The Museum of Hoaxes
hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive
HOME   |   ABOUT   |   FORUM   |   CONTACT   |   FACEBOOK   |   RSS
The Top 100
April Fool Hoaxes
Of All Time
April Fool Archive
April fools throughout history
Hoax Photo
Archive

Weblog Category
Folklore/Tall Tales
In late July an essay appeared in the Australian literary journal Meanjin written by Azhar Abidi. It was titled 'The Secret History of the Flying Carpet'. The essay described the discovery of 13th-century Persian scrolls that suggested there was some truth to the old legends of flying carpets. Ancient Persian artisans had apparently discovered a process of boiling fibers in a magnetic clay before weaving them into a carpet. These magnetized fibers then floated above the ground, repelled by the Earth's own magnetism. According to the scrolls, the fledgling flying carpet industry was driven out of existence by horse and camel breeders worried about future competition. This all sounds pretty fantastic, and it obviously is. But nevertheless, Abidi's essay was presented as fact, complete with footnotes, so it shouldn't be any surprise that some people have taken it seriously. According to The Weekend Australian, "Two Iranian websites have published his essay, prompting internet exchanges on the finer technical points of piloting carpets and how to turn and land them."
Categories: Exploration/Travel, Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Tue Aug 10, 2004
Comments (6)
image Jim sent in this picture of his grandfather posing with an ear of corn, along with this explanation: "My grandfather, Frank Weed, who died in 1949, worked on the railroad for years. He bragged to the other men about how big the Iowa corn was but they wouldn’t believe it. So my father took a picture of him, and of an ear of corn, then cut the negative, pasted the other into the hole and printed it. After that, the criticism of my grandfather’s exaggerations were silenced!" Thanks, Jim!
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales, Photos/Videos
Posted by Alex on Wed Jul 14, 2004
Comments (4)
image Thirty-two years ago the tiny town of Eucla, Australia, on the edge of the Nullarbor plain, became famous when a few of its residents first sighted the Nullarbor Nymph. The Nymph was a blonde, feral, half-naked woman who lived in the bush and ran wild with kangaroos. News of this wild woman quickly spread around the world. President Nixon was asked his opinion of her (reportedly his reply could not be repeated over the air), and the Loch Ness monster sent her a telegram. Sooner or later I'll have to put a fuller account of the Nullarbor Nymph in my 'Hoaxes Throughout History' Gallery, but for now you can read all about her at Dora Dallwitz's excellent site.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales, Places
Posted by Alex on Tue May 18, 2004
Comments (1)
image Musicians will appreciate this. It's a little known instrument, popular back in the Middle Ages, known as the Tromba Da Gamba, or Knee Trumpet. According to Virgilanti (who managed to acquire one of these rare instruments): "It was gaining a lot in popularity by the start of the 17th century but encountered a bit of a PR problem in 1619 when, according to the story, the pope (presumably Pope Paul V) saw the instrument being played by a woman. He was shocked at the suggestiveness of the performance and made his displeasure very apparent. It wasn't long before most of the upper class throughout Europe regarded the instrument as crude and vulgar." (Thanks, Virge)
Categories: Entertainment, Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Tue May 18, 2004
Comments (2)
image I've actually been to Lynchburg, Virginia, but somehow I missed the little-known attractions that it offers, such as the Fletcher Farm Rhino, the ABC Cemetery in which all the graves are in alphabetical order, Mags the headless cat (pictured), and the world's only car that runs on Kool-Aid.


Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales, Places
Posted by Alex on Mon May 03, 2004
Comments (5)
'Malbec' is running a competition on his LiveJournal page: Make up a fact that's totally untrue, but sounds like it might be the case. For example: "All Ikea flat-pack furniture can be stably constructed using only 3 of the supplied screws."
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Tue Apr 06, 2004
Comments (0)
martinThe American Museum of Photography has a nice collection of William H. "Dad"�Martin's tall-tale photographs online. Martin made a fortune selling tall-tale postcards during the early twentieth century. He had a company called the Martin Post Card Company based in Ottawa, Kansas.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales, Photos/Videos
Posted by Alex on Wed Dec 17, 2003
Comments (0)
Was the 15 inch snowflake that was recorded to have fallen in eastern Montana on Jan. 28, 1887 a tall tale? It was either that or a bunch of snowflakes frozen together.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Wed Dec 17, 2003
Comments (0)
A Florida elementary school teacher made the mistake of telling her kids that Santa doesn't exist. Now Santa himself is making a special trip down from the North Pole to visit the classroom just to prove that he really does exist. I'm sure the teacher feels appropriately remorseful, but at least she didn't tell her kids that Santa was dead as a British vicar did last year.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Wed Dec 03, 2003
Comments (0)
I got an angry email from Mystic Merlin, creator of the Crop Circles Mystery Board Game that I linked to below. He demanded that I remove all mention of his game from my site because, in his words, 'THIS BOARDGAME IS NOT A HOAX AND HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH HOAXING AT ALL' (caps are his). Of course! How could I have been so foolish as to presume that crop circles have anything to do with hoaxes? My mistake entirely. And yet, I just can't bring myself to remove the link. Sorry, Mystic Merlin.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Mon Sep 22, 2003
Comments (2)
Some board games with hoaxy themes: First, the Crop Circles Mystery Board Game, it's the Game With Healing Energies (via liquito). Next we have Tall Tales, the Game of Legends, Humdingers, and Creative One-Upmanship.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Thu Sep 18, 2003
Comments (0)
A cool set of Baron Munchausen trading cards. I'm sure it would cost a lot of money to buy the complete set.

Update 8/14/03: I didn't intend to suggest that these cards are a hoax, as a few people queried me about. I linked to them because Munchausen (the fictional character) was a famous teller of tall tales, so the cards appealed to me as an example of hoax memorabilia.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Wed Aug 13, 2003
Comments (1)
Page 5 of 6 pages ‹ First  < 3 4 5 6 >