30 Royal Facts about Queens – Part 2

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1Sibylla

Sibylla, the Queen of Jerusalem agreed to annul her marriage to Guy de Lusignan to appease the High Court, on the condition that she has free rein to choose her next husband after her coronation. Upon being crowned queen, Sibylla immediately announced that she chose Guy as her husband.


2. China's Empress Longyu agreed to sign the abdication on behalf of the six-year-old Emperor on the condition they could keep their titles and receive 4,000,000 silver yuan annually. The Qing dynasty ended and she died only a few months later.


3. Lady Jane Grey, also known as England’s Forgotten Queen was only the Queen of England for 9 days in 1553. She only ascended to the throne because Edward VI wanted to keep a Protestant as the sovereign of England. She was then deposed and executed the following year.


4. Empress Dowager Cixi was served 120 different dishes for each meal. She would eat only two or three bites of some of the dishes because of fear that they would be poisoned. Cixi usually gave permission for the other concubines, officials, and eunuchs to eat the unfinished dishes.


5. French queen Marie Antoinette was offered in 1787, a boy from Senegal as a servant but instead of taking him as a servant she adopted him as her son and baptized him as Jean. During the revolution, Jean was separated from the royal family and left by revolutionaries to die on the streets at the age of 10.


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6Tadj ol-Molouk

Iran's Queen Tadj ol-Molouk played an important part in the abolition of the veil in Iran during the reign of her husband. She was the first Iranian Queen to show herself in public when she attended a graduation ceremony in modern clothes with her two daughters, without veils.


7. Queen Elizabeth II once went for a walk near her Balmoral estate with one of her protection officers and met some American tourists who didn’t recognize her. They asked her if she’d ever met the Queen and she said “No”, then pointed to her officer and said, “he has”. They didn’t connect the dots.


8. In the 1700s, Queen Caroline of Great Britain had smallpox inoculation trialed on six prisoners in return for commuting their death sentences. When this was successful, she inoculated her own children, popularising the process.


9. Queen Teuta of Illyria was a warrior queen who oversaw a fleet of hardcore pirates, led armies and navies that conquered cities and islands along the Adriatic coast and forcefully challenged the Roman Republic by declaring piracy legitimate business and killing their diplomatic envoys.


10. 19th Century Empress Elisabeth of Austria washed her hair with brandy, bathed in olive oil, and slept in a face mask lined with raw veal. She was supposedly considered one of the most beautiful women in Europe.


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11Anne of England

Queen Anne of England was pregnant 17 times. The first time at the age of 18, and the last at the age of 34. She either miscarried or gave birth to stillborn babies. One child died under a year, another at a year and a half, and the oldest died at the age of 11 in 1700.


12. Dowager Empress Marie, the mother to the last Russian Tsar, was moved from Denmark to St. Petersberg in 2006, 77 years after her death. During the reinterment ceremony, the crowding around the coffin caused a young danish diplomat to fall into the grave.


13. Empress Kōken of Japan nearly made a Buddhist monk Dōkyō her successor on the throne. This would have broken the line of Japanese monarchs all being descendants of Amaterasu, and completely shifted the Imperial dynasty forever.


14. Cleopatra, while born Egyptian, traced her origins to Greece, may have been more renowned for her intellect than her appearance. She spoke as many as a dozen languages, was well educated and was later described as a ruler “who elevated the ranks of scholars and enjoyed their company.”


15. Elizabeth of Russia received little education, no one wanted to marry her because her mother was a peasant, and her finacé was murdered. Regardless, when she became Empress of Russia she built the University of Moscow, the Winter Palace, and would pay the dowry of future brides.


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16Olga

A Russian queen named Olga buried Nobles alive, burned the royalty, slayed everyone at her husband’s funeral, and set their remaining town on fire, with birds, because they killed her king.


17. Velu Nachiyar was the first queen to fight against the British colonial power in India. After her husband was killed by British soldiers, she raised an army and repelled the British in 1780. She is one of the few rulers who regained her kingdom and ruled it for 10 more years.


18. Queen Victoria, the matriarch of the British Empire proposed to her future husband Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha because according to tradition a man couldn’t propose to the queen.


19. Wu Zetian is the only reigning Empress of China who was the wife of two different emperors. She eventually usurped the throne and ruled through brutal use of murder, betrayal, and secret police forces.


20. Mary, Queen of Scots who was suspected of murdering her husband fled to England for help. Her cousin Queen Elizabeth I, threatened by Mary’s claim to her throne, imprisoned her for 19 years then beheaded her. Elizabeth had no children so Mary’s son ironically became the first king over England, Scotland, and Ireland.


21Mumtaz Mahal

In 1632, a year after the death of Mumtaz Mahal, the Empress consort of the Mughal Empire, her husband emperor Shah Jahan had her body exhumed and brought to Agra. Then he started work on building her a mausoleum. 22 years later the Taj Mahal was finished.


22. Queen Isabella of France; frustrated, humiliated, and tired of her husband; fled England, tricked him to send their son, invaded England with her lover (enemy and fugitive of her husband), and defeated him.


23. At the age of 16, Queen Anne of Romania fled from the Nazi Germans in 1939 and eventually escaped to the United States. She attended college in New York and worked as a sales assistant at Macy’s department store. In 1943, she volunteered for military service in the French Army, where she received the Cross of war.


24. Empress Irene of the Byzantine Empire, among other things, became empress by winning a beauty contest, after her husband died became the first empress to rule in her own right in Byzantine History, and blinded her own son in order to retain power.


25. The 17th century Swedish Queen Christina surprisingly abdicated her throne. Very bright, and a lover of arts, she almost bankrupt Sweden in her extravagance. Speculators suggest her abdication was a result of her proclivity towards "men's pursuits," wearing men's clothing and refusal to marry.

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