When  people think of bad, bad women they perhaps think of Isabella the First – the woman who commissioned Torquemada – or Bloody Queen Mary, the scourge of Protestant England.

Few people have heard of Hürrem Haseki Sultan, or Roxelana, as she is better known in Europe.

Yet she made Anne Boleyn, one of her contemporaries, look like an underachiever.

Anne, after all, fell out of favour with her king and ended up with her head on the block.

Roxelana married the Sultan of the Ottomans, had him throw out his entire harem, and kept him in her thrall the rest of her life.

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