It is believed that the monarch who rules the country should be the most intelligent, honest and noble. However, the rulers are the same people who are characterized by all the same weaknesses. In addition, “thanks to” the closed nature of their lives, to numerous related marriages, the psyche of kings is often threatened. In history, there are many rulers who left a trace of their eccentricities, and not political actions.
So, Countess Elizabeth Bathory, adored torturing her servants, according to rumors, she even took baths from the blood of virgins, which, of course, looks unhealthy. The Italian John Gaston was so lazy that he spent the second half of his reign in his own bed. Yes, and our Empress Anna liked to joke about the court, dressing them with clowns and conducting humorous weddings.
However, most of these quirks were still relatively tolerant, while some of their counterparts had much more cruelty, vanity and insanity. Long stay in power, coupled with such vices had a negative impact on the lives of entire states. We will tell below about the ten most insane rulers in the history of mankind.
The Emperor of Zhende.
This Chinese ruler was in power from 1505 to 1521 years. It was one of the strangest representatives of the Ming dynasty. On the throne, he entered as early as 14 years of age. Soon after, the emperor literally became intoxicated with his power. He abandoned state affairs, devoting all his time to taverns and brothels, choosing favorite beauties. The monarch built several palaces for exotic animals, such as tigers and leopards. Often the emperor visited his pets, opening cages and hunting predators. Even the servants of the ruler looked strange – he forced them inside the palace to dress like in the city quarter. On command, all the surrounding people turned into passers-by and street vendors, whereas the emperor could, as a simple person, walk on an improvised street. This childish behavior of the emperor caused massive gossip. Historians believe that it was precisely from then on that the tradition of laziness among the emperors was born, which eventually led to the fall of the Ming dynasty. Yes, and the death of Zhende was quite ridiculous. He died in 1521, presumably from an infection that got into the body after the monarch fell into the canal in a state of intoxication. But the strangest action of the emperor happened in 1518 – he suddenly decided to become a military man and declared himself a general. He personally led the expedition to Jiangxi Province to catch rebels rebelling against his authority. It turned out that their leader was already caught. Then the emperor, angered by the failure, ordered to release the leader and declare it immediately hunt. So the ruler recovered his thrill from the pursuit.
Friedrich Wilhelm I.
This king of Prussia ruled from 1713 to 1740. Although his main activity was peaceful, he periodically recalled his attachments to the army. He often called for army units and forced them to march in front of him, even in moments of illness, being bedridden. The monarch was quite ascetic, he even slept in the barracks of his soldiers. But the king had a goal – to make his army the strongest in Europe. This obtrusive goal was transferred to the family. He wanted a good soldier from his son, Frederick, to grow up. The boy woke every morning from a gunshot. The monarch even provided his son with a small arsenal and created him his own army of child soldiers. When the king saw that the heir badly undergoes military training, he simply beat him. It is not surprising that in the end, Frederick II even tried to flee, but was captured and imprisoned by his own father. Obsessions of the king are associated with the creation of a special army unit, the Potsdam Giants. Only the strongest and tallest soldiers were to enter it. “Giants” became the King’s favorite project, he did everything possible to implement this venture.In this “special forces” were called mercenaries, so one Irish soldier was about 210 centimeters in height. Neighboring kingdoms, for the sake of maintaining friendship with the Prussians, were sent there to serve their high soldiers. In his efforts, the king went even further – all tall boys were called to join, and high men and women were recommended to have joint children, for the future replenishment of the unit.
Ludwig II of Bavaria.
