This article is about the Manga version of William Minerva. For alternate pages referred to by this name, please click any of the icons above.
I am William Minerva. I am raising the banner of revolution. To give the human world back to you...to finish the "Neverland" once and for all, I shall seal a new promise. First of all, break out from the plantations and head to the agreed point. I'll be waiting for you. For all of you.— William Minerva's message recorded in the Promised Pen in "Friends".
James Ratri (ジェイムズ・ラートリー, Jeimuzu Rātorī?), professionally known as William Minerva (ウィリアム・ミネルヴァ, Wiriamu Mineruva?), is an author who has written several books in Grace Field House's library. He has been leaving secret messages in his books with Morse Code in hopes of helping cattle children trapped in the farms.
James Ratri was also the 35th head of the famous Ratri clan which oversaw that the Promise with the Demons was maintained. However, he grew disgusted with the idea of sacrificing innocent children and decided to organize a way to help them escape and smuggle as many as he could into the human world. He is the creator of the Promised Pen and the one who built Shelter B06-32 and Goldy Pond.
James' role as the head of the Ratri clan was eventually passed down to his younger brother, Peter Ratri, who now stood as the current head of the house. James was also the descendant of Julius Ratri.
James Ratri was the 35th head of the Ratri Clan, tasked with maintaining the Promise between the human and demon worlds. While James was in charge of maintaining this status quo, he could not tolerate the savagery inflicted on the cattle children. James secretly began a revolution and initiated plans for a "New Promise" to help these children.
He began his plan by gathering allies and building safe havens. Sometime in the past, James built Goldy Pond, a place for the children away from the demons. Hidden inside Goldy Pond's windmill was a secret passage that led to a door (Minerva's door) which had sign matching signs found in Grace Field House's books as well as the pen's holographic projections. Inside was a large monitor room that controls everything inside Goldy Pond (e.g., the temperature, air pressure, etc.). A large adjacent blue cavern contains a wide Golden Lake with a floating island at the lake's center. On the island is a cabin which contains an elevator that led to the human world. However, the elevator was rendered unusable by James' brother, Peter Ratri.
Still, several other entrances to the human world exist in the plantations of Grace Field House, Glory Bell, Grand Valley, and Goodwill Ridge. James also gave three choices in a telephone message: 1) Call for the support of William's revolutionaries, 2) begin an uprising against the demon forces with their group and destroy the promise, or 3) "look for the seven walls."
To help the children, he provided clues about the orphanages' true nature. At the Grace Field House, Phil discovered that all the books in the library contained a hidden message: "run from the house because there is danger lying ahead of them." Such clues are in the form of secret coding which the children call Minerva's Morse Code. He also left multiple letters behind; both the Grace Field House and Glory Bell orphanages had one letter. Another letter hidden within Shelter B06-32's library told the children to head towards Goldy Pond.
Sister Krone also found a pen marked with the initials "WM", which matched his William Minerva alias in his books. The pen has multiple functions: holographic mapping the user's current location and direction and accessing the secret shelter. It is later discovered that Minerva made multiple pens as Mister and Lucas used another pen to enter the secret shelter when they escaped their orphanage.
He is depicted as a tall man, who is almost always seen wearing a suit with a black tie and a hat. On several occasions, he is seen holding a cane.
It is later revealed that he is indeed a tall man, with platinum blonde hair and light blue eyes. Aside from being taller and having shorter hair than his brother Peter, the two look very similar.
James is an individual with a deep sense of shame for his own actions and those of his family. His revolution was birthed out of a longing to bring justice to the demons and change the world for the better and his desire to atone for his ancestors’ actions. He is a complex and intelligent man, leaving hints behind for children to survive and escape the plantations and leave the demon world. He even went as far as to endanger his own well-being and life when he tried to help the children by building safe sanctuaries.
James worked for the demons and supplied them with a lot of literature to use in the orphanages. However, these were just tools to help the children escape and he only worked together with the demons to begin the revolution and change the harshness of the world.
The two of them originally had a good brotherly bond. Peter even agreed with James his way of thinking for a while because he thought that it was better. However, this seems to be a facade, as Peter later revealed that he was just pretending to agree with James his plans. Peter even went as far to take James his title of the 35th head of the family and claim it himself. He then ordered his underlings and the rest of his clans to kill his own brother, implying the hostility between the two.
- In the special edition of Volume 13, an interview with Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu revealed that William Minerva was initially not planned to exist as a character.
- It is likely that William Minerva's name originates from the Ancient Roman Goddess Minerva. Minerva is the goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom, strategic warfare, commerce, weaving and crafts. Like William, she is also commonly depicted and symbolized with her owl, "The Owl of Minerva".
- James Ratri is likely named after Captain James Hook from J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan.
- It is implied that James possess a wide knowledge in cryptology.
- The Promised Neverland Manga: Chapter 49, Page 20
- The Promised Neverland Manga: Chapter 38, page 17
- Interview with Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu (Japanese)