Most of us have some general history knowledge, some of the most incredible and fascinating things that have happened in history somehow manage to slip right under our noses!
Below are 26 mind blowing facts that aren't as widely known. Check them out!
Napoleon once took a heavily fortified city by having his men casually walk across the bridge as if peace was just declared and Napoleons troops were just trying to pass through.
Submitted by: Fredfredbug4
Sunglasses were invented by the Chinese. They were not used to block out the sun however but instead they were used by judges in courtrooms to hide their emotions.
Submitted by: josserg
During the 1916 Easter Rising (a battle to end British rule over Ireland), there was a ceasefire each day to allow the park-keeper of St. Stephen's Green to feed the ducks in the park.
Submitted by: daveyb86
During World War II, the Japanese outfitted special planes (some were designed to be launched from submarines) with enough range to reach the west coast of the United States. The goal was to use incendiary bombs to start wildfires in the forests of the Pacific Northwest. One pilot, Nobuo Fujita, successfully dropped his bombs over the forest near Brookings, Oregon. Fortunately, a storm the night before had dampened the forest, and the fire started by Fujita's bomb was quickly controlled by the Forest Service.
Eighteen years later, in 1962, Fujita returned to Brookings. He brought with him his family's heirloom, a katana that was over 400 years old. Fujita apologized to the townspeople for his actions during the war, and revealed that if the townspeople demanded it, he would ceremoniously commit seppuku with the sword to make reparations for his actions.
The townspeople would have none of it. Fujita was made an honorary citizen of the town and returned to visit it several times during his life, including one trip to plant trees in the forest he had bombed decades before. After his death in 1997, his daughter returned to Brookings and scattered some of his ashes there. The Fujita family katana is on display in Brookings, after being given to the town by Fujita as a token of friendship.
Submitted by: MrFuxIt
Albert Einstein was offered the role of Israel's second president in 1952, but declined stating that he had "neither the natural ability nor the experience to deal with human beings."
Before he was president, Andrew Jackson rose to national fame for his victory in the Battle of New Orleans during the war of 1812. His "decisive victory against the British" occurred after the war was over, though the combatants didn't know that yet, and the victory would have been impossible had it not been for the support of a French pirate named Jean Lafitte, who was only siding with the Americans in exchange for a pardon from a number of war crimes he was accused of.
Submitted by: DanHam117
Adolph Hitler's remaining relatives made a pact to never have children, so that the family dies out forever.
Submitted by: karmanaut
The man who was to protect Abraham Lincoln on that fateful night shirked his duties to go drink at a nearby saloon. Ironically, the man who would shoot the president was drinking at that saloon probably getting up the courage.
Submitted by: waiting_for_rain
The word 'Kamikaze' means 'divine wind' in Japanese. The original Kamikaze was when the Mongols sent a huge invasion force to Japan. The Japanese would have been thoroughly defeated, but both times the Mongols tried to invade, a hurricane swept down and destroyed the Mongol fleet. The Japanese named this wind, 'Kamikaze.'
Submitted by: thestrongestduck
A plan to attack American cities to justify war with Cuba was approved by the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1962. Rejected by President Kennedy, Operation Northwoods remained classified for 35 years.
Submitted by: PittsburghJon
John Tyler's (the 10th president of the USA) grandson is still alive.
John Tyler was born in 1790 and had a son when he was 63. That son had his son when he was 75. Meaning John Tyler's grandson was born in 1928.
Submitted by: [deleted]
Julius Wagner-Jauregg won the Nobel Prize for curing syphilis by giving people malaria.
Submitted by: illibhau
Benjamin Franklin once played a practical joke that put England and France on the verge of war.
He was stuck in England as ambassador for some time and was bored. He wrote a letter to the biggest newspaper under a fictitious name, complaining that France needs to stop sending over all their prisoners, and England needs to stop accepting them. The British were outraged to learn this was happening, but of course it wasn't. At some point the French caught wind of the rumor, and took on the attitude that they could do that if they wanted to. "You think your country is too good for our prisoners?" It escalated through both governments and the military until leaders on both sides had to unilaterally convince the populations that none of this was true.
