Margaretha Geertruida MacLeod, better known as Mata Hari, was a Dutch exotic dancer and courtesan. She was convicted of being a spy for Germany during World War I. Many people still believe she was innocent because the French Army needed a scapegoat.
About Mata Hari in brief
Margaretha Geertruida MacLeod, better known as Mata Hari, was a Dutch exotic dancer and courtesan. She was convicted of being a spy for Germany during World War I. Many people still believe she was innocent because the French Army needed a scapegoat. Zelle was born 7 August 1876, in Leeuwarden, Netherlands. Her father owned a hat shop, made successful investments in the oil industry, and became affluent enough to give Margaretha a lavish early childhood that included exclusive schools until the age of 13. She studied Indonesian traditions intensely for several months and joined a local dance company during that time. In 1903, she moved to Paris, where she performed as a circus horse rider using the name Lady MacLeod. She also posed as an artist’s model to earn a living. Critics would later write about this and other such movements within the context of Orientalism and Orientalism became openly flirtatious, flirtious, and openly flirtious. She died in Paris, France, in 1918, after being executed by firing squad in France. She is buried in the Paris suburb of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, near where she lived with her husband Rudolf MacLeod and their two children, Norman-John MacLeod and Louise Jeanne MacLeod until her death in 1921. She had no recent Asian ancestry and both her parents were Dutch. She married MacLeod in Amsterdam on 11 July 1895. She moved with herhusband to Malang on the east side of the island of Java, traveling out on SS Prinses Amalia in May 1897, and had two children.
She later married another Dutch officer, Captain John Brienen MacLeod, and had a daughter, Jeanne. She left MacLeod when he became an alcoholic and regularly beat his wife, who was twenty years younger and whom he blamed for his lack of promotion. MacLeod was legally required to pay support, which he never did, making life very difficult for Zelle and her daughter. In 1899, their children fell violently ill from complications relating to the treatment of syphilis contracted from their parents, though the family claimed they were poisoned by an irate servant. Some sources maintain that one of MacLeod’s enemies may have poisoned a supper to kill both of their children. After moving back to the Netherlands, the couple officially separated on 30 August 1902, and the divorce became final in 1906. In correspondence to her relatives in the Netherlands in 1897, she revealed her artistic name of Mata HarI, the word for’sun’ in the local Malay language. At MacLeod’s urging, Zelle returned to him, but his behavior did not change. In 1908, she gave birth to a son, Norman, who later died at the age 21, also possibly from complications related to syphilis. The marriage enabled Zelle to move into the Dutch upper class and placed her finances on a sound footing. In 1909, she and Norman moved to the Dutch capital, Amsterdam.