Weird Wikipedia Articles

alex atkins bookshelf triviaWikipedia is no ordinary encyclopedia. Each month, more than 500 million unique visitors visit Wikipedia to read its more than 40 million articles written in more than 250 languages. The English version grows at a rate of 800 new articles each day. Compared to any written reference work, Wikipedia’s breadth is simply astonishing. But if you spend enough time browsing through this massive encyclopedia, you will come across some rather unusual or weird articles. Wikipedia even has a page that lists all of their “unusual articles” with this note: “There are over five million articles in the English Wikipedia. These are the ones that Wikipedians have identified as being a bit unusual. These articles are verifiable, valuable contributions to the encyclopedia, but are a bit odd, whimsical, or something you would not expect to find in Encyclopedia Britannica. We should take special care to meet the highest standards of an encyclopedia with these articles lest they make Wikipedia appear idiosyncratic.” Here are some of the weirdest articles on Wikipedia:

Algoe, New York (a fictional town)

Antiqua-Fraktur dispute (a typographical dispute in Germany in late 1800s)

Argelico “Argel” Fucks  (real name of a retired Brazilian soccer player)

Death by coconut (falling coconuts that kill people)

Dord (a ghost word; i.e., a meaningless word included in a dictionary by mistake)

Euthanasia coaster (a steel roller coaster designed to kill its passengers)

David Charles Hahm (radioactive Boy Scout)

How many angels can dance on the head of a pin? (a theological and philosophical debate) 

Hubert Blaine Wolfeschlegelsteinhausenbergerdorff, Sr. (longest surname in the world)

Hypoalgesic effect of swearing (swearing helps reduce sensation of pain)

People who have lived in airports (six people who have lived in airports for more than a month)

Project Steve (a list of over 1,300 scientists named “Steve” that support evolution)

Robert Shields (left a diary that recorded his life, written in five minute intervals)

Sex in space (the challenges of humans having sex in space)

Spite house (similar to a spite fence, a house built to annoy neighbors)

Toilet paper orientation (over vs. under)

Toilet-related injuries and death (people have died while using the Valsalva maneuver, the forceful attempt to expel feces from the rectum during a bowel movement)

Vladimir Demikhov (surgically created the first two-headed dog)

Waffle House Index (an informal metric used by FEMA to determine effect of a storm and scale of assistance required for disaster recovery)

Read related posts: Wikipedia by the Numbers
How Many Pages Would it Take to Print Wikipedia?
How Many Articles on Wikipedia?

Serendipitous Knowledge
Best English Dictionary
How Long Does it Take to Read a Million Words?

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