Mata Hari (Hindu for "Eye of the rising sun")
1876 - 1917
Real name: Margaretha Gertrude Mac Leod Codename: H21
Although she claimed she was born in India, Mata Hari was born on August 7, 1876 in Holland, the daughter of a hat maker named Adam Zelle. From 1898 to 1904 she was married to John Rudolf Mac Leod and bore two children, one of which died mysteriously of poison in it's infancy. During the early 1900's in the Salons of Paris, Mata Hari became a successful belly dancer, but around 1910 when her success began to flounder, she became a prostitute and a plaything for wealthy military officers in Germany and France. As such she was enlisted by both sides during WWI to spy on each other. Although her secret work was rather ineffectual, she was arrested by the French and placed in front of a firing squad on October 15, 1917. Mata Hari's own fabrications on her childhood story, the French Secret Service believing she was the "spy of the century," and many years of rumors and exaggerations have made her life seem more mysterious than it actually may have been. Many people believe she was an innocent girl, duped into a world of sex and espionage. Whatever the case, she remains a legend and a beauty who continues to captivate the senses.
"The dance is a poem, of which each movement is a word." - Mata Hari