Common Misconceptions

We all get things wrong from time to time, however there are some things that lots of us have believed for our whole lives, that actually aren’t true at all. It’s always fun to learn about things like this, and it’s fascinating to find out what we’ve been getting wrong for so long. So, with this in mind, we have put together a list of common misconceptions so you can see how many of them you also thought were true.

Fortune cookies didn’t originate in China

If you have ever been for a Chinese meal, you may have enjoyed eating a fortune cookie at the end. However, these are not a Chinese tradition, and you won’t find them in China itself. In actual fact, they were brought to America by the Japanese, and it is more related to America’s take on oriental culture than anything else.

Mozart didn’t compose “Twinkle, Twinkle”

Lots of people believe that Mozart composed this popular tune, and there has been a long-standing rumour that he did so when he was a young child. Although he is responsible to some variations on the theme, he only wrote these when he was around 25 years old, and the actual song itself is based on a traditional French folk tune.

There were no horns on the helmets of Vikings

If you were ever asked to draw a picture of a Viking, it is almost certain that it would include a picture of a horn on a helmet. However, this is inaccurate, and was not actually a part of Viking history at all. Rather, this image of a Viking came from a Wagner opera, and the idea took hold and became ingrained in the images that people associated with Vikings.

You can see things from space – not just the Great Wall of China

There have been many people who state that when in space, the only thing that you can see from space that is manmade is the Great Wall of China. However, this is not true. While it might be the only extensive structure that you can see, it is not the only thing in general, because you can clearly see the light from city lights – which were also manmade.

Napoleon was taller than you think

Whenever you see anybody portraying Napoleon on screen, it is almost certain that it will be a short actor. However, the recorded height of 5 foot 2 was in French feet, which is closer to 5 foot 7 in English feet. Although this might not sound like a very tall man, it was above average at the time, when people were typically shorter – which means that he wouldn’t have been noticeably smaller than anyone else.

So, were you surprised by any of the above facts? It’s almost certain that you were, because these are things that a lot of people believe. It is often fascinating to see just how much things can be ingrained in beliefs through history when they are not actually true – so always be wary of the information that you accept from the history books!