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Twisted Facts

The measurement of the statutory mile (as opposed to the nautical mile, which is slightly longer) derives from ancient Rome. As walking was then the primary mode of transportation, the Romans measured distances in paces, which were about five feet. So milia passsum, 1,000 paces, measured 5,000 feet. However, in 1575 the British Parliament added 280 feet to this measurement, declaring the mile to be 1,760 yards or 5,280 feet, so that it could be divided evenly into furlongs. One furlong is 660 feet long, giving 8 furlongs to the mile.
Until 1959, when the avoirdupois pound was established as 453.59237 grams, the United States and Great Britain had different values for the pound. The American version was 453.5924277 grams and the British pound 453.592338 grams. Similarly, the British and American inches differ slightly (with the American inch 2.540005 centimetres, and the British inch 2.539998 centimetres).
The carat was derived from the weight of a seed of the carob tree.

The Hundred Years' War actually lasted 116 years, from 1337 to 1453.
It is not true that the early Chinese used gunpowder only for fireworks. They had forms of guns (invented in 1288), bombs, grenades, rockets, land mines, and other arms

Few witches were burned during the Middle Ages. Most witch-burnings occurred in later centuries.
In the fifteenth century, Prince Henry the Navigator dispatched his sea captains on voyages to explore the African coast. One of Henry's hopes was that his men would discover the rich Christian kingdom of "Prester John", which was cut off from the rest of Christendom by the Islamic conquest. The Portuguese rounded the Cape of Good Hope and sailed the east coast of Africa, only to find that Prester John's kingdom did not exist. While they found a Christian kingdom in Ethiopia, it was dismissed as being that of Prester John due to its povertY

The Emanicipation Proclamation did not free any slaves. Issued by Abraham Lincoln on New Year's Day 1863, the proclamation freed only slaves in the areas controlled by the rebel Confederate government, where Lincoln had no authority to enforce it
In 1903, Albert Michelson, one of the 19th century's top physicists, commented "The more important fundamental laws and facts of physical science have all been discovered, and these are so firmly established that the possibility of their ever being supplemented in consequence of new discoveries is exceedingly remote". Two years later, Einstein published his revolutionary Theory of Special Relativity

As late as 1820, the universe was thought by European scientists to be 6,000 years old. It is now thought to be about 15 billion years old.

The Eastern side of the Panama Canal connects to the Atlantic Ocean and the Western side of the canal to the Pacific, not the other way around

In 1985, NASA estimated that the probability of an accident occurring to the space shuttle was 1 in 100,000. However, on January 28, 1986, only the 25th shuttle launch, Challenger exploded after take-off, killing all seven astronauts aboard, and on February 1, 2003, the 113rd mission, Columbia exploded on re-entry, again killing all seven astronauts. Earlier estimates by other groups had estimated the probability as being closer to 1 in 100, a probability that seems more reasonable.

It is untrue that carrots are good for your eyes. This belief started in World War II, when the British began using airborne radar, allowing them to find German bombers at night. In order to mislead the Germans, a rumour was spread indicating that John Cunningham, the Royal Air Force's most successful night fighter pilot, had developed phenomenal night sight by eating carrots in large quantities

Abner Doubleday did not invent the game of baseball. The story of his invention of the game was created many years later based on hearsay. Alexander Cartwright, a New York City bank clerk who devised several changes to the American form of rounders in 1844, is the best candidate for the inventor of baseball.

On average, 100 people choke to death on ballpoint pens every year.

Butterflies taste with their feet.

More people are killed by donkeys annually than are killed in plane crashes.

In 1994, electromagnetic interference (EMI) from a nearby cellular telephone captivated the power of a wheelchair at a scenic vista in Colorado, sending the passenger over a cliff.

More people working in advertising died on the job in 1996 than those who died while working in petroleum refining.

Babies are born without knee caps. They don't appear until the child reaches 2-6 years of age.

A cockroach will live nine days without its head, before it starves to death.

On average people fear spiders more than they do death.

Thirty-five percent of the people who use personal ads for dating are already married.

Elephants are the only mammals that can't jump.

Only one person in two billion will live to be 116 or older.

