Any woman is a secret. But sometimes the scale of her personality goes beyond society and leaves behind a train of legends.
Here are 10 mysterious women in the history of mankind, special pages from which people of unprecedented talent, fortitude and will look at us.
Xenia of Petersburg, blessed Xenia (Russia)
The prophetess who lived during the building of St. Petersburg. Presumably, she was born between 1719-1730, and died no later than 1806.
She received the prophetic gift as a result of the death of her beloved husband, with whom she lived in perfect harmony for 3 years. The morning after his death, Ksenia changed into his clothes, signed the papers on the distribution of property – and went to wander the streets of the Petersburg side. From that day on, the widow demanded that they address her as her late husband Andrei Fedorovich. She considered herself dead.
Soon the townspeople began to notice that her assistance averted misfortune, illness, or predicted major changes in fate.
Ksenia wandered around the Petersburg side for more than 40 years, patronized the good – and sternly instructed unmerciful, greedy and dissolute people on the mind, thanks to which the moral level of this troubled region began to rise.
The grave, and then the chapel of Xenia, became a place of pilgrimage for all suffering.
But who, after all, owes the merit of the spiritual education of Petersburg at the dawn of its formation – Ksenia Grigorievna or Andrei Fedorovich – is one of the greatest mysteries inaccessible to human understanding.
Born in the Ottoman Empire on the territory of modern Macedonia on January 31, 1911, she died on August 11, 1996 in Sofia (Bulgaria).
At the age of 15, she lost her sight, but instead she acquired the gift of seeing the future of humanity and the life of a person who came to her with a request for help. Vanga communicated with the “angels from the planet Vamfim” and told incredible things about them – for example, how they treated her: cleansed blood vessels, replaced the heart and lungs.
To Hitler, who turned to her even before the start of his campaign, she predicted a complete defeat from Russia. He did not believe it, and then Vanga ordered his guards to look into the next house, where a foal was about to be born in the barn. The seer accurately described the color of the future newborn, and after a few minutes the mare was relieved of the burden of a cub of the indicated suit.
One of her most memorable sayings is about Russia, that “there will be nothing left but the glory of Russia, the glory of Vladimir.” And, if earlier this was seen as a hint of the historical merits of the ancient prince Vladimir, now the prophecy has a different meaning.
Agent 355 (USA)
The first ever female secret agent. She served in the secret troops of George Washington during the US Revolutionary War. Disguised as a socialite, she attended unofficial events that the head of British intelligence, John Andre, arranged in New York.
It was not difficult for her to extract information from the gentleman in a drunken manner. So she managed to expose the betrayal of General Benedict Arnold and save the French troops of Rochambeau, who had recently arrived in America to help Washington.
Who this lady was, what her name was and when she was born, it was not possible to establish. About the last days of her life, it is only known that in 1780 she was captured by the British while pregnant – and died in prison during childbirth.
Nefertiti, “the beautiful one has come” (Egypt)
1370 BC – 1330 BC (conditionally) The Queen of Ancient Egypt, the owner of an amazing, almost alien beauty and extraordinary fate. Her images became the same symbol of that era and civilization, which Mona Lisa became for Europe.
The origin of Nefertiti is shrouded in mystery. Undoubtedly, she was born into a noble family, perhaps – was the daughter of the ruler of a neighboring state, or even the daughter of the king of Egypt from one of the concubines. It is possible that until the age of 12 she was called by a different name.
At the age of 12, she became the concubine of Pharaoh Amenhotep III, and after his death she miraculously escaped ritual murder, as she attracted the attention of his son, Amenhotep IV (Akhenaten), the new ruler.
Having ascended the throne at the age of 16, Nefertiti, together with her husband, introduced a new religion, became a co-ruler of Egypt, survived the double betrayal of her husband due to the inability to give birth to a son (she gave birth to six daughters).
After Akhenaten died and power passed to his son Tutankhamun from his second wife, the traces of the legendary queen are lost. Perhaps Nefertiti was killed by the priests of the former religion.
Her tomb was never found. Where the beautiful came from, and how she went into eternity – remains a mystery to this day.
Greta Garbo (Sweden)
Greta Lovisa Gustafson was born in Stockholm on September 18, 1905. A 17-year-old girl with perfect facial proportions was noticed by the producers of advertising filming in the department store where she worked.
The first films with her participation were silent, in the credits she was listed as Greta Garbo. She was the highest paid actress in Hollywood.
By the time the first sound film was released (“Anna Christie”, 1930) she already had an army of fans and the unofficial nickname “Sphinx”. The audience was struck by her beautiful low voice with a hoarseness. Garbo was filmed until 1941, one of the images that she embodied on the screen belonged to another, no less mysterious woman – Mata Hari.
When the war began, Garbo made a statement that she would return to the cinema after the victory – but she never fulfilled her promise.
The mysterious lady-Sphinx with a deep cold piercing gaze and dignified posture worked for reconnaissance during the war years. Thanks to her, a plant where the Nazis tried to create a nuclear bomb was destroyed in Norway, and she also helped save Jews in Denmark. It was rumored that Hitler admired her, wanted to meet with her, so British intelligence prepared Greta Garbo as a weapon to destroy the leader of the fascists.
After the war, she did not want to return to the world of invented Hollywood passions, besides, she always loved solitude and avoided the paparazzi.
