Rani Rudrama Devi (1259-1289 AD)
Emperor Rani Rudrama Devi ruled Warangal, the capital of the Kakatiya kingdom that held sway over the entire Andhra Pradesh during the 13th century.She was one of the most prominent rulers of the Kakatiya dynasty. She died in a war at the age of 80 years.
Her father, King Ganapati Deva, nominated her as his successor. Even though her ascendancy was resented by some nobles and her cousins because she was a woman, her gender was not in her way in discharging the duties of her exalted office. She took an active part in governing the country and strove to promote the best interests of the state. In spite of the wars which frequently disturbed the country, her people remained contented and happy under her rule.
Construction of Hospitals and Ponds were done when female rulers were ruling the Dynasty. Rudrama Devi s rule is an example to show the difference between male and female rulers, and people still cherish her memory today. - Sathish M.
Tsarina Elizabeth I (Elizabeth Petrovna), (1709-1761)
Elizabeth I ruled Russia from 1742 - 1763. She was the youngest daughter of Peter the Great and Catherine I. She is one of Russias most popular rulers due to her strong opposition to Prussian policies, and the outlawing of the death penalty. Not one person was executed in Russia during her long reign. Among other notable deeds, she revitalized the government through her policies of appointing only Russian citizens to top advisory positions, was victorious in the War of Austrian Succession (1740-8), managed to negotiate a long-standing land dispute between Russian and Sweden, and built or established major institutions, such as the University of Moscow. [Women in World History]
She was preceded by the Empress Anna. - M. Brown.
Makeda, also known as the Queen of Sheba (10th century BCE)
I could not find one whom I know in History as a queen and powerful ruler, the Queen of Sheba or Makeda from Abysinia (Ethiopia) - Mulu
[Various origins have been ascribed to this fabulous Queen, including south Arabia and Abyssinia (Ethiopia). A powerful queen, she is known for her control and expansion of trade networks. Supposedly she met King Solomon in Jerusalem, and on her return home had his baby, a son named Menelik. Women in World History]
Additional Information About Queen Elizabeth I
Queen Elizabeth Tudor of England: The daughter of King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, and the sister of Mary I and Edward VI, Elizabeth ruled with great poise and determination in England. She wanted what was best for the English people and she wished to unify the country religiously and politically. Known for being the "virgin queen" Elizabeth led the English people into an era of prosperity and into a Renaissance. She died childless and beheaded her cousin Mary of Scots unwillingly, but also led the English Navy( or the
Eleonora of Arborea - (1383-1404) reigned as Queen of Sardinia
"A great woman ruler was Eleonora of Arborea in Medieval Sardinia, Italy. She issued an important Law Code too." - Laura M.
[Eleonora reigned during the regency of her son, Frederick. She is regarded as a Sardinian heroine for her ability in 1383 to unite the population against invaders from Aragón, Spain. The daughter of a judge, in 1395 she compiled a set of humanitarian law codes, the famous "Carta de Logu" written in the Sardinian language, one of which protected falcons. Today one falcon bears her name, as does a piazza in the city of Oristano. Women in World History]
Queen Tomyris of the Massagetae Battle (530 B.C.)
"After her husband's death the Massagetae (the eastern most Scythian people) were ruled by a woman, Queen Tomyris. When the Persian king Cyrus decided to invade Massagetae territory the Queen sent him a message ...."stop & rule your own people and put up with the sight of me ruling mine "... Cyrus was not going to let a mere woman stand in his way, even against the better advice of Croesus of Lydia, his advisor (and king he conquered). When Cyrus engaged the Massagetae he captured the Queen's son Spargapises. When Spargapsisis asked to be freed his request was granted and then he was immediately killed.
Queen Tomyris then herself mustered all her forces and engaged Cyrus in battle. They fought at close quarters and eventually the Massagatae gained the upper hand. Most of the Persian army was wiped out, Cyrus himself died. Queen Tomyris filled a wineskin with human blood and searched the battlefied for Cyrus's corpse and when she found his body she said "...I warned you that I would quench your thirst for blood, and so I shall". Herodotus Book One (205)-(214)" - Kya
Nefertari-Merymut (19th dynasty B.C.E., Egypt)
"I need to learn more about Nefertari, queen of Egypt. Please list her in the Great Rulers section." - William S.
Empress Irene (763-803 C.E.)
