Actress Tilda Swinton comes from an ancient Anglo-Scots family that can trace its lineage to the Middle Ages, & is one of only three British families that can trace their unbroken land ownership and lineage to before the Norman Conquest en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Til…
The famous photo of Johnny Cash giving the middle finger at San Quentin in 1969 was taken by photographer Jim Marshall when Marshall asked Cash to share his feelings on the prison authorities, saying to Cash, "John, let's do a shot for the warden" nme.com/news/music/johnny…
A California dam collapse in 1928 is considered one of the worst engineering disasters in US history. Its chief engineer took sole responsibility, testifying, "If there was an error in human judgment, I was the human." Over 400 people were killed when the dam failed in the middle of the night. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St.…
A small island in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay named Tangier Island still speaks a dialect of Old Modern English that sounds the most like British English. youtu.be/AIZgw09CG9E
A bumblebee will stick up a middle leg if it’s annoyed by your presence, which means β€œback off!”. Otherwise they are docile to the point that you could usually handle one without negative consequence. bumblebee.org/
Codpiece (Middle English: cod, meaning β€œscrotum”), feature of 15-16th c. men’s fashion, was shaped & padded to emphasize the genital area. It became fashionable to design the codpiece to hold the penis in a position insinuating it was erect constantlyβ€”a statement of political and economic power. fashionhistory.fitnyc.edu…
In 1992, 28800 rubber duckys fell off a cargo ship in the middle of the ocean, and some of them even made it to Hawaii! (17000 miles away!) edition.cnn.com/2013/10/0…
Ducks enter deep sleep with one half of their brain while the other half is wide awake. In a row of sleeping ducks, the middle ducks are fully asleep, while the two end ducks pick a brain-half to sleep. This lets their outer-facing eye stay open to function as a group defense mechanism. sciencemag.org/news/1999/…
Today I learned of the Ceremony of the Keys which is carried out every night at exactly 9:53 pm at the Tower of London and is believed to be the oldest military ceremony in the world. Originating in the Middle Ages it has never once been cancelled though it was delayed once during WWII due to enemy action. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cer…
In order for Voldemort’s name to spell out to β€œJe Suis Voldemort” in the French translations of Harry Potter, they had to make his middle name β€˜Elvis’ bookshelf.mml.ox.ac.uk/20…
President Harry S. Truman was not given a middle name, only the initial S. The S honors his grandfathers, Anderson Shipp Truman and Solomon Young. There is controversy over whether or not the period after the S should be included, although Truman's own letters suggest he regularly used a period. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Har…
The Porsche 901 had to change name to 911 because Peugeot copyrighted any three-digit number car name that had "0" in the middle. dustycars.com/model-histo…
Today I learned that the sound of snapping fingers isn't generated from the friction between the middle finger and the thumb, it acctually comes from your middle finger hitting the palm of your hand at a high speed. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fin…
In WWII, an Australian soldier removed his own appendix in the middle of a Philippine jungle in 1944, without any anaesthetic and with only the use of a mirror and an ordinary knife. The operation took 4 and a half hours and he stitched himself up with jungle fibre. trove.nla.gov.au/newspape…
Today I learned about former American slave, John Berry Meachum, who began teaching classes for black people on a steamboat in the middle of the Mississippi River to work around the state of Missouri's prohibition of black education. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joh…
A treatment in the Middle Ages for venomous snakebite was to pluck the feathers from a rooster's arse and place it on the site of the bite. Apparently its anus could suck up the venom. It was considered a good sign if the rooster died. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…
The word 'assassin' comes from the order of Hashashins, a sect from the middle ages. Young boys were believed to be shown paradise by giving them cannabis (hashish). The leader would ask them to e.g. kill someone, 'so he could get them back to paradise' afterwards. They complied. hashashin.wikia.org/wiki/…
Romans invented the flamethrower in the early middle ages, only to lose the invention when the guy who invented it died. They re-invented it about 200 years later. It's also most likely the inspiration for the "wilfire" in GoT. historyextra.com/period/a…
There's an underwater mountain in the middle Lake Superior that rises from the lake bottom (400 feet down) to as high as 21 feet below the surface. Some say Superior Shoal was responsible for the 1975 wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sup…
There was once a two-foot triangle of private property in the middle of New York City, due to bizarre planning decisions in the early 20th century. getpocket.com/explore/ite…
The oldest mosque in Australia was built in the 1860s, set up by Afghan camel drivers in the middle of the South Australian desert. This was very early by Western standards - the UK's first mosque was built in 1891, while the US and France didn't have any mosques until the 1920s. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
Today I learned of 'Friendship Albums', a tradition among African-American women in the early 1800s from the middle/upper class. Empty books were passed around their circle and filled with philosophical, political or creative writing and art. Extremely rare antiques, only 5 such albums are known to exist today. finebooksmagazine.com/new…
The Package Saver is the name of the little plastic table that goes into the middle of pizza boxes. eater.com/platform/amp/20…
Bathing was common in the Middle Ages and people understood the importance of being clean. medievalists.net/2013/04/…
Queen Victoria's first name was Alexandrina, Victoria was her middle name. townandcountrymag.com/soc…
The middle out compresion algorithm in the HBO series Silicon Valley is a real thing and is used by Dropbox's Lepton compression algorithm. techcrunch.com/2016/07/14…
Physicians in the middle ages would drink their patients urine to diagnose medical conditions. They were able to accurately diagnose diabetes because the urine tasted sweet. sekisuidiagnostics.com/bl…
On April 20, 1979, then President Jimmy Carter, was fishing in the middle of a lake in Georgia when a rabbit swam up to his boat and tried to get in it before he scared the rabbit off. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim…
In 2014, scientist Michael J. Smith published a study on where it’s most and least painful to get stung by a bee. Most painful: nostril, lip, and penis shaft. Least painful: skull, middle toe tip, and arm. He won an IgNobel Prize. peerj.com/articles/338/
Michael J. Fox’s actual middle name is Andrew michaeljfox.org/michaels-…
The Berlin Wall was not the border between East and West Germany. The City of Berlin was in the middle of East Germany but had several zones controlled by the Western Allies. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eas…
Today I learned about Al - Naslaa rock that's mysteriously split in a perfectly straight line down the middle. unusualplaces.org/al-nasl…
Nutmeg contains a hallucinogenic compound called myristicin. You can get high with doses of 15 g of grounded nutmeg, and the effect include, hallucinations, dizziness and memory impairment of the trip. This is why it was part of prison culture in the middle of the twentieth century. healthline.com/health/hig…
Jack Ma, the founder of one of China's most successful companies, failed primary school twice and middle school three times and also failed his university exam three times - he was also rejected by the police force and even KFC - but now is the one of the richest people in the world ccamonash.com.au/articles…
Today I learned of Pax Americana, a period of relative peace beginning around the middle of the 20th century, brought about by the dominant power of the United States. Similar time periods were Pax Romana and Pax Britannica. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pax…
Donuts were invented in New York and were originally called "Oily Cakes". The name later changed to Donut because nuts were added to the middle because the center would not cook properly. doyouremember.com/115457/…
The origin of Shark Fin Soup dish can be traced to the Emperor Taizu of the Northern Song. He established shark fin soup to showcase his power. With the decline of Elitism when the CCP came to power, economy reforms led to middle classes who showcased their wealth by buying Shark Fin Soup. theguardian.com/science/b…
There is a spacecraft cemetery in the middle of the Pacific Ocean en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spa…
In the Middle Ages, a nun in a French convent inexplicably began to meow like a cat, shortly leading to the other nuns in the convent also meowing. Eventually all the nuns would meow together for a certain period every day. This did not stop until the police threatened to whip the nuns en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
The etymological history of the word 'Slavs" stems from the Middle English word "sclave" which means slaves given that medieval Slavs were routinely captured and enslaved during wars in the Middle Ages. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sla…
In the Middles Ages, psychiatric disorder existed among the upper class causing people to fear that they were made of glass "and therefore likely to shatter into pieces". One famous sufferer was King Charles VI of France, who wore reinforced clothing to protect himself from "shattering" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gla…
The Romans called giving the middle finger 'digitus impudicus', the indecent finger. It was historically a phallic gesture, the middle finger being the penis and the curled fingers on either side the testicles. bbc.com/news/magazine-169…
Up until 2016, there was a pool in the middle of nowhere out in the Mojave desert that anybody could go to. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soc…
The mass persecution and killing of "witches" was not a thing of the Middle Ages but only started in the 15th century. history.com/topics/folklo…
The word "Ye" on nostalgic signs (Ye Old Tavern, etc) is supposed to be a Middle-English translation of "The". However, Ye was never actually a word- a character called a Thorn (ΓΎ) made a "TH" sound, so it would be spelled 'ΓΎe Old Tavern', reading as 'The Old Tavern.' mentalfloss.com/article/3…
As women enter middle age, they experience a rapid decline in facial attractiveness (regardless of cultural beauty standards) as compared to their male counterparts which scientists believe mirrors their quickly diminishing fertility. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…
Chuck E. Cheese’s official backstory is that he is an orphaned mouse who does not know his own birthday. To make up for never having a birthday party of his own, he hosts parties for children. And his middle name is Entertainment. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chu…
The chemise cagoule, was a heavy nightshirt worn by Catholic men and women during the Middle Ages in order to permit a husband to impregnate his wife without having more physical contact. The chemise cagoule covered all sexual areas, but left an opening for necessary contact. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che…
Today I learned about the Bangui magnetic anomaly which is a dip in the Earth's magnetic field in the Central African Republic - a grievously poor country in the middle of Africa. The anomaly may have been caused by an ancient meteorite impact... en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ban…
Matthew Perry lost the tip of his middle finger as a child β€œdue to an unfortunate door-shutting accident” ruinmyweek.com/entertainm…
After an internet vote for a new middle name, Macaulay Culkin legally changed his name to Macaulay Macaulay Culkin Culkin. cnet.com/news/macaulay-cu…
Hobby Lobby was fined $3,000,000 for the illegal smuggling of over 5,500 cuneiform tablets from the middle east en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hob…
Some scholars believe smiling was an invention of the Middle Ages and point out that not all cultures today use smiles to show happiness. This challenges the popular notion of 7 universal facial expressions. bbc.com/future/article/20…
Today I learned about the so-called Orphan Train. Over several decades, a quarter of a million street children from the overcrowded east coast were sent to families in middle America. mobituaries.com/the-podca…
The soda can tab is engineered to be operate as two different levers: a second-class lever pulls open the middle vent which depressurizes the can and then the first-class lever opens the drinking spout. businessinsider.com/the-g…
During the Middle Ages, small triangular-shaped stones β€” thought to be the tongues of snakes turned to stone by Saint Paul β€” were highly sought after as cures for poison and plagues. Centuries later, the β€œtongue stones” were identified as fossilized shark teeth. web.prm.ox.ac.uk/amulets/…
When the Baltimore Colts tried to move to Indianapolis, the owner feared that the government would attempt to keep the team in the city by eminent domain. He secretly packed up everything in trucks in the middle of the night and was in Indiana before the government realized they were gone. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bal…
Perpetual Stews were common in the middle ages. The pot was never or rarely emptied, and whatever food was found was placed inside and cooked en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per…
Life expectancy at birth was a brief 25 years during the Roman Empire, it reached 33 years by the Middle Ages and raised up to 55 years in the early 1900s. academic.oup.com/ije/arti…
Papa John's was sued for $250+ million for spam texting people in the middle of the night money.cnn.com/2012/11/13/…
Female kangaroos have three vaginasβ€”one vagina in the middle that's used for birth and two additional vaginas on either side which lead to separate uteri. tonyflorida.com/how-many-…
The "Cheerios effect" is an interesting fluid dynamics phenomenon that happens in cereal bowls. When there are just a few bits of cereal left floating on top of the milk, they tend to cluster together in the middle or around the edges of the bowl, rather than dispersing across the surface. phys.org/news/2019-12-che…
Germany started using jury trials the Middle Ages, but a constitutional crisis in 1924 led to an emergency decree abolishing juries and replacing them with the mixed system of judges and lay judges that is still used today. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jud…
Hedgehogs are a food source in many cultures. Hedgehogs were eaten in Ancient Egypt and some recipes of the Late Middle Ages call for hedgehog meat. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hed…
The modern usage of the word "slut" dates back to at least 1450 in Middle English. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slu…
Today China is experiencing piano frenzy with an estimated 40m children now learning to play. The instrument is increasingly in vogue among China’s burgeoning middle classes, who have the money to splurge on steep lessons and expensive fixtures. For many, owning a Steinway is a status symbol bbc.com/culture/story/201…
In 2008 Laura Matthews who had legally adopted the middle name 'Skywalker' was refused her passport, because her signature L. Skywalker infringed trademark rights bbc.com/news/uk-england-e…
Since the Middle Ages a "knacker man" was a person responsible for the removal of animal carcasses from private farms or public highways and rendering the collected carcasses into by-products. It was considered a disreputable occupation. They were also commissioned by the courts as executioners. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kna…
"Jazz on bones" or "Ribs" were bootleg vinyl recordings made from old x-rays with holes burned in the middle from cigarettes. In the 50's and 60's they were a black market method for smuggling banned music into the Soviet Union such as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and Elvis. vice.com/en_ca/article/rq…
Upon hitting middle-age your dog or cat can get acne vetmed.illinois.edu/pet_c…
Chinese wheelbarrows, which have a large wheel in the middle of the vehicle instead of a smaller wheel in front, can carry 3-6 times more than their European counterparts. lowtechmagazine.com/2011/…
While traveling Marco Polo heard stories of a giant bird living in Madagascar. He assumed the giant bird was Roc the legendary eagle from Middle Eastern mythology. Many centuries later, bones and eggs discovered on the island proved that giant ostrich like birds once lived in Madagascar. amnh.org/exhibitions/myth…
The original word for 'bear' has been lost. People in middle ages were superstitious and thought saying the animal's name would summon it. They called it 'bear' which means 'the brown one' to avoid saying its actual name. content.time.com/time/art…
A revolt of textile workers in 14th century Florence led to the son of a washerwoman becoming president when he entered the palace barefoot and overthrew the oligarchic government. For 4 years the republic was ruled almost entirely by middle class artisans and shopkeepers en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cio…
The historical Buddha became a saint in the middle ages by the name of Saint Josaphat en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gau…
Christmas in the Middle Ages was more like Mardi Gras on steroids; including raucous parties that lasted for days, animal sacrifices, and adult trick or treating. mentalfloss.com/article/5…
Female kangaroos have three vaginas and two uteruses. The two side vaginas carry sperm to each uterus, while the middle vagina sends the joey to the outside world. This can allow female kangaroos to be perpetually pregnant with one joey developing in her pouch and another in the other uterus. blogs.discovermagazine.co…
There was a group of middle aged women called β€œSnapists” who believed that they were married to Severus Snape on the β€˜astral plane’ and that he controlled their lives. An independent researcher published an in-depth paper on the matter. mdpi.com/2077-1444/5/1/21…
During the Middle Ages the Church prohibited the eating of meat on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturdays, as well as dairy and eggs during Advent and Lent. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Med…
During the middle ages, the alleged foreskin of Jesus Christ was a much-coveted relic and several churches claimed to own part or all of it. The foreskin was held to have great powers. However, the various relics of it were discredited by the end of the 18th century. theguardian.com/artanddes…
During the Irish Potato Famine, the poor were hired for useless construction projects called 'famine follies' in order to provide them with work that would not take existing work away from other workers. These included roads in the middle of nowhere, between two seemingly random points. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fol…
During the Middle Ages, members of guilds were referred to as β€œmasters.” Artisans who wanted to join a guild were required to prepare a β€œmaster piece” to be judged for qualification. If the masters approved of the piece, that artisan would be accepted into the guild. employees.oneonta.edu/far…
During the middle Ages saffron was so expensive some traders would try to increase their profits by bulking up the herb with yellow marigold petals. When authorities in Nuremberg, where the herb was mainly traded, found out about these tainted parcels of saffron, the traders were burned alive. theherbexchange.com/surpr…
The Shroud of Turin is believed to be the image depicting Jesus of Nazareth and the fabric is the burial shroud in which he was wrapped after crucifixion. In 1988, three radiocarbon dating tests dated a corner piece of the shroud from the Middle Ages, between the years 1260 and 1390. history.com/news/shroud-t…
"Rhyming names were popular in the Middle Ages, so Richard became Rick, Hick, or Dick, William became Will, Gill, or Bill, and Robert became Rob, Hob, Dob, Nob, or Bob." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob…
During the initial phase of the battle of Gettysburg, the two armies fought inside the town. During one of the skirmishes, a man called Joseph Broadhead leaved his house in the middle of fire in order to collect beans telling his wife that "The Rebels were not going to take his crop!" emergingcivilwar.com/2018…
A man in Vermont, upset with local officials for denying a building permit for his proposed business, paid $4,000 to build a giant illuminated middle finger statue on his property. β€œIf you don’t want to look at the building, look at this." He said to the Development Review Board. boston.com/news/local-new…
Since 2007, the top 1% in the US (those earning above $300,000 per year) are spending less on material goods, while middle-income groups (earning around $70,000 per year) are spending the same but trending upward. Instead, the 1% are spending more on things like education and health. bbc.com/worklife/article/…
Middle-age misery peaks at 47 years of age, in both developed and developing nations. ctvnews.ca/mobile/health/…
China has a 60-year (Sexagenary) cycle on top of its 12-year (Zodiac) cycle, with 2020 being the start of a cursed "Branch". 1900- middle of the Boxer Rebellion (~100,000 casualties) and 1960 - middle of the Great Chinese Famine (with casualties ranging from 15 to 45 million) en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sex…
Today I learned of Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), which is a tumour located in the middle of the brainstem. DIPG has a 5-year survival rate of less than 1%, with fewer than 10% of sufferers surviving their second year. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dif…
Today I learned about the phenomenon called "pseudoneglect" - the tendency to skew visual processing to the left. When asked to find the middle of a line, people will almost always choose a spot just left of center, regardless if they are right-handed or left-handed. thepsychologist.bps.org.u…
The word "mortgage" comes from an old French word used in Britain during the Middle Ages meaning "death pledge" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mor…
The "Murderkill River" in Delaware actually has no relation at all to death. "Muderkill" comes from the Middle Dutch words "moeder" (mother) and "kille" (river), meaning "Mother River". Which also makes it a tautological (redundant) name since Murderkill River = "Mother River River". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mur…
In 1933 6000 people were deported by the Soviet Union to an island in the middle of Siberia and were abandoned there without food or shelter. Within three weeks most of the prisoners were dead due to the widespread episodes of cannibalism. The island became known as β€œCannibal Island”. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naz…
Tony Iommi, lead guitarist of Black Sabbath, lost the tips of the middle and ring fingers of his right hand in an accident on his last day of work in a sheet metal factory. He went on to be ranked number 25 in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ton…
Star Trek's Wesley Crusher is suspected to be an idealized self-insertion character for Gene Roddenberry (whose middle name was Wesley) en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mar…
A bunch of drunk guys in the UK put a 25 foot Dinosaur (Triceratops) in the middle of the road. bbc.com/news/uk-england-h…
A new, unknown species of wasp was found in the Vondelpark, right in the middle of Amsterdam bdj.pensoft.net/article/4…
When Ted Bundy was put on trial, women would send him fan mail, many of which included nude pictures or marriage proposals. Groupies would even show up to the courtroom wearing hoop earrings with their hair parted down the middle, on the assumption that this style matched his victims. refinery29.com/en-us/what…

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