One of the most beloved and eccentric rulers of Bavaria led the country from 1864 to 1886. Glory to King Ludwig was brought by his strange obsession with charming buildings and quaint castles. The monarch’s family was difficult, so he devoted himself to art, music, and the creation of his own fantasy world. This behavior was transferred to the reign of Ludwig as king. Moreover, the young man became a monarch at the age of 18. Ludwig did not like public appearances, preferring to remain alone in his castle, where he was even put on opera and performed. At the same time, the monarch was not at all a recluse – he liked to travel around the country, while he liked to stop and talk with casual comers. Modest character of the king ordinary people fell in love, but there were those who decided to remove the monarch from power. The conspirators made up a whole list of Ludwig’s oddities-conversations with fictional people, bad manners, shyness, a penchant for picnics in the moon with bare dancers. These arguments were given in order to prove the madness of the king. Although the reliability of such charges is extremely controversial, in 1886 Ludwig was declared unfit for governing the country and deprived of power. The very next day after the resignation the king was found dead in the lake, many believe that this is the work of his rivals. Today Ludwig is known not so much by eccentricities as by numerous castles built in Bavaria. The king was literally obsessed with their construction, he often went abroad to consult with builders and architects. One of the most difficult creations is the castle of Neuschwanstein. On a steep rock there is a stunning fortress. This project was inspired by the music of Richard Wagner. Ludwig was so carried away by his architectural projects that the kingdom nearly went bankrupt because of the permanent construction of the castles. Ironically today, these castles are among the most lucrative tourist attractions in Bavaria.
This king of France ruled the country from 1380 to 1422. The monarch received an eloquent nickname “insane.” In the time of Charles VI, the country participated in the Hundred Years’ War. Historians believe that the signs of psychosis and paranoia arose at an early age, which eventually led to the development of schizophrenia. The first vivid manifestation of psychic abnormalities occurred in 1392, when the king was enraged at a horse race across the forest. Karl suddenly lost his orientation, became so violent that he attacked his own servants and companions. The king even managed to kill one of the knights before he was pacified. Since then, Karl’s condition has only worsened. He often forgot who he was, had to be reminded of his royal office and duties. Once the insane monarch refused to bathe and change for a few months. It is known that Karl so often wildly ran through the halls of his palace, that the doors in the end for his own safety were boarded up. Strange behavior of Charles noted and Pope Pius II. He once wrote in his notes that the king somehow suddenly decided that he was glass and could fall apart. Fearing destruction, Karl began to wear soft clothes and forbade touching him. In the Middle Ages such a mental illness was quite common and was called the “Glass confusion”.
From 246 BC. to 221 years BC. he ruled as King Qin and until 210 BC. already as the emperor of China.Although this ruler was a capable manager, alternating rigidity with cruelty, in the personal life of Qin Shihuandi there were certain problems. The Emperor’s main mental problem was the fear of death that devastated him, which forced the monarch to spend most of his life searching for immortality. The Emperor was constantly afraid that the enemies would attack his life. Paranoia has led to the fact that Shihuandi never slept twice in the same place, and his travels were accompanied by a large number of archers. Determining the location of the emperor was considered a serious crime in itself. Over time, the ruler was built underground passageways, which allowed him to travel invisible between the palaces. Even during his life, Qin Shihuandi began to build his own massive tomb, which in the event of (or after) death will protect the remains of the enemies. The tomb was found only recently – there were found more than 8000 terracotta figures in full size. In addition to soldiers defending the emperor, there were many servants – a whole city to serve the king in the afterlife. Such a measure was only a precautionary measure, along with this, Qin Shihuandi constantly consulted with apothecaries, fortune-teller and other spiritual teachers in search of an elixir that allowed to prolong life or even make it immortal. By the way, the paranoia of the monarch can not be called completely unreasonable – during his reign, three attempts were committed. However, the Emperor’s suspicions were directed in completely meaningless directions. So, he was very afraid of being killed by a sea monster. The monarch claimed that in his dream he saw how the creatures went hunting after him. That is why Qin Shuhandi never left his palace without a detachment of guards. Such paranoia did not remain harmless – after hunting for one of the sea monsters and killing of the whale thrown to the shore, the emperor fell seriously ill and died a few days later.
Emperor Norton I.
