You've heard of the great French conqueror Napoleon Bonaparte, right?
Did you know that one of his biggest defeats was at the paws of bunnies? A rabbit hunt went terribly wrong for the emperor, when 3,000 rabbits were released from cages and promptly attacked Napoleon and his men. Apparently, the fuzzy creatures felt no fear when faced with humans and their guns. Rabbits climbed up the men's legs and coats, and the attack only stopped when the hunting party fled in their carriages.
History is filled with funny and unexpected stories! That's why Redditor u/Bluebird_azuite asked people to share... "What is a crazy historical event that sounds fake but is actually true?"
50. 3 in 1...Giphy
Mexico had 3 presidents in one day
Old guy goes out of office
New guy comes in
Guy says to new guy "Leave this office"
New guy says "Ok"
Other guy gets in
New guy had the shortest president with being president for less than an hour. newgamerdude
49. Erasmus of Rotterdam
Erasmus of Rotterdam, one of the most respected theologians of his age, announced that he was going to do a new translation of the Bible from the original Aramaic and Greek texts. Everyone, right up to the Pope, was cheering him on until he started working on the First Epistle of John. Then he noticed that, hey, guys, you know that verse about God being three in one, the primary textual support for the doctrine of the Trinity? It's kind of not there in the original.
There was a short embarrassed pause, and then some very frantic letters sent around Europe, and then suddenly some monks popped up and said oh, sorry, did we forget to mention? We have this totally authentic and not at all hastily forged original text of the First Epistle of John which, look, totally has the bit about the Trinity in it.
The debate about the authenticity of the Johannine Comma is.... probably not completely settled.
48. Finding Fidel.
The CIA tried to kill Fidel Castro hundreds of times and failed. Some of their plans would have put Wile E. Coyote to shame - exploding cigars, poisoned cigars, poison in his diving suit, a poisoned ballpoint pen. Also, they tried to place his radio studio with LSD and once tried to use thallium salts to make his beard fall out. bookwing812
47. Knives Away!
Robert Liston was a surgeon in the 1800s. He once performed a surgery with a 300 percent mortality rate.
The patient needed a leg amputation. During the operation Robert sliced off 2 fingers of his assistant. They both died of gangrene. An observing doctor had his coat sliced by mistake and he got scared and had a heart attack. TheLightningCount1
46. XL for Life....
In the Cold War the Americans planned to drop XL condoms labeled "medium" on communist territory to make them think Americans were anatomically superior. SirFox06
45. Hey Arnold.
Its even crazier when you read the details. It looks like Hey Arnold! did do an episode based around the event, so yes, I had never heard of this show before though. SentientPotatoSalad
44. Cup Runneth Over....
Two countries went to war following a World Cup match between their teams. kookycandies
This was El Salvador and Honduras in 1969. The actual cause of war was the government of Honduras violently expelling Salvadoran peasants who had settled on Honduran estates. PaloAltoTerraformers
43. holy bejesus....
MKUltra kind of scares the holy bejesus out of me. Most of the FOIA documents procured through the courts have been published and you can freely read them online or buy a book of actual photos of the documents to read directly. Many of them are redacted to holy hell, but the stuff they didn't redact is monstrous beyond belief... what unholy mess is under all that black ink?!
And the programs reach is vast. It got out of control a number of times. One time these guys participated in an MKUltra test at a research hospital and, long story short, smuggled out some acid and literally started the psychedelic movement. That movement was indirectly responsible for John Lennon's success as a musician, AND his murder! It's responsible for the unibomber and Ken Kesey. They dosed major American cities and performed heinous tests on people who couldn't defend themselves in hospitals and psych wards.
None of this crap would play as fiction in a story book, yet it was real life. They were ultimately seeking a mind control substance/methodology and, what really creeps me out is how long it went on. The US government and various branches of the US military have done studies on all kinds of voodoo throughout the years... UFOs, remote viewing, psychic phenomenon. You name it. Most of those projects were cancelled relatively quickly.
MKUltra went on for decades, and there's no direct proof that the tests ever stopped! This tacitly suggests that, if they didn't find an actual mind control method, they at least found proof of concept enough that they kept funding the program for a long time in pursuit of it.
I wonder what they really found. Cats-Ate-My-Pizza
41. Ski Patrol Issues...
I'm surprised no one has mentioned Aimo Koivunen. He was a Finnish soldier in WWII. While out on a ski patrol with his fellow soldiers, they were attacked by Soviet forces, but managed to escape. Koivunen was also the sole carrier of the team's Pervitin, a methamphetamine meant to keep soldiers awake. He took all the pills from a bottle, and boy did he wake up.