"Irene overthrew and then blinded her son in order to rule in her own name and managed to hold onto her power for five years. She actively intervened the the religious controversy of the time., using her power to favor one doctrine over another." "I hate what she did to her son in order to keep on ruling, but at least one source I checked states that Charlemagne wouldn't have risen to power if she hadn't ruled in her own right. Lovers of icons should be happy that she fought iconoclasm." - Ann N.
She was regent for her son, Constantine VI from 780-790. After Constantine VI assumed power in 790, he reigned for 7 years before his mother blinded him and reigned for another 5 years. So in reality, her reign lasted for 15 years and fought off several uprisings, although she will most be remembered for her idol worship. - Carl R.
(Her victory over iconoclasm in the council which met in 787 in Constantinople restored the worship of icons in the Byzantine world).
Empress Isabella of Portugal
"She was wife of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, Granddaughter of Ferdinand and Isabella, and Mother of Philip II (Husband to Queen Mary). Charles V, of Spain and the Hapsburg Empire, needed to make a strong political alliance. He looked to the west to Portugal. Isabella brought unity to a Spain who was longing for leadership with Spanish blood (Charles V being a Hapsburg). Thus Charles V left Isabella to rule Spain on his many absences to fight wars in other countries. She beget him several children, one of whom was to be Philip II of Spain. A strong willed woman, though delicate, She ruled the country and her children with a strong hand. Though a rarity in arranged marriages it is believed Charles and Isabella shared a strong love for one another. When she died in her 30's following a miscarriage, Charles was heartbroken. He collected all the paintings that were done of her and had more commissioned to keep the memory of her alive." - Natasha B
Queen Maud - 12th century
"Born in August of 1102, Maud (also called Matilda) was the daughter of England's King Henry I and his Queen Edith of Scotland....When Maud was about 12 years old, she was sent to marry the Holy Roman Emperor Heinrich V, thus becoming Empress of Germany. The pair were married for some years, but produced no children.
"I would like to suggest that you add Kim Campbell in your world leaders category. She was the first woman appointed as a Justice Minister in Canada, and became the first female Prime Minister of Canada in 1993. Although she only served in that capacity for about 4 months, she still broke that barrier for women in Canada. You can access a number of different internet sites by searching MSN for "Kim Campbell" or there is a site under: www.cnet.unb.ca/achn/pme/akcdb.htm." - Corey B. Canada.
"Salamasina was the first and only queen of Samoa. She was related to all the major sovereigns of Polynesia by blood. She was a role model for all the village virgins of Samoa thereforth." - Arny
"Deborah was one of the Judges of Israel between the death of Joshua and the anointing of Saul as King (See "Judges", the Bible). General Barak refused to lead the battle unless Deborah, as judge and prophetess, accompanied him." - Ann N.
Nana Yaa Asantewaa
"Her fights against British colonialists is a story woven throughout the history of Ghana.... She led the Ashantis troops against the British. Yaa Asantewaa's war was the last of the major wars in Africa led by a woman." - Mary Ann P.
Zawditu, Empress of Ethiopia
"She died in 1930 after becoming the first woman to rule in over three thousand years of Ethiopian history. She was a strong and intelligent woman who ruled the country from 1917-1930." - Arsema, Ethiopia
"Queen Zenobia challenged the Roman empire and ruled the city-state of Palmyra in the third century A.D. Palmyra was an important stopping point for caravans carry trade goods along the Old Silk Road. She declared Palmyra independent of Roman rule after her husband's murder. In their first attempts the Roman generals failed badly. Zenobia was an extremely able general....but was finally captured and taken captive back to Rome and walked in golden chains in Aurelian's triumphal parade." - Joseph A.
Zenobia governed Syria from about 250 to 275 AD. She led her armies on horseback wearing full armor and during Claudius' reign defeated the Roman legions so decisively that they retreated from much of Asia Minor. Arabia, Armenia and Persia allied themselves with her and she claimed dominion over Egypt by right of ancestry. Claudius' successor Aurelian sent his most experienced legions to conquer Zenobia but it took almost 4 years of battles and sieges before her capital city of Palmyra fell and Zenobia along with nine other martial queens of allied provinces were paraded through the streets of Rome in chains. Aurelian exiled Zenobia to Tibur. Her daughters married into influential Roman families and her line continued to be important in Roman politics for almost three centuries. - Kathleen OB.
