Historians of Reddit, What is the most bizarre historical fact you know?

Historians of Reddit, What is the most bizarre historical fact you know?

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  1. Ancient romans considered Asian people white meanwhile anyone of Nordic descent wasn’t considered white but a whole nother race I forget the word for it but in Latin they would basically call them yellows

  2. In a society if the veteran oldest generation dies the younger population will only have an abstract idea of what war is. Then chances go WAY up that that younger gen will get involved in a war that could been avoided.

  3. *Regarding the French kiss:*

    The term “French kiss” was likely coined by American and British servicemen in France during World War I who noticed that Gallic women were more open to employing the erotic technique than their American counterparts.

  4. The Holy Prepuce.

    In the Middle Ages it was common for the elite to have a reliquary. This was a sort of portable museum generally containing body parts of saints. Or at least, body parts that were supposed to belong to saints. Most of them were fakes.

    Touching the relics or the reliquary was said to have healing powers, and elites would charge for access. They could charge the highest prices for the best body parts. Most religious figures, they’d want to touch the first two fingers on the right hand, used in blessings and such. Lotta power in those fingers. Once the Catholic Church dug up a dead pope, put his decaying corpse on trial, and upon conviction they hacked off his blessing fingers. (Cadaver Synod. It’s pretty wild.) The specific body parts were a big deal.

    The best physical relic would naturally belong to Jesus, the biggest corporeal manifestation of God’s power to have ever existed. But Jesus rose bodily into heaven, so there’s nothing to dig up and distribute, right? So reliquaries held splinters of the True Cross, which of all the splinters of the True Cross were assembled, you’d probably be able to make a whole building. Or a thorn from the Crown of Thorns. No physical relics of Jesus would have existed…

    Except Jesus was Jewish. Which means he was circumcised. And there’s no mention of the foreskin also rising into Heaven, right? That means Jesus’s foreskin is still out there!

    Cue a substantial industry in hacking off foreskins and selling them as The Holy Prepuce. People would line up to touch Jesus’s actual foreskin. Counting up all of the copies floating around, Jesus must have been hung well before the crucifixion.

  5. Not really bizarre, but I always thought it was really interesting. The ancient Maya were very into teeth modification. They would carve their teeth in a variety of ways, sometimes even adding jade inserts. Also, this was NOT a status thing (as some archeologists have tried claiming). It’s been found in equal amounts in both high and low ranking individuals. One of the most common modifications involved fileing down just the corners of your front teeth, creating notches that would have given you kind of an airy/whistling way of speaking. One theory is that this was done to sound similar to how Huracan (the wind/storm god) would have sounded when he spoke.

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