Harbingers of Doom: Celestial Events and Superstitions

 

Aztec Sun Stone

What kind of superstitions or myths do you think of when you look up at the stars? Every culture has them; there have been stories developed all over the world to explain star constellations or natural phenomena like solar and lunar eclipses, comets, meteors and more. When the sun provides warmth to help the crops grow and night skies are used to measure the passage of time, it’s not surprising that any unexpected or unusual phenomenon is assigned meaning when the science isn’t sophisticated enough to distinguish between causation and correlation. Horrific History co-hosts, Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender, explore beliefs related to celestial events from across the globe.  Hindu serpent demons, China’s dragons (or dogs) and modern conspiracy theorists watching for alien spaceships, we have a lot of “bad omens” for your enjoyment.

 

Lunacy and humours, werewolves and witches, […]

Leaving You in Stitches, Part 2

Day laborer scams in India, exploitation of people in poverty desperate to provide for their families, surgeries and death threats, this episode has the details on human tissue theft you’ve been waiting for! Horrific History co-hosts Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender are back to continue their two-part episode on human tissue theft (if you missed Part 1, you can find it here)! A large organ trafficking ring catering to transplant tourism, the so-called Admiral of the Kansas Navy who made his fortune as a Quaker doctor who peddled virility miracle cures, organ brokers and donors who are viewed as both saints and sinners, this episode will leave you wondering what your body parts are worth and to whom.

 

Doctor Dracula” stealing kidneys; goat testicles; pseudoscience, doctor self-experimentation and […]

Leaving You in Stitches, Part 1

A nun plucks penises off a phallus tree in the Roman de la Rose, c. 1325-1353. (Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, MS. Fr. 25526, f. 106v.)

What do you think of when you hear the phrase “tissue theft?” Do you think of evil elves on a clandestine caper to acquire tissue paper for wrapping presents? Perhaps you think of someone with a horrible cold stealing your last box of tissue. After this episode, you’ll think of more gruesome things… Horrific History co-hosts Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender examine examples from history when people have had parts of their body lost, removed or stolen- sometimes even without their awareness or consent! Documented true-life cases and psychological maladies, fables and witch hunts, curses and hexes, this episode will have you looking for certain body parts in the trees.

 

Severed penises held captive (and put on a strict diet), radium tube inserts, immortal cells that could encircle the Earth three times over, marital difficulties blamed on  […]

Wait for it… Wait for it!

Our co-hosts thought our latest topic of research, human tissue theft, would be a fast and easy topic. But by the day of recording they discovered a lot more horrifying, bloody and even some hilarious information from the 13th century to modern day history than they could fit into our standard-length episode. Rather than fast forward through the interesting details and bodily fluids they’ve decided to take a little extra time to deliver all the sticky facts through a two-part episode. Come back next week for Part 1 of Leaving You in Stitches, and then we’ll be back to our regular publishing schedule and release Part 2 the following week! Meanwhile, listen to Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender give you a special preview of what you can look forward to in our next episode… just remember, no squeam allowed!

 

Slideshow photo credit: Ari Sanjaya Old fashioned clock and broken via Dreamstime (license)
Post photo credit: shaggy359 Time for prizes via photopin (license)

…And You Thought Dad Jokes Were Bad

The rice chest in which the deposed prince died was likely about this size.

What do you celebrate on Fathers’ Day? Some people are lucky enough to have fantastic dads who were positive influences in their lives, but not everyone is so fortunate. For those, if they observe the holiday at all, they may simply give tribute to surviving and learning from the trials and tribulations they never wanted. With Fathers’ Day weekend wrapping up in the United States, co-hosts Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender discuss some terrible fathers from history you’ll be glad to not have in your family.

 

Abuse, torture, rape, murder, flaying and royal intrigue, our co-hosts cover all the horrifying details you’d expect to find related to awful fathers with power from history. From ruling fathers committing filicide […]

A Horrible Inheritance

What is the worst thing you can imagine receiving as an inheritance or “legacy gift”? What if the worst your parents could give you was their shared DNA? Sure, we know we’re going to get a combinations of physical traits, for better or worse, from our parents but some people have terrible genetic odds due to the close relations of their parents! From Neanderthal discoveries found in modern day Siberia to the royal affairs (and marriages) of royalty in Egypt and Spain and ending with the modern Colt family incest cult in Australia, this episode gets around! Co-hosts Curtis Bender and Eric Slyter will be filling this Horrific History Podcast with the tragic details on what can happen when you keep the genes inside the family!

 

Hapsburg’s jaws, club feet and cleft palates, […]

It should come as no surprise to listeners of One Night With Venus Part 1 and Part 2 that a syringe full of mercury injected into a vagina was considered top-of-the-line medical treatment in the 16th Century. How often do you get to own such an, um, penetrating insight into the subject? Remember: No squeam allowed!

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Slideshow photo credit: CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

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With our “One Night with Venus” two-part debut episode (If you missed it, you can go directly to Part 1 and Part 2) already shared with the world, we thought we had covered the most horrifying historical details on syphilis and gonorrhea. Unfortunately, horrific things from history don’t always stay in the past. Sometimes they live on into present, where we create the history of tomorrow. We thought that those of you who enjoyed our “One Night with Venus” debut would be interested in this article from CNN from March 1, 2017: Record STD Rates Drive Syphilis in Newborns

 

photo credit: DHPersonal Simon in Light Therapy Bed via photopin (license)

One Night with Venus, Part 2

We’re now on Part 2 of our Valentine’s Day debut with our co-hosts, Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender, continuing their discussion on period accounts in western culture of the historical description of symptoms and gruesome historical treatments of gonorrhea and syphilis (and modern media representations of them)! This episode primarily covers accounts from the Renaissance to more modern history including receiving purple flowers, masks and prosthetic noses, animal gut condoms, and historical poultices for testicular swelling. And if that’s not gross enough for you, we’re also covering urethral lavage, gonorrheal aprons, pustules, rotting brains and mobsters! […]

One Night with Venus, Part 1

Happy VD! It’s Valentine’s Day, so you may think we’re debuting our Horrific History Podcast on the horrible gifts people have given for the occasion (and, you may be right, from a certain point of view). No, we won’t be talking about candy and wine; we’re focusing on venereal diseases! Our co-hosts, Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender, will specifically be discussing period accounts in western culture of the symptoms and gruesome historical treatments of gonorrhea and syphilis, in stomach-churning detail. Rashes, prostitution, burning sensations and blindness… you’ll find it all here. […]