The only person who enjoyed the whole thing from beginning to end was Ben Franklin.
Submitted by: Scrappy_Larue
Despite the terrible nature of and damage caused by the 1666 Great Fire of London, only six people were killed. This is despite the fire destroying at least 13,500 houses.
Submitted by: Eloquentdyslexic
When the Allies stormed the beach in Normandy, Hitler was asleep. No general would make a move without him, and no one dared to wake him up.
Submitted by: xPlicitMike
Martha Washington rated Thomas Jefferson's visit to Mount Vernon as the second worst day of her life, being surpassed only by the death of George Washington. Now, bear in mind that George was Marthas second husband, so her list of painful occurrences went: 1. Second husband dying 2. Having Thomas Jefferson in her house 3. First husband dying.
Also: Thomas Jefferson and John Adams vandalized one of William Shakespeare's chairs to take bits of it home as souvenirs, and John Adams had a dog named Satan.
Submitted by: gcbriel
Anne Frank, Martin Luther King Jr, and Barbara Walters were born the same year: 1929.
Submitted by: thegoldeneel
Alan Shepard (the first American man in space), entered the atmosphere with wet pants. Knowing he was about to be a major part of American space history, Shepard drank coffee that morning, to try and keep himself calm. About three cups or so and barely anything else.
When astronauts are launched, often they sit at a 90 degree angle backwards, whilst experiencing intense vibrations. Also important to note, the crew don't just jump into their shuttle and immediately off they go. Often, crew sit and wait for a minimum of two to three hours on the launchpad, as final checks go through.
Back to Shepard, who is sitting on the launchpad, tilted backwards 90 degrees with a stomach filled with coffee. He mentioned his issue with MOCR, (ground control) and they pretty much told him that he can go to the loo and not do the launch, or try to hold it and become a part of history. Shepard chose the latter.
Submitted by: louise_sophie
In 1972, the Buffalo Sabres drafted Taro Tsujimito as the NHL's first Japanese player. Unfortunately, he didn't make much of a splash because the Japanese style of play didn't translate to the North American style and the fact that Taro Tsujimoto was completely made up. Turns out the team was annoyed with the length and complexity of the draft and this was their protest.
Submitted by: awsears25
The Star that the Three Wise Men followed that led them to Jesus actually existed, but as a rare moment of aligned planets.
Submitted by: Mr_Sarcasum
Alexander the Great literally changed the world. Permanently.
Tyre used to be a city on a island surrounded with giant walls which reached 200m 200 feet high (some of which are still there today). Alexander wanted to go worship at the temple of Ajax there (and for them to swear fealty to him) but they refused and locked the gates. Since he didn't have a navy they thought they were safe.
How wrong they were. He sent one half of his army down the coast all the way into Egypt to capture every port they could find and raise a small fleet, and the other half he had build a causewaya mile outinto the Mediterranean to reach the island to assault it, and capture it. And slaughter the inhabitants of course, and sold 20,000 into slavery.
And permanently altered the geography of the region, creating what longshore drift turned into a tombolo which still connects the "island" to the mainland today. In building it, he also altered the flora of the region, deforesting the lowlands of the Lebanon to such an extent that thousands of years later it's still bare (of course their upland areas are still thickly forested in cedar Trees).
Submitted by: johnydarko
The last American Civil War veteran lived until 1956. From muskets and cavalry to jets and tanks.
Submitted by: paradoxpolitics
During World War II, the men of the 442nd unit scaled a 4000 foot cliff at the dead of night in order to launch a ambush on the German emplacement known as the Gothic Line.
Men would fall during this climb but none would let out a scream, they just silently plummeted to their deaths, in order to keep their position safe. After getting into position the group laid in wait for dawn to launch their attack. At dawn the attack began and the 442nd won the day and broke the Gothic Line in 34 minutes.
Submitted by: StarPike
The United States Air Force accidentally dropped two hydrogen bombs (each with a payload of over four megatons of TNT) over North Carolina in 1961, one of which was armed and battle ready. All trigger mechanisms worked as designed expect one basic low voltage switch which didn't move and prevented a nuclear catastrophe.
