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10 Historic Myths and Misconceptions (That Will not Go Away)



Even though history is, in theory, a fixed and unchangeable field of study, in practice it evolves all the time.

It is after these changes in historical perspective that certain notions, myths, and misconceptions stick around , In other cases, however, it could just be so historically accurate. Whatever the case may be, here are the records for 10 of them …

10. The Viking Name

The Norsemen, more commonly known as the Vikings, were a group of peoples from Northern Europe, especially the Scandinavian Penninsula, Denmark, and Iceland. The most common misconception about the Vikings is in the relationship to their very name.

The term Viking did not appear in the 19th century. There are several possible origins for the term; vikingr at Old Norse term meaning to raid or piracy. Vikings men rowing in shifts .

What's more, the Norsemen had different names to the different people they came in contact with. The Germans knew them as Ascomanni (ashmen), the Irish knew them as Lochlannach (lake people), while the Slavs, Byzantines, and Arabs know them as the Rus. The fact of the matter is that we do not really know what they are. Nevertheless, the Vikings started living in Ireland started calling at Eastmen at some point.

9. Napoleon Was Short

There's a common misconception that Napoleon Bonaparte was really short in stature. This myth is as ingrained in today's collective consciousness that it may even have been named after it: the Napoleon Complex.

As far as the actual Napoleon was concerned, he was what 5-footer. 2, to be exact. That's not particularly tall. But the fact of the matter is that which is shorter than the average Frenchman of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. So, why all the feet about his height, then? The answer lies between the measuring systems of France and England at the time. In reality, Napoleon made 5-foot-6 in British inches and 5-foot-2 in French. At some point, a confusion was made, and people started believing that Napoleon was 5-foot-2 in British inches. To make matters worse, Napoleon was surrounded by taller guards, making him seem smaller by comparison. Napoleon's byname of le petit caporal or the little corporal.

. 8 Benjamin Franklin Discovered Electricity

Many people around the world are under the misconception that Benjamin Franklin discovered electricity during his famous kite experiment. And while Franklin was a renowned scientist of his time with an interest in many areas of study and an inventor of many things, such as bifocal glasses, he did not discover electricity.

In fact, scientists of the 17th century had been experimenting with static electricity. What did Benjamin Franklin do, however, what did he do? What did that mean, in fact, a type of electricity. His initial idea for the experiment was to use a 30-foot rod. But after two years, he decided on the silk kite, instead. Thomas-Francois Dalibard did Conduct the experiment as Franklin originally intended – on May 10, 1752, just one month before Franklin. Dalibard concluded that Franklin's hypothesis was right.

7. Peasants Ignited the French Revolution

Revolutions are almost always idealized as an event in a nation's history where the lower class people took up arms against a brutish and authoritarian regime. Yet, as history has seen it time and time again, for a revolution to be successful, it often requires more than just the peasantry. The same thing can also be said about the French Revolution of 1789.

Explaining the actual causes and how the revolution went down is something beyond the scope of this list. Nevertheless, the common "knowledge" is that the impoverished people started the revolution. There were several notable uprisings prior to the revolution. But every time, degenerating further. In 1789, however, things were different. The middle class and lower nobility, themselves – dissatisfied with the high taxes and levels of corruption – joined the commoners. Thus, the fate of the French monarchy.

6. Hernan Cortes and the Aztec Empire

At its height during the early 16th century, the Aztec Empire managed to cover much of what is now central Mexico. It encompasses an area of ​​over 52,000 square miles and a population of around 11 million. Though relatively young, the Mesoamerican nation manages to gather a lot of wealth and expand its reach into a short amount of time. This, however, has attracted a lot of attention from the people they are subjugated to as well as the attention of the Europeans stationed in Cuba.

Hearing reports of strange stone monuments and brightly dressed and golden-covered natives on the mainland, the Spanish Governor of Cuba, Diego Velasquez, organized an expedition with a fleet of 11 ships, 500 soldiers, and 100 sailors. At the head of this expedition was Hernan Cortes.

The historical myth surrounding Hernan Cortes is that he and his men are working to bring the mighty Aztec Empire to its knees all by themselves. Truth be told, they were sporting state-of-the-art weapons such as crossbows, steel swords, guns, pikes, cannons, and full plate armor. They had horses, something which had never encountered before. Nevertheless, this is not the case, but it does not take much to bring it back to the battlefield.

Nevertheless, this would not be enough to bring down an Empire – let alone in a span of just three years. It was by employing the help of several subjugated tribes and their armies, as well as smallpox, that was introduced several years earlier that managed to do the job – along with its heavily armed, of course.

