When people think about beautiful women in history, they generally think about icons like Marylyn Monroe. What is often over overlooked, though, is that some of the women who are well-known for their extraordinary achievements were beautiful too. So, instead of just listing out the obvious beautiful women from history, here are amazing women who did amazing things and were beautiful too.
1. Soong Ching Ling
Soong Ching Ling was the second wife of the man who created the Republic of China, Sun Yat-sen, in 1911. Knien is considered in China as the ‘mother of the nation’, Soong Ching Ling played a major role in Chinese politics at the time and she openly criticised the Chinese government sometimes too. She was also well known in China for her intelligence, her fashion sense and her beauty too.
2. Charlotte Bronte
Charlotte Bronte was the eldest of the Bronte sisters and is best known for famous novel, Jayne Eyre, which was the book that started an early feminist movement. She was witty, intelligent and quite beautiful too, and she was a popular figure in the high class social circles of London.
3. Joan of Arc
Joan of Arc managed to inspire an army of men to drive the English from France and, even though she cut her hair short and she wore men’s clothing, all the images that we have of her, portray her to be a picture of beautiful innocence. She was only 16 years of age when she led the French army and, sadly only 19, when she was burned at the stake, but her actions paved the way for a French victory.
4. Grace Kelly
Grace Kelly is always right at the top of any list of beautiful women in history and her story is no less remarkable than her beauty was. Having made it to the top in Hollywood, she retired from making movies to marry Prince Rainier of Monaco and became a princess. Hers is still a sad tale, though, because it is said that always yearned to return to the world of movies and suffered badly with depression, before she died in a car accident in 1982.
5. Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
Anything you read about Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis always starts off with the fact that she was married to the US president, John F. Kennedy, but Jackie O was a stunning beauty, long before she became First Lady. In fact, she was dubbed “debutante of the year” when she made her society debut in 1947.
6. Mata Hari
Mata Hari, whose real name was Margaretha Geertruida Zelle was the Dutch Frisian exotic dancer who used her beauty to gain favour with many high-ranking allied military officers during World War One. She then promptly passed on any information she gained from the pillow talk of those officers to the German army. French intelligence officers eventually identified her as being the spy that the Germans called H-21, and she was executed by firing squad in 1917.
7. Princess Diana
When Princess Dianna first appeared in the public eye, she was a shy kindergarten teacher and he seemed quite overwhelmed by all the publicity that her engagement to Prince Charles caused. She later blossomed into one of the most beautiful women in the world and was one of the most photographed too.
8. Marie Antoinette
Marie Antoinette married the future king of France when she was only 14, and the young Austrian’s beauty and sense of fashion captured the hearts of the French people. Her fair skin, blue eyes and blonde hair are said to have captured the attention of quite a few people close to her as well and she is rumoured to have had numerous affairs.
9. Audrey Hepburn
Audrey Hepburn has been called the ultimate beauty icon of all time and was one of the biggest stars of the Hollywood Golden Era. In later life, though, Hepburn dedicated all her time to her work with UNICEF and she helped people on some the poorest countries in the world. In 1992, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in recognition of the work she did in her role of Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF.
The beauty of Cleopatra is legendary, as are some of the tales of her beauty regimes. One Roman historian said that Cleopatra was “a woman of surpassing beauty” and that she was extremely knowledgeable and could charm anyone. She must have had something about her, because she managed to tempt both Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, two of the most powerful men in the Roman Empire.