Be The Smartest Person In The Room, Join The All That Is Interesting Newsletter

The Bloody History of Decapitation

Beheading has a long history, and it might have a long future. Find out the who, when, why, where, and how of one of humanity’s worst execution methods.

Beheading Through History

On the morning of February 8, 1587, the condemned sovereign Mary Queen of Scots mounted a public block and was put to death on the orders of her cousin, Queen Elizabeth I of England, marking the end of one of history’s most famous disputes. After 18 years of confinement in one fortified house after another, Mary blessed her executioners for “mak[ing] an end to all my troubles,” and even managed to fire off a few one-liners before the sentence was carried out.

That sentence was beheading, and it’s been one of humanity’s favorite execution methods since the first clever caveman figured out how to make troublesome cave neighbors shut up once and for all with the stroke of a sharpened stone.

Now, discover all the grisly ways we’ve been beheading since then…

Continue Reading

Shocking Labor Practices That Were Legal In Charles Dickens’ Age

Charles Dickens devoted much of his life to writing about the struggles of the working class. On the eve of his birthday, we look back on the historically awful conditions that may have inspired him to write in the first place.

Charles Dickens Writing Desk

A portrait of of Charles Dickens at his writing desk in 1858. Source: Wikimedia

Nearly 204 years ago, Charles Dickens was born in Portsmouth, England. Dickens would go on to write an array of now-classics such as Great Expectations, Oliver Twist and A Tale of Two Cities, but Dickens’ life, like that of so many of his characters, did not have an easy beginning.

Continue Reading

The 10 Most Horrific Methods Of Execution Throughout History

Whether involving rats, spikes, or boiling oil, the worst execution methods ever invented prove that humans have mastered the art of torture and death.

Worst Execution Methods Again

If the last few thousand years of human history have shown us to be good at one thing, it’s the art of inflicting painful, humiliating death on one another. Whether using ravenous animals, scorching temperatures, or endless variations of sharp, pointed implements, the ingenuity that has gone into the act of death by torture is genuinely shocking. You’ll need a strong stomach to make it through this list of the worst execution methods ever used:

Continue Reading

4 Female Civil Rights Leaders You Didn’t Learn About in School

Most people know who Rosa Parks is — here are four other women in the Civil Rights Movement whose names you should know.

Rosa Parks Leaders

Many women — such as Septima Clark, Mildred Loving, Georgia Gilmore and Betty X, above — helped advance the Civil Rights Movement

February 4th marks the birthday of Rosa Parks, the African American woman who made history on December 1, 1955 when she refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Alabama bus.

Parks was one of many African American women who helped lead the movement for equality and the end of segregation in the 1950s, 1960s and beyond. Several of her contemporaries were, like Parks, working women whose advocacy and activism were simply part of their day-to-day lives. This, in a way, makes them and their achievements all the more extraordinary.

Four of these female civil rights leaders are profiled here, to celebrate not just Parks’ legacy, but the collective courage of the women of her generation:

Continue Reading

Close Pop-in
Like All That Is Interesting

Get The Most Fascinating Content On The Web In Your Facebook & Twitter Feeds