Christina of Sweden
(1626-1689) "She was an intellect who transformed her court into a 'New Athens" by attracting the finest minds to her throne to Stockholm. She turned Sweden into an empire that dominated the Baltics and parts of Germany. After ten years in power, she abdicated, wandered through Europe, converted to Catholicism, and tried to secure the throne of Naples, again Sweden, and Poland. In all attempts she failed. "She was an excellent political navigator and did it all on her own!" - Sweetpea
Theodora (c. 497-548 A.D.)
"Theodora of the Byzantine Empire did a great deal to help the plight of women and ruled alongside her husband." - Deb C.
"Empress in her own right, and certainly the power behind the throne of her brother Anastasius II. She convened the council of Ephesus at which the Virgin Mary was declared "Theotokos" - (Mother of God). They ruled together for fifteen or so years." - Christopher K.
"The most married monarch of the Macedonian dynasty. She legitimized three husbands as emperor as she was the imperial heir." - Christopher K.
The women of Kashmir from early times down to the 12th century C.E. played prominent roles in the political life of the region. "The widowed Queen Didda ruled Kashmir from 980/1 - 1003, first as a regent for her son Abhimanyu, and thereafter as sole ruler in her own right after killing her three grandsons. Her influence behind the throne spans 50 years, covering the reign of her husband, King Kshemagupta, the time of her regency, and later as sovereign ruler. She eventually handed over the throne to her maternal family from Lohara in undisputed, peaceful succession. Didda was very beautiful but was apparently lame. She was able to transform herself from a comparatively unsure and politically naive persona into a ruthless, decisive and ambitious one. Her alternate bribe-and-placation policy helped in quelling rebellions..."- Devika - India.
Sister of a French King, Isabella married Edward II, King of England. Told that Isabella was plotting against him, in 1324 Edward took away her estates, cut her allowance, and friends at court. "She raised an army against his weak kingship, he abdicated [or was perhaps murdered by her], and she was not named the Regent, but took over the reigns of power with her lover, Roger Mortimer. She ruled for several years, until her son Edward III took over when he chose to." - Kelli - Michigan, USA.
Audata of Thrace (Greek name, Eurydice)
"Thrace had queens of equal rank to its kings. Audata, general of her army and warrior, married King Philip of Macedon, Alexander's father...But when Philip finally conquered the rest of Greece, he no longer needed her alliance and divorced her. Back to her other kingdom, with the daughter she had from this marriage, she organized her army and trained her daughter to be at its head, and formed alliances with all the neighboring kingdoms who wished to get rid of Philip. But the time she and her daughter were ready, Philip had been murdered and Alexander was on the throne, and Audata was senile." - D., Greece.
Olympias, Queen in Epirus and mother of Alexander the Great (3rd century BC)
She was "a queen of Epirus in her own right and ruled on the throne of Macedon and even after Philips's death nearly won all the battles she led against successors." She acted as regent for Philip during his military campaigns, and after his death, with her daughter Cleopatra, she ruled Epirus. - D., Greece.
Agrippina the Younger, wife of Claudius, mother of Nero (first century AD, Rome)
Interested in power and wealth, she managed to manipulate her uncle/husband, Claudius and position her son, Nero, to become emperor. She may have murdered Claudius by poison. She remained a power behind Nero's throne, but when she threatened to dethrone him, Nero, after many failed attempts, managed to get her assassinated. "Due to her great influence on both the emperors (even coins of her were made without the picture of Claudius on the reverse), I think she would fit your biographies." - W. S., Austria.
Candace, the Ethiopian Empress
Candace was the Greek name given to all the impressive Nubian/Kushite warrior queens. One "was such a great military leader that Alexander the Great simply chickened out from matching his army against hers. (in 332 BC)." Instead he turned to wage a more successful war in Egypt. - R. de R., Nicaragua
The Candaces (A Roman interpretation of the title of the queens) were a succession of leaders from about the time of the fourth century BCE through the third centuries CE. They each had a different name, but bore the same title. Alexander the Great mentions one, as well as does an account of Paul (Romans). - Candace S.
The Celtic (Iceni) queen Boadicea (first century AD)
"She was a homgongous headache for the Romans until she swallowed poison to avoid being caught." - R. de R., Nicaragua (Featured in our unit, I Will Not Bow My Head)
Marie de Champlain, daughter of Eleanor of Acquitaine (1100s AD)
She sponsored music, singing, and the creation of literature written in the local language. Poet singers wrote versus of praise and respect for women in her court, raising the value of women in the eyes of the rough nobility. She was "a countess in Champagne during the 1100s (and) very much responsible for the way women are treated here today." - N. & B.
