5 Underreported Jerk Moves By Famous Historical Figures
Popular history is sort of like a Disney adaptation of a classic fairy tale. We trim out the uncomfortable bits, sort every character into black and white categories, and gloss over all the nudity and pooping. And in doing so, we sweep enormous amounts of historical dickotry under the rug. Things like ...
Allied Leaders Spitefully Pissed On Things All The Time
The Allies win! Planes soar overhead, the citizens hold ticker-tape parades, people kiss in the street, and beneath it all is the sweet, tangy smell of victory urine. Yes, some of history's greatest leaders went ahead and pissed all over their defeated opponents -- a tactic that most of the animal kingdom would call "a bit gauche."
General George Patton, the Tom Brady of generals, couldn't resist adding his stream to the Rhine River as his troops rolled across Germany. The Rhine is a powerful nationalist symbol in Germany, so of course Patton thought emptying his bladder into it was a great way to facilitate their peaceful surrender.
Someone should have told him to take his dick out first.
Patton also thought trenches were for sissies. When another general showed George some new, innovative narrow trenches -- to protect men from aerial strikes -- Patton showed his contempt by whipping it out and ordering an airstrike of his own. After zipping up, he quipped, "There -- now try to use it" and left. We're guessing without washing his hands.
Winston Churchill also got in on the urination celebration. He really wanted to pee all over Hitler's precious Siegfried Line, and you can decide for yourself what that says about the man. Churchill was classy enough to not let anyone take pictures, but a witness did describe the scene: "I shall never forget the childish grin of intense satisfaction that spread all over his face as he looked down at the critical moment." Churchill keeps on giving, doesn't he? "The critical moment" is our new favorite euphemism.
Columbus Was Somehow An Even Bigger Jerk Than You Thought
On their lengthy trip to a continent that may or may not have existed for all they knew, Christopher Columbus and his crew got a bit tired of looking at nothing but waves and the occasional mermaid. He incentivized his men to stay alert by offering a big cash reward to the first crewman to spot land. On October 12th, 1492, Rodrigo de Triana spotted land. He thought he hit the jackpot, discovering the free world and earning a sweet bonus. Triana told Columbus of his discovery, no doubt expecting him to make it rain, which was significantly more painful in the days of gold coins.
As though this article didn't already have enough golden showers.
Funny thing: As it turned out, Columbus had totally noticed something land-like the night before with his superior, continent-discovering eyes. He neglected to tell anyone, because he didn't want to get them riled up. So Columbus kept the money to himself, along with Traina's rightful place in history as the first European colonizer to lay eyes on North America.
Eisenhower Came Up With The Worst Pranks
Dwight D. Eisenhower was a big roads guy -- he oversaw the creation of the Interstate Highway System during his presidency. But his love of asphalt started earlier in life. As a young rascal in the army, Ike got the job of assessing America's road system by roadtripping across the country with some Army buddies. As far as military assignments go, that's hard to beat. Ike and his friend Sereno Brett immediately took this assignment for granted, and set out to prank their way across America. They did things big back in the day; not content to merely moon passersby or draw dicks on their sleeping friends, they set out to convince their buddies that they were about to be murdered.
Eisenhower and Brett told high tales of Indian massacres in Wyoming, then staged an attack the minute they arrived in the state. They put a guard on duty for the camp, then went out into the woods, started emitting war whoops, and inched ever closer, pressing the poor guy into taking action. He grabbed his shotgun and secured his perimeter, as he should have. As the noises grew closer and more frequent, he fired off his gun ... which Ike had loaded with blanks, so everyone had a good laugh at his expense. Wow, OK, we thought that was going to end waaay differently. This one's actually pretty cute ... for a fake massacre.
Peter The Great Put His Wife's Boyfriend's Head In A Jar
History regards Peter the Great as one of Russia's, well ... greatest leaders, along with his wife, Catherine (also super Great). But everything was not great. One of the things Peter the Great was, uh, good at: banging mistresses. Anna Mons was Peter's favorite side girl, and as such, her family members netted some important jobs working with the royal family. Anna's brother Willem became Catherine's secretary, and if you've watched enough porn, you know exactly where this is going: Willem started banging Catherine.
We don't know the exact name of this porn, but the word "mons" better be in there.
Peter was a little on the hypocritical side when it came to affairs, and had Willem beheaded on a trumped-up charged of embezzlement. To make sure Catherine got the message, Peter had Willem's head pickled (communication didn't seem to be their strong suit). By some accounts, Peter forced Catherine to keep the head in her room, because it's always Halloween in Russia. Catherine would hang on to the "conversation starter" well past Peter's death. A friend of Catherine's would later find Willem's head, along with the head of another woman (because this was apparently something Peter was into), and give them both a proper burial. Well, not proper (they were severed heads in jars), but they were at least allowed to decompose.
John Adams And Thomas Jefferson Vandalized Shakespeare's Chair
The accessibility of Shakespeare's legacy has led to some shameful theft and vandalism over the years. In one incident, two men snuck away while touring the revered playwright's home and chipped off a piece of his chair to keep as a souvenir. The mad lads chiseled away at literary history, vandalizing the very chair that Shakespeare maybe wrote Romeo And Juliet in, and certainly, certainly farted in.
Those men? American Founding Fathers John Adams and Thomas Jefferson (the Mario and Luigi of president).
Chair piece seen here, being not fucking worth it.
The incident occurred in 1786, when Adams was serving as U.S. ambassador to England, and Jefferson was tagging along just because they were best buds. When they saw the chair, they broke off a chunk to take home, which Adams wrote in his diary was "according to custom." How many people could uphold that custom before Shakespeare's thinkin' chair was a splintery mass? Like ... 15?
Adams and Jefferson would later become bitter political rivals, with Jefferson wrestling the presidency away from his old pal in 1800. They would spend many years as enemies, taking turns disrupting one another's ambitions, before reconciling late in life and dying on the very same Fourth of July. That sort of dramatic storyline forces us to wonder if they spent the rest of their lives having their fates controlled by some sort of vengeful Shakespeare spirit.
A Shakespirit, if you will.
But that would be ridiculous, right? Oh look, Adams wrote in his diary about a curse he found on Shakespeare's grave. One about removing things from their rightful place.
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