.

daughter AnneThis was my very shy daughter Jane (or Frances) who was named after my stepmother. She began her acting career in 1615 by playing the part of the young second wife of Sir William Pope who was also named Lady Ann Pope or was she supposed to be his unknown daughter?  When this happened I became the sister of Robert Cecil (aka Lord Hopton) Elizabeth which you read about above.

It was mainly to provide even more confusion for assassins. The proof of this fantastic sounding claim of mine is on the same page.  

The painting was in the same family collection, latterly at Wroxton Abbey until sold in 1933, as the portrait of the sitter's sister-in-law Elizabeth Pope (Tate T00067).Here 

So it's not that fantastic and since it's is in the history books it's not even my claim. It's actually the claim of the government records of England.
Are you more confused? Imagine how confused the assassins were. We had Spanish spies asking the doorman at the front door for the other Lady Anne Pope with the large hanging breasts.


There are many tie ins between my various aliases. My half brother the 6th Earl of Derby is thought by many to have been the real author of the plays. Lady Anne Pope of Wroxton already had three children Thomas, Henry and Jane and then it says later she had three more sons. The real me, Ursula Stanley, had a son named Thomas but he died.

However  Ursula Stanley had these children:
Henry, John, William, Ferdinand, Arabella, Uriana, Jane. That accounts for Lady Anne Pope's Henry and Jane so there is some more confirmation. However here it says Ursula and John had ten children so there was probably a Thomas among the other three.

I won't yet enter into the fray about whether or not Sir Edward Vere was my son by the Earl of Oxford (when I was Anne Vavasor). He has often been promoted as being a candidate for having written the plays of the Bard. However, I should take the time to point out that same page says that Anne Vavasor had a Thomas as did the previously mentioned Lady Anne Pope.

For more information from sources in relationship to my career as Anne Vavasor you can't miss this fantasy about Thomas Vavasor.

I was a lot of woman (or women) but I also wrote the plays.


The historical records say that my husband Robert Cecil died of scurvy, but good God how does a person die of scurvy who eats normal food, especially on the 24 of May. That is when Vitamin C loaded fresh fruit came into season and was in everyone's diet. Robert Cecil went to check on workers that did not show up. It only happened about once a year so there was a real concern when one supervisor did not show up. He had contracted either smallpox or an African virus.

When Robert returned several days later the man and his entire family of 7 had all died. Robert left town so that he would not possibly infect us. 

Such an advanced case left him with weeping tumours

The high lethality of that disease as well as the symptoms were very similar to Ebola. There were lots of hemorhagic fevers (like Ebola) from Africa. They combine in African animals to produce new ones so the more animals there are the more types of fevers there are. The kinds of hemorhagic fevers is almost square the number large animals in Africa. When you double the animals then you almost quadruple of kinds of hemorhagic fevers that pop up. Before the gun went to Africa there used to about 5 times the number of animals and 20 times the number of large animals as there are today.

The Hemorhagic fever outbreaks would occur in England in the spring time since the infected lice and birds would migrate from Africa. People like Robert who died in May (and June) often had very strange symptom of unknown diseases. Those small epidemics almost always ended by July when the African ticks died out due to the milder weather. However, it could have been a rare but nearly 100% deadly form of Smallpox. I am not certain even now what caused his death. 


Why all the name changes so late in my life?

The problem was that those damn plays kept on getting more and more popular which I never expected. Other acting troops began to pick them up and then more and pretty soon most of England had seen my plays.  The history of the later production of those plays are covered much more completely on my page about William Shakesper.

As time went by the plays started to get performed in Europe so more rulers of Europe ( Spain and France mainly) began to hate the Bard and the more they pressured England to arrest me and they sent out fairly large hit teams. I think I had to change my identity to Lady Elizabeth Pope and the old paintings of me and my oldest son who they wanted to murder too. 

Political assassinations seemed to become much more common place after I was allowed to be hunted by murderers (from other countries) without them being stopped and without my being protected. They put them on ships after a whipping and send them back to Spain or France unrepentant.  After Queen Elizabeth died King James ignored her close friends. He did not understand that his not doing much about these assassins meant that he gave tacit approval to political assassinations.  Then the Spanish tried to poison him and he had the audacity then to ask me 'What should I do'? I told the King of England to: 'Cook your own food'. Queen Elizabeth  would have crushed them all and possibly started a war over this issue. Before James became king of England those who read or heard about political assassination's used to become immediately revulsed and angered. It used to be that when people would read the last statement they would get angry and you just went right on and read this sentence as if you accepted political assassination.  That is a very careless attitude and it borders on you accepting murder.


"All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely


*In that painting I am the woman in white. I was being honored quietly as the bard by being placed in front of the other women and positioned in the same line (not behind) as Queen Elizabeth.  However, do you realize how much of a dead give away it was that I was the bard?  The artist might as well have put a sign on me saying 'she wrote the plays'. 

Us women remember certain things and I remember only these words that came from the painters mouth 'I'll paint you thin' . (Now we would say 'I'll make you look thin'). Since I was very preggers that made me very happy. Not much makes you feel happy when you are 7 months pregnant and as large as a four horse carriage  so I remembered this statement for the last 400 years! However, when I saw the painting and saw how ridiculously skinny he had painted me I thought to myself 'even a dog licks your boots with more discretion'.

Strange, the things I recall from that life.

Previous Page
All rights reserved. © J Pinil, Inc. 2006-8