40 Facts About the World That Will Surprise Even the Most Intelligent People

40 Facts About the World That Will Surprise Even the Most Intelligent People

1. The Mona Lisa was in Napoleon Bonaparte’s bedroom for a few years.

2. To tell a real diamond from a fake, you need to breathe on it: a fake one will become foggy, and a genuine one will stay clear.

3. The Spanish word “esposas” means both “handcuffs” and “wives.”

4. Mayday is the word that is used instead of SOS in radio chat.

5. The Pokemon characters Hitmonlee and Hitmonchan were named after Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan.

6. Bananas have a curved shape because they reach for the sunlight when they grow.

7. Some cats are allergic to humans.

8. North Korea and Cuba are the only places you can’t buy Coca-Cola.

9. Some Japanese traffic lights have a blue light instead of green because historically both colors were named with the same word.

10. Queen Elizabeth II is related to Vlad Tepes, the famous prototype for Dracula.

11. If you make ice cubes with tap water, they will be white; if you use boiled water, they will be transparent.

12. Charles Darwin was the first person who had the idea to attach wheels to his office chair to move around more quickly.

13. The last words that Albert Eins,tein spoke are unknown because he said them in German to a nurse who didn’t speak the language.

14. 99% of the microbes that live inside humans are unknown to science .

15. When you take a hot bath , you burn as many calories as you would if you went for a 30-minute walk.

16. A paper cut is more painful than a regular cut because such a wound almost never bleeds, so the nerve endings stay open to the air, which irritates them. By the way, there is an article about this on Wikipedia .

17. If you have the feeling you’ve experienced an event before in real life, call it déjà vu. If you feel like you’ve previously experienced an event in a dream instead, there’s a different term for it: déjà rêvé.

18. George Washington served an eggnog-like drink to visitors at Mount Vernon. His recipe included rye whiskey, rum, and sherry.

19. Ravens in captivity can learn to talk better than parrots.

20. Blood donors in Sweden receive a thank you text when their blood is used.

21. An estimated 1 million dogs in the U.S. have been named primary beneficiary in their owners’ wills.

22. The Russians showed up 12 days late to the 1908 Olympics in London because they were using the Julian calendar instead of the Gregorian calendar.

23. In Great Britain and Japan, black cats are perceived as auspicious. In the English Midlands, new brides are given black cats to bless their marriage, and the Japanese believe that black cats are good luck—particularly for single women.

24. During World War I, a Canadian soldier made a black bear his pet and named her Winnipeg. “Winnie” was later a resident of the London Zoological Gardens where she was an adored attraction, especially to a boy named Christopher Robin, son of author A.A. Milne. The boy even named his teddy bear after her.

25. The manchineel tree is nicknamed the “Tree of Death” for good reason: Touching it can leave chemical burns on your skin, its fruit is toxic, and its bark—when burned—can cause blindness.

26. If drivers adhere to the 45 mph speed limit on a stretch of Route 66 in New Mexico, the road’s rumble strips will play a rendition of “America the Beautiful.”

27. Space has a distinct smell: a bouquet of diesel fumes, gunpowder, and barbecue. The aroma is mostly produced by dying stars.

28. The annual number of worldwide shark bites is 10 times less than the number of people bitten by other people in New York.

29. Tootsie Rolls were added to soldiers’ rations in World War II for their durability in all weather conditions.

30. The ampersand symbol is formed from the letters in et —the Latin word for “and.”

31. A solar eclipse helped end a six-year war in 585 BCE. When the sky suddenly darkened during a battle between the Lydians and the Medes in modern Turkey, soldiers took it as a sign to cease fighting.

32. Dogs are capable of understanding up to 250 words and gestures. The average dog is as intelligent as a two-year-old child.

33. Bones found at Seymour Island indicate that at one time, 37 to 40 million years ago, penguins stood at a formidable 6 feet tall and weighed 250 pounds.

 

34. China owns all of the pandas in the world. They rent them out for about $1 million a year.

35. In colonial America, lobster wasn’t exactly a delicacy. It was so cheap and plentiful it was often served to prisoners.

36. An avocado never ripens on the tree, so farmers can use trees as storage and keep avocados fresh for up to seven months.

37. A reindeer’s eyes change color through the seasons. They’re gold during the summer and blue in the winter.

38. One April day in 1930, the BBC reported, “There is no news.” Instead they played piano music.

39. There’s a Nikola Tesla statue in Palo Alto that provides free Wi-Fi.

40. A double rainbow occurs when sunlight is reflected twice inside a raindrop. If you look closely, you can see that the colors of the secondary rainbow appear in reverse order.

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