He got separated from his group, captured by Soviets again, escaped again, injured himself on a landmine, and subsisted entirely off of nuts, berries, and a bird he not only caught with his bare hands, but ate raw, too. By the time he was found and rescued, he weighed like 90 pounds and had a heart rate of 200 BPM. First recorded case of a soldier overdosing.
40. Mythic War.
Caligula, Roman emperor, declared war on Poseidon. He had his army march towards the beach where the soldiers proceeded to stab the water and throw their spears into the ocean. FullRequirements
39. Project Azorian....Giphy
Wrecked Soviet nuclear submarine in Pacific? CIA's on the scene! Oh, you know that aviation nut Howard Hughes? Let's have him construct a ginormous ship built for secretly lifting said submarine 16000ft below with a giant claw then transport it back to states! Great plan guys let's roll!
This was $4.7 billion to only retrieve half of the sub (it broke apart during the lift), and without any nukes nor encryption equipment. Still a mission success though. Another_Adventure
38. Uncle Tales.
My uncle told me about this battle in which the winning commander sent the losing commander a letter saying for him to surrender. The losing commander sent back a letter that just said nuts on it. It inspired the losing army so much that they won the war. I don't know if this is real but I really hope it is. HomerCultLeader
You're thinking of Brig. Gen. Anthony C. McAuliffe in WWII at The Battle of the Bulge.
Wikipedia has a briefer account:
37. Voyage 1904....
The voyage of the Russian 2nd Pacific Squadron, 1904.
During the Russo-Japanese war, the Russians sent a fleet on a 18000 mile journey from the Baltic to Japan. The trip can be summed by as: "and then things got worse."
Untrained crew, incompetent officers, mistaking English fishing boats for Japanese torpedo boats and attacking, friendly fire incidents, attacking civilian vessels from 3 other European powers, re-coaling in the middle of the ocean, acquiring exotic animals from Madagascar, the Kamchatka, reinforcements being obsolete vessels, and much more all happened.
36. Happy Holidays.Giphy
The Christmas truce was a series of widespread unofficial ceasefires along the Western Front of the First World War around Christmas 1914. The truce occurred during the relatively early period of the war. Bishop68
35. Plus 1...
Liechtenstein sending 80 men to invade Italy only for them to come back with 81. StickBreightley
Nobody cared about bringing troops even close to Liechtenstein though, and those border guards made friends with a lone Italian civilian who walked by, so they took him along when they went back home. curiosityLynx
34. Melted Pain.
During WW2, the Allies bombed Dresden, Germany with so many incendiary bombs that it created a firestorm that literally pulled people down the street.
An allied POW that was being held there was tasked to clean up the bodies and had to open the bomb shelter in the center of the city and said that the remains of the bodies were essentially a green and brown gelatin. The city center of the firestorm was so hot that it melted the people.
33. Best Wishes...
Hitler flew to Finland to congratulate Mannerheim on his birthday.
And his speech between them is a rare recording where he isn't putting up his leader act. SinisterCheese
Also interesting, Finland and Germany were allies against Russia but Finland did not participate in the Holocaust and actively worked to get Jewish refugees and protect them. Freezebread
32. Be Gone Hex!Giphy
Pope Gregory IX declared war on cats. sandipk96
It is believed by some scholars that the war on cats which out lived the pope himself, resulted in the surge in the rat population that was later responsible for the black plague. chainmailler2001
31. Taffy 3....
The Battle Off Samar.
Taffy 3, a group of around a dozen small American escort carriers, destroyers, and escort destroyers, found themselves under attack by the Center Force, around two dozen of the most powerful warships in the Japanese Navy including battleships (particularly the Yamato), cruisers, and destroyers.
Thanks to the incredible bravery and determination of every ship involved, and poor intelligence on the part of the Japanese forces, they inflicted heavy casualties on the vastly superior force and got them to retreat. That's a pretty basic summary of things. TheSorge
The story of the town of Kalavrita, Greece. One day the Nazis invaded, they lured all the women and in children into a church in town and locked the doors. They marched all the men to the top of the hill put guns to their heads and forced them to watch as they set the church on fire.
They had to watch the women and children burn alive. Then they shot the men. They say the blood flowed down the hill like a river. They have the most beautiful underground Memorial of hanging incense for each life lost. It really gets to you. FuzzyBoop
29. No Touching.Giphy
The "glass delusion" where in medieval times, people of royal status would flip out one day and avoid touching anything because they believed they were made of glass of their insides were made of glass. King Charles VI was a good example of this. cxrte4
You know that massacre scene in Tulsa from 'Watchmen'?
