Some “Famous” Sad Single Ladies of the Past

So sometimes it kind of feels like we will never find someone. That our single days will never come to an end. Well, apparently, we are in some pretty good company (although, not all of these ladies are lookers)…

Susan B. Anthony
The Champion of Women’s Rights and Vote

Although, all us ladies are pretty luck she didn’t ever marry and settle down with some kiddies! It’s because of her we can vote.

Joan of Arc
A national heroine in France

This is an actress playing Joan, not the ACTUAL Saint...just wanted to make that clear.

At age 17 she led the victorious French troops in the Battle of Orleans (1429). Two years later she was convicted of heresy and burned at the stake; in 1920 Joan was canonized by the Roman Catholic church as a saint. I think the key thing we must remember about Joan though is she was only 19 when she was burned! But in the 15th century, wasn’t 19 middle age or something?

Jane Austen
Well known Author

I opted for the real deal rather than Anne Hathaway playing her in a movie I haven't seen.

Jane Austen lived from 1775 to 1817. She wrote many of the movies books you love the most: Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Northanger Abbey, Emma, and Mansfield Park (and Clueless!). I guess she was too busy making sure all of her great characters were finding TLOTL to find her’s!

Gertrude Bell
What Oprah Only wishes she was

Tent for one, please!

Bell, one of the most famous women of her time, was a scholar,
historian, kingmaker, archaeologist, spy, writer, traveller, political officer, administrator, explorer, cartographer in Greater Syria, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, and Arab. She was also responsible for the state first known as Mesopotamia – formed from the Ottoman provinces of Mosul, Baghdad and Basra – and now known as Iraq. And before you start to think, oh she was just too busy doing EVERYTHING to get married, she did in fact have a long affair with married Lieutenant-Colonel “Dick” Doughty-Wylie…apparently nothing was ever consummmated and the affair consisted of tweets love letters.

Margaret Brent

First female landowner and attorny in the colonies.

She looks powerful!

Brent lived from 1601 to 1671, and was a colonial landowner (when it really wasn’t legal for women to own land). She was the attorney for the governor of Maryland, a position that made her the first female lawyer in America, as well as an early feminist. Brent never married, a rarity in the time when men outnumbered women 6:1 (how lucky)!

Mary Cassatt
American impressionist artist

You probably know Mary Cassatt from her lovely paintings of mothers and children. Except Cassatt decided early in her career that marriage would not work to be successful, so she just painted her family…hard to believe she would paint so many loving pictures of motherhood if she truly didn’t want it, but she did break the mold as a female Impressionist.

Coco (Gabrielle) Chanel
Chanel (need I say more?)


Coco was a famous French fashion designer who introduced the world to her signature cardigan sweater, “little black dress” and Chanel No. 5. Coco dated some of the most influential men of her time, but she never married. The reason may be found in her answer, when asked why she did not marry the Duke of Westminster: “There have been several Duchesses of Westminster. There is only one Chanel.” Much like there is only one Chanel (and no, your crappy Chinatown copy doesn’t count!).

Emily Dickinson
Reclusive American Poet

Emily Dickinson was born on December 10, 1830 in Amherst,
Massachusetts. She is recognized as one of the greatest American poets of the 19th century. She didn’t like to leave her house, causing historians to think she was probably an agoraphobe. Clearly she never married. But just think, if she had and was a normal house leaving girl, maybe her poems would be less great and more Hallmark greeting card.

Elizabeth I of England
The Virgin Queen

Even though it was such a short part, Judy Dench in Shakespeare in Love is fab as Elizabeth 1.

The most famous Queen of England, Elizabeth I was the last of the
Tudors and a monarch whose life featured war, discovery and religious strife. In 1566, she confided to the Spanish ambassador that if she could find a way to settle the succession without marrying, she would do so. By 1570, senior figures in the government privately accepted that Elizabeth would never marry or name a successor.Elizabeth’s silence about marriage or an heir strengthened her own political security: she knew that if she named an heir, her throne would be vulnerable to a coup. Her unmarried status also inspired a cult of virginity, promoting the unmarried virgin to goddess status. If she was playing the which “Sex and the City” Character game, she would truly be the Miranda (before Steve and baby…). Single powerful woman trying to shove the men away.

Barbara McClintock

One of the World’s (not just women, not just American, WORLD) Most Distinguished Cytogeneticists (whatever that is)

Babs busy in the lab

Barbara won the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1983 for…doing some crazy genetic thing I don’t understand with maize.Basically she was the first person to understand that pieces of DNA can jump around, causing genetic mutations, which people had no clue why those weird things happened before. But if Barbara had not devoted so much of her life to figuring all this out, and had run off and gotten married, who knows where modern science would be?

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