18-19 May 1536— “This morning she sent for me, that I might be with her at such time as she received the good Lord, to the intent I should hear her speak as touching her innocency always to be clear. And in the writing of this, she sent for me, and at my coming she said: ‘Mr. Kingston, I hear I shall not die aforenoon, and I am very sorry therefore, for I thought to be dead by this time, and past my pain’. I told her, it should be no pain, it was so sottle. And then she said, ‘I heard say the executioner was very good, and I have a little neck’, and then put her hands about it, laughing heartily. I have seen many men and also women executed, and that they have been in great sorrow, and to my knowledge this lady has much joy in death. Sir, her almoner is continually with her, and had been since two o'clock after midnight. This is the effect of anything that is here at this time, and thus fare you well.” [Letter from Sir W. Kingston, Constable of the Tower, to Thomas Cromwell]
Also known as the Maid of Orléans, Jeanne d’Arc (1412 - 1431) was a leader of french troops during the Hundred Years War. She came from a peasant family and could neither read nor write. When she was 12, it is said that she began hearing heavenly voices (one of them is said to have been the Archangel Michael), who told her to save her country. At this time, almost all of France was controlled by England. She went to Bourges to meet the dauphin, Charles VII, and when she left, she was the commander of the french troops. Her most famous battle was the Siege of Orléans, where the siege was lifted after only nine days. 1430 she was captured by Burgundians (allied with the english) and was burned at the stake on May 30th, 1431, at the age of 19.
Taurus: Catherine the Great
Catherine the Great (1729 - 1796) was the Empress of Russia. She came to power after her husband, Peter III was assassinated. During her reign she expanded the Russian boundaries considerably and promoted education and Enlightenment - Russia grew larger and stronger than ever before. Russian borders spread as far as to the Black Sea and Central Europe. During her reign Russia became known as one of the great powers of Europe. She is the longest ruling female of Russia.
Gemini: Nakano Takeko
Nakano Takeko (1847 - 1868) was a Japanese female warrior of the Aizu domain, who fought and died during the Boshin War. She was thoroughly trained in the martial and literary arts. During the Battle of Aizu, she fought with a naginata and was the leader of a group of female combatans
who fought in the battle independently, as the senior Aizu retainers did not allow them to fight as an official part of the domain’s army.
While leading a charge against ImperialJapaneseArmy troops, she was fatally shot in the chest. Rather than let the enemy capture her head as a trophy, she asked her sister, to cut it off and have it buried. It was taken to Hōkai Temple and buried under a pine tree.
Cancer: Queen Christina of Sweden
Christina (1626 - 1689) was the Queen of Sweden, Grand Princess of Finland and Duchess of Estonia. She was the only surviving child of King Gustaf II Adolf, and when he died during the Battle of Lützen in the Thirty Years War, she became queen. However, she was only 6 years old when this happened. When she was born, she was believed to be a boy. When it was discovered that she was a girl, her father didn’t matter; he had become very closely attached to her. She was raised as a king, and her father made sure that she would inherit the throne when he died, even though she was a girl. Christina is remembered as being one of the most well educated women of the 1600s. She rejected the sexual role of a woman, and decided to never marry. In 1654 she abdicated, converted to Roman Catholicism (Sweden was a protestant country) and moved to Rome.
Boudica (dead 60-61 AD) was the Celtic war queen of the british tribe Iceni, who lead a major uprising against the occupying forces of the Roman Empire. Her warriors successfully defeated the Roman Ninth Legion and destroyed the capital of Roman Britain. She was later captured by Roman soldiers, but instead of letting them kill her she is believed to have poisoned herself.
Virgo: Elizabeth I
Queen Elizabeth I (1533 - 1603) is remembered as one of the greatest monarchs to ever have ruled England (and Ireland). Her rule is known as “Englands golden age”. She is also known as the Virgin Queen or Good Queen Bess. She never married, nor had any children. Therefore, her death marked the end of the Tudor Era. When the Spanish Armada invaded England in 1588, Elizabeth defended her strength as a female leader, saying: “I know I have the body of a weak, feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king, and of a king of England too.”
Libra: Anne Boleyn
Anne Boleyn (c. 1501 - 1536) was the second wife of King Henry VIII. Henry had wanted her to become his mistress during the 1520s, but she refused, telling him she had to become his wife first. In order to marry Anne, Henry had to get divorced from Catherine of Aragon. However, as the pope refused to acknowledge the divorce, Henry broke with the catholic church, making England a protestant country. Anne Boleyn married the king in 1533 and was crowned the Queen of England, and gave birth to a daughter, Elizabeth, September 7th 1533. Henry VIII was mad at her for not giving birth to a son, and searched for a reason to get rid of her. 1536 Anne Boleyn was accused of adultery, incest and being a witch. She was found guilty, and on May 19th, 1536, she was beheaded. After her daughter was crowned as Queen Elizabeth I, Anne was venerated as a martyr and a heroine of the English Reformation.
Scorpio: Lyudmila Pavlichenko
Lyudmila Pavlichenko (1916 - 1974) was an Ukrainian Soviet sniper during World War II. She is regarded as the most successful female sniper in history with 309 kills. In 1943 she was awarded the Hero of the Soviet Union. During the war she was also known as Lady Death.
Sagittarius: Grace O’Malley
Grace O’Malley (1530 - 1603) was a female pirate and Irish queen in the 16th century.She
is sometimes known as “The Sea Queen of Connacht”.
She was apparently well-educated and was regarded by contemporaries as being exceptionally formidable and competent. Upon her father’s death she inherited his large shipping and trading business (a trade sometimes referred to as mere piracy). She once met Queen Elizabeth I of England, and refused to bow down before her, as Elizabeth didn’t recognize her as the Queen of Ireland.
Capricorn: Natalia Peshkova
Natalia Peshkova joined the Russian Army when she was just 17, during World War II. She served as a combat medic, and spent three years at the front, accompanying wounded soldiers from the front to the hospital and fought diseases and starvation among the troops. As the war went on, Peshkova was promoted to Sergeant Major and after the war, she was awarded the Order of the Red Star for bravery.
Aquarius: Elizabeth Coleman
Elizabeth “Bessie” Coleman (1892 - 1926) was the first female pilot of african american descent. She was an american civil aviator. She was denied pilot training in USA, so she learned french and went to France where she could become a pilot. She died in 1926, after flying an unsafe plane, which after ten minutes, unexpectedly went in for a dive and spun around. This lead to Coleman being thrown out of the plane at 610 m (2 100 ft), and she died instantly when she hit the ground.
Pisces: Amelia Earhart
Amelia Earhart (1897 - 1937) was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean and also the first woman to recieve a National Geographic Society gold medal. She was a pioneering female pilot, determined and independant, and a supporter of women’s rights. She disappeared in 1937 when she tried to fly around the globe, but she is to this day still remembered as a legend.