Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [history]

Use this tag for questions that pertain to historical events, or claim whose evidence is historical in nature.

7
votes
1answer
752 views

Is the Amityville Horror real?

No one disputes the atrocity of the 1974 murders committed by Ronald DeFeo Jr which occurred at the house. However, was there any truth to the 1977 book by Jay Anson which chronicled various claims ...
10
votes
1answer
835 views

Was the Patterson Bigfoot Film Faked?

On October 20, 1967, Roger Patterson made a video which seared an image of Bigfoot into the popular consciousness..... Is that video real?
284
votes
7answers
33k views

Did Jesus live?

Regardless of whether you believe or not... What is the non-Biblical evidence regarding his existence around the time he is commonly thought to have lived? That is, are there other historically ...
14
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the current state of the evidence of the existence of the so-called Nazi UFO's?

As a skeptic I was present at a meeting where the presenter stated his believe in Nazi UFOs. Many websites claim that the Nazis had developed flying saucer technology during WWII. In science ...
22
votes
1answer
1k views

Was the mathematical genius of Gauss discovered at school?

It is often said that the genius of Carl Friedrich Gauss was first discovered when his teacher told the students to calculate the sum of all integers from 1 to 100 to keep them occupied and young ...
15
votes
1answer
3k views

Did Charles have Lady Diana murdered?

Apparently, the English monarchy had the motive and the opportunity: In 1997, Princess Diana (Princess of Wales) and Dodi Fayed (son of Mohamed Fayed, owner of the Ritz Hotel and Harrods) were ...
29
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the most realistic estimate for how far the Vikings could have explored the western hemisphere?

There is at least one proposal that Vikings sailed around the northern coast of Canada and made it as far south along the west to reach Vancouver Island. (Image taken from the link in the previous ...
39
votes
1answer
27k views

Was the Great Sphinx of Giza originally an Anubis?

Does Robert Temple's book The Sphinx Mystery: The Forgotten Origins of the Sanctuary of Anubis have any support in the academic community? For those of you unfamiliar with his theory, here's a quote ...
26
votes
4answers
4k views

Was the world life expectancy only 30 years at 1900?

In this article, About.com article on Life Expectancy they claim: In 1900, the world life expectancy was approximately 30 years I've also the same claim elsewhere. However, this doesn't jibe with ...
76
votes
5answers
13k views

Were people shorter in the middle ages?

In many castles or museums you'll find medieval armor, belonging to a knight. Those are often very small compared to the average human nowadays. I've heard this explained multiple times as being due ...
22
votes
4answers
2k views

Could a Great Flood have happened?

In Noah's Ark myth God sent 40 days of rain to flood the Earth. Are any such long periods of persistent rain recorded? What kind of disaster could happen to cover all continents with water?
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Does the Mount Washington wind speed record have scientific validity?

A record wind gust of 231 miles/hour was recorded in 1934, according to http://www.mountwashington.org/about/visitor/recordwind.php Wind speeds of this magnitude are commonly known to damage or ...
15
votes
1answer
3k views

Was McCarthy directly involved with the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC)?

There are often claims that Joe McCarthy started, led, or was responsible for the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). Examples: BBC reports "Many of those forced to appear before ...
20
votes
1answer
3k views

Did (Does?) the Shaolin Wooden Men labyrinth exist?

It is mentioned in nearly every fiction on Shaolin Temple, but did it really exist? Wikipedia didn't mention it at all the last time I read, so I assume it's all fiction. But I haven't had a chance to ...
27
votes
1answer
6k views

Is the Bible the most read book?

I have often heard that the most popular book is the Bible, but it seems to me that, for example, classical Indian books as the Mahabharata or the Chinese Four Books and Five Classics may be more ...
29
votes
2answers
20k views

Pirates with a prosthetic hook: Lore or Truth?

Was it common practice for pirates to replace a lost hand with a prosthetic hook? Or was this lore perpetrated by fiction and Hollywood? It does seem like a reasonable choice, since a hook is a ...
14
votes
1answer
2k views

What formal education did L Ron Hubbard have?

There are various claims that L. Ron Hubbard (the creator of Scientology) had degrees and doctorates. What formal education and qualifications did he have?
17
votes
2answers
2k views

Was kissing punishable by death in 16th century Naples?

According to Dr Karl: And in 16th century Naples, in Italy, kissing was an offence that carried the death penalty. Is that true?
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Do ley lines exist in the landscape?

The alignment of ancient sites (1500+ years) in the landscape is said to be evidence of ley lines. In the UK and elsewhere in Europe, it is said that many Saxon churches and pre-Christian monuments ...
10
votes
2answers
402 views

Ash Wednesday History

I recently read a blog that stated: Ash Wednesday is a relatively late addition to the Christian liturgical calendar, first surfacing in the tenth century according to accounts written in the ...
16
votes
3answers
959 views

Has there been an increase in the frequency of seismic activity? [closed]

First it was New Zealand, now Japan -- two major earthquakes in a span of less than 2 months. Cults could use this opportunity to sell their end-day stories. Joking aside, is there any scientific ...
24
votes
1answer
9k views

Did sailors mistake sea cows for mermaids?

I've heard theories that mermaid sightings were the result of sex-starved sailors mistaking manatees, dugongs or Steller's sea cows for beautiful women. History.com claims Columbus did this, "How I ...
178
votes
7answers
24k views

Did people think the Earth was flat?

I've heard it numerous times, that in the old days people thought that the world was flat. Most commonly I heard this in connection with the voyage of Columbus, that he believed the earth to be a ...
83
votes
5answers
15k views

How were the pyramids built?

It is claimed in many different pseudoscience publications and sites that it was impossible for the ancient Egyptian civilization to build the pyramids, because: too much labour was needed it was ...
42
votes
3answers
4k views

Was the golden ratio deliberately used for aesthetics in ancient or Renaissance times?

It's a famous claim that the golden ratio was both known to and deliberately used by artists and/or architects, for example in the Parthenon. I doubt this, and suspect that any observations about the ...
28
votes
4answers
4k views

What is going to happen in 2012?

The Mayan calendar completes its 5,125 year cycle, on 21 December 2012. Is there any evidence they foresaw the end-of-the-world?
52
votes
3answers
3k views

Have there been unusual disappearances in the Bermuda Triangle?

An unusual number of ships and planes are said to have disappeared without a trace in the area called the Bermuda Triangle. This has caused some people to claim supernatural causes for these ...