16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

Categories: History | Society | World

Many people are interested in topics that science cannot explain. We like conspiracies and hoaxes. Throughout history, both individuals and groups have developed elaborate schemes to deceive other people. We have found 16 different historical hoaxes that prove that a person is ready to believe in incredible things. Take, for example, the fact that hundreds of viewers really believed that macaroni trees actually exist.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

An Englishwoman from Surrey managed to mislead not just anyone, but doctors. With the help of certain manipulations, the woman managed to convince several doctors that she had given birth to... rabbits. After the "birth" of the 15th rabbit, Mary Toft was decided to be placed under surveillance, as a result of which she was caught cheating. After this incident, society for a long time mocked the credulity of doctors, who at that time believed that a woman could modify the fetus in her womb with the power of thought.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

The "Big Moon Hoax" or the lunar "duck" is a series of articles published in the New York newspaper Sun. They reported about a huge reflector telescope allegedly built on the Cape of Good Hope, in which scientists managed to see the surface of the Moon in detail, as well as to discover a civilization of local inhabitants - intelligent "mousemen". The deception was revealed a few weeks after the first publication, which, however, did not affect the circulation of the newspaper in any way, since the public was amused by their own credulity.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

The Giant from Cardiff is a sculpture of a man with a height of more than 3 m, which was quite successfully passed off as the fossilized remains of a real giant who lived in prehistoric times. According to legend, two workers from Cardiff (New York, USA) discovered the "body" while digging a well. He was declared the well-preserved remains of a native American, and the owner of the land immediately began to charge those who came to see the giant.

However, the "prehistoric man" turned out to be a hoax: an atheist named George Hull decided in this way to annoy a certain priest who stubbornly defended his belief that the Earth, according to the Bible, was indeed once inhabited by giants. The sculpture was cut out of a plaster block and buried on the ground by Hull's brother, who then hired workers to dig a well.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

The legend of the giant potato variety "Maggie Murphy" was created in Loveland (Colorado, USA) by the editor of the city newspaper Thorndyke, who wanted to draw attention to the upcoming fair in this way. The "potato tuber" was carved out of wood and passed off as a real one, grown by a local farmer Joseph Swan. People all over the country willingly believed in the fiction and even began to ask the farmer for pieces of the legendary potato to germinate them and get their "giant harvest".

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

What do you think, which of the people depicted in this photo is actually a fraudster? Perhaps it would be more correct to ask which of them is not. All of them are scammers, or, as they would be called in our time, pranksters disguised as foreign guests. Moreover, the nobleman in a turban on the left is not even a man, but the writer Virginia Woolf, and the mustachioed gentleman on the right is the aristocrat William Horace de Vir Cole, the "ringleader" of this little gang of pranksters. Audacious hooligans fraudulently organized a visit to the flagship of the United Kingdom HMS Dreadnought, posing as members of the royal family from Abyssinia, accompanied by an "interpreter" (Cole).

The "distinguished guests" inspected the ship, expressing their admiration for the gibberish, in which the exclamation "bunga-bunga!" prevailed, and the officer accompanying them, who was familiar with Virginia and Horace, did not recognize them. This trick, like many others, got away with Cole, although he was threatened with flogging, despite his noble origin. Cole ignored this threat and replied that the officers should first of all punish themselves for letting themselves be deceived so easily.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

In 1917, the American journalist and satirist Henry Louis Mencken (pictured) published an article entitled "The Forgotten Anniversary", where he outlined the "history" of a modern bathtub allegedly invented in Cincinnati 75 years ago. In the article, Mencken claimed that before in the United States, taking baths was illegal because doctors considered them dangerous to health. Of course, baths like modern ones appeared much earlier and not at all in the USA (like, for example, this bath from the Cyprus museum), but it turned out that many did not even suspect this.

Despite the fact that the journalist just wanted to make a joke and once again make sure of the credulity of readers, his article seemed so truthful to people that it continued to be referred to as a serious source of information many years after the official refutation.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

These photos were taken in 1917 and 1921 by two teenage girls: 16-year-old Elsie Wright and her 10-year-old cousin Frances Griffiths. They had to prove that the "little people" (fairies, elves and dwarves) really exist. Surprisingly, even Sir Arthur Conan Doyle considered these obviously two—dimensional figures to be real - he believed in the authenticity of the photographs until his death. And about the origin of the last photo, where the "fairies" look more voluminous, disputes are ongoing to this day.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

This creature was allegedly caught in Iceland, Canada and some American states, in particular, in Arkansas, where a hair growth tonic was accidentally poured into the river. Newspapers published stories about how fishermen caught "fur trout" in order to sew their own slippers, and soon found her stuffed — of course, fake. Who came up with the idea to spread stories about fish covered with fur is unknown. But it can be assumed that the cause of the myth was the Saprolegnia fungus (or "cotton mold"), which causes infected fish to appear on the body of tufts similar to fur.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

Chimera creatures called "volpinger", "hare" or "rabbit" were believed in the Middle Ages - at least, they were mentioned in books and depicted on engravings. But the legends of the horned hare gained particular popularity in the USA when taxidermist Douglas Herrick from Wyoming made a stuffed animal of this fictional animal as a joke.

