Factropolis.com - facts or crap?

I recently found Factropolis.com, which posts a daily unusual factual trivial tidbit of knowledge or history, and started following a feed of the site. However, some of their claims strike me as rather dubious. (For example, they state that Archimedes was tortured and boiled in oil, when it seems most accounts say he was simply killed by a soldier.) Does anyone have knowledge of their veracity, either of the site itself or the facts they cite? They list a panel of experts, but they offer no substantiating documentation beyond an occassional generic website that doesn’t say anything specific about what they’re claiming as fact.


Well, today’s “fact” is that shrinking heads was a common custom among the Knights Templar. While there are several accounts of Templar rituals involving a dessicated head*, there’s no evidence that they preserved it themselves or that it was “a common custom”.

So, the website is probably a combination of truth and half-truth.

*the RCC claimed it was the head of John the Baptist, but probably it was that of St. Euphemia, and they didn’t use it as part of a ritual, just kept it as a relic; keeping bits of saints as relics is common in European churches.

Now I’m wondering that myself. Some of them do smell like BS to me (including the Archimedes one).

Are they getting their facts from the Federal Bureau of Miscellaneous Information?

Am I being whooshed here? Seems to me that the site obviously follows a rather Discordian interpretation of factual accuracy… i.e. all of it is wholly made up. I mean, a fish that changes its sex by turning its body inside out? Pilate having an angel tattood across his back? Radioactive war armadillos? Big Ben running counterclockwise due to an April Fool’s prank (is that even possible?)?

Not all of it, perhaps, totally impossible in and off itself, and everything carefully worded to be nigh inirrefutable (is there an actual word for that) by google searches and the like, but in an accumulation like that? Shenanigans.

…I just realised there is, and it’s ‘irrefutable’. :dubious: I have my brain on backwards today.


Given a site on the Internet that alleges to have weird facts, but does not cite its sources, why do you even need to ask? I’d automatically consider the contents of such a site to be half-remembered half-truths at best, and outright fabrications at worst: I wouldn’t even entertain the possibility that they might be right, except by accident.

Good grief, I feel dumber just for having visited that page. Apparently someone thought it would be funny to come up with an April Fools joke every day. A mitten fish for example, to the best of mine and Google’s understanding, is simply a cloth fish made out of an old mitten and not some exotic deepwater species.

Every time I tried to independently verify their claims, I simply got… nothing. All these replies are starting to explain why. :slight_smile:


Their editorial board has about as much truthiness as these fine Americans

More things I “learned” from this site:

The number of axe murders has dropped every year in the United States since 1970, while machete murders have nearly quadrupled.

President Abraham Lincoln and his assassin John Wilkes Booth shared an uncommon musical ability – both men were harmonica virtuosos.

A random sampling of dollar bills from major U.S. cities found that more than 70 percent tested positive for the virus that causes genital warts.

Ducks can’t digest rye bread.

Fred Rogers, better known as Mister Rogers, wore sweaters to conceal extensive forearm tattoos commemorating his short stint as a Merchant Marine.

This last one has been debunked by Snopes (next-to-last item on the page).

So, alas, it appears that factropolis cannot be trusted after all. I guess if we want the truth, we’ll have to stick with the world’s only reliable news.

Heh, even their disclaimer basically says don’t believe us:


Ah, well. It looked interesting, but now seems to be nothing but BS. Thanks for the insight, folks!