Herstory - Intriguing Women in History You Probably Don't Know

Osh-Tisch was leading bate (a woman who at birth is assigned to be a male in the Crow nation).

She held an esteemed position in her society. In the Crow nation, it was not only acceptable for one to be bate, but they were often regarded as highly as being the bridge between the two genders. Being bate, Osh-Tisch was allowed to take on both traditionally female and traditionally male roles and was known for excelling at bother. She was esteemed not only for her sewing skills, but she was also known for her ferocity in battle. In fact, her strength as a warrior is what earned her the name Osh-Tisch, which translates to “finds them and kills them.”

Tsuruhime Ohori: was the daughter of Ohori Yasumochi, a head priest of Oyamazumi Shrine on the island of Omishima in Iyo Province. Tsushima was born in 1526. At that time the island was under threat from the growing power of Ouchi Yoshitaka from Yamaguchi on the mainland of Honshu, and fighting took place between the Ouchi and the Kono on Shikoku, under whose jurisdiction the shrine fell. Tsuruhime’s elder brothers were killed in one such conflict, and when Tsuruhime was 15 years old, her father died of illness, so she inherited the position of chief priest. She had been trained since childhood in the martial arts, and when the Ouchi made further moves against Omishima, she took charge of the military resistance. She led an army into battle and drove the Ouchi samurai back into the open sea when they raided Omishima in 1541.

Ching Shih (1775-1844)

She was born in Guangdong province of China. She worked in a floating brothel in Canton. In 1801, the Pirate Zheng Yi, who commanded a fleet of ship noticed Ching Shih’s beauty and wished to marry her. According to some, Zheng Yi sent a raiding party and ordered them to plunder the brothel and bring back Ching to him. They did, and the two commanded the infamous Red Flag Fleet. Ching Shih became one of the most powerful female pirates. The fleet grew under her command, with expanding reserves of loot, and an organized system of business. Eventually, she sought amnesty when offered by the Chinese government, not without first negotiating to maintain the riches and power she earned as a pirate lord.

Constance Markievicz (February 4, 1868-July 15 1927)

Constance Georgine Markievicz, known as Countess Markievicz was an Irish Sinn Fein and Fianna Fail politician, revolutionary nationalist, suffragette and socialist. A founder member of Fianna Eireann, Cumann na mBan and the Irish Citizen Army, she took part in the Easter Rising in 1916, when Irish republicans attempted to end Britsh rule and establish the Irish Republic. She was caught and sentenced to death, but this was reduced on the ground of her sex. On December 28, 1918, she was the first woman elected to the British House of Commons, though she did not take her seat and, along with the other Sinn Fein TDs, formed the first Dail Eireann. She was also the first woman in the world to hold a cabinet position (Minister of Labor of the Irish Republic, 1919-1922)

Rosalind Franklin July 25 1920-April 16 1958)

Ms. Franklin was an English chemist and X-ray crystallographer who made contributions to the understanding of the mo9lecular structures of DNA and RNA, viruses, coal, and graphite. Although her work on coal and viruses were appreciated in her lifetime, her contributions to the discovery of the structure of DNA were only recognized posthumously.

Tayto Betul

Taytu Betul was Emperor Menelik II’s third wife and was thereby Empress of Ethiopia. She was his confidante, a loyal wife, a commander, and a brilliant military strategist.

She was a true Ethiopian leader. Her deeds at a critical moment in Ethiopian history not only saved Ethiopia from European colonization, but it also paved the way for the decolonization of Africa. Her advice and action resulted in the defeat of the Italian army at the 1896 Battle of Adwa, a mighty European army defeat at the hands of Africans. Taytu vigorously defended national interest by overcoming challenges both from within and from without. Just as there was no Menelik II without Taytu Betul, there would have been no Ethiopia without Taytu’s great strength, courage, devotion, and determination. Taytu should forever be remembered as one of the greatest empresses of Ethiopia and of Africa as a whole.

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