In the nineteenth century, the United States unofficially proclaimed Emperor Norton, with the capital of the state in San Francisco. The monarch declared himself neither much, not a little “The Emperor of the United States” and “Defender of Mexico.” The unofficial board lasted from 1859 to 1880. The real name of this man was Joshua Abraham Norton. In 1849, this Briton came to the United States rich. However, a series of unsuccessful investments destroyed the state. Financial problems led to megalomania and very eccentric behavior. As a result, in 1859, Norton officially declared himself the ruler of the whole of America. Local newspapers initially took Norton’s claims as an ordinary joke. However, the “emperor” soon became very popular among the inhabitants of San Francisco. They even began to address Norton in public places not otherwise than “Your Highness” and issued the original uniform. The early part of Norton’s rule was devoted to issuing decrees on the dissolution of the “corrupt” US Congress and officially declaring himself emperor. When all the efforts of the “ruler” were ignored, I decided to pay attention to local issues. So, the emperor personally strolled through the streets of the city and checked the condition of roads and buildings. To solve urgent problems, Norton even allocated his own funds, which were happily accepted by local traders. Norton himself was poor, but he was allowed to eat free at one of the best restaurants in San Francisco, as well as getting tickets for every new play. In exchange for this, it was only necessary to allow the imperial seal of approval to be placed on the doors of the establishment. Norton died in 1880 right on the street. All city newspapers paid much attention to the obituary, about 30 thousand citizens gathered at the funeral of the monarch. Although the emperor’s problems with the psyche were obvious, he himself sometimes demonstrated a striking gift of foresight. So, he foresaw that the “League of Nations” is formed without the participation of the US, predicted the emergence of a bridge between Oakland and San Francisco, which also became a reality.But it is not worthwhile to consider its decrees rational. For example, in 1872 Norton stated that anyone calling his city the humiliating word “Frisco” should be fined $ 25.
This sultan of the Ottoman Empire, who ruled from 1640 to 1648, is also known by the nickname “Mad.” Among all the Turkish sultans, he was the most mentally unbalanced, although the insane and cruel rulers in this country in the 16th and 17th centuries were lacking. Today it is practically proved that Ibrahim suffered from a number of mental illnesses. Most of them are caused by a building-cage, with a small number of windows, where the future monarch spent his youth. After the death of his brother in 1640, the 23-year-old Ibrahim was released and was declared a sultan. His enthusiasm was so great that he immediately led to insanity. Ibrahim began to make up for lost time, mainly due to his harem, which could satisfy an insatiable sexual appetite. The sultan liked to collect his concubines in the courtyard and gallop around them with a horse neigh. Ibrahim had an irresistible passion, a fetish, to full women. One day he even sent his servants to find and deliver to him the most complete woman on Earth. They returned with a nearly 200-kilogram beauty nicknamed “Saharok”, who became a beloved wife in a harem. However, the eccentricity of Ibrahim was not limited to his sexual games. The Sultan was very greedy, his servants often plundered the homes of his subjects in order to deliver his perfume to the ruler, the clothes he demanded. Also Ibrahim became famous for his character, he was naturally violent. In addition to numerous tortures and executions, the Sultan once threw his young son into a pool of water, and later cut his face in a fit of anger. Such a stream of cruelty and debauchery led to the appearance of the Sultan’s many enemies. In 1648, a coup took place, and the ruler was arrested and returned to his cage for some time. Later Ibrahim was strangled by sent assassins. The strange behavior of the monarch was his impulsive and very aggressive behavior. So, when he once received news that one of his harems had been compromised, he ordered many women to be tortured at once. When the name of the traitor did not remain clear, Ibrahim ordered the drowning in the lake of 280 of his wives from the harem.