The Zulu queen Nandi, mother of Shaka Zulu (early 19th century)
Nandi, with other women surrounding Shaka, was put in charge of military kraals and given power to govern while he was on campaign. Nandi was a force for moderation in Shaka's life, suggesting various political compromises to him rather than violent action. At her death, in an orgy of grief, he committed extreme violence against his own people for not mourning correctly. - R. de R., Nicaragua
Razia Sultana (ruled Delhi, 1236-40 A.D.)
Razia, who ruled during the Mughal era in India, was "the only woman who ever sat on an Indian throne." It was her father who wished her accession to his throne, over her brothers. Once there, she dressed as a man and appeared in public with her face uncovered. Her her choice of a lower class lover and unfortunate military losses led to her downfall." - S. & R. de R..
She ruled India not for a long period but as long as she ruled, ruled very bravely and
(Featured in our unit, I Will Not Bow My Head)
Jhansi Ki Rani (Queen of Jhansi, India, 1850s)
"She ruled and fought against the British. She is the lady ruler most referred to in India history." - R. S.
Maria Theresa of Hapsburg, Empress of Austria (1724 - 1780)
"She defended her throne against Frederick the Great of Prussia and unified the diverse regions of her Austro-Hungarian Empire. She instituted a policy of centralized government and inaugurated social and economic reforms." "She was an excellent ruler and an interesting character."- R. de R., Nicaragua & M. W., the UK.
Gro Harlem (married name Brundtland) 1939
"Educated as a doctor, she was Norway's first prime minister in 1981. Her first government consisted on 18 person, with eight women ministers. She stayed as primer minister for three periods. Her first government didn't last for long, but she came back strong in 1986, and stayed there throughout 1989. Now she is president of the WHO (World Health Organization.)" - G. T., Norway.
Corazon Aquino, ex-leader of the Philippines (1986-1992)
Corazon rose to power following the assassination of her husband, a popular political leader opposed to the Marco regime. "She was a great leader and people do look up to her as a role model." - V.
Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike of Sri Lanka (Prime minister 1960-1965, 1970-1977, 1994-)
"She became primer minister ( in 1960) following her husband's assassination. She was the first woman elected to lead a country. Her son was the leader of the opposition and her daughter - Mrs. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga - is now the executive president of Sri Lanka. She plans to abolish the presidency and sit in parliament. This itself will make history." - Ms. W., Sri Lanka.
Empress Wu Chao
She was also known as Wu Zetian, Wu Zhao, Wu Hou, and Tian Hou - D. (To see our biography on Empress Wu Zetian - click here.)
Sila Maria Calderon
She was elected the First female Governor of Puerto Rico in November of 2000 and she will take power in January 2, 2001. - Del Valle J.
"She was twice elected as the Prime Minister of New Zealand. And before that we had another. " -Frances V. - New Zealand
Empress Himiko (183 C.E.)
"Are you planning on having any articles about Empress Himiko, the first ruler of ancient Japan. In such a male dominated society, having a female as their first leader seems pretty cool." - Megan D.
"You should include Wilma Mankiller. She was principle Chief of the Cherokee People. And the first woman to rule a captive nation within the confines of the United States." - Carol C.
(Mankiller was elected to office of principle chief, in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, in 1985. Her goal was to create a financially independent and self-governing Cherokee Nation, and in 1990 helped re-establish the Cherokee tribal judicial system).
Khaleda Zia (1945-)
There are women political personalities from Asia that this website does not mention. Ms. Khaleda Zia being one. - S. Chowdhury
Ms. Sheikh Hasina (1947 - )
There are women political personalities from Asia that this website does not mention. Ms Sheikh Hasina being one. - S. Chowdhury
Benazir Bhutto (1953-2007 )
There are women political personalities from Asia that this website does not mention. Benazir Bhutto being one. - S. Chowdhury
Madagascar Queens (1800s)
During the 180s four women ruled over the India Ocean island of Madagascar beginning with Ranavalona I 1828-61, Rasoherina, 1863-68, Ranavalona II 918688888-83) and Ranavalona III (1883-96 - deposed and exiled 1896). - R. Duncan
Empress Elisabeth of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (mid 19th Century)
Despite the fact that Elisabeth (also known as Sisi), Empress of Austria and Queen of a range of small states from Dalmatia to Hungary, was never allowed to rule or never took the opportunity to exert a sense of independence into her station, she is still a particular favourite historical figure. She was brought up very far away from court life, in a liberal family where she was the least important people of the household...[In 1853] she married Emperor Franz-Joseph of Austria, whom she hardly knew, and did not whoolly want to be married to....
