Since Angela Merkel was named Time Magazine’s Person of the Year, you may think you know everything about this powerful lady. That is, of course, very unlikely. Here are 10 very surprising facts you probably didn’t know about Angela Merkel.

Number 1: The Longest-serving Female Leader in the EU

Of course, Angela is nowhere near unelected British Queen Elizabeth’s time in power. Though Merkel has led Germany since she was chosen as the country’s first woman chancellor in 2005.

Number 2: Angela Merkel is a Great Chef

Merkel’s plum cake is her signature dish. Also, Angela loves making potato soup and roulade.

Number 3: She is half-Polish

Angela Merkel’s grandfather was born in Poznan, Poland (it was a part of Germany in 1896).

Number 4: Angela Merkel a.k.a. “Mutti”

Merkel has no children of her own. Despite that, Germans call her “Mommy” (“Mutti”).

Number 5: Merkel and Dogs

Angela Merkel has been afraid of dogs after the incident in the 1990s when she was bitten by one. Vladimir Putin knew this fact when he allowed his beloved Labrador into a meeting with Angela some years ago.

Number 6: Most Powerful Woman

In 2015, Magazine Forbes named Angela “number one” on its list of the most powerful women in the world.

Number 7: Merkel Grew Up in East Germany

Angela Merkel’s father moved the family from the West to East Germany quickly after Angela was born.

Number 8: Angela Speaks Russian

The best way to approach Vladamir Putin…

Number 9: Angela Merkel is a Scientist

Marie Curie (the first woman to win a Nobel Prize) was Angela’s role model. She earned degrees in quantum chemistry and physics, which made her the only woman occupying a position in the theoretical chemistry section in the East German Academy of Science.

Number 10: “Merkel” is Her First Husband’s Last Name

Physics student Ulrich Merkel was Angela’s first husband for about 5 years (1977 – 1982). Since 1998, she has been married to the chemist Joachim Sauer who has two kids from a previous marriage.

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