5. Richard the Lionheart was English

Richard I of England, later known as Richard the Lionheart, was born on September 8, 1157 in Oxford. He was the son of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine. Second only to Henry VIII, Richard I was among the most famous kings of England. Among his most notable accomplishments during the Third Crusade (1189-1192) alongside Frederick I Barbarossa, King of Germany and Holy Roman Emperor, and Philip II of France.

The Crusaders not being able to take the Holy City of Jerusalem. There were, however, several victories along the way, most notably the capture of the city of Messina in Sicily, the capture of the island of Cyprus, the capture of Acre in Israel, and the Battle of Arsuf. Even though he was born in England, Richard the Lionheart became the Duke of Aquitaine and Count of Poitou at age 11 – both in France. Among Richard's other deeds were two rebellions against his own father, after which he became sole of the Kingdom of England, as well as Normandy, Maine, and Aquitaine. He died in the year 1199, leading a victory at the age of 42, and throughout his life he set foot in the British Isles twice for a total of six months. The Crown's coffers and sold off many lands and titles in preparation for the campaign.

4. Chivalry

People, by and large, have a rather idealistic view of history. Many of us like to think that the past is a simpler, nicer, and overall better time. But this is a common misconception so deeply ingrained into our own consciousness. Many of us often say forget-just-was-the-world or what little access most people had to so many things that we take for granted today.

The purpose of history is, or should be, to examine events and systems the most objective way possible. To see what worked and what did not, and how we can use these things to improve the future. History should not be about keeping score or grudges, nor should we look at it through a nostalgic lens.

One example of this is chivalry Popularized by numerous medieval and modern novels, stories, and epic poems, chivalrous knights are often seen as valiant, noble, courteous men, defined by their high-minded consideration, particularly towards women. Yet, the reality is quite different. The origins of the term and concept back to the 10th century France. It was introduced as an attempt at regulating the endemic violence in French society. The term comes from chevalier or knight, which in turn, derives from cheval or horse.

In reality, these knights were quite violent, with numerous accounts of bagging and pillaging towns, villages, monasteries, as well as regularly committing acts of murder, torture, rape, and so on. Chivalry today.

3. The Infamous Vomitorium

According to popular culture, a vomitorium what a room in Ancient Rome where Romans would go to purge during feasts so as to continue to gorge themselves and make room for more. But for the actual novel did not love their food and drink, the purpose of the vomitorium.

For the actual novel of old, vomitoriums were the entrances and exits to stadiums, arenas , and theaters. They were dubbed as such by the Roman writer and philosopher Ambrose Theodosius Macrobius in his work entitled Saturnalia. spewed crowds of people onto the streets.

It was sometime during the late 19th and early 20th centuries when the term was reintroduced with its wrong connotations. In his 1923 novel Antic Hay author Aldous Huxley writes about the factories as literal places for people to vomit.

2. Vincent van Gogh Cut Off His Own Ear

Vincent van Gogh's Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear. 1888. He then wrapped it in a. He painted it shortly after returning from the hospital in 1889. The official version of the story is in 1888. He then wrapped it in a

He then went back home, went to sleep and nearly bleed to death before he found the next morning in a blood -drenched bed. Being unconscious, he was taken to the hospital. When he woke up, van Gogh asked his friend Paul Gauguin, who refused to see him.

Nevertheless, two German historians have proposed a different version of events. The two argued that, after reviewing numerous witness accounts and letters, the official story had plenty of inconsistencies. Their interpretation points to Paul Gauguin, van Gogh's friend, who was a keen fencer and, during a heated argument, lopped off his earlobe with a sword. where the Gauguin was looking for a good time while trying to keep his girlfriend, with whom he was infatuated.

A somewhat recent discovery, however, seems to disprove (or at least significantly older) both the original version and the one proposed by the two German historians. A letter written by dr. Felix Rey explains in full detail the extent of the wounds. As it turns out, the entire left ear is sliced ​​off, not just the earlobe, as it was previously assumed.

1. Emperor Nero Played the Fiddle as Rome Burned

For an entire week in AD 64, the citizens of Ancient Rome have watched them helplessly burned to the ground. As with many similar tragedies, ordinary people who've lost everything often look for someone to blame. Old stories say that Nero, himself, set fire to the city, after which he climbed on the city walls and began playing the fiddle and reciting long-lost poems about the destruction of Troy. Truth be told, Emperor Nero was not a particularly good man. Nero is considered by many to be the Biblical Antichrist.

But when it comes to the fire of AD 64, Nero did not sit idly by or play his instrument as the city ​​burned. He was actually at his palace in Antium when the fire started. When news reached him, Nero rushed back to the city. So he opened all public buildings and his own private gardens to act as temporary shelters. In addition, Nero imported grain from all nearby cities and offered it to the citizens at a fraction of the cost.

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