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Selina Pascale

Selina Pascale


Total Article : 213

About Me:I'm a graduate student studying International Criminal Law and first started writing for King's News almost 4 years ago! My hobbies include reading, travelling and charity work. I cover many categories but my favourite articles to write are about mysteries of the ancient world, interesting places to visit, the Italian language and animals!

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The biggest mistakes in history! (part 2)

The biggest mistakes in history! (part 2)

Number 4: The Washington Cherry Tree Lie – Wrong!

There is a famous story that when George Washington was six years old he was given an axe as a present and that he used it to chop down his father’s cherry tree. Being a noble person he admitted the act to his father as he could never tell a lie. In reality this never happened and the entire story was fabricated by Mason Weaves who wrote a biography on George Washington. As the first president of the United States Weaves wanted Washington to appear noble hence making the story, but it is in fact completely false.

Number 5: Crossing the Delaware – wrong!

George Washington is famously said to have crossed the Delaware river into Pennsylvania and it is a symbol of American bravery in the war for independence against British rule.  It is depicted in a painting by German born Gottlieb Leutze in 1851 (so obviously wasn’t alive at the time to witness the crossing) showing Washington standing atop a small raft moving through little chunks of ice, risking his life in the crossing; an image that has been depicted in many books across America. In reality the Delaware river forms much larger icebergs when it freezes over and Washington and his men actually crossed in ironclad boats named Durhams which were much sturdier and had no seats. In the photo the men behind Washington are sitting which is wrong. Also, the American flag with the stars and stripes in the photo wasn’t used until over a year after the Delaware crossing. Furthermore, there is no evidence that the man holding the flag, James Monroe, was ever in the same boat. All in all the story has many inaccuracies which all come together to create national pride over real history.


Number 6: Van Gogh cut off his own ear – wrong!

We are commonly taught that the brilliant artist Van Gogh, in a state of depression, cut off his own ear and mailed it to his ex- lover. In reality if you read documented letters between Van Gogh and some friends it seems that, after too much wine, his friend accidentally cut Van Gogh’s ear with his sword whilst playing games and, not wanting to see his friend in prison, Van Gogh claimed the injury as his own doing.

Number 7: The Sphinx’s nose destroyed by Napoleon– wrong!

The Sphinx monument in Egypt is missing its nose, but you can tell by looking at the face that the nose was once there, so what gives? A common theory is that it was destroyed by one of Napoleon’s cannons in target practice during his invasion of Egypt. In reality it was gone hundreds of years before Napoleon was born who was fascinated by Egyptology and wouldn’t have been as foolish as to practice cannon fire near the Sphinx. The limestone used to construct the Sphinx has eroded over thousands of years and there is clear damage across the face but none so obvious and total as the nose. According to historical accounts from the 1400s religious leader Mohammed Said Maldar destroyed the nose when he saw people worshipping the Sphinx as an idol. Egypt is a Muslim country whereby it is not allowed to worship idols.     



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