1. Bangladesh has a higher population than Russia

Unbelievable Interesting World Facts

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Bangladesh might be tiny compared to Russia (it’s about the size of New York state) but it actually has a population of over 161 people. Meanwhile, Russia has just over 144 million, despite being the world’s largest country! Russia has nine different time zones, and has a bigger surface area than Pluto FYI.

2. A con man sold the Eiffel Tower (and he went back for a second attempt)

The Man Who Sold the Eiffel Tower - YouTube

(Image/ Source: youtube.com)

“Count” Victor Lustig’s career as a con man is pretty outstanding. He managed to convince six scrap metal dealers to make a bid on the Eiffel Tower. He told them he was a government director who was looking to sell the landmark off, and pocketed a cool $20,000 in cash, as well as an additional $50,000. Victor tried to recreate this scam, but one of the targets went straight to the police.

3. The world’s largest tree is bigger than the average Wal-Mart

Great Banyan Tree vs Walmart

(Image/ Source: businessinsider.com)

The Great Banyan tree, which happens to be 250 years old, has aerial roots that cover a whopping 3.5 square acres of land. This is around 14,400 square meters. Meanwhile, your average Wal-Mart has a store size of about 105,000 square feet (basically the stores that aren’t Supercenters). How wild is that?!

4. Chicago was raised over a foot without disrupting life for its residents

Raising Chicago out of the mud – Chicago Tribune

(Image/ Source: chicagotribune.com)

Back in the 1850s and 60s, Chicago has a bit of a mud problem. So the Board of Sewage Commissioners decided to raise the buildings, streets and sidewalks to higher levels to help the city drain properly. It took about two decades to complete, but the slow pace of the work minimized disruption to residents.

5. You have more synapses (nerve connections) in your brain than the stars in our galaxy

Do Stars Have Consciousness? One Rocket Scientist Thinks They Might

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Neuroscientists have estimated that the number of synaptic nerve connections in an average adult is about 500 trillion. However, your average three-year-old has a whopping 1 quadrillion! Meanwhile, astronomers have estimated that in the Milky Way galaxy alone, there are around 200 billion stars.

6. A nuclear bomb got lost somewhere off the coast of Georgia

There's a Lost Nuclear Bomb Just Off the Georgia Coast. Should You Be Worried?

(Image/ Source: historynet.com)

In 1958, a jet ended up crashing into a B-47 bomber, which was carrying a MASSIVE nuclear bomb. Naturally, the pilot of the plane panicked, and dropped the bomb into the ocean, which wasn’t too far away from the coast of Georgia. It’s been said that the bomb shouldn’t cause any problems as long as it’s left undisturbed…

7. Finland and North Korea are only seperated by one country

Finland–North Korea relations - Wikipedia

(Image/ Source: wikipedia.org)

Technically, Finland and North Korea are only separated by one country- but it happens to be the biggest country in the world! If you haven’t guessed already, it’s Russia that keeps these two countries apart- but the distance is pretty big. The official distance between Finland and North Korea is 6,682 kilometers.

8. Cleopatra actually lived closer in time to the existence of Pizza Hut than the pyramids

Cleopatra lived closer in time to the building of the first Pizza Hut than to the building of the pyramids - )

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This one is pretty mind-boggling. Cleopatra, who was the last Pharaoh of Egypt, was apparently born in 69 BC and died in 30 BC. However, the timeline of the pyramids’ construction dates back to around 2550 BC to 2490 BC. Meanwhile, the first-ever Pizza Hut opened in 1958, which is actually 500 years closer to Cleopatra’s lifetime than the pyramids’ construction.

9. The woolly mammoth was still around while the pyramids were built

Historical Events Happening Around the World at the Same Time

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While we’re on the subject of Egypt’s pyramids, these wonders of the world were actually standing while the woolly mammoth still roamed the earth. According to experts, the very last woolly mammoth died in Russia back in 1650 BC, but the great pyramid of Giza had already been in existence for over 1000 years!

10. Heroin was used to treat children with coughs

Heroin: The Deadly Narcotic That Was Once Medicine!

(Image/ Source: historycollection.com)

The German pharmaceutical company Bayer actually commercialized heroin in the 1890s- and it was used as a remedy for colds, flu, and pains. The most shocking thing is that it was also marketed to treat children, and was widely promoted as late as 1912. The use of heroin as a pharmaceutical drug stopped after multiple reports suggested that the drug was dangerous.

11. Alaska is the most northern, eastern and western state in the US

alaska aleutian islands

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It’s pretty easy to tell that Alaska is the most northern state in America. But because of the placement of the Aleutian Islands, Alaska runs all the way to the tip of the Western Hemisphere, and across to the Eastern Hemisphere too. In fact, Alaska actually runs all the way up to the Russian Federation.

