baroness margaret thatcher

The Signs as Powerful Female Rulers throughout History

1. AriesHatshepsut, Ancient Egypt, 1508 BC - 1458 BC

Hatshepsut was one of the most powerful women in the ancient world. She was the fifth pharaoh of the Eighteenth Dynasty of Ancient Egypt and she ruled longer than any other woman in Egyptian history.

2. TaurusMaria Theresa of Austria, Central Europe, 1717 - 1780

Maria Theresa succeeded her father, Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI, as empress of the Hapsburg controlled lands of Central Europe in 1740. She made her son, Joseph II, coregent in 1765 after the death of her husband.

3. Gemini : Queen Amina, Nigeria, 1560 - 1610

Queen Amina headed the northern Nigerian Hausa city-state of Zaria. It is thought that perhaps the Hausa were matrilineal people at that time since having a woman as queen was not all that rare. She was also a great military leader.

4. Cancer : Empress Theodora, Cyprus, 500 AD - 548A D

Empress Theodora was one of the most influential and powerful women in the Early Middle Ages. She was the wife of Emperor Justinian I and joint ruler of the Byzantine Empire.

5. Leo : Queen Elizabeth I, England, 1533 - 1603

Even though past queens such as Empress Matilda, Lady Jane Grey, and Mary I had all ruled England in their own right, Elizabeth was truly the first crowned queen to successfully rule with absolute power. She is also remembered for defeating the Spanish Armada and establishing Protestantism in England, replacing Roman Catholicism.

6. VirgoEmpress Wu Zetian, China, 625 AD - 705 AD

Empress Wu Zetian is considered to be one of the most powerful women in Chinese history. She lived during the Tang Dynasty and was born to a wealthy and noble family. She was also very well educated. When Wu Zetian was 13, she was sent to Emperor Taizong’s court to be one of his concubines.

7. Libra : Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, India, 1917 - 1984

As daughter of Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first prime minister, politics was always a part of Indira Gandhi’s world. She joined her father’s Congress Party in 1938 and was jailed for awhile by the British for her support of India’s independence from Great Britain. After her father’s death, she was elected to Parliament in his place, becoming Prime Minister herself in 1966.

8. Scorpio : Boudicca, East-England, ? - 60AD

Boudicca  was queen of the British Icini tribe, a Celtic tribe who led an uprising against the occupying forces of the Roman Empire.

9. SagittariusJoan of Arc Leader of the French Army, France, 1412 - 1431

Born into a peasant family, Joan became a French heroine by leading the army of Charles VII against the English and raising their siege of Orleans.

10. Capricorn : Chairperson and General Secretary of the National League for Democracy Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar (Burma), 1945 - present

Aung San Suu Kyi returned to Burma in 1988, after years living and studying abroad, only to find widespread slaughter of protesters rallying against the brutal rule of dictator U Ne Win. She spoke out against him and initiated a nonviolent movement toward achieving democracy and human rights. In 1989, the government placed Suu Kyi under house arrest, and she spent 15 of the next 21 years in custody. In 1991, her ongoing efforts won her the Nobel Prize for Peace, and she was finally released from house arrest in November 2010.

11. Aquarius : PM Baroness Margaret Thatcher, UK, 1925 - 2013

Margaret Thatcher was Britain’s first female prime minister, and first British prime minister in the twentieth century to win three consecutive terms. A lawyer, Margaret first entered Parliament in 1959, eventually serving in a variety of ministerial posts.

12. Pisces : Queen Victoria I, Britain, 1819 - 1901

Queen Victoria’s reign was the longest in English history. Called the Victorian age, it was a time when Britain was at the height of its colonial power. Victoria became a symbol of British expansionist foreign policy. She insisted on taking an active part in the decisions of the government, and forcefully backed those ministers she liked.

Sometimes the best parts of History are Herstory.

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May 4th 1979: Thatcher becomes Prime Minister

On this day in 1979, Margaret Thatcher became the first female Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. She is known for her conservative policies which are now commonly referred to as ‘Thatcherism’.  Her Conservative party’s victory in the 1979 general election came twenty years after she was first elected to Parliament to represent Finchley. Upon becoming Prime Minister, Thatcher had to deal with high employment and financial problems that crippled the country, to which her government responded with deregulation, privatisation and reducing the power of trade unions. She also led Britain during the Falklands War with Argentina in 1982, which propelled her to re-election in 1983. Thatcher’s popularity waned and she was eventually challenged for the Conservative leadership by others in her party and thus resigned as Prime Minister in 1990. Known as ‘the Iron Lady’, Thatcher was the longest-serving British Prime Minister of the 20th Century. She died from a stroke in 2013 and remains a very controversial and divisive figure in British history.