5 Historical Figures Who Would Definitely Be Banned From Tinder
Dating is an absolute nightmare, and I don’t think you’ll find a lot of people who disagree. If you were to pitch someone, as a friday night activity, “small talk, but absolutely suffused with deep vulnerability,” I don’t think many people would be eager to throw that onto their calendar. Men do have a slight upper hand in just how bad a bad date can be, however. A left hook to their credit card’s kidneys or an hour or two of awkward conversation is the usual fear when heading to some mutually-agreed upon watering hole.
Women, on the other hand, as pointed out excellently by comedian Hampton Yount, are crossing their fingers that they won’t end up on a Netflix true-crime documentary a couple years later. These days, of course, murder is taken pretty seriously. But if you go back far enough in time, and find someone suitably powerful, they were pretty much allowed to knock off any wife that they didn’t like or didn’t get knocked up fast enough.
Here are five historical figures who are insanely deserving of a left swipe…
Henry VIII, famous for liking his wives headless, is definitely in contention for the worst husband of all time. When a website lists the status of one of your wives as “Survived,” like you’re a natural disaster instead of a portly king with anger issues, you can imagine that’s not what they call a healthy relationship. The guy had six wives and two of them ended up beheaded, giving his marriages a 33 percent mortality rate. You’re better off contracting Hodgkin’s lymphoma than marrying Henry VIII.
Even if you were one of the three wives who made it out with their ability to see and smell intact, it wasn’t a cakewalk. Henry was also known for multiple affairs and at least one confirmed illegitimate child. Unsurprisingly for a monarch, he was a narcissist known for an extremely short fuse. These days, that’s basically half of a jigsaw puzzle that ends with bodies in a basement. When you’re a king, though, you just get charitably described as a “spirited man” or similar.
Sultan Fuad I
Nazli Sabri was taking in an opera in Egypt when the first Sultan of Egypt, Ahmed Fuad, spotted and became besotted with her. A man of royalty, spotting a woman in public and receiving an immediate Cupid’s arrow to his metaphorical rump? It sounds like the beginning of a Disney movie. The middle and end, though, are a little closer to A24 territory. Not to mention that Fuad was 25 years older than Nazli, something that doesn’t earn nodding approval from most modern humans not named Leonardo DiCaprio.
The age difference was quickly eclipsed by other issues, though, not because it wasn’t creepy, but because things got so much worse. Fuad desperately wanted a male heir. Old-fashioned, sure, but pretty much par for the course back then if you decided to marry anyone with a claim to the throne. Fuad’s methods of, let’s say, reproductive encouragement, however, were unbelievably cruel. He literally locked his wife away in Abbassia Palace and informed her she would only be able to leave the building after producing a bouncing baby boy.
Thankfully for her supply of Vitamin D, she did. Unfortunately, it turned out that Fuad’s idea of freedom was just being locked up in his palace instead, and wouldn’t even allow her to see her son for more than an hour a day. She eventually attempted to overdose on aspirin, and only got out from under Fuad’s thumb when he died.
Being known as the “Last Emperor of China” already isn’t the most prestigious of legacies, but Emperor Puyi did absolutely nothing to help himself, especially when it came to his romantic relationships. When he was informed, having been emperor since a young age, that it was time to wed, he married a, by all accounts, stunningly beautiful woman named Wanrong. She wasn’t his first choice, however. That honor went to a woman his advisors vetoed because, well, she wasn’t really a woman yet — she was 12 years old. So, as a compromise, he took her as a concubine. Yikes!
Pedophilia aside, which I acknowledge is an absolutely insane start to a sentence, he was also known as a violent and sadistic man. One of his favorite hobbies was whipping eunuchs until his counselors pleaded with him to stop. He wasn’t exactly apologetic about it either, saying “My cruelty and love of wielding power were already too firmly set for persuasion to have any effect on me.”
That’s the sort of thing you work out with a psychiatrist, not put on the public record of Earth, you psychopath.
It’s probably a massive win for public safety that dating apps weren’t around when Charles Manson was recruiting for his infamous family. Manson is best known for being a serial killer who was silver-tongued enough to never get his actual hands dirty, instead relying on followers. Some members of the “Manson Family” were male, but a good portion of them were women wooed by the inescapable power of bad acoustic guitar.
The family carried out a number of murders, most famously killing every inhabitant of 10050 Cielo Drive, a house that had used to belong to a music producer that had rejected Manson’s music. It was, at that point, owned by Roman Polanski, and his pregnant wife Sharon Tate was murdered along with four others. Polanski, unfortunately, was out of the country at the time. One can only imagine what kind of army Manson could have assembled with access to OkCupid.
Whether the god Zeus truly exists depends on whether you have some fervent and extremely old-fashioned beliefs about religion. One thing that’s not in doubt was that Zeus was a pretty horrible choice of paramour. Sure, he could light your post-sex cigarette with a quick lightning bolt, but your whole life was now centered around his wife Hera never finding out.
Because Zeus was the most powerful god on Olympus, when he cheated (constantly) on Hera, she couldn’t do much to him. Which meant whichever unfortunate mortal he’d decided to do the dirty with received a double-dose of jealous rage. Getting murdered by a jealous lover? That’s not great. Getting slapped with one of the iconic curses Greek gods were oh-so-good at cooking up? Even worse.
However nice Zeus might have been with it, it’s probably not worth getting turned into a cow.