It's possible to lead a cow upstairs...but not downstairs.

Women blink nearly twice as much as men.

The Main Library at Indiana University sinks over an inch every year because when it was built, engineers failed to take into account the weight of all the books that would occupy the building.

Our eyes are always the same size from birth, but our nose and ears never stop growing.

Four sunken nuclear submarines sit at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. One, a Russian sub resting in deep water off of Bermuda, holds 16 live nuclear warheads. Scientists and oceanographers are unsure what the impact of the escaping plutonium will have, but warn that corrosion could create the proper chemical environment for a massive nuclear chain reaction.

The electric chair was invented by a dentist.

All polar bears are left handed..

An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain.

TYPEWRITER is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard.

"Go." is the shortest complete sentence in the English language.

A crocodile cannot stick its tongue out.

In the 1990's more than 30 people were axed, hanged, burned and mobbed to death in the United States for practicing witchcraft.

The average human eats eight spiders in their lifetime at night.

Unusual deaths have plagued the cast of the Poltergeist trilogy of films including 12-year-old actress Heather O'Rourke, who died of septic shock. The theory is that the set was cursed by evil.

A dragonfly has a lifespan of 24 hours
Cat's urine glows under a black light.

In 1970, a group of people were arrested at Highgate cemetery for intent to harm...a vampire! The vampire is rumored to still be around today.

Prisoners in a California jail were so spooked by a Ouija board they made that Priests were called in to cast out the demons. The convicts had summoned up spirits, including a woman who told them how she was murdered.

The human heart creates enough pressure when it pumps out to the body to squirt blood 30 feet.

On average, people fear spiders more than they do death.

The strongest muscle in the body is the tongue.

After complaining about the smell in their room, a couple staying in a hotel in the United States discovered the body of a murdered girl under their bed.

It's impossible to sneeze with your eyes open.

Ants always fall over on their right side when intoxicated.

The catfish has over 27,000 taste buds, that makes the catfish rank #1 for animal having the most taste buds.

Starfish haven't got brains.

Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated.

Peanuts are one of the ingredients of dynamite.

The average secretary's left hand does 56% of the typing.

There are more chickens than people in the world.

No word in the English language rhymes with month, orange, silver or purple.

In most advertisements, including newspapers, the time displayed on a watch is 10:10.

In England, the Speaker of the House is not allowed to speak.

The name for Oz in the "Wizard of Oz" was thought up when the creator, Frank Baum, looked at his filing cabinet and saw A-N and O-Z, hence "Oz."

The microwave was invented after a researcher walked by a radar tube and a chocolate bar melted in his pocket.

It is physically impossible for pigs to look up into the sky.

A pregnant goldfish is called a twit.

More than 50% of the people in the world have never made or received a telephone call.

Nearly a third of all bottled drinking water purchased in the US is contaminated with bacteria.

Homely criminals get 50% longer jail sentences, on average, than good-looking criminals.

Wearing headphones for just an hour will increase the bacteria in your ear by 700 times.

If the government has no knowledge of aliens, then why does Title 14, Section 1211 of the Code of Federal Regulations, implemented on July 16, 1969, make it illegal for U.S. citizens to have any contact with extraterrestrials or their vehicles?

In every episode of Seinfeld there is a Superman somewhere.

A shrimp's heart is in its head.

In a study of 200,000 ostriches over a period of 80 years, no one reported a single case where an ostrich buried its head in the sand.

February 1865 is the only month in recorded history not to have a full moon.

Donald Duck comics were once banned in Finland because he doesn't wear pants.

If you keep a Goldfish in the dark room, it will eventually turn white.

A snail can sleep for three years.

Average life span of a major league baseball: 7 pitches.

Our eyes are always the same size from birth, but our nose and ears never stop growing.

The shortest war in history was between Zanzibar and England in 1896. Zanzibar surrendered after 38 minutes.

A polar bear's skin is black. Its fur is not white, but actually clear.

Almonds are members of the peach family.

Tigers have striped skin, not just striped fur.

A duck's quack doesn't echo and no one knows why.

In 10 minutes, a hurricane releases more energy than all the world's ...

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