Weird Behavior of Famous People Part 2

About the weird behavior of some famous people in history including Enrico Caruso, Cardinal Richelieu, and Baruch Spinoza.


11. Opera singer Enrico Caruso, who died in 1921 at age 48 in Naples, had an Italian peasant's belief in superstitions. He always consulted an astrologer before making an ocean crossing and he never started a journey on Tuesday or Friday.

12. King Charles II, ruler of Great Britain from 1660 to 1685 and master of Nell Gwyn, sometimes gathered up powder from the mummies of Egyptian kings and rubbed the powder on himself in the belief that he would acquire "ancient greatness."

13. Cardinal Richelieu, prime minister of France in 1624 under King Louis XIII and the real ruler of his country, got his daily exercise by jumping over furniture.

14. Alphonse Daudet, French novelist and playwright, made his reputation with the production of his first play, La Derniere Idole, in Paris in 1862. He wore his eyeglasses to bed every night and went to sleep with them on.

15. Eddie Rickenbacker, the top U.S. flying ace in W.W. I (with 26 victories), made his name as an automobile-racing driver. He became one of America's three leading drivers, yet he never bothered to get a driver's license in his life. He died in 1973.

16. Nothing got the French author Voltaire down--not even a month of imprisonment in the Bastille in 1717. Nothing, that is, except the scent of roses. Whenever he smelled roses he fell into a faint.

17. Baruch Spinoza, the Portuguese-Jewish philosopher who lived in Holland, worked constantly tutoring, grinding lenses, and writing controversial books (Ethics, for one, which he finished in 1674). His favorite form of relaxation was to catch two spiders and watch them fight each other.

18. Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt, the U.S. shipping and railroad tycoon who amassed a fortune of $100 million by the time of his death in 1877, never owned a checkbook. He wrote most of his checks on half sheets of blank writing paper.

19. Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919), the benevolent steel magnate, adored his mother and refused to marry as long as she was alive. When she died, Carnegie finally married at age 52 and had his only child at 62. After his mother's death, Carnegie did not mention her name for 15 years.

20. Hans Christian Andersen, famous worldwide for such fairy tales as "The Princess and the Pea" and "The Emperor's New Clothes," was terrified of being prematurely declared dead and buried alive. He almost always carried a note in his pocket telling anyone who might find him unconscious that it must not be assumed he was dead unless he was examined again. He often left another note on his bedside table stating, "I only seem dead." But in 1875, when he died of cancer in Copenhagen, he was very dead.

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