12. A park in Austria becomes a lake every Spring

Would You Believe This Park in Austria Literally Turns Into a Lake in Summers?

(Image/ Source: delhiplanet.com)

Each spring, a park in Styria, Austria turns into a lake. It’s referred to as Gurner See in winter, and has a lake that’s about three to six feet deep. However, as the ice and snow melt on the nearby mountains, the park becomes submerged. The water is so deep that scuba divers flock to the lake to see the benches, footpaths and trees underwater.

13. The timeline between the T-Rex and the Stegosaurus is longer than the timeline that seperates Tyrannosaurus and us

Fluff] If you're ever sad, just remember the world is 4.543 billion years old and you somehow managed to exist closer to the time of the Tyrannosaurus Rex than the Stegosaurus did. :

(Image/ Source: reddit.com)

While a lot of popular films will try and convince us otherwise, the dinosaurs actually lived across three distinctive time periods; Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. The Stegosaurus lived during the Jurassic period, and the T-Rex didn’t make an appearance until the late Cretaceous period. This means there’s a gap of 80-90 million years between these two dinosaurs, and 65-67 million years separating us and Tyrannosaurus.

14. Harvard University was up and running before calculus was invented

Calculus Counts in College Admissions | BestColleges

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Harvard University is the oldest higher education institution in the US-  and it’s even older than calculus! Harvard was founded way back in 1636, and calculus wasn’t discovered until fifty years later after a LOT of fine tuning from the likes of Gottfried Leibniz and Isaac Newton. There were a fair few refinements from plenty of other mathematicians too.

15. A man managed to win the highest honor of service from both sides in WWII

Blue plaque for D-Day spy who tricked the Nazis from suburbia | News | The Times

(Image/ Source: thetimes.co.uk)

This might sound almost impossible, but Joan Pujol Garcia, a Spanish spy, managed to gain honors from both the Allies AND the Nazis. He was working as a double agent alongside MI5, and managed to keep his head above board thanks to the careful reports he gave to the German side. He later received an Iron Cross from the Nazis and a Most Excellent Order from Britain.

16. Two people died from a balloon festival in Ohio

How Cleveland's Balloonfest '86 Became a Public Disaster

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In 1986, a balloon festival took place in Cleveland, Ohio. While it was supposed to be a harmless bit of fun, it actually caused huge problems across the city when the balloons drifted back down to the earth. Falling on Lake Erie, the balloons hampered the coast guard’s search for two boaters who had run into difficulties. The boaters were later found drowned.

17. A chicken lived without it’s head for 18 months

mike headless chicken sculpture

(Image/ Source: businessinsider.com)

This might sound like an urban myth, but Mike the chicken really did survive for 18 months after his head had been cut off. As chicken brains are concentrated at the back of the skull, they can survive for quite a while after losing their head, as the chicken can live just from the nerve endings left. After Mike’s owner, farmer Lloyd Olsen, cut his head off, he kept him alive for 18 months, as he just dropped food and water straight into the esophagus. Eww.

18. A species of shark can live for over 500 years

Greenland shark | Size, Age, & Facts | Britannica

(Image/ Source: britannica.com)

The Greenland shark is a pretty impressive specimen. It has the longest lifespan of all vertebrates, with an average life span of around 272 years. However, there are some Greenland sharks that have lived for a whopping 500 years. This means some Greenlands were alive around the same time as Martin Luther!

19. Aphid give birth to other pregnant aphids

How To Easily Get Rid Of Aphids On Plants | Horticulture.co.uk

(Image/ Source: horticulture.co.uk)

Speaking of animals-  did you know that aphids have a clever evolutionary trick up their sleeve? Creatures like ladybirds are usually born pregnant, so there are constant embryos in development. Think of them as Russian nesting dolls! This means the male aphids aren’t all that important when it comes to breeding the next generation.

20. Nintendo started out in 1889

The Natural Beauty Of Nintendo's Traditional Playing Cards

(Image/ Source: kotaku.com)

Yep, this is legit. While many of us will think of Nintendo as the home of Mario and Pokemon games, the Japanese gaming company actually started way back in 1889- and it was a traditional card game company! Nintendo then slowly started branching out with other games before they became the conglomerate we know today.

21. One 18-inch pizza is more pizza than two 12-inch pizzas

18-Inch Chicago Pizza Delhi Based Pizza Outlet Restaurants Now in Chennai

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We’ll need to do the math for this one. If a pizza has a diameter of 18 inches, this means it has an area of 254.47 square inches. Meanwhile, if a pizza has a diameter of 12 inches, it has an area of just 113.1 square inches. So even if you buy two of them you’re still at 226.2 square inches, which is still far less than just one 18-inch pizza. You’re welcome!

