Of the hundreds of women who made a difference in the world during their lives, here are just a few who were recorded in the history books. It is also good to note that there were and still are millions of women who make the world a better place every day but are not given credit for it and these are just four women out of millions who went down in history:

Joan of Arc

Joan was a young girl of peasant birth born into a poor family during a time of conflict between England and France. At age sixteen she petitioned the heir to the throne of France telling the king that she was sent by God to help him. By seventeen she had control over an entire army and was allowed to lead them into battle. Joan even won the hearts of her soldiers who saw her as a mythical leader of sorts. Young Joan was a force to be reckoned with, despite her youth she was known to be wise and someone of great spiritual maturity. She gave the people something to believe in and fight for and within a year she led the French army to victory against various adversaries. However, she was soon captured and sold to the English who tried her for witchcraft (which they only did to get rid of the women they thought were being too rebellious) and burned her at the stake.

Elizabeth the First

After much national upheaval and difficulty Elizabeth was named successor to the throne. When she was threatened with potential invasion Queen Elizabeth showed real strength as a leader by personally visiting the troops and famously telling them that although she was a female she was still their ruler. Elizabeth often met with her subjects in person resulting in her monarchy being more accessible and thus making her extremely popular. She had smart advisors and defused many political crises but she wasn’t perfect and made her fair share of errors. She never married and never produced an heir and so with her died the last of the Tudor Monarchs and she became popularly remembered as the ‘Virgin Queen’. She was a powerful female monarch and broke boundaries by leading England to its supremacy all while she ruled without a King which made her an iconic Queen.

Florence Nightingale         

Aspiring to become a nurse during a time when nursing was looked down upon Florence finally fulfilled her goal by volunteering to nurse soldiers and helping with the development of hospital practices. She was determined to serve others and when the Crimean war broke out, Florence decided to help since so many soldiers were dying simply from the lack of a basic first-aid kit. She selected and trained nurses and had strictly disciplined rulings for herself and the rest of the staff when it came to nursing. Her dedication was highly appreciated by the soldiers and the news of her efforts soon spread. She continued to work hard to improve hospital conditions even after the war ended. Nightingale also wrote about the role of women in society – she pushed women to be less passive and to take a greater stand in society with regards to their positions.

Marie Curie

Curie won the Nobel Prize twice, due to the pioneering work she did in the field of Radioactivity. Compared to the women of her time she was a front runner simply by taking interest in subjects like Chemistry, Physics and Biology and altogether pursuing her education of scientific knowledge. She tirelessly persisted in her work and was supposed to have said that life is not easy and so perseverance is needed in everything we do. Even during world war one she dedicated much of her time to installing X-tray machines in hospitals to help the soldiers and doctors. Ultimately she achieved great things because she persisted.

These are only four women who made an impact in society and by taking lessons from the women who came before us, we must remember that we too can make a difference.

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