5 Crazy Historical Figures More Terrifying Than Any Horror Movie Villain

Just when you thought King Joffrey couldn’t get any worse in Game of Thrones… There were actually real-life tyrants back in the day who did much worse. King Joffrey looks like an amateur compared to these evil scoundrels.


1. Phalaris of Agrigento Roasted People Alive In a Hollow Bull Statue

Let’s start with Phalaris. Phalaris (dictator of Agrigento, Sicily around 570 and 554 BC) had this hallow bull statue that was a given to him by an artist named Perillos. Sadly for Perillos, he would have never guessed the demented bloodthirsty tyrant would use this as a torture device. When Phalaris received the bull, he wanted a demonstration from the artist himself. Phalaris then locked Perillos into the contraption that had a trap door installed under the belly.


As if being trapped inside a metal bull wasn’t scary enough, Phalaris would then light a fire beneath the belly of the bull so that whoever was in it would literally roast inside.To make matters worse, the bull’s mouth had an acoustic device that would convert screams from the inside into a drawn-out mooing sound to the outside.

After Perillos had the scare of his life inside of his own creation, Phalaris went ahead and through him off a cliff. People grew tired of him, had an uprising, and roasted Phalaris in his sick contraption. Karma took care of him, don’t worry.


2. Emperor Tiberius Enjoyed Bladder Burst Executions and Fish Attacks

This is Emperor Tiberius of Rome. He was absolutely insane. His torture technique: He tied the genitals of males with lute strings (preventing them from going to the batroom), then forced heavy amounts of wine down their throats until their bladder would inevitably burst. He was a very jealous king as well. He was so jealous of his grandson, Nero, and his popularity that he declared him an enemy of the state and sent an executioner to stand at his door and carry nooses and hooks — enough to terrify anyone.

Nero got the hint and committed suicde. As for his other grandson, Drusus, who was gaining popularity was well, well, let’s just say he was starved to death in 9 days by his own grandfather, Tiberius. As for fish torture: There once was a fisherman who presented Tiberius with a large, freshly-caught carp, only to have his face scrubbed raw with the fish’s sharp scales by the king’s guards.

3. King Goujian of Yue Confused Opponents by Forcing His People to Cut Their Own Throats

Here’s a king by the name of Goujian, who would order convicted criminals to not only fight in his war, but to slit their throats down to the bone in order to confuse the enemies…. yeah. Basically, Goujian would march a line of unarmed men to the front of his army and commit this act in full view of the enemy… He would do this over and over as a type of dramatic effect to scare is enemy.

So you’re probably wondering how these people were convinced to take their own lives… well, because they were convicted criminals. They would either die with honor or get taken out by the massive army behind them… either way they were doomed.

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