10 Deeply Unsettling Facts that Are Discomforting to Read

by Shivam Khandelwal3 years ago

6 In the first 12 hours of the Battle of Verdun, over a million artillery shells were fired on a 19-mile wide piece of land. Even if one survived those dreadful attacks, the sound alone was enough to drive them insane.
Verdun Memorial
Image credits: Wolfgang Staudt/Wikimedia

The Battle of Verdun happened in World War I is thought of as one of the longest, bloodiest, and most ferocious wars. The French side lost 400,000 men and Germans 350,000.

Approximately 70% of the total casualties were caused by artillery attacks. Just during the initial moments, the Germans bombarded two million shells; the first time ever in history.

Later, both sides kept on launching between 40 and 60 million shells over the next 10 very deadly months.

The noise from the attacks could be heard as far as 100 miles away from the battleground.

Soldiers described the scene as horrific to the degree that particular hills were so heavily bombed that volcanoes started to spurt lava out from them.

The soldiers who survived the fatal shell attacks couldn’t easily recover from the constant noise created from the bombardments. The ones who survived were left in trauma; they were just speechless. (1, 2)


7 In extreme cases of scurvy disease, the patient’s scars break down and old wounds reopen. This is because the patient’s body loses the ability to produce collagen, the glue of the body cells.

Scurvy disease
Scurvy disease

Scurvy, a disease, can be described as the total disintegration of the patient’s body. The skin literally starts to break off. The process starts with small blood blisters and develops into large ulcers.

Other symptoms are also disturbing. The gums begin to putrefy and turn black, bones that were once broken rebreak, and old wounds open up. The cartilage present near the thorax also starts to disappear.

The ugly disintegration of the body doesn’t end here. The arteries and the capillaries begin to decay, and blood starts to leak and coagulate inside arteries that cause heavy cardiovascular damage.

The terrible disease didn’t have any diagnosis for centuries, let alone the curative methods. The sailors on long voyages were the ones that mostly suffered from scurvy. Records show that the number of sailors who died of scurvy is three times the number of soldiers who died in the American Civil War.

The cause of the pathological condition is the chronic deficiency of vitamin C. (source)


8 There is a paint hue called “mummy brown” which is made up of ground-up Egyptian mummies. Its rich brown color was extracted by grinding up the mummies. Basically, there exist paintings made of dead people.

Mummy brown color
Mummy brown color. Image credits: laafa.edu

Mummy brown color pigment was popularized in the 16th century. It contained crushed fragments of Egyptian mummies including both human and feline. The color was prized for its transparency and was used for painting shadows, glazing, and flesh tones in oil paintings and watercolors as well.

In the 19th century, a community of young artists, Pre-Raphaelites, favored this mummy brown color. They rejected the so-called “classical art” so that they could practice realism and use natural subjects.

It is unclear how to determine exactly which paintings have been made using the very natural color, but many well-known artists of those times have been recorded purchasing it.

The mummies from Egypt were transported to Europe where they transformed mummies into colors. A single mummy was enough to create 20 years’ worth of paint.

In the 20th century, there were fewer mummies to be exported, their prices rose, and the production of the mummy brown paint came to the end. It partly also came down when the artists slowly became aware of its origins. (source)


9 Paradoxical undressing is a strange behavior shown by the victims of extreme hypothermia in which they will paradoxically remove most of or all of their clothing due to a sudden feeling of warmth.

Paradoxical undressing
Paradoxical undressing

It is recommended by the experts that while rewarming a hypothermic person, the warmer and the victim both should be barely dressed. However, researchers claim that this has nothing to do with the bizarre paradoxical undressing.

During the process, the body of a hypothermic person induces vasoconstriction or the reflexive contraction of blood vessels.

Muscles that facilitate vasoconstriction exhaust in some time and fail which in turn causes blood to rush from the core to the extremities creating a “hot flash” and making the hypothermic patient feel as if they’re burning up.  As a result, the confused and totally disoriented victims then hastily remove their clothes.

Patients with extreme hypothermia engage in paradoxical undressing generally just after yet another unusual act which is known as “terminal burrowing.” In terminal burrowing, the hypothermic individual will bury themselves under a bed, behind a wardrobe, on a shelf, etc.

Researchers say terminal borrowing is the position that indicates a final mechanism of protection against the extreme temperature in the environment. (1, 2)


10 Billy Milligham was a criminal who had his life so disturbed that his mind fractured into at least 24 personalities. Every time he switched those personalities his speech pattern, accent, and ways of sitting in a chair changed.

Milligham raped three women, all from Ohio State University, but was not found guilty because of his multi-personality disorder. He committed all three rapes in October 1977. 

Billy was not the criminal’s real name. His birth name was William. however, he had other names such as Ragen, Arthur, Adalana, Christene, and 19 more. 

He was arrested at 22 and charged with his crimes. During interrogations, he mentioned that he couldn’t sense what was going on and he felt like he was talking to different people at different times.  

A year later, psychiatric reports clearly made the case that different personalities of actual people took over Milligam’s body, and so he unconsciously acted them out. 

Even lawyers and prosecutors saw him switching to different personalities in brief periods of time. 

William’s childhood was also not pretty. His father was an alcoholic and took his own life when Willian was just four. His mother married another man who tortured him by hanging him by his toes and tried to bury him alive. 

He was kicked out of high school and he engaged in robbery. 

Willian had one “The Teacher” personality that aided him in learning the characteristics of other personalities. 

After 1977, he was hospitalized for 11 years and was finally released from supervision three years after that. In 1991 he faded from the public eye. (source)

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