Author Archives: Karl Smallwood

Do You Get Your Stuff Back If You Go Missing, are Declared Dead, Then Turn Up Alive like a Certain Shire Hobbit?

ScrobTheFancyTurtle asks: Love your video on what happens when people are accidentally declared dead. But it got me wondering, what happens if you make a will, go missing, so your will is executed, then turn up alive later? Do you get your stuff back? As we discussed in our article on what happens to a person who is accidentally declared dead […]

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How Exactly Did One Become an Executioner in Medieval Times?

Mary A. asks: How did someone get the job of an executioner in medieval times? Few occupations from history are as maligned as that of Medieval-era executioner. Popularly painted as gleeful dispensers of death and torture, the truth seems to be that many executioners throughout this period usually treated the occupation with a certain reverence and exhibited an extreme dedication […]

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Has Anyone Ever Really Inherited Millions from a Random Person They’ve Never Heard Of?

Jessica K. asks: Has anyone ever inherited millions of dollars from a long-lost relative they’ve never heard of like happens in movies? If you’re like, well, pretty much everyone, at some point you’ve received an email claiming you’ve inherited a large sum of money from some person you’ve never heard of. All you have to do to get it is […]

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How Exactly Do You Prove You’re Alive if You’re Accidentally Declared Dead?

Asa K. asks: What happens when people are accidentally declared dead, and how do they prove that they’re alive? As with most legal matters, answering the question of what exactly happens when a person is accidentally declared dead varies from country to country, although, curiously, from our research, with some exceptions like a few instances we found in Canada particularly, […]

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What Happened to Dead Bodies After Big Battles Throughout History?

Jen M. asks: What did they do with all the dead bodies after huge battles in history? Given we know that even Neanderthals would bury their dead (even including objects with the bodies) and various human hunter-gatherer groups likewise used to bury or cremate people at specifics sites that functioned as sort of pilgrimage locations for these nomads, it should […]

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That Time a Guy Destroyed One of the Ancient Wonders of the World Just So People Would Remember Him

Long considered the greatest of the so-called “Seven Wonders of the Ancient World”, the Temple of Artemis located in modern-day Turkey consists of nothing more than a single column of marble surrounded by random pieces of debris. Famously destroyed and rebuilt multiple times over the centuries, the temple is most notable for being burned down by a guy who wanted […]

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