favourite faces for favourite mythic ladies: Dido with Gugu Mbatha-Raw

The most noble daughter of Phoenicia, Dido had fled the murderous intentions of her brother, the man who had already taken her husband and would take everything else should she let him. But Dido had always been the clever sibling and in the night she packed her gold and jewels and commanded ships of loyal followers to sea.

But now on the shores of a new country, those same followers were hungry and tired, missing the comfort and safety of the home they’d left behind for her. When the strangers came to the ships and said she must leave, Dido begged instead for their kindness. Let us rest here, Dido said to them. In return for half the wealth in my hold, I will take only as much land here as can be contained by an ox hide.

Behind their hands they laughed and then allowed it. Dido cut the hide into the thinnest of strips, laying each piece end to end upon the ground until it circled enough land to build her new city, her Carthage. And there Queen Dido flourished, a beauty and mind unmatched by any. 

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