Grainne O'Malley - 16th Century - Ireland
A pirate queen of Galway, Ireland who gave Elizabeth Rex a run for her money. Twice widowed, twice imprisoned, fighting her enemies both Irish and English for her rights, condemned for piracy, and finally pardoned in London by Queen Elizabeth herself, Gráinne was one of the few sea-raiders to retire from the sea and die in her own bed, though where she's buried remains a mystery. See site; www.legends.dm.net/pirates/grainne.html - Kathleen OB.
Cartimandau - 1st Century Celtic British
Queen and Warrior of the Brigantes tribe which worshipped Brigantia the Goddess Queen of the Land as their direct ancestress - her name means "sleek pony". She refused to join Bouddicca's revolt. See site; www.romans-in-britain.org.uk/clb_tribe_brigantes.htm - Kathleen OB.
Artemisia I - 5th Century, B.C.E.
"Artemisia I, ruler of the Greek city-state of Halicarnassus and Cos and advisor to Xerxes the ruler of the Persian empire, assisted him in his attacks on the Greeks by commanding a force of warships in the naval battle of Salamis around 480 BC.- Kathleen OB.
Arachidamia - 3rd Century, B.C.E.
One of a number of Spartan princesses who led female troops. She fought against Pyrrhus during the siege of Lacedemon in the 3rd century BC. The Princess Chelidonis captained women warriors atop the city wall during a siege of Sparta in 280 BC. - Kathleen OB.
Zabibi and Samsi - 700s B.C.E.
Zabibi and her successor Samsi reigned as Arabian warrior queens from approximately 740 to 720 BC. Both commanded armies containing large numbers of women. - Kathleen OB.
Mavia - 370-380 C.E.
Mavia was Queen of the Bedouin Saracens from 370 to 380 AD. She led her troops in defeating a Roman army then made a favorable peace and married her daughter to the Roman commander in chief of the eastern Emperor Valens. - Kathleen OB.
The Kahina - Mahgreb c. 702 C.E.
An 8th century religious leader, the Kahina, united the Byzantine and Berber forces against the invading Arab army. She maintained an independent Berber monarchy for many years before her death in battle against the Arabs. - Kathleen OB.
Aethelflaed - late 9th-early 10th century
Aethelflaed, oldest daughter of Alfred the Great, was considered the chief tactician of her time. She united Mercia, conquered Wales and subdued the Danes becoming the de facto ruler of the Mercians and Danes. She was killed in battle in June 918 AD at Tammorth in Staffordshire. - Kathleen OB.
Nanye-hi - Beloved Woman - 18th Century
Nancy Ward -Cherokee warrior and Beloved Woman, the title of civil leaders of the Cherokee, was still very young when she married a warrior named Kingfisher; while still a teenager, she bore two children. When she went to battle with her husband, at Taliwa against the Creeks, she was just 17, maybe younger. She chewed bullets for her husband's musket; a well-masticated bullet was known to cause more damage in enemy flesh. When her husband fell dead, Nany'hi took up her husband's musket. She was honored for her bravery with the title Ghigau, or Beloved Woman, the highest title available to Cherokee women, a sacred position that sometimes trumped the highest chiefs. Considering the Cherokee held women in higher esteem than any other tribe, especially the pale one, Nancy Ward may have been the highest-ranking woman in America." - Kathleen OB.
Creek Mary - leader of the Creek Nation Confederacy
See site: http://www.lakotaarchives.com/natwomen.html. More resources on American Indian Women leaders www.meyna.com/wspirit.html. and, www.minervacenter.com/bibs9.htm - Kathleen OB.
POWERS BEHIND THE THRONE (WIVES, MOTHERS, SISTERS, DAUGHTERS, MISTRESSES)
The four female regents of the Netherlands, all intelligent, and politically savvy, were: Margaret of Austria. Mary of Hungary. Margaret of Parma.Clara Isabella Eugenia. Also, Catherine of Braganza who acted as Regent of Portugal. There are a few others, but I consider these among the most important - Rex W.
