Italian philosopher. Born 1646, died 1684.
Coming from a family of Venetian nobility, the Cornaros, Elena Lucrezia was given an unusually good education, studying Greek and Latin from early childhood. Later expanding her studies to many other languages, as well as mathematics, philosophy and theology, she became a Benedictine oblate in 1665 - but never took full vows.
She had originally aimed at a doctorate in theology, but she was thwarted in this because of her gender - a female doctor of theology was unacceptable at the time. Instead, in 1678, she received a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Padua - the first woman in history to become a doctor. The title of her thesis is not preserved, but the subject was probably Aristotle's Posterior Analytics and Physics.
She died in 1684 and lies buried in the church of Santa Giustina in Padua.