Anna Komnene, Latinized as Comnena (Greek: Άννα Κομνηνή, Anna Komnēnē; December 1, 1083–1153) was a Byzantine princess and scholar, daughter of the Byzantine emperor Alexios I Komnenos and Irene Doukaina. She wrote the Alexiad, an account of her father's reign, making her one of the first Western female historians.
Anna was born in the Porphyra Chamber (the purple chamber) of the imperial palace of Constantinople and was thus a porphyrogenita. She was the eldest of nine children. Her younger siblings were (in order of birth) Maria Komnene, John II Komnenos, Andronikos Komnenos, Isaac Komnenos, Eudokia Komnene, Theodora Komnene, Manuel Komnenos and Zoe Komnene.
In 1097, 14-year-old Anna Komnene married an accomplished young nobleman, the Caesar Nikephoros Bryennios the Younger. Nikephoros Bryennios was the son of an aristocratic family that had contested the throne before the accession of Alexios I. Nikephoros was also a renowned statesman, general, and historian. Anna claimed that the marriage was a political union rather than one of love. For the most part, however, it proved to be a successful union for forty years, and produced four children—Alexios Komnenos, John Doukas, Irene Doukaina, and Maria Bryennaina Komnene.
Anna Komnene's literary style is fashioned after Thucydides, Polybius, and Xenophon. Consequently, it exhibits struggle for an Atticism characteristic of the period, whereby the resulting language is highly artificial. For the most part, the chronology of events in the Alexiad is sound, except for those that occurred after Anna’s exile to the monastery, when she no longer had access to the imperial archives. Nevertheless, her history meets the standards of her time (Catholic Encyclopedia).