paula here. I am amazed as I research and blog that I am constantly finding incredible women – lesbian, bi-sexual or heterosexual. When going back in history, most women were married for safety and for financial reasons. When we look at somebody like Queen Zenobia, we look at her accomplishments as ruler and warrior. As lesbians, we can only speculate as to, if given a choice of not marrying, would they have taken it? However, this site is about honouring all women regardless of their sexual orientation.
When delving into the facts of her life, there is an obvious reason why she was called “the warrior queen.” Following the assassination of her husband and stepson in 267, Zenobia became the ruler of the Palmyrene Empire or modern Syria.
In less than two years as queen and ruler, she battled back the advances of the Roman Empire. She expanded the boundaries of her kingdom by force, invading Egypt and Anatolia.
Winning the Love of her Soldiers
Truly, a warrior queen in battle, Zenobia showed a kinship with her foot soldiers by walking miles with them. This kinship was rewarded by her soldiers advancing and capturing countries.
Brief but Famous Life
Zenobia would go on to capture key trade routes before the Romans responded by laying siege to Emesa, where her treasury lay. She and her son Vaballathus escaped the siege, but were caught along the Euphrates River. They were taken as hostages, but Vaballathus seems to have vanished en route to Rome. He is presumed to have died along the route. The year was 274 and her defeat was celebrated in Rome where she was bound in golden chains and led through the streets. There are two or even more accounts of her final years. One account paints her as a pitiful victim who died in poverty or illness. A second account states that she was beheaded. A positive account claims that the RomanEmperor Aurelian, was overwhelmed and charmed by her grace and integrity that he granted her freedom. She is said to hve married a Roman politician and became a philosopher and socialite. From this happy marriage came daughters and the entire family lived in a luxurious home.