Submitted by: stevenmchill001
The United States of America was founded in 1776. About 150 years later, they were pretty much the number one power in the world. Men who fought in World War II had grandpas who fought in the Civil War. Men who fought in the Civil War had grandpas who fought in the the Revolutionary War.
In such a short time period, a somewhat small group of people grew into the most powerful nation in the world.
It also blows my mind that since North America was pretty much the last frontier that was conquered, it is so untouched by human hands. There are areas of the wild that have barely seen humans.
Submitted by: forman98
When looking at a resume, it's easy to understand how prospective employers will assume someone is very intelligent based on their education and past experience.
But one shouldn't only assume someone's intelligence based on what they read.
More often than not, one can tell rather quickly that someone possesses above-average intelligence, based on how they speak, how they behave, or other telling details.
Redditor PadWanKenobi was curious to hear what people felt were the tell tale signs they were in the company of a possible genius, leading them to ask:
"What’s a sign of extremely high intelligence?"
"Ability to intuitively and quickly understand complex systems and how lots of parts relate in a coherent whole."
"Like I work with some people who just keep tons of concepts in their head and easily integrate new information into their understanding of those concepts."
"They immediately know what questions they should be asking to better understand."
"And these are things they're currently working on, not like things they spent time studying in school over years."
"They just have a very strong ability to synthesize new information into their understanding."
"I sit in meetings distracted and confused having forgotten what we talked about in the previous meetings, and these folks just consistently have a solid handle on everything."- Ok-Control-787
Innate Problem Solvers
"They know when not to solve a problem."
"This took me a while to understand but the smartest people I know do this."
"It could be a really simple thing like ignoring emails from people asking for help."
"The supervisor or boss might have a quick and easy solution for the situation but instead of just handing it to the person that asked they let them figure it out on their own."
"They know who they can do this with and when to do it."
"If they did that with all of their underlings it would just create a mess."
"Another example that I can think of is planned chaos."
"Some people can predict exactly where things will go wrong and they could fix it before it creates a problem."
"They don't because nobody ever notices what's going on in the background when things are working perfectly."
"Once things fails then everybody notices and if you are the one person that fixed it you become the hero."
"They can also use then chaos to reach a goal they couldn't get before if things were working correctly."
"There's many examples of this in every day life that I didn't see before until I realized what was happening."- atapesGiphy
You know what they say about people with small hands
"If your hand is smaller than your face."- FallofTheKnight
The all knowing glow.
"When someone asks you a question and you push your glasses up while light comes out of it and covers your eyes for some reason."- JonEregor
Those giveaway behavioral quirks
"Wearing glasses and saying things like 'ah yes', and 'I see' while you pensively rub your chin."- iuytrefdgh436yujhe2Thinking Reaction GIF by ABC TV + IVIEWGiphy
"When they explain something they make the people around them feel smarter, not dumber."- redkat85
Being one step ahead.
"The capacity to understand complex things, see patterns where regular people don't."- Ostepop234
"They have this tendency to make you go 'Ohhh, why didn't I think of that?' when listening to them talk."- did_it_forthelulzWhy Didnt I Think Of That Cillian Murphy GIFGiphy
An endless love of learning
"A passion for knowledge and expanding understanding of complex concepts."
"The plumber can be just as insightful as the scholar."- KatatoniK94
Of course, one shouldn't always be fooled by what they see.
As many people are masters at appearing much smarter than they are.
In fact, one important sign of super intelligence is being able to separate those who appear smart, from those who actually are.
With each passing year of a marriage, couples will often discover that while they don't love each other any less than they once did, that spark their relationship used to carry has faded.
This will often lead these couples to look for ways to spice things up a bit.
Among the more popular experiments is inviting a third member to their bedroom.
Enticing as this prospect is, however, it's also easy to be intimidated by the reality of it, or even the mere suggestion of it.
"Men, what advice do you have for men whose wives want to bring a third into the bedroom?"
