Only one being is missing, and everything is depopulated. Elizabeth II is leaving for good, and to compensate for our immense pain (yes, yes, no exaggeration in this introduction), we have decided to plunge our noses back into the history books. Remind us, rediscover or discover the queens, who, like her, had quite a pair… Had a lot of courage, strength of character. Sovereigns who have marked history, what.
1. Elizabeth I
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Also nicknamed the “Virgin Queen”, since she refused marriage all her life, no matter how much pressure was put on her. An independent woman, politically more moderate than her father (Henry VIII, a really toxic guy) or than her half-sister Marie Tudor. His 44-year reign (1558-1603) was eventful, so much so that the entire second half of the 16th century is now dubbed the “Elizabethan era”, considered a “golden age” of England. In short, a hell of a woman!
Empress of the Byzantine Empire from 527 to 548, she presents a very complete and very interesting CV: she was first an actress, prostitute and wool spinner, until she caught the attention of Emperor Justinian I. She was so oufissime that Justinien had a law repealed so that he could marry her. Historians call her a “feminist before her time”, and for good reason: she founded a house where prostitutes could live in peace, defended the legislation against rape or even supported young girls sold as sexual slaves. Intelligent and influential, her husband consulted her almost systematically before making a decision. A real badass as we like them.
3. Nzinga Mbandi
From 1624 to 1663, she was queen of Ndongo and Matamba (now Angola). A fine military strategist and great diplomat, she quickly acquired international fame. She was particularly skilled in war strategy, espionage, trade, alliance, etc. In this way, she managed to repel Portuguese colonialism throughout her reign.
Also called “Boadicea”, it is considered “the English Vercingetorix”. In AD 60, Rome had been ruled by Nero for almost six years. While calm reigns, the province of Brittany rises under the impulse of a woman, Celtic queen: it is Boudicca. Often forgotten in history books, misunderstood by the French, it nevertheless represents, across the Channel, the spirit of resistance and independence. Needless to say, it’s damn cool.
The last monarch to reign on the island of Hawaii (1891 – 1893), she spent most of her time fighting to defend her land and her people from American annexation. Unfortunately, his battle to maintain Hawaii’s independence was unsuccessful. She was overthrown, tried for treason and sentenced to five years of hard labor.
Princess Khutulun is considered one of the most fearsome Mongol warriors. Not hard to believe when you know she was a descendant of Genghis Khan. Her “recruitment” criteria for her future husband were quite unusual: she had sworn to marry only a man capable of beating her in a wrestling match. If the opponent failed, he had to offer him 100 horsepower. Results ? She owned 10,000 horsepower at the end of her life. One hell of a ranch, you might say.
Ok, we’re cheating a bit, since she didn’t have the name of “queen” but of “princess”. On the other hand, if it has its place in this top, it is because it held a real power over the people. She is even one of the last Mongolian women to have resisted male power. In short, nothing to do with a Kate Middleton, what.
7. Christina of Sweden
Christine, “King of Sweden”, is a true androgynous icon of history. Just like Elizabeth I, she remained single and preferred to celebrate the simple and carnal joys of life with her lovers and mistresses, rather than an old dumb marriage to look good. In 1654, after ten years of reign, she preferred to abdicate rather than let the ring slip! Short hair, men’s dressing room clothes and a pipe in her mouth, she was castigated by Pope Alexander VII for her “too manly ways”. Never mind, she wrote an autobiography that was more than modern for the time, evoking her androgynous identity, her lovers, and declared that, contrary to rumors, she was neither male nor hermaphrodite. Free. Just free. After traveling around the world, she ends up packing her bags in Rome and studying eight languages there. Impressive, from A to Z.
8. Queen Elizabeth II
A thousand times (ok, maybe not that many, but still) Queen Elizabeth II has broken the codes. Mechanic during the Second World War, at the origin of the modification of the inheritance laws in favor of women, actress alongside Daniel Craig (James bond) for a clip on the occasion of the London Olympics, dresses and hats of all the colors,… In short. Elizabeth II (who is by no means the daughter of Elizabeth I, as their 323-year age difference suggests) was a real badass. RIP, Lizzie.