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Picked to be an impotent figurehead, this savvy intellectual quickly learned how to play politics and modernized the nation to ward off invasion.
100 years before Lawrence of Arabia, this British woman traveled the Middle East by herself, surviving shipwrecks, plagues, and Bedouin attacks in the process.
Instigated a massive "women's war" against British taxation, the effect of which was one part protest movement, one part comedy roast, and one part block party.
Wallada bint al-Mustakfi
Spirited poetry-spouting princess who lived an audacious life and put her cheating lover on blast with her expert slam poetry.
The greatest ruler of Yemeni history, she defeated her numerous foes to usher the country into its golden age.
Rose from poverty to become a respected journalist who raced Nellie Bly around the world.
The only female emperor of China in history, her ruthless rise to power makes Game of Thrones look like a day at the beach.
In fighting the bias of the caste system to spread education, this woman brought knowledge to girls across India.
Muslim sultan who took the throne, defeated Louis IX in battle, ransomed him back to France for 30% of their GDP --- and did it all in secret.
This Indonesian queen ruled wisely and justly in life, and was deified as the embodiment of all evil after her death. The story of why gets a bit complicated.