The countries of Europe had been invaded. The attack had come swiftly, and the invaders were winning. These desperate times called for extreme measures if there was going to be any hope […]
Was Elizabeth I Poisoned By Her Makeup?
”If looks could kill…” No, we’re not talking about the imperious glare for which Queen Elizabeth I was feared. The killing looks in this case refer to the appearance of Her Majesty. […]
A Warning for Women About the Dangers of Bicycle Face
Nineteenth-century life had more than its share of challenges for women. Disenfranchisement, substandard medical care, and the need to wear corsets are just a few of the downsides they had to face. […]
Why Does the U.S. Have a Secret Strategic Chicken Stockpile?
Hey, you. Yeah… We’re talking to you. Come here for a minute. Lean in. Listen carefully. Can you keep a secret? So can we. That’s why we have never disclosed any information […]
The Strange Case of the Woman Who Urinated From Her Ears, Eyes, Nose, and Navel
If you have suffered through a long car ride in which the driver refuses to stop for a bathroom break, you may have felt as if your eyeballs were floating. Possibly you […]
Beware Mad Honey Disease
Do you like honey? Are you just mad about it? There’s nothing wrong with having an affinity for the taste of honey, but if your obsession approaches the level of madness, you’d […]
5 to 8 Percent of Your DNA Isn’t Human
Remember your seventh grade Home Economics teacher who screamed, “You’re burning your oleo!” as you tried to make rice crispy cookies? Or what about that guy at the bus stop who looks […]
The Forgotten Zombie Epidemic of the 20th Century
Have you heard about the strange, horrifying, and unstoppable malady that gripped the planet? Hundreds of thousands lost their lives, and they were the lucky ones. Those who survived remained as hollow […]
Was Alexander the Great Buried Alive?
When Alexander the Great died at the tender age of 32, he had conquered the known world. Many wondered at the time and since what he could have accomplished if he had […]
How a Video Game Pandemic is Teaching Us How to Cope With a Real One
A new disease emerged from a remote part of the world. It started in an animal before jumping to humans. It was highly contagious, but many who caught the disease remained asymptomatic. […]
Rabies — 100% Fatal and 100% Preventable
When it comes to killer diseases, you will be hard-pressed to find anything more lethal than rabies. Tens of thousands of people contract the disease each year. Once the symptoms begin to […]
Cube-Shaped Wombat Poop and Other Scientific Breakthroughs
We at Commonplace Fun Facts are big fans of the Ig Nobel Prize and its mission to “first make people laugh, then make them think.” The list of 2019 laureates touched on […]
The Mysterious Illness That Killed 80% of a Nation
At a time when much of the world’s attention is on the COVID-19 coronavirus global pandemic, it is appropriate to remember an epidemic that history has largely overlooked, despite the fact that […]
How Did a Measles Outbreak Lead to the Use of Telephone Numbers?
As events such as the COVID-19 outbreak affecting the ability to travel, many people are grateful for the option of picking up a phone, dialing a number, and being able to speak […]
Fleas Accelerate Faster than the Space Shuttle — 10 Fun Facts About the Flea
Fleas may have been directly responsible for wiping out a significant percentage of Europe’s population during the Middle Ages, but you can’t help but admire the tiny insect’s design. The body of […]