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Annie Jump Cannon
This astronomer threw off all the social conventions of her day to pursue her one true calling: the stars.
Sold into sexual slavery to Hernan Cortes, this maligned woman became his interpreter, and it was with her words that…
When the Portuguese took the throne from her, this Angolan queen made a new one: out of her own servant. She then fled to the jungle, conquered a tribe of cannibals, and waged war on the Portuguese for so long that they gave up and left.
When Columbus and his crew ravaged her land, this native Haitian poet gave all to keep the peace.
Isabel Godin des Odonais
To reunite with her husband, she went on a months-long trek through the jungle -- and was the only survivor.
Possibly the most prolific female serial killer in history, a primary inspiration for Dracula, one of the most reviled women in history, and, I argue, innocent.
Marguerite de Bressieux
When soldiers sexually assaulted her and others, this woman donned armor and got revenge.
Jeanne de Clisson
When her husband was unjustly executed, this French noblewoman-turned-pirate became the terror of France.
One of the greatest pharaohs to ever live, she built up Egypt so much that a generations-long sustained effort to erase her from history couldn't do the trick.
Sister Rosetta Tharpe
The godmother of rock and roll, this black bisexual singer fused gospel and pop to blaze her own way across the Jim Crow-era south.