The joke was a success, and in the future Herrick's workshop produced thousands of such stuffed animals, and the town in which she was located even began to issue souvenir licenses for shooting horned hares, which can be obtained today. They are valid for 2 hours after midnight on June 31, while in order to obtain a license, you must pass an IQ test and score no more than 72 points in it, so smart people are unlikely to get them.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

The drawing, arranged on April 1, 1957 by the BBC television company, turned out to be much more successful than one can imagine. It turns out that many viewers had no idea where the pasta actually came from, and therefore believed in the story about the "unprecedented spaghetti harvest" in Switzerland. The TV company was hit by a flurry of calls from people who were interested in how to grow a miracle tree on their own. In response, the BBC staff advised them to "put the spaghetti escape in a jar with tomato sauce and hope for the best."

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

In this photo you can see the Hannington transmitter in England, through which an "alien invasion" was carried out on television on November 26, 1977. At 17:10, during the evening news, the audio signal of the broadcast was intercepted. There was interference on the TV screens, during which a strange "electronic" voice was heard, which stated that it was an alien named Vrillon from the Galactic Command of Ashtar. In his message, Vrillon warned the inhabitants of the Earth about the catastrophe that threatens the planet if humanity does not change course and does not get rid of the "weapons of evil". The event is considered a hoax, but the identity of the person who arranged all this remains unknown to this day.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

How would you react to a warning to stay away from water that contains a "dangerous concentration of hydrogen"? This joke clearly showed how the lack of basic knowledge and a biased attitude towards science can lead to panic. It all started in 1990, when students at the University of California distributed leaflets warning about water pollution with dihydrogen monoxide. In fact, this is one of the scientific names of water having the formula H2O.

Subsequently, several websites were created with information about the "danger" of dihydrogen monoxide, and in 1997 Nathan Zoner, a 14-year-old schoolboy from Idaho, conducted an experiment to collect votes among his classmates for banning a "harmful substance." As a result, 43 out of 50 people voted "for". In recognition of this experiment, the term "zonerism" was coined, meaning "the use of a fact that leads to false conclusions by a public not versed in science and mathematics."

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

Archaeoraptor is the generic name unofficially given in an article by National Geographic magazine to the fossilized remains of the "missing link" between birds and terrestrial dinosaurs found in China. Unfortunately, the "link" turned out to be a fake, collected from fragments of the remains of various animals. This event caused a big scandal and proved once again that any archaeological find needs to be thoroughly checked.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

It's hard to believe, but many Internet users have recently sent each other information about the upcoming approach of Mars to Earth, during which the Red Planet in our firmament will be equal in size to the Moon. Of course, Mars periodically approaches the Earth, but at the same time remains a relatively small object — the way you see it in this photo (the red dot to the right of the Moon).

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

One of the most recent hoaxes that occurred on October 15, 2009 in Fort Collins (Colorado, USA). Married couple Richard and Mayumi Hin released a balloon in the shape of a flying saucer filled with helium into the sky, claiming that their son Falcon was on it. A rescue operation was immediately organized, the media picked up this information, as a result of which many believed that the 6-year-old boy had indeed made a dangerous journey at an altitude of 2,100 m.

In fact, everything turned out to be much simpler: Falcon, of course, did not fly anywhere, but just hid in the attic of his house at that time. The whole story was invented by his parents to attract attention and the opportunity to make money on it. As a result, the Hinovs were sentenced to prison, community service and a large fine, and were also obliged to make an official apology to the institutions that "saved" their child.

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

In 1974, Defeo Jr. shot and killed six members of his family in a large Dutch colonial house located in the settlement of Amityville in New York. On November 19, 1975, Ronald Defeo Jr. was found guilty of six second-degree murders. For each of them, he received a life sentence in prison. Ronald Defeo Jr. Ronald Defeo Jr. It seems that you can put a period here. And in general, the question arises: how can this story be attributed to grandiose scams?

