The Emberverse series features a number of historical characters or references thereto:
- Queen Elizabeth II of England who does not appear but is described as having died on the Isle of Wight the first winter after the Change.
- King Charles III, AKA "Charles the Mad," former Prince of Wales, who ascends to the throne following his mother's death. Soon after the Change, his knowledge of basic gardening techniques is invaluable. He does not appear but is described in less than favorable terms. He is eventually murdered by his wife, Hallgerda.
- Camilla, Charles' second wife. She does not appear.
- King William V, formerly Prince William, who ascends to the throne following his father's death and begins to rebuild England, including Prince Edward Island, which had been part of Canada.
- Pope John Paul II of the Catholic Church, who dies protecting the Church about a month after the Change. He does not appear but is described in favorable terms.
- Pope Benedict XVI of the Catholic Church, who begins rebuilding the church. He is described in conversation and appears only on his deathbed, but is described in favorable terms.
- Theodore Kaczynski, aka the Unabomber, who becomes the insane first Prophet of the Church Universal and Triumphant.
- The Cat, Mayor of Portland, who only appears as the victim of execution by being hung from a cargo hook by Norman Arminger.
- The Moose, Portland Police Chief, only appears as a victim executed similarly and alongside the Cat.