27. Beyond the Pail.
The Bucket War. ArenVaal
In case anyone didn't know the war was not started over a bucket, but rather the bucket was taken later on in the war.
Still crazy piece of history though! SentientPotatoSalad
26. 3 more times....
The third defenestration of Prague. The act of throwing someone out a window - and the fact that it happened in Prague 3 major times. thirteenorphans
And the two guys who were thrown in the 3rd defenestration both survived - they landed in dung/hay. FatherDromos
25. From the Air.
Berlin air drop - who would have thought real people and real governments could do something so inspiring. wanderingfoody
It was honestly just a combination of spite and having bombers and their crews laying around that are starting to become obsolete. DasFrebier
The Baby Boom in France 1985
The German rock band The Scorpions released the power ballad "Still Loving You" in 1984. The song became so popular in France that it caused a baby boom measured by the government.
Not that long ago but one of the facts that never fail to make me laugh just thinking about it. Mooncat05
The Siege of Tyre. Alexander the Great seemed to have been bested by the Tyrians (lol hahaha GOT yeah yeah) because they had control of the surrounding ocean and ports via an island fortress that had proven inpenetrable because it was rather difficult to siege a fortress in those days, but it was worse when the fort encompassed an entire island, all the way to the ends of the beach. Rather than give up, Alexander simply went balls to the wall and built a causeway to the island, which was then sacked and 8000 people were killed, the remainder sold as slaves, as was the style of the day
Second one was the Warwolf, the largest castle ever. Built by Kind Edward the 1st. It took 3 months to build, and the inhabitants of a castle that was being sieged with it surrendered. Edward said "LOL... NOPE HYUCK!" and finished it and leveled the castle with the siege engine.
Even before construction could be completed, Scottish soldiers offered surrender, fearing the weapon's potential to destroy the entire castle. Edward sent the truce party back inside the castle, declaring, "You do not deserve any grace, but must surrender to my will." Edward decided to carry on with the siege and witness the destructive power of the weapon. The Warwolf could reportedly accurately hurl rocks weighing as much as three hundred pounds (140 kg) from distance of 200 meters and level a large section of the curtain wall.
Mongols attempted to invade and conquer japan, but their forces were decimated by a typhoon. Twice. First in 1274, then again in 1281. The mongols lost up to 40k men, and 900 boats. SolarisIX
21. Bill & Jeff Who?
That one super-wealthy Muslim who wrecked the economies of several countries as he traveled to Mecca for Hajj. uniquecannon
He was so charitable and gave such handouts that he demolished economies of countries that he visited.
To this day, the wealthiest man of all time. His wealth is considered to stupidly huge that it puts Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates to shame, combined. An estimate is that his wealth exceeded $400 billion dollars. Phtpnk
20. Last One Standing....Giphy
Battle of Stamford Bridge
In short: One sole viking beserker held off an entire army of Englishmen while the rest of the vikings could retreat. TweedyCap
19. The Tortoise..
Yi Sun-Sin. Korean admiral. He was trained as a general, but became an admiral and destroyed a bunch of invading Japanese navies. For a period, the only part of Korea that was not under the occupation of the Japanese was his base of operations.
Turtle ships were basically primitive ironclads invented over 300 years before the Monitor and Merrimack, the first true ironclads. BZZBBZ
18. Good-bye boys.
His name was Vince Coleman. He telegraphed: "Hold up the train. Ammunition ship afire in harbor making for Pier 6 and will explode. Guess this will be my last message. Good-bye boys." About 300 people who were on that train were saved by his sacrifice. twenty_seven_owls
17. Not the Whiskey!!!Giphy
The Dublin whiskey fire.
In 1875 a whiskey distillery caught fire and some 5000 barrels spilled into the streets. The flow was reportedly only 6 inches deep but claimed the lives of 13 people, from alcohol poisoning. rowenstraker
The story of Herath.
For a period in the 18th century, Kashmir was ruled by the Afghans who were persecuting the local population, slaughtering them and genociding them, the works. One of the things they did was to mess with their religious festivals.
Shivratri is the biggest festival of the kashmiri Hindus, and this governor Jabar Khan didn't like all this idol worship. It's celebrated in February by the end of winter, and it always was below freezing then. The tradition was to make the official idol from ice and snow.
So the dude decides let's ban it in February and make them hold it in July, the hottest month, let's see how they get their idol.