Make sure you want to do it.
"You need to be completely honest with yourself, ask if this is something you want and could live with."- Dame87
Proceed with caution
"It’s like frolicking in a mine field."
"You both better be SUPER into the idea, you can’t have one person who’s reluctantly agreed to go along with it."
"And established rules."
"A threesome sounds like fun and games until you’re watching your partner make faces and sounds that you only thought were for you in your most intimate moments together, and a burning jealousy comes out of nowhere and breaks your heart."
"I’m not saying it’s automatically a bad idea and I know people do polyamory successfully, but dear god be careful."- coleosis1414
Make sure you're an active participant
"I had an ex that was adamant that she wanted to be a swinger or whatever."
"The one time I decided to roll with it, I hit it off immediately with the other dude's girlfriend and had a blast hanging out with her all night."
"The other dude was a total creep, though."
"Also, my ex could not handle the fact that someone else was giving me the slightest bit of attention."
"So, needless to say, that didn't go anywhere."
"Turns out she didn't want to be a swinger, she just wanted to have sex with other people behind my back, which she had no problems whatsoever with."- Ted_Denslow
Look out for ulterior motives
"Just remember that if you bring this up and your husband is against it, that could be the beginning of the end of your marriage."
"For a lot of people their partner saying 'I am seriously considering having sex with other people and I'm checking with you if it is ok', is a deal breaker."- gamerplays
Consider a test run?
"Go to a bar together separately."
"Watch them flirt/interact with someone else."
"If you get jealous, it's probably a bad idea to bring in a third."
"If it turns you on, go for it."- SinSlayer
Query people with experience.
"It’s something my wife and I have talked about."
"We both agreed that opening the Pandora’s box is not the way we want our relationship to go."
"While it sounds fun, we have seen way to many relationships derailed because of it."- DarthDujo
Consider going whole hog.
"Bring a 4th."- xxemrgmi
Evaluate your relationship first.
"Make sure you and your partner are secure in your own relationship before having another person join."
"Have boundaries, and no secrets."
"From my experience it doesn't usually work out in the end."- Thick-Procedure455
"Don't do it."
"For a long time, my ex harbored a fantasy of watching me have sex with another woman."
"Hey, who knows why any of us are wired the way we are?"
"After contemplating the idea together for a while, we decided to approach one of her more attractive co-workers, who had made a series of flattering comments along the lines of "you're so lucky" and "he's so good-looking'."
"She enthusiastically agreed."
"Our first meet-up was of course awkward, but the second, third and following were pretty good."
"In fact they got progressively hotter, as we all got more comfortable with each other's boundaries, erotic likes and dislikes."
"However, over a few months these occasional kinky weekends transitioned into the co-worker asking more frequently and aggressively to be invited over."
"We tried to explain that we had intended these threesomes to be rare and exotic highlights in our sex life, not regular occurrences, but she didn't take the message to heart and instead became increasingly insistent, bordering on smothering."
"After being turned down one Friday, that night she unexpectedly showed up at our door anyway, carrying a weekend bag and wearing nothing but a raincoat, stay-ups and heels."
"While that was quite a sight, it definitely creeped us out, as it made us finally realize the whole arrangement was descending into 'play Misty for me' territory."
"My ex and I agreed that her unexpected and unwelcome appearance signaled the end of future three-ways, at least until we were able to cool our own selves down, reassess, and perhaps later find a less demanding and insistent third."
"Things subsequently got very sticky at work for my wife, as her co-worker, with whom she had to interact closely, strongly resented being permabanned, and kept demanding to know 'what she'd done that was so awful'."
"Coworker eventually asked to be transferred to another office, but by the time that process was over and done, the discomfort / guilt / pressure / confusion my ex was suffering both at home and at work had begun to take its psychological toll."
"I must confess it didn't help that our own sex life was simultaneously going through a rough patch."
"Long story short, we ended our decade-long relationship less than a year after breaking off the threesomes, chiefly due to trust issues and growing sexual incompatibility, both perhaps triggered by our experimentation."