[Margaret of Austria was the daughter of Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor and Mary of Burgundy. She was appointed for the first time as governor of the Hapsburg Netherlands (15071515), and guardian of her young nephew Charles, who became Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor. When he was older, Charles rebelled against her influence, but he soon recognized her as one of his wisest advisers, and she was again governor of the Netherlands (151930) intermittently until her death. Women in World History].
[Mary of Hungary, also named Mary of Hapsburg, was the Queen consort of Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia. In 1531, her brother Emperor Charles V appointed her regent of the Netherlands, as Margaret's successor. She remained on the post until 1555. Women in World History].
[Margaret, Duchess of Parma was was appointed as governor of the Netherlands in 1559 by Philip II of Spain. She was the illegitimate daughter of Charles V. In 1567 Margaret resigned her post and left for an unhappy marriage to the Duke of Parma, Italy. Women in World History].
[Clara Isabella Eugenia was the daughter of King Philip II and his third wife. She married the Archduke of Austria, Albert VII. After Albert's death in 1621, the sovereignty of the Spanish Netherlands reverted to Spain, and Isabella ruled as governor of the country for her nephew, King Philip IV of Spain, until her death. Women in World History].
[Catherine of Braganza: was queen consort of the Stuart House of Charles II (England, the Scots, and Ireland, 1662 1685). She was the daughter of John IV of Portugal (Duke of Braganza). In 1704 she was appointed regent of Portugal during the illness of her brother King Pedro II, and died the year after. Women in World History].
Queen Kaahumanu (c.1768 - 1832)
In reality this queen was more an equal partner than power behind the throne. She first was queen of King Kamehameha I and after his death served as Premier, really co-ruler, to his successor. She also was acting regent until Kamehameha III should come of age. In these roles she managed to establish many reforms.
"She ruled equally beside her husband and son for 30 years, fought for womens rights and managed to abolish both polygamy and a brutal system of capital punishment called kapu." (L. Miller).
Katherine Swynford (1350 1403) was sister-in-law to Geofrey Chaucer
Married to Sir Hugh Swynford (2 children) and mistress to John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, bearing him 4 illegitimate children. Through the Beauforts (her children by John of Gaunt) the royal line of England is descended (Tudor, Stuart, Hanover, Winsor).
"Antoinette defied Versailles etiquette gracefully to expose its falseness, and became an excellent state craftswoman in a hurry when she became queen." - Sweetpea
"She was adored by millions for her more than monumental role in Argentina's 'healing' and personally saw and spoke with (as well as answered) 10,000 letters a day. She called Juan's and her supporters the 'shirtless ones." - Sweetpea.
Princess Joanna of Wales - wife of Llewelyn ap Iorweth (Llewelyn Fawr)
"Being the daughter of King John of England, she owed her loyalties to her father due to the fact that he provided her a suitable title. Joan was born from an outcast mother who played mistress to King John, and was illegitimate. Her father being able to gain her the title of Princess of Wales was a feat that earned her respect and loyalty. At the beginning of her marriage with Llewelyn, she showed her first sign of spunk by burning her husband's bed after she walked in on him with his lover. At the time she was only 14, and didn't know that under Welsh law, she could have rightfully murdered the woman her husband was with... Llewelyn and King John became allies through the marriage of Joanna. While Llewelyn would assist King John on crusades and paid him homage, King John constantly betrayed their alliance by encouraging wars among the Marcher lords and stirring up trouble for Llewelyn. Knowing this, Joanna openly defied her father when her husband was forced to yet again pay homage to the king and pay him a ridiculous amount of money. When Llewelyn paid homage to the king, Joanna walked over to her husband, knelt, and swore fealty and loyalty to him. She ruled alongside her husband in Wales, created a scandal or two, but was still considered a powerful and loyal woman." - Star M.
Eleanor de Montfort
Born 1215 (also called Eleanor of England, Eleanor Plantagenet, and Eleanor of Leicester)
Wife to Simon de Montfort (6th Earl of Leicester)
"While England was being ruled by a weak and unjust king (King Henry III), Simon fought for the common folk who worked by day and night to provide for his family. Simon spurred a crusade in England and gained the support of all the commoners and a number of Royals and trustees of the King. Ellen supported him in whatever he did, and went through times of both of them being outcasts from England for various reasons. To make a long story short, Simon was killed fighting the King. Ellen took over his title, took care of the entrusted materials her husband bestowed upon her, kept in full support of renegades fighting in the name of Simon, took care of their 3 sons and daughter, and was able to acquire decent titles and land ownership for her eldest and youngest son. She pleaded with the King to lift the ban from England so that her children can visit the royal courts. - Star M."