As a recluse, Garbo lived for 50 years in the United States, avoided public events, did not respond to fans’ letters and did not give interviews, and died there on April 15, 1990.
Mata Hari (Netherlands)
Real name – Margareta Gertrude Zelle, born on August 7, 1876, Leeuwarden, Netherlands, died on October 15, 1917 in the suburbs of Paris, the city of Vincennes. Originally a Frisian. Her pseudonym translated from Malay means “sun”.
Having left with her first husband to Java, she became interested in Indonesian culture, in particular, dancing. This came in handy after the divorce, when she found herself in Paris alone without a livelihood. Against the background of growing interest in the East in Europe, Mata Hari was a great success, to enhance the effect she composed legends about her descent from Asian monarchs.
Among her lovers were influential persons from different states. When she was recruited by intelligence and how she became a double agent remained a mystery. Presumably, the beautiful adventurer stayed in this role for about three years, until she was declassified, detained and shot.
The life of this extraordinary woman inspired many screenwriters, directors, musicians and artists to create works about her: more than 20 films were shot alone.
Ada Lovelace (England)
December 10, 1815 (London), November 27, 1852 (London). Augusta Ada King Lovelace, female mathematician, programmer and inventor. Lord Byron’s only daughter, whom he saw once in his life as an infant. She had incredible mathematical abilities, foresaw the development of the capabilities of calculating machines – and put a lot of effort into this.
At the age of 13, she tried to realize the idea of learning to fly, and approached its implementation like a real scientist: she studied the anatomy of birds, materials for making wings, and even the use of steam propulsion.
At the age of 18, she met Charles Babbage, who developed a computer that was unique at that time. Several years later, she created a translation of his lecture from French, and her notes to the text exceeded the volume of the article three times. And it was not Babbage, but Ada Lovelace who explained to the British scientific community the principle of the mechanism.
In the twentieth century, her research formed the basis for the creation of the first program for a computer, although Babbage’s machine was not designed during Ada’s lifetime. Ada knew that in the future this apparatus would be able not only to do calculations, but also to create works of art: musical and pictorial.
In addition, Ada tried to create a mathematical model of the nervous system, was fond of phrenology, studied magnetism and tried to derive an algorithm that affects the rates.
Despite her merits, Ada Lovelace is still not officially recognized as the first computer scientist.
Joan of Arc, Maid of Orleans (France)
January 6, 1412 – May 30, 1431 This simple girl from Lorraine at the age of 17 became the commander-in-chief of the French army. Jeanne, according to her own confessions, was led to this mission by the saints: Archangel Michael, Catherine of Alexandria and Margaret of Antioch.
The visions first visited Jeanne at the age of 13. She was instructed to go to Orleans with the army and relieve him of the siege, and France from the British occupiers.
It is interesting that even Merlin, the court magician of King Arthur, long before her birth predicted the appearance of the Maid of Orleans – the savior of France. Thanks to her prophetic gift, Jeanne made her way to the court of the Dauphin Charles for an audience and persuaded him to set out on a campaign. In Blois, Jeanne, with the help of the heavenly patrons, received the legendary sword that had been waiting for her for 7 centuries. No one else had any doubts about her mission.
The battle of Orleans ended with Jeanne’s victory, then Reims was taken. But after Karl received the crown, luck receded from the heroine. Betrayal, captivity and death awaited her. She was accused of being in connection with the devil, having snatched out a confession by deception, and burned at the stake.
It was only in the twentieth century that it was justified and canonized. But it still remains a mystery how a young girl from a provincial town managed to raise the whole of France to the national liberation war, and why her prophecies came true one after another.
Cleopatra VII Philopator (Egypt)
The last queen of Egypt from the Ptolemaic dynasty, 69-30. BC. Born in Alexandria, possibly from the concubine of Ptolemy XII.
As a child, Cleopatra almost died as a result of the palace turmoil, after which her father lost the throne and with great difficulty returned it. Nevertheless, Cleopatra received a good education, which, combined with her natural intelligence, led her to power.
She knew 8 languages, and also possessed a rare charm – and knew how to find a way to the heart of any man, without being a beauty. Among the main love victories of Cleopatra are Julius Caesar and Mark Antony. Thanks to their help, she managed to keep the Egyptian throne, support her people and resist external enemies.
As a result of the palace conflict in Rome and the assassination of Caesar, Cleopatra and Antony lost their power, and then their lives.
The name of Cleopatra has become a symbol of the incomprehensible feminine seduction and perspicacity.
Ninel Kulagina (USSR)
She was born on July 30, 1926 in Leningrad, died on April 11, 1990. She became famous in the 60s, when she declared her phenomenal abilities: skin vision, telekinesis, remote exposure to objects, etc.
It was found that there was a strong electric field and ultrasonic pulses around her hands. It became a real sensation.
Eyewitnesses were divided into two camps: some accused Kulagina of charlatanism, while others were convinced over and over again that the experiment was clean. And yet, the scientific community did not manage to come to a consensus about her abilities.
In the world chronicle there are many stories about women, whose life and talents remained unsolved. Women who do not age, women are muses of famous people, women are time travelers, and so on.
But, if you think about it, being a woman is a special gift in itself, because each of us has its own incomprehensible mysterious zest…
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