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A “Bug” is an insect that has sucking mouth parts.

The oldest active synagogue in Europe is in Prague. It is called the Old New Synagogue.

Humans and elephants are the only animals with chins.

The Lord Ponsonby of Shulbede and Baron Soulsby of Swaffham Prior are actual titles in the English Peerage.

Australia was discovered by the Chinese. The Dutch were the first Europeans to discover it. William Dampier was the first Englishman to discover it.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

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Leap Day Trivia


Throughout the ages, the leap day, or the 29th of February, has driven people from all over the world to rather odd behaviour – for one reason or another. Here is a selection of curious or special leap day related facts:

  • Julius Caesar introduced the first leap year around 46 BCE.
  • In Ireland, February 29 is called Bachelor’s Day, when women are allowed to propose to men. It is held that Queen Margaret of Scotland began the tradition in 1288. If a man refused the proposal, he would be fined a kiss, a silk dress or 12 pairs of gloves.
  • One in five engaged couples in Greece will plan to avoid getting married in a leap year. They believe it is bad luck.
  • In Taiwan, married daughters traditionally return home during the leap month as it is believed the lunar month can bring bad health to parents. Daughters bring pig trotter noodles to wish them good health and good fortune.
  • In Finland, the tradition is that if a man refuses a woman’s proposal on leap day, he should buy her the fabrics for a skirt.
  • According to the BBC, the chances of having a birthday on a leap day are about one in 1,461.
  • According to the New York Daily News, in modern times, at least two women have given birth to three leap day babies.
  • The Honor Society of Leap Year Babies is a club for people born on the 29th of February. More than 10,000 people worldwide are members.
  • On February 29, 1946, in Tokyo, the February 26 Incident ends.
  • In France, since 1980, a satirical newspaper entitled La Bougie du Sapeur is published only in a leap year, on February 29, making it a quadrennial publication and the least frequently published newspaper in the world.
  • On February 29, 1940, Hattie McDaniel became the first black woman to win an Oscar. She was awarded for her role in Gone With the Wind.
  • According to the World Heritage Encyclopaedia, the eighth premier of Tasmania, James Milne Wilson, was born in 1812 and died in 1880, both on February 29.

Frasier: Yeah dad, you should go.
Martin: Ah, Montana’s too far away.
Frasier: Well dad, his birthday only comes around once every four years. As a matter of fact, this day only comes around every four years. You know, it’s like a free day, a gift. We should do something special, be bold!  It’s leap year, take a leap!
Martin: You know, I was just about to say the same thing to you.
[…]
Frasier: Dad, Jimmy’s already sixteen. How many more birthdays is he going to have?
Martin: [smiles] You know, I would kind of hate not being there when Jimmy brings out the big ham.
Frasier Season 3, Episode 16; “Look Before You Leap” [No. 66]

Gympie Gympie


The Gympie-Gympie (pronounced gimpey-gimpey) is one of four species of stinging tree of the family Urticaceae in Queensland, Australia. It is said to have the most painful sting of any plant, not only in Australia, but the World.

“I like it when a flower or a little tuft of grass grows through a crack in the concrete. It’s so fuckin’ heroic.” – George Carlin

Although called a tree, the Gympie-Gympie is a soft-wooded shrub that can reach 4-5m, but is often found as a smaller shrub around 0.1-1m tall. It has broad, oval or heart-shaped leaves (which appear furry due to a dense covering of tiny stinging hairs) with saw-tooth edges, and white or purple-red fruit. The stems and fruit are also covered in the stinging hairs.

When touched, the tip of the hairs break off which turn the hairs into a self-injecting hypodermic needles. It is reported that brushing against it is like being burnt with hot acid and electrocuted at the same time.

The actual chemicals contained in the toxin are not completely understood; however, it is probably a peptide (organic chemical molecules made from linking amino acids together in a certain order) called moroidin, hence the plant’s taxonomic name Dendrocnide moroides.

After a person has been stung, the small hairs can become embedded in the skin, which can lead to long-term pain and sensitivity – there are many accounts of people suffering heavily for months from a sting.

Worse still, the Gympie-Gympie is just as capable of stinging when its leaves are dead. The toxin in the hairs seems unaffected by age.

One account a soldier in the bush during World War II was caught short of toilet paper, used the wrong leaf, and was in so much pain that he shot himself in an attempt ease the pain. In 1866 a surveyor reported that his pack horse was stung by the plant, went mad and died in two hours.

“…and then, I have nature and art and poetry, and if that is not enough, what is enough?” – Vincent van Gogh

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A human being has about the same number of genes as a cabbage.

Pumpkin Island, Australia, has been renamed XXXX Island.

Lipstick can still contain lead, but no more than 20 parts per million; arsenic, but no more than 3 parts per million; and mercury, but no more than one part per million.

The Dutch for ‘piglet’ is big.

According to the Quran, the testimony of two women is needed to contradict that of a man.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

2/iv mmxv


The opening theme to the American 1970’s television show M*A*S*H was called Suicide Is Painless.

The Latin palmo means ‘I print the palm of the hand’ or ‘I tie up a vine’.

In 1994, there were only ten lawyers in Cambodia.

The Great Barrier Reef is the greatest organism-made structure on the planet. It covers 350,000 square kilometres (135,000 square miles), an expanse greater than Poland.

According to Deuteronomy 22:24, if a woman did not scream loud enough while being raped, she was deemed to be part of the evil that must be purged; it was therefore ruled she must be stoned together with the rapist.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

12/ii mmxv


Henry IV of France promoted green parks in Paris. He is responsible for a street called the Street of the Bridge of Cabbages.

10,113 Americans insured themselves against giving birth to the messiah at the millennium.

The 10th President of Nigeria (that is, the 3rd President of the Fourth Nigerian Republic), was called Goodluck Jonathan.

Scorpions navigate by starlight.

More than 50% of the world’s languages are located in just eight countries: India, Brazil, Mexico, Australia, Indonesia, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, and Cameroon.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

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Quail pipe was Victorian slang for ‘woman’s tongue’.

The newspaper mogul William Randolph Hearst once wanted an answer to the question ‘Is there life on Mars?’ he asked an astronomer via telegram ‘Please cable 1000 words.’ The scientist’s reply was ‘Nobody knows’ – written 500 times.

Main-belt asteroid 9007 is called James Bond.

In Fort Worth, Texas, the Museum of Science and History is adjacent to the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame.

Dame Nellie Melba, the legendary Australian operatic soprano after who Escoffier named Melba Toast, believed oral sex was good for the voice.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

30/x mmxiv


After his death in 1904, the body of the Russian physician and playwright Anton Chekhov was shipped back from Germany to Russia in an ice-filled railway carriage marked ‘For Oysters’.

Countries with a higher Human Development Index have more income equality.

Less than two years into his term as Prime Minister of Australia, Harold Holt dove into the high tide in Melbourne and was never seen again. The 59-year-old had nearly drowned two months earlier. Ironically, there now is a Harold Holt Swim Centre in Melbourne.

Hindus celebrate the feast of Holi-Phagwa by throwing coloured powder on each other.

The Metamorphoses of Apuleius, which St. Augustine referred to as The Golden Ass (Asinus Aureus), is the only Ancient Roman novel in Latin to survive in its entirety.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts