Ten Historical Misconceptions of Our Times!!!
History has been a witness to some of the most popular misconcepts of our times. These historical misconceptions are so wide spread that we actually take them to be true. Some of them are given below to set your record straight.
Benjamin Franklin discovered electricity
Legend has it that Benjamin Franklin discovered electricity when the lightening struck his kite. The truth is electricity was already known during that time. In fact, he was trying to prove the electrical nature of lightening.
Humans evolved from chimpanzees
Darwin’s Theory is often misconstrued that humans have evolved from chimpanzees. Although, Darwin never said that. Humans and chimpanzees share around 94% of the DNA and both might have been actually evolved from common ancestor, Sahelanthropus tchadensis (an extinct species).
Marie Antoinette said, “Let them eat cake.”
When Jean Jacques Roussea narrated an incident, in 1776, wherein “a great princess” had asked her subjects to “eat cake” if they did not have bread, Marie Antoinette was just 11 years old girl living in Austria. This rumor probably was spread by propagandists to bring out the sheer indifference of Marie Antoinette towards the misery of French people.
Eve ate an apple
Well, Eve just ate the “fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the garden” (Genesis 3:3). Nowhere was it mentioned as she eating an apple. It must have been the fertile imagination of someone who might have been fond of apples.
Napoleon was short
No, the great French ruler was not really vertically challenged. He was 5 feet 7 inches tall and that is taller than the average Frenchmen of his times.
Magellan circumnavigated the world
History books told you that Ferdinand Magellan, the Portuguese explorer, circumnavigated the world and he was killed by the natives of Philippines. This is partly true. Sadly, Magellan was able to make only half way through the world.
Captain Cook discovered Australia
The misconcept is so popular that even some of the Australians will tell you the same. But the fact is that around 100 years before Captain Cook set his foot on the Australian soil, a Dutch explorer, Abel Tasman had already been to the place.
Hitler was an atheist
He might have been the most ruthless man of our times but to brand him an atheist would be inaccurate. Adolf Hitler was born a Roman Catholic and in his autobiography he wrote about his church experiences. Of course, he does not seem to have followed his religious doctrine.
America became independent on July 4, 1776
This one might dampen your patriotic spirits just a little. No doubt the founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence on the 4th of July 1776, however, USA officially became an independent nation only on the 23rd September 1783.
Columbus proved that the Earth was round
Columbus already knew, like most of the Europeans, that the Earth was round or pear-shaped. In fact, the fact was already proved much before Columbus was even born. So, he did not have to prove it again, did he?