And on that designated day in July, it actually snowed hard, amazing everyone, and they got their idol.
I'm not sure of this part, but it was called herath since then, which means astonishment/amazement. (There's other etymologies of Herath as well). sensitiveinfomax
French soldiers defending Germany from invasion by German soldiers.
It happened sometime around 1944, when French Waffen SS troops were defending East Prussia, or the area nearby, against the oncoming Red Army. The USSR had created a small unit of communist German soldiers, mainly for propaganda purposes. I remember reading about it, but I can't remember the source, and I am unsure if they ever engaged in direct combat with one another, but it highlights how strange parts of WWII were at times. ChipmunkPouch
It is not really a singular event, but the year 46BC was the longest Year in history, with roughly 90 extra days in the pre-Julian roman calendar :)) All thanks to Julius Caesar.
13. The Bats....
During WWII, The US military had the idea of tying small incendiaries to bats and dropping them on Japanese cities. The idea was that the bats would fly into structures which at the time used a lot of paper and wood and "detonate" causing many fires.
During one test some of the bats got loose and burned down the testing range. The bats were also put into forced hibernation and a problem arose where when they were dropped instead of flying around sometimes they didn't quite wake up and just dropped like rocks.
The bats were never deployed in actual combat. Igor_J
12. Poor Dumbo...
September 13, 1916
An elephant was hanged as a public execution in retaliation for killing its "trainer."
Can be found by searching for "Mary (elephant)" in Wikipedia. SmurfMan94
11. AJ got this!Giphy
A would be assassin tried 2 shoot Andrew Jackson with 2 different pistols. Both misfired and Jackson beat the the guy with his walking stick. Igor_J
10. People danced til they droppedGiphy
"The Dancing Plague of 1518
It happened in Strasbourg, Alsace where it's thought that 50 to 400 people were dancing for days on end without rest.
John Waller, an American medical historian thought this was the work of some sort of mass hysteria or psychogenic disorder. These only happen in cases of extreme stress."
9. The worst (or best) marathon ever
"The 1904 Olympic Marathon in St. Louis.
32 athletes took part, but only 14 were able to finish - there was only one water station in the entire 26-mile course. The 'winner' was later disqualified because they found out he drove half the race in his car. The new winner (the guy who came in second) had to be carried over the finish line by his trainers because they'd been dosing him the whole time with a strange mixture of strychnine, brandy, and egg whites.
Several people almost died of internal injuries. Multiple runners stole things from passerby. Most people in the race weren't even Olympic-level athletes, just amateur runners, many of whom didn't even have to run a full marathon to qualify."
8. When Boston got sticky
"The Great Molasses Flood in Boston"
7. The world was at Pepsi's mercyGiphy
"Pepsi Co. was briefly the worlds 6th largest military power."
Wasn't it because the soviets paid Pepsi for their product in trade with a bunch of military vessels?"
6. Why sewer systems matter
"The Great Stink of London in 1858.
One summer the heat dried up the River Thames (where all the human waste went) and an unbearable smell pervaded throughout the entire city. All Parliament representatives were eventually coerced out of their homes outside of London to convene and solve the issue. Much to the citizens' glee, Parliament was held in their building on the bank of the River Thames, resulting in one of the fastest Parliament decisions ever made to reform the London sewer system."
5. Machine guns were nothing against the emus
"The Great Emu War of Australia (1932).
The emus won."
4. Yet Michigan still kind of won here
"Michigan and Ohio had a protracted dispute over Toledo. Militias were deployed, tensions rose, and it nearly exploded into war. After the president sent representatives to help mediate the situation Michigan ultimately ceded their claim on Toledo which was seen as a loss. As compensation Michigan received all of the Upper Peninsula which in the long run had a far greater positive impact."
3. Peter Sellers and his weird goals
"Peter Sellers (Inspector Clouseau of the Pink Panther films) once had eight heart attacks over the course of three hours, after inhaling amyl nitrites in search of 'the ultimate orgasm.'
This forced him to withdraw from the movie he was filming at the time, a comedy called Kiss Me, Stupid. The movie's director was dismissive, remarking 'You have to have a heart before you can have an attack.'"
2. Two queens meet
"When the Pirate Queen Grae O'Malley visited Queen Elizabeth I of England and didn't bow to her. Everyone in Elizabeth's court were shocked but Elizabeth was like, 'Dude, she's the only one on my level. STFU and go get us some wine.' And then they had a nice, long chat."
1. This perfect sentence
"In 1918, California drafted children into a war on squirrels"
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