There are some interesting facts and information sprinkled all throughout history. But quite a bit of those “facts” have been disproven. However, people still talk about them and spread the information as though they’re 100% correct. Here are some historical “facts” are actually incorrect.


Cleopatra Wasn’t Egyptian

Cleopatra was the last sovereign ruler of Egypt. Although, she wasn’t Egyptian. She was a member of the Ptolemaic Dynasty. They were a family of Greeks descended from Alexander the Great. Even while the family rules Egypt, most of them refused to learn the native language. With the exception of Cleopatra, herself. To be fair, she did present herself as fully Egyptian. She even dressed like a reincarnation of Isis, the Goddess of Healing and Magic.

Napoleon Bonaparte Wasn’t Actually Short

Napoleon Bonaparte was described as a military genius with a “little man complex”. He’s actually the origin of the term, “Napoleon complex”. Everyone envisions Napoleon as this short man, but the truth is that he simply wasn’t. Well, by today’s standards he’s a little bit below average in height, he was five-foot-six. However, the average height for men in France in that era was five-foot-five. His height was unremarkable at first and above average at worst. His nickname, “The Little Corporal”, was merely a term of endearment used by his soldiers.

Albert Einstein Didn’t Fail Math

The idea that Einstein failed math as a kid is a completely bogus story. It’s been going on long enough that Einstein, himself, debunked it. The rumor was first circulated by Ripley’s Believe It Or Not (yes, it’s that old). As you’d expect of a physicist, Einstein was a master of mathematics. Einstein had mastered differential and integral calculus at age 15. And at age 17 he received a matriculation certificate. His grades showed that he had the highest marks in algebra and geometry.


Christopher Columbus Didn’t Discover The Americas

You may have heard people say before that Christopher Columbus Day should be renamed Lief Erikson Day. For starters, Columbus never even went to North America. He explored the Caribbean and parts of Central and South America, but never the North. Additionally, the Vikings had arrived in North America 500 years before Columbus’ famous voyage. That credit goes to Lief Erikson. There are actually eight Viking buildings in Newfoundland that are now a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The Pyramids Were Not Built By Slave Labor

Professor Amihai Mazar from the University of Hebrew in Jerusalem, concluded that the Pyramids of Giza were not built by Jewish slave labor. Mazar stated that the myth was introduced by former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem. Simply put, when the pyramids were built, the Jewish people did not yet exist. Dieter Wildung, a former director of Berlin’s Egyptian Museum, provided additional evidence. On this, Wildung said “The world simply could not believe the pyramids were built without oppression and forced labor, but out of loyalty to the pharaohs.”

George Washington Carver Did Not Invent Peanut Butter

George Washington Carver was a botanist, and he used peanuts to help the South’s economy. He found many uses for the nut. But he didn’t invent peanut butter. It’s actually been around since 950 BCE. The Incans created it by smashing peanuts into paste. The first modern patent for peanut butter though was in 1884, when Carver was around 20.

Marie Antoinette Didn’t Say “Let Them Eat Cake”

Jean-Jacques Rousseau wrote in his novel, Confessions, that a “great princess” said, “Let them eat cake”, in reference to France’s starving poor. And a lot of people attributed this quote to Marie Antoinette. However, there’s no evidence to support that she actually did say this. Lady Antonia Fraser actually claims that a different French process, Marie-Thérèse, proclaimed this 100 years before Antoinette’s rule. The quote has also been attributed to other royals in the past, including some Chinese dynasties.