History is full of amazing stories and fascinating facts that can leave you in awe. Some of these facts are so unbelievable that they sound like they could only be the stuff of legends. Yet, they are completely true! Here are nine mind-blowing facts from history that are sure to leave you amazed and curious.
1. The Great Pyramid of Giza was built in under 20 years
The Great Pyramid of Giza is one of the most impressive structures ever built by human beings. It stands 481 feet tall and is made up of over 2.3 million blocks of limestone. What’s even more incredible is that it was built in just 20 years, using only simple tools and manual labor. That’s the equivalent of building a skyscraper without modern technology and equipment!
2. The first photograph of a human being took 10 minutes to capture
The first photograph of a human being was taken in 1838 by Louis Daguerre. The subject was a man getting his shoes shined on a Parisian street. What’s amazing is that the photograph took a whopping 10 minutes to capture, and the man getting his shoes shined is the only person in the photograph because everyone else was moving too quickly to be captured!
3. Cleopatra lived closer in time to the first moon landing than to the construction of the Great Pyramid
Cleopatra is often thought of as a figure from ancient history, but she actually lived closer in time to the first moon landing than to the construction of the Great Pyramid of Giza. Cleopatra died in 30 BC, while the Great Pyramid was built around 2560 BC. The first moon landing, on the other hand, took place in 1969.
4. The shortest war in history lasted just 38 minutes
The Anglo-Zanzibar War of 1896 is officially recognized as the shortest war in history. It lasted just 38 minutes, with the British using their superior firepower to destroy the Zanzibari navy and force their surrender.
5. A single pigeon helped save over 1000 lives in World War II
During World War II, a carrier pigeon named G.I. Joe helped save over 1000 lives by delivering a message that prevented an Allied bombing mission from hitting a group of friendly troops. The message was delivered just in time, and G.I. Joe was awarded the Dickin Medal for his bravery.
6. The Mona Lisa was once stolen by an employee of the Louvre
In 1911, an employee of the Louvre Museum in Paris stole the Mona Lisa by simply walking out of the museum with the painting under his coat. The painting was missing for two years before the thief was caught trying to sell it to an art dealer.
7. The first computer programmer was a woman
Ada Lovelace, the daughter of poet Lord Byron, is widely considered to be the first computer programmer. In the 1840s, she worked with Charles Babbage on his Analytical Engine, a precursor to the modern computer. Lovelace wrote a series of notes that included an algorithm for calculating Bernoulli numbers, making her the world’s first computer programmer.
8. The Great Emu War
In 1932, the Australian government declared war on emus, a large flightless bird that was causing damage to crops in Western Australia. The government sent in the military to cull the emu population, but the emus proved to be more resilient than expected, leading to a bizarre and humorous series of events known as the Great Emu War.
9. The world’s first novel was written by a woman
The Tale of Genji, written by Murasaki Shikibu in Japan in the 11th century, is considered to be the world’s first novel. Shikibu was a noblewoman and lady-in-waiting at the Japanese court, and she wrote the novel in Japanese using Chinese characters. The Tale of Genji tells the story of a nobleman’s romantic life and is renowned for its vivid characters and detailed descriptions of court life in ancient Japan.
These are just a few of the many incredible and fascinating facts from history that can blow your mind. While some may seem too unbelievable to be true, they are indeed based on facts and events that have shaped the world we live in today. History is full of surprises and we can learn so much from it.
So, keep exploring and discovering, you never know what amazing fact you might come across next!