Tag Archives: warrior women

Amazing Amazons

1Fierce! Courageous! Strong! Brave! Beautiful! Tall!

The warlike, self-reliant Amazons were a no nonsense tribe of early feminists.

An intriguing myth first perpetrated by the Greeks,  we’re more familiar with the modern Xena:Warrior princess and Wonder Woman version.

Like all myths there’s few real anthropological indicators to validate that there was indeed a tribe of women warriors. Wow– a race of warlike gorgeous ruling babes–who doesn’t want to totally buy into that legend!

XWP-CHARIOTS-OF-WAR-1X02-xena-warrior-princess-18580789-748-576Let’s start with the myth, because that’s more fun than the reality.

  • They hail from what is now Ukriane
  • Queen Hippolyta wore a magical girdle ( why such independent  women would wear one is beyond me–maybe it held their weapons)
  • They seared or cut off their right breast so it wouldn’t interfer with their archery aim ( although no ancient art depictions support this)
  • One tale claims they had sex with men in the neighboring lands soley to procreate. Boy babies were either returned to the father or left to die in the willderness
  • they dressed as Persian men–in pants
  • they invented the battle-axe
  • a woman couldn’t get married until she killed a man in battle
  • another story asserts the women kept male sex slaves
  • girls were raised to be hunters, warriors, and farmers

WW_(LC_1)What is provable:

  • graves found in the Ukraine reveals many women buried in battle gear and with weapons ( usually a spear)
  • women at the time would definitely have needed to defend themselves from  invaders since their warrior hubbys were on years-long military campaigns
  • scholars believe the myth arose from the Greek culture about their battles with foreign barbarians
  • or the myth originated  from the earlier Minoan civilization ( Bronze age )
  • the Amazon river is named after the explorer, Francisco de Orellana, who claims he encountered a tribe of warrior women while exploring the rain forest.

h2_32.11.4Amazons, bad-ass women who didn’t didn’t need men ( well…except for that one thing)!

Something to mull over:

Being referred to as an Amazon has a  (mostly) positive connotation,

whereas being called a Battle Axe–not so much!

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Fab Female Friday:Boudicca

"Boadicea Haranguing the Britons" by John Opie

“Boadicea Haranguing the Britons” by John Opie

Bodacious Boudicca was the queen of the Icini tribe in Briton (the area is called Norfolk now) in AD 60.

After her husband, King Prasutagus died, Roman publicani (crooked tax collectors) and loan sharks infested the land demanding MONEY $$. No frail flower, Boudicca knew she was being played and manipulated by Roman thugs so she voiced her objections—loudly!

The Roman response? Boudicca was flogged (whipped)  and her daughters publicly raped and beaten.

Rightly incensed at this atrocity, the red-head Boudicci gathered her warlike people and led them in a revolt against the Romans where she devastated the 9th Roman legion. How did they do this? The stealthy Celts engaged in guerrilla style warfare, moving quickly through the dense forests and taking the slow-moving Romans by surprise.

Victorious— but still pissed off—she advanced on London, a hub for Roman trade.B1

The numbers are suspect but Boudicci’s army reportedly slew over 70,000 Roman citizens who were living in London.

The tide soon turned and the growing revolt against the Roman interlopers ended in tragedy when the over-confident, ill-armed Celts could not withstand the highly-trained, well-equipped Roman forces. The massacre was  vicious— men, woman, and children–no one escaped the carnage.

Reports differ over the death of this warrior woman. Some say  Boudicci committed royal suicide by poison ( the rage at the time). Others contend she became sick and died.

Boudicca: Bold. Powerful. Determined. Courageous. Fierce.
Legendary Queen and Fearless Leader.

To learn more about this Fab Female check out the University of North Carolina’s website at http://www.unc.edu/celtic/catalogue/boudica/catalog.html

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