Despite the fact that the decision was made unanimously by the jury, there are a number of incomprehensible and even mysterious moments in this case: — None of the family members made a single attempt to defend themselves or escape. Meanwhile, the massacre lasted more than 10 minutes. At first, the investigation had a version that the "Big Guy" had spiked all the relatives with some kind of narcotic muck during dinner, but the toxicological examination gave an unambiguously negative result. — According to the manufacturer, the 35-caliber carbine of the Marlin brand makes such a roar during the shot that it can be heard at least a kilometer away. Meanwhile, not only the victims themselves, but also numerous neighbors whose houses are located 50 meters from Defeo, did not hear anything. Not a single shot. Out of eight!

The version on which the investigation stopped, that the walls of the house worked as a silencer, does not stand up to any criticism. — Finally, the most incredible thing: all six of the dead were found in the same position: face down. No traces of the killer changing the position of his victims were found. It turns out that a moment before death, all Defeo slept in this unthinkable position — facing the ground!

16 hoaxes that have been believed in for a very long time

In the same year, George and Kathy Lutz, along with their three children, moved to 112 Ocean Avenue. The family claimed that a demonic spirit had supernaturally attacked them and they fled the house after 28 days of paranormal terror. George Lee Lutz and Catherine Lutz George Lee Lutz and Catherine Lutz It all started corny. Lutz liked a luxurious Dutch-style mansion right on the ocean. And what is most surprising: only 80 thousand dollars were asked for it, although this amount should be at least 125 thousand. The Latzov family happily bought this house.

Before moving, Lat asked a familiar priest, Ralph Pecoraro, to consecrate the house. The consecration took place quietly. Nothing caused concern except for one room on the second floor — it was the bedroom in which little Mark and John Defeo died. However, the priest did not attach much importance to this. At first, everything looked quite harmless: unusual sounds, creaks, whistling and buzzing howls of wind were heard from different parts of the house. All this could be attributed to the venerable age of the house (built in 1924). However, further — worse: suddenly unbearable smells of decomposing meat or flesh began to appear. Starting from the second week of staying in the mysterious house, the symptoms worsened.

Kathy Lutz began to feel someone or something touching her back as she walked up the stairs to the second floor or went down to the basement. And one night, Kathy Lutz was sleeping with her face turned down, as usual. (Surprisingly, all members of the Lutz family began to sleep in the same position — face down.) Suddenly, Katie's body rose above the bed and began to slowly rotate in the air. George woke up and froze with his eyes wide open. He could not move his arm or leg: his whole body seemed to be filled with lead. Katie's levitation lasted for several hours in a row, then Katie turned her face towards her husband, and he saw how she had aged before his eyes, turning into a 90–year-old woman. By morning, everything fell into place. George couldn't stand it and called the priest. The latter recommended leaving the mansion in the near future.

Said and done. The Lutz family moved into the house of their parents, who lived not far from this "cursed" place. Lutz had no intention of finally parting with the mansion. He decided to put the house in the hands of specialists who would free him from evil spirits. George contacted the spouses Warren — Ed and Lorraine, the most famous ghostbusters in America. However, the couple gained star status after they examined the house in Amityville. For the first session in the house 112 on Ocean Avenue Ed and Lorraine The Warrens appeared together with the crew of the television channel Channel 5. The results of the visit turned out to be terrifying: Lorraine and Ed, as professionals should, experienced the monstrous effects of "evil forces", and the uninitiated news channel host Marvin Scott was taken out of the house in an unconscious state. After the Warrens, the house was "processed" by 7 more famous psychics.

According to the unanimous opinion, evil is so deeply rooted in this unfortunate building that it is almost impossible to remove it. The house had to be finally abandoned: in March, the Lats returned the mansion to the bank. However, investigators were skeptical of the family's claims. It was only years later that this lie was revealed, as DeFeo's lawyer, William Weber, finally admitted that both he and the Lutz family had worked together on this story, and that both of them had profited substantially from the deception. They also worked with Jay Anson, a well–known author of paranormal bestsellers, and concluded a parity agreement with him: The Lats give the writer audio cassettes on which the details of the experience were told, well, and the profits are divided fifty-fifty.

First came a book by Jay Anson called "The Horror of Amityville: The True Story of One Family." Immediately, the Hollywood blockbuster of the same name was shot in hot pursuit. George Lutz not only managed to register and patent the Amityville Horror trademark, but also concluded an unheard-of contract with the film studio, which gave Latz exclusive rights to all subsequent film adaptations and written editions of the same name.

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