One of the world’s most chilling ruins is the Ploutonion at Hierapolis, “the Gates to Hell”. Here crowds watched priests lead animal sacrifices down into a cave, where they died mysteriously as if dragged down to the underworld. No one knew how they did it, that is, until very recently.
We like to think that our modern world is free from superstition – we are enlightened people living in an age of science fact. Well, not quite, we still find ourseves observing superstitions – sometimes consciously and sometimes by habit. In this article we look at some historical superstitions we still observe today.
Why does a thumbs-up gesture mean “okay”? : Any Roman gladiator movie worth its salt always includes the obligatory Colosseum combat scene where the fate of a beaten warrior is given by the thumbs-down signal – or the thumbs-up if he wants him to live. But is this really the origin of this signal ?
Loch Ness, the largest by volume, of all the many lochs in Scotland, is possibly the most famous body of water in the world. The reason, of course, is what is claimed to lie in its deepest, darkest depths – The Loch Ness Monster!
Legends and superstitions thrive in Guernsey and form a large part of its rich folklore heritage. Stories all of witchcraft and fairies, devils and ghosts have been passed through the generations from family to family
On the 21st April 753 BC, according to Plutarch, the city of Rome was founded. In this article we look at the myths and legends surrounding the foundation of the ‘Eternal City’.
This is one of those urban myths that refuse to die … “Do Eskimos Really have 80 Words for Snow ?” So in this article we hope to answer it once and for all.
Eponyms are one of the most fascinating examples of how the English language gains new words. In this article we take a colourful look at the phenomenon some eponyms like : Juggernaut, Lynching, Malapropism, Maverick & Tantalise.
2014 was the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, the supposed “war to end all wars”. It was the first ‘modern mechanised war’ and a lot of myths about it have been built up over the years. In this article we look at some of the bigee “facts” that are just plain wrong
Everybody knows that if you want to catch a bus, you spend ages waiting and then three will come at once. That at least is the urban myth which is popular enough to become the title of a book. According to mathematicians, however, it really is a myth. Buses don’t usually come in threes, they come in twos, and the reason why this is so can be found in this article.
Ok, hang on to your hats, this conspiracy theory must be the Daddy of them all – The Phantom Time Hypothesis. In a Nutshell (pun intended) According to the Phantom Time Hypothesis theory, the period between 614 ad and 911AD didn’t exist; the history normally attributed to that time is either a misinterpretation or a deliberate falsification of the evidence. If this were true, Charlemagne (reigned 768-814) never existed and the...
During the Great War Hitler claimed that he was wounded on the Western Front and recalled that a British soldier pointed his gun at him and then deliberately did not fire. But who was this mysterious British Soldier ?
Most of us would like to think that Richard the Lionheart did in fact encounter history’s most famous outlaw, Robin Hood. So is there any chance that he ever did ?
One of the most persistent of urban myths : Is it true that goldfish have a memory span of only 3 seconds?
World War I was supposed to be the “war to end all wars”. It was the first ‘modern mechanised war’ and a lot of myths about it have been built up over the years often by revisionist historians using ‘hind-sight’. Some of these so called “facts” are blinding us to the reality and we are in danger of belittling the experience of soldiers and civilians in this conflict. In this article we look at some of the bigee “facts” that are just plain wrong.