Infamous Historical Figures

According to dictionary.com, to be famous means:

having a widespread reputation, usually of a favorable nature; renowned; celebrated:

So then what does it means to be infamous?

having an extremely bad reputation: deserving of or causing an evil reputation; shamefully malign; detestable:

As we study throughout school and learn about history, we learn of two types of people – those who do good in the world (for example, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Mother Theresa, Gandhi) and those who do evil in the world (Adolf Hitler, Stalin, Sadam Hussein).

What makes these people infamous or evil is what they did – their crimes against humanity. These historical figures are taught to us in school because of their crimes which were (pardon the pun) enormous. Here’s our list of Infamous Historical Figures that people seem to forget were so incredibly evil:

1. Nero

Nero was the Roman Emperor from 54 to 86 AD. Nero suffered from mother issues as she controlled a lot of his life at an early age. This resentment towards his mother took Nero down a dark path and he arranged to have her murdered. He became extremely paranoid of anyone trying to take the power away from him and was even accused of raping and killing his half brother.

2. Pol Pot

Pol Pot was a communist leader of Cambodia from 1975 to 1979. In those four short years, 1.5 million people, roughly 25% of the entire population died from overwork, disease, starvation and good old fashioned execution. With the goal of creating a peasant and classless society his regime targeted anyone intellectual.

3. Saddam Hussein

President of Iraq from 1973 to 2003. Over this 30 year reign there are numerous crimes to choose from that make him one of the most infamous despots, but here are some of his most noteworthy:

  • Kidnapped an entire village in response to his attempted assassination in 1982 including women and children
  • Afnal Campaign forcing the Kurdish out of Iraq resulting in the use of chemical warfare killing 5,000 men, women and children
  • Causing environmental disaster after ordering oil wells to be ignited during the Persian Gulf War
  • Order the murder of his relatives and other family members

Sometimes we think of evil as something that isn’t real. Something that is only fiction but as it turns out, in our own short history of mankind, there are some truly evil people.

Who are some of your favorite infamous historical figures?