The world is full of amazing and extraordinary events. So much so, that if you decide to dig into it just a little, you’re bound to find random historical facts that’ll blow you away:
And in our opinion, these surprising facts are what schools should teach – here are our top 5:
1. Vikings Were The First Non-Native People To Discover America
From the very start of every academic life, we are taught that Christopher Columbus discovered America but that is not entirely true:
Nearly 500 days before Columbus, a band of Viking explorers left their home in search of the new world. It was those Vikings that were the first Europeans to set foot in America.
The expedition was led by Leif Eriksson who was born in Iceland around 970 A.D. Leif Erickson Day is observed annually in the United States, Canada, and Nordic Council to honor Erikson on October 9.
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2. During World War I French Built A Fake Paris
During World War I the Germans were sending heavy-duty airplanes to bomb civilian cities, particularly at night which was costing thousands of lives each day.
Paris was the most hit location, therefore, the French authorities built a Paris replica outside the city itself to fool the German bombers to drop off their load at a location where they would only hit wood and fabric.
There was no advanced technology at that time and therefore, German bombers were easily fooled by this trick saving the lives of many.
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3. The World’s Most Successful Pirate To Have Ever Lived Was A Woman
History has often ignored the contribution of women, crediting others with their inventions and acts of heroism.
The same is true with infamous acts:
The 22-year-old Chinese woman Ching Shih was the most successful pirate to have ever lived and yet no one knows about her.
Ching started her life in poverty and worked as a prostitute before getting married to pirate captain Zheng Yi, who died a few after the marriage.
After his death, Shih managed to inherit the throne and soon built the largest pirate fleet to have ever existed. Her fleet consisted of 1,800 ships and 80,000 pirates, and she was feared throughout the pirate world.
4. Athletes Performed Naked In Ancient Olympics
Most of us have seen art or movies showing off ancient Olympians, however, most aren’t accurate because, in each event, they would have been naked:
And this makes sense when you consider that most of the Greek sculptures were also naked.
Olympians didn’t wear clothes so that they could show off their muscular physique to the god Zeus. It also allegedly helped intimidate their competition.
5. Rasputin Survived Being Poisoned And Shot
The story of Grigori Rasputin should be more widespread. From his ties with mysticism, religion, and influence over Russia during Emporer Nicholas II’s reign. It all makes for a compelling history lesson:
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Rasputin was linked to many miracles but his death was the most astonishing of all. Assassins tried to give him heavy doses of a lethal poison but it didn’t work, then he was shot several times, and again, he did not die.
In the end, he was tied up and thrown in the Neva River – but there is still no explanation regarding how he survived earlier assassination attempts.