Most of my regulars know that I do like me some history and I try to find cool and interesting stuff to help my readers learn about our distant past.
We know about Julius Caesar and Spartan kings and Socrates….among others.
These deaths are pretty straight forward….assassination, poison, combat….but there are also deaths that can be explained as…well….weird.
There is never an easy time to be alive. The New York Times claims that, in 3,400 years of recorded history, humanity has only been at peace for a grand total of 268 years, or eight percent of the time. And as world diplomacy becomes increasingly complex and national interests rub up against one another, it doesn’t seem like we’ll be adding to that total anytime soon.
But perhaps it’s fair to say that some periods of time are more unpredictable, or rather that societies were so ungovernable that very strange things could occur. This is true especially of the ancient world, when democracy was experimental and science was equal parts observation, interpretation, and superstition, a way of looking at the world that was both searching and naive.
From domestic life to war, from private passions to public performance, the lives of ancient people have suddenly ended in the most unexpected ways. That’s not say that each of the ancients in this article should be receiving a long-overdue Darwin Award, but their deaths constitute such overwhelming weirdness that their stories have been transmitted down the millennia. There’s an element of timelessness to them, and once you read about them, you won’t be able to get them out of your head.
Draco–Death By Applause
Strange deaths…..stuff that is not taught in your typical history class….and that is why the Old Professor is here……to teach the stuff others ignore.
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”