@Pierre Petit, Bibliothèque Marguerite Durand, Paris

French education pioneer Julie-Victoire Daubié is the first woman to ever obtain a baccalaureate in 1861 at age 37.

At a time when women were expected to have children and keep house, she defied the odds and went on to complete a Bachelor’s degree even though she was not physically allowed on university premises.

Earlier in her life, she wrote a groundbreaking essay on the status of low-income women, “La Femme pauvre au XIXe siècle, par une femme pauvre“.

Julie-Victoire died of tuberculosis in 1874 leaving behind her an incredible legacy. She paved the way for French women and opened the doors of education for them. She also championed women suffrage, fair wages and equality in marriage.

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