Cut Nyak Dhien (or Tjoet Nja’ Dhien) was a leader of the Acehnese guerrilla armies in the Aceh War against the Dutch during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Raised in an aristocratic household, Dhien swore vengeance upon the Dutch after her father and first husband were killed in the escalating war with Dutch colonial forces. She began leading her own troops against the Dutch, eventually merging her army with that of the celebrated hero Teuku Umar. They were later married in 1880, an arrangement she agreed to on the condition that he would not prevent her from continuing to fight.
This promise was kept and Dhien went on to act as the chief strategist of the combined army and later assumed leadership following the death of Umar in 1899. Despite difficult losses inflicted by the Dutch Maréchaussée and her own dwindling health, she continued to lead her forces until 1905 when the position of her base was betrayed to the Dutch. She was captured and exiled to Sumatra, where she continued to the preach her message of resistance until her death in 1908.
Today she is officially recognised as a national hero of Indonesia.