Queen went down in history under the nickname “Mad.” Juan rules Spain from 1504 to 1555 years. Juan of Castile became the first kings of the Habsburg dynasty, having married in 1496 for Philip of Burgundy. The couple was an unusual in love with each other, which for the royal marriage was unusual phenomenon, but soon everything changed. Juan turned out to be jealous, while Philippe is extremely indiscriminate in his love affairs. Numerous betrayal of his wife led Juan into a state of paranoia. Considering that her husband would constantly take care of cute servants, the Queen accepted only old and ugly ladies in her service and retinue. Once, Juan even attacked one of the women, considering her the mistress of Philip. Desperate to find out the truth from her husband, the queen began resorting to the services of sorcerers and their potions. When her husband continued to ignore her, she even went on a hunger strike. It is not clear to the end whether Juan was really crazy, but such unpredictable behavior, along with the desire of people next to her to usurp power, led to the fact that the last years of her life the woman held, being locked in a remote castle. The eccentricity of the queen has increased significantly since 1506, when Philip died in a fast-paced illness. She was completely at a loss, wearing black clothes and crying uncontrollably. She traveled with a coffin in Castile, even demanded to open it under various occasions, to kiss the feet of the deceased spouse and look again at him. Concerned that her husband would deceive even after death, Juan forbade any woman to be near the coffin. The ban concerned even nuns.
This king of England ruled for many years – from 1760 to 1820. His case is considered, perhaps, the most famous among royal madness. Georg during the last part of his life suffered from periodic attacks of mental illness. Today, historians believe that the king probably suffered from porphyria, a blood disease, but the monarch’s doctors could not put such a diagnosis. During the attacks, George shouted loud words, insults and curses until he was tied up with a straitjacket and was not given a gag. A whole team of doctors was sent to help the monarch, but their primitive methods of treatment seemed to make the condition even worse. The king eventually fell into the grip of delirium. So, it seemed to him that London was swept away by flood, he was giving orders to fictional or long-dead people, and once he even tried to attack sexual purposes for one of the servants. On one of Christmas there was a bizarre case. The king named his pillow “Prince Caesar” and began to celebrate her new birth on this day. Nevertheless, the king often had moments of clarification, the illness for a time receded. Over time, nonsense returned, eventually, after considerable loss of hearing and vision, George III was in seclusion until his death, the country was regent. One of the king’s most strange misconceptions occurred during his first outbreak, when he met a possessed woman named Elizabeth Spencer. In the heat of her passion, Georg began to believe that they were married, arguing that Queen Charlotte, the legitimate spouse, was actually an impostor who wanted to kill the monarch.
Only 4 years, from 37 to 41, Caligula was a Roman emperor. However, it was enough for him to go down in history as one of the most cruel and strange rulers. When Caligula came to power in Rome, he was only 25 years old. During the first two years of his reign, he was able to achieve love by proving his abilities. Later, few people doubted the emperor’s madness. These mental abnormalities were ultimately expressed in the form of certain laws of the ruler. It was illegal to look in the face of the emperor, for this they threw him into a ditch with lions. Caligula used numerous tortures and executions, he made great efforts to develop new methods of killing his enemies. One of his favorite executions, they say, was to cover the criminal with honey and launch a swarm of wasps on him. Today Caligula is known mainly for her loose sexual behavior. It includes, perhaps, everything – bisexuality, bestiality and even incest. It is believed that the emperor slept with each of his three sisters. Caligula adored grandiose orgies, on them he declared himself a demigod, spending also parties and parties with an abundance of food and wine. As a result, the Imperial Palace turned into a real brothel. It is not surprising that the head of the country’s insane behavior attracted the wrath of its political rivals, who were able to successfully organize a conspiracy and kill Caligula in 41 CE. Some of the strange activities of Caligula are related to his favorite horse. An incite. The emperor dressed the animal in luxurious outfits, built a luxurious marble stable for him. The horse was served by a whole army of servants. The emperor even allowed the horse to eat directly from the table during dinner parties, guests were often invited to the palace on behalf of the Incitat. But the most extravagant act was the actions of Caligula on giving the horse first official citizenship of Rome, and then senatorialism. The noble trotter did not succeed in becoming a consul-the owner’s death prevented him.