"Ever since, I've regretted agreeing to that first three-way."
"If I hadn't been so damned eager to take a bite of forbidden fruit, we might have kept our relationship intact."
"But I guess this can also be put down as what sometimes happens when you ignore that old advice, 'don't sh*t where you sleep'."- theartfulcodger
When venturing into the unknown, it's always wise to gain some first hand experience, to hear a variety of pros and cons of what you're possibly getting yourself into.
That way, deciding whether or not it's for you will become increasingly clear.
It's also important to remember, that it is always ok to say "no".
People Share Their Best 'You Either Die The Hero Or Live Long Enough To Become The Villain' Experiences
"You either die the hero or live long enough to become the villain."
Though not necessarily a universal truth, all of us have witnessed unfortunate moments in our lives where we've seen this saying become a reality.
Be it seeing our favorite public figures take a serious fall from grace, someone we know and admire eventually disappointing us in a devastating manner, or even seeing ourselves turn into someone we promised we'd never become.
One Redditor was curious to hear people's examples of this saying coming to light, either from a personal experience or seeing it happen to a well-known, public figure, leading them to ask:
"Who is your example of 'you either die a hero, or live long enough to see yourself become the villain'?"
"He originally stood up for civil rights when it was really unpopular."
"Was hospitalized and accidentally placed in the black ward."
"When the doctors found out, they tried to move him, but he refused."
"Then he became a cult leader and used his power and influence to end the lives of a thousand people."- Crvsby
Earning a position of power
"Working in restaurant kitchens."
"You either burn out young, or become the boss that everyone hates."
"There's exceptions, but that's the rule."- grandpas_old_crow
"Henry Heimlich, inventor of the Heimlich Maneuver."
"Made up a bunch of untested uses for it, treating people having asthma attacks, and drowning victims were the two I remember that he publicly talked up."
"Later, he funded an experiment that involved injecting people with Malaria to see if it would treat other conditions.
"The experiment was found to be unethical by American review boards, so he conducted them in Ethiopia." - User Deleted
"In WW1 he led the French to victory at Verdun, one of the worst battles in human history."
"In WW2, after France was beaten, Petain was the head of state of Vichy France."
"Guy went from the Lion of Verdun to the biggest Nazi collaborator in France."- arthuranymoredonuts
"Every organ until it gets cancer."- SuperBaconjam
"He had the whole country behind him here in Ireland at one point bar people who thought combat sport is grotesque."
"He was witty, original, backing himself up and having a Hollywood like rise to stardom."
"Now he's someone who the whole country is ashamed of, goes punching old men, clearly sleeps around on his wife while she's at home with the kids, just a walking caricature of himself."
"He didn't listen to his own advice."
"Get out."- StephenPigot2020
Turning into our parents
"My dad used to annoy me by calling my Pokemon cards 'Pokey-Mans'."
"Now my kids have them and I do the same thing and it annoys the sh*t out of them."
"Thanks for the (Pokeyman) gold!"- rumpel4skinOU
"Almost died during the revolutionary way, if I recall correctly, and if he had he would have been remembered a huge hero, and a martyr."
"Instead he lived and changed sides, and is remembered only for his being a traitor."- uniqueperson22
Be it someone we knew quite intimately, or someone we admired from a far, it is always heartbreaking to see someone evolve from someone we love, to someone we utterly hate.
Sometimes we do things that have to be done.
And some of those things live in life's gray area of right and wrong.
What comes as a surprise to some is when we don't care if we're wrong.
We may still technically be in the right.
But morally and ethically, there may be some issues.
But still, many people don't care.
Redditor BirdyPizzawanted to see who would fess up about some of the worst things we're responsible for but have no shame.
"What is the darkest thing you have ever done and don’t regret?"
I've stolen from department stores that overcharged. I was arrested. I didn't care. So there...
"Five years ago my dad suffered a catastrophic stroke. Left paralyzed and robbed of his speech and ability to communicate he was a shell of the once vibrant, charismatic man he once was. He was moved into skilled nursing where he lived for nearly two years, he was miserable."