22. A bear became a corporal after fighting with Poland in WWII

Wojtek the bear

(Image/ Source: businessinsider.com)

After a ‘soldier bear’ was released from prison camps in Siberia, he was picked up in Iran by Allied forces. This bear was called Wojtek, and he became the friend of the Polish army that looked after him. Unbelievably, Wojtek helped out moving ammunition during the Battle of Monte Cassino in Italy, and was later promoted to the rank of corporal.

23. A mantis shrimp’s punches are the force of a 22-caliber bullet

The Mantis Shrimp Inspires a New Material—Made by Bacteria | WIRED

(Image/ Source: wired.com)

Mantis shrimps are pretty impressive creatures. They can punch so fast that the naked eye can’t actually see it. The force of the punch can actually break glass, so it’s a highly effective hunting technique that the shrimp uses time and time again. Keep your eyes peeled for them in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean!

24. Children don’t develop knee caps until they’re three years old

Weird And Interesting Newborn Baby Facts You Should Definitely Know

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Did you know that children don’t actually develop proper knee bones until they reach the age of three? Apparently, this is all down to the part of the skeleton called the patella, which starts out as cartilage when a baby is born. This cartilage then slowly develops into solid bone as the baby starts to walk.

25. The Guinness Book of World Records was made to settle bar arguments

world record largest domino drop shot drinking]

(Image/ Source: businessinsider.com)

So the Guinness Book of World Records origin story is pretty interesting. It was originally used to settle an argument in a pub over whether the golden plover or the red grouse is the fastest game bird in Europe. One of the men arguing was Sir Hugh Beaver, Manager Director of Guinness, who was frustrated that he couldn’t find an answer in a reference book. So he started the Guinness World Records to settle things!

26. Dropping silly putty from a height makes it shatter instead of bounce

How to Make Silly Putty to Demonstrate Chemical Reactions - Howcast

(Image/ Source: howcast.com)

Silly Putty has a few unusual properties. This bouncy, rubbery toy is a non-Newtonian fluid, which means it sometimes acts like a liquid and sometimes like a solid. So much so, YouTubers have been experimenting with this toy to see what form it takes and when- and they found that Silly Putty actually shatters if you drop it from a height.

27. One teaspoon of a neutron star weighs more the 900 pyramids of Egypt

Neutron stars: A cosmic gold mine | Astronomy.com

(Image/ Source: astronomymagazine.com)

It turns out that Neutron stars are very, very dense, despite being just 12.5 miles in diameter. According to National Geographic, just one small sugar cube of neutron star matter would weigh about one hundred million tons on Earth. Meanwhile, one cubic meter of Neutron star would be equal to the weight of the entire Atlantic Ocean.

28. Oxford University is older than the Aztecs

University of Oxford | History, Colleges, & Notable Alumni | Britannica

(Image/ Source: britannica.com)

Harvard might take the crown away from calculus, but Oxford University is on hand with its own prestigious history. This high-caliber school opened way back in 1096, and has played host to many academics along the way. Meanwhile, the Aztec Empire was founded MANY years later in 1428, which means Oxford University is significantly older than a lot of people think.

29. Betty White was older than sliced bread

Betty White shares her secret to a long life in new interview

(Image/ Source: nbcnews.com)

We’re big fans of the icon that is Betty White, and she now has another impressive accolade up her sleeve. Betty was born on January 17th 1922, but sliced bread didn’t actually hit the market until six years later. Sliced bread was officially sold in stores on July 7th, 1928, which means Betty White is way older! We miss you, Betty.

29. Gary Oldman is younger than Gary Numan

Who's older, Gary Oldman or Gary Numan? - Wisdom Biscuits

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Speaking of celebs- did you know that actor Gary Oldman is younger than the musician Gary Numan? The Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy star was born on March 21, 1958, while Are Friends Electric? singer Gary Numan was born a couple of weeks earlier on March 8, 1958. So its clear that names really aren’t everything!

30. “Home Alone” was released closer to the moon landing than today

Home Alone - Dates in Movie & TV History: Dec. 22 - Kevin Left Home Alone |  IMDb

(Image/ Source: imdb.com)

We don’t know about you, but sometimes we forget just how old this Christmas classic is… The movie came out in 1990, and while it feels like just five minutes ago, it’s actually been 32 years since it was released. Meanwhile, the first moon landing took place in 1969, so there’s only 21 years difference between that and Home Alone. Time flies by a little too quickly these days!