(After capturing the King and heir-apparent, Edward, in 1264, Simon and Eleanor became the de facto head of the government; Eleanor even had her own seal made.Under them England briefly had a new type of government in which the Parliament of 1265 included two knights from each county, and two citizens from each city or borough. When barons loyal to the king challenged Simon, Eleanor placed herself and her son Simon in command of various strongholds, like Dover Castle. But all ended when Simon and another son, Henry, were defeated and killed - Women in World History Curriculum)
Anne of Brittany (1460-1522)
"I think Anne should be added because she was queen of France twice and was an intelligent woman...and was very kind." - Student D.
Roxelana (Haseki Hurrem)
"What about Roxelana, also known as Rossa, also known as Haseki Hurrem, who got Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent to marry her. She had quite a lot of power over him." - Ann N.
Great dame of the late Roman Republic and the first really modern woman in history considered herself equal with men and lived according to this. She directed her son Brutus career and Caesars, as his most loving mistress. She led Roman and world political life with Caesar until his death. From this she led the Senate and thereby Rome to the start of Augustus reign. S. Kondra
Margaret, Byzantine Empress and Regent/Queen of Thessaloniki (1204-23)
She was legendary with her beauty, and powerful and clever. She was the last civilized ruler of Greece in the middle age, and only woman leader in the conquered Greece by crusaders. After her domination her kingdom fell into anarchy. S. Kondra
"Daughter of King Louis XI of France and sister to King Charles VIII- her father appointed her regent of France for her brother- the only time such an office has ever been conferred on a royal sister. She was responsible for keeping the peace during her brother's infancy, and for adding Brittany once and for all to the possessions of the French crown (by marrying Charles to Ann of Brittany)" D.Weiner
Crown Princess Sophia
"Daughter of Czar Alexis of Russia and half sister to Peter the Great and Czar Ivan V- her father left her as regent for her brothers, one of whom (Ivan) was probably mentally retarded. She was a staunch conservative. Her brother and step mother overthrew her in a palace coup and locked her away in a nunnery." D. Weiner
Alexandra Federovna Romanov (1872-1918)
I know Empress Alexandra Fedrona Romanov wasnt on the toughest side, but would you pleas put her on your site? I need to learn a little bit more about her instead of the other Romanovs. = L. Rollins.
Queen Suriyothai - Queen of Thailand (Siam)
I recently watched the move The Legend of Suriyothai produced by Francis Ford Coppola and directed by Thai nobleman Prince Chatrichalerm Yukol. As Thai history is not extensively covered in most school curricula, I had never heard of the Thai heroine or of the history of Southeast Asia of her times... - L Fines
Queen Ankhesenamon - 1322-1319 B.C.E.
Queen Ankhesenamon (or mun) was widow of King Tutankhamum. ...Letters from an Egyptian queens were found in the annals of the Hittites...the most reviled enemies of Egypt. This was the strangest occurrence in history for no Egyptian lady, especially a queen would ever consider marrying a foreigner, much less an enemy. Basically the queen Ankhesenamon wrote to the king (Suppiluliuma) begging him to send her his son for her to marry. She wrote that she was afraid, and she would not marry a servant. The king and his council were so amazed that the king said, Such a thing has never happened to me in my whole life! He sent a man to investigate, sure that this was a trap. Ankhesenanmon wrote back very indignantly writing that she was afraid still and would not marry a servant. The son (Zannanza) was sent and the prince was found murdered on the border of Egypt with all his company....
Lozen- 19th Century
Lozen was an Chiricahua Apache warrior and Medicine woman. - Kathleen OB.
For an up-to-date list of current women heads of states, please link to these sites:
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| Empress Wu Zetian | Queen Sondok | Murasaki Shikibu |
| The Trung Sisters | Sorghaghtani Beki | Mirabai | Nur Jahan |
Three Transforming Poets - Iran
| Eleanor of Aquitaine | Shagrat al-Durr | Melisende | Anna Comnena |
| Great Women Rulers | More Women Rulers |
| Notable Women (1000 C.E.) | Empress Adelaide |
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Women in World History Curriculum