Facts


  • Your body needs sleep. Staying awake for two weeks can be enough to kill you.
  • People who lose an arm or leg in an accident or operation can often still feel it hurting, aching or itching but can do nothing to make it feel better.
  • Air you swallow, and gas released from food as you digest it, comes out as a burp or a fart – which one depends on how far through your intestines it has got.
  • When you die, the bacteria in your gut start to eat away at you from the inside.
  • The mental disorder called ‘walking corpse’ disease leads people to believe parts of their body are missing or that they are dead.
  • There is enough iron in the human body to make a nail.
  • People who live in big cities make more ear wax than those who live in the country, where the air is cleaner.
  • A shark can taste blood over a kilometre (about half a mile) away.
  • In Palestine 8–9,000 years ago, a dead relative was buried under the floor of the family’s house – except the head. The flesh and brain were removed from the head and the skull used as the base for a plaster mould of the person’s head, which was decorated and kept.
  • Anyone who rebelled against the Mesopotamian king Ashurnasirpal could expect to be skinned or buried alive. We know this because he buried some rebels inside a column and carved the story of their crime on the outside.
  • The servants of a dead Egyptian pharaoh were often killed and buried with him or sealed alive in his pyramid.
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