"On my last visit I told him it was okay if he wanted to leave us, that we would miss him but he should go. A week later I received the call that he had passed. Instead of immediate grief I felt relief. Relief that he was finally free. The grief came later and I still miss him every single day."
"Got into a car accident and had to stay with my mom for a couple days to figure out what to do. Went back to my apartment (I had two roommates) and everything was missing from my room. Long story short one of my roommates had everything hidden in her room."
"I called and told her the things were missing from my room and she came up with a lie that a couple girls came to look at my room (I was moving out bc of the accident, long story) and that they must have taken my things. She had everything I owned. Including my grandmothers perfume bottles, stuffed to the back of her closet, under her bed, behind her dresser etc."
"So I packed all of my stuff up. Then took a giant black garbage bag and stuffed as much of her closet in it as I could. Took it to the middle of nowhere, dug a hole and burnt it. She called screaming at me that her stuff was missing. I told her the two girls must have come by and taken her stuff too."
"I hit my uncle left right and center when he was trying to choke my father to death. I was 16 years old at that time, a very skinny girl. I beat his face neck and every part of him that I could target with so much intensity that my knuckles turned blue the next day. I had an animalistic rage that day trying to help my father get away from his death grip. I hate my uncle even today."
"I got anger issues because of growing up around him. And I don't regret beating him that day at all. He was physically abusive to his wife as well. One fine day, his wife retaliated by beating him blue with a stick. And he stopped being physically violent towards her post that."
"A neighbor like 10 years ago was neglecting their dog badly in the heat. The dog escaped often and ended up at the shelter a lot. One day she jumped the fence and got her tie-out cable stuck on the fence. (She was not in danger of choking.) Neighbor put her on a 3-foot-long cable tied to a doorknob, no water, 90 degree day. I let some kind folks steal her, watched the whole thing and said nothing to stop them."
"When my father was dying and in pain I was the one who told the doctors he had been through enough and we couldn't see him suffer anymore. Doctor injected him with something, I assume a morphine mega dose and he passed peacefully moments after. Euthanasia may not be legal in UK but compassionate doctors know what's what. I don't regret it because my pa made me promise I would have his back when he got sick or old. I'm sad he got sick and never got to get old."
That is a lot of mess. But sometimes we have to do what we have to do.
"One of my ex best friends in high school was a real narcissistic lunatic. Had so many egotistical fantasies about what he deserved but I remained his friend because we met through my close friend (his girlfriend). As I started realizing what a terrible person he was I convinced him to go after his fantasy of a harem by asking to add a 3rd to their relationship, that led to a fight between his gf."
"I called her about it and asked how she felt about him adding someone to their relationship and about him sleeping with her. She said she knew nothing about that and started crying because he cheated on her. I basically helped orchestrate their breakup and have no regrets. She is happy with her first child now and he is in a toxic af relationship with 3 kids, 2 of which aren't his and his partner is 8 years older than him."
"Had to make the choice to take my dad off of life support after he got Covid this year. He was sedated for a couple of weeks and one of his lungs collapsed and I couldn't watch him fall apart anymore. My dad was a bulky dude. Constantly did a lot of outdoor work and to see him bone skinny and have no muscle left killed me and I knew even if he somehow got through it, he would have been so miserable and depressed in that state he was in. I don’t regret it. I think it was the right thing to do by him. I’ll never not miss him though. That was my buddy."
"Turned a close friend into the fish and game. He would poach mountain lions and bears. His whole family would literally shoot them and leave them. He would brag about it. I couldn’t stand it and felt that I needed to stop him. He’s in prison and so is his uncle. I know I ruined his life but he was literally killing so many mountain lions and bears."
"In middle school, there was this group of boys that would corner me in the hallway and try to scare me. I was the perfect target for these little b**tards. I was short, skinny, and had (and still have) and anxiety disorder. One day I just had enough, and asked a friend if I could have an extra pencil, sharpened it as much as I could, and when I saw one of them in the hallway, I stabbed the hell out of his leg. Sh**head got what he deserved."
Wow... we really are a dark and secretive people.