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This pope was largely assumed to be male until she gave birth in the midst of a procession - and largely assumed to be factual until the 13th century.
Susan la Flesche Picotte
The first Native American medical doctor endured back-breaking labor, years spent alone, and institutional racism to better the lives of her people.
When a government magistrate unjustly killed her son, this unassuming middle-aged wife spent years raising an army to topple that same government.
History's first computer programmer, who invented algorithms for the first computer - which didn't even exist during her lifetime, so…
With a dead husband and a hostile foreign country on her hands, this Indian queen did the unthinkable - turned her loyal servants into some of the first suicide bombers in recorded history.
Matilda of Tuscany
Fiery defender of the pope who made kings kneel before her.
This princess held her father to his word in the most unexpected way: by demanding to marry the stupidest man in Korea.
This mythical Native American woman saved her loved ones from starvation with delicious magical leprosy - a fact that led to, shall we say, complications.
When this indigenous Brazilian warrior mermaid proved too awesome for her tribe, she just took up residence in the water, and started an aquatic harem of passers-by.
100 years before Lawrence of Arabia, this British woman traveled the Middle East by herself, surviving shipwrecks, plagues, and Bedouin attacks in the process.