England won a second Women's Rugby World Cup after a stunning 21-9 victory over Canada in Paris.
Centre, Emily Scarett, scored 16 points including a late try inside the final 10 minutes to end a run of three successive defeats in the final in 2002, 2006 and 2010.
Danielle Waterman's first-half try put England ahead at the break, with Magali Harvey keeping Canada – in their first World Cup final – in touch with three penalties but they were unable to keep pace with the Red Roses in the second 40 minutes.
"It hasn't quite sunk in yet," said coach Gary Street. "I'm just relieved and thrilled for everyone that has helped along the way.
"Once the 80 were over it was good, knowing that even if they scored there was only time for a conversion. The emotion took over but it's been four years of pain and planning and I'm just overjoyed."
First-half try scorer Waterman added: "Someone just said to me 'Danielle Waterman, world champion' and I just started welling up but I don't think I will get bored of hearing it. We knew we were going to get pressure on right until the end and they didn't disappoint.
"The girls up front were unbelievable, the platform they gave us and Emily Scarett what a hero. We've been working so hard and it's been such a journey and yeah it's been the past 12 years but the support we've had this last six months has been to the point.
"We do give up a lot but it is worth it. We wouldn't do it if we didn't want to do it and the hardest thing isn't the day job it's the fact we play every four days."
Victory for England's women comes 13 months ahead of the men's tournament which will be hosted on home shores in 2015.