The World Wide Web is a mind-boggling web of information and Wikipedia is no exception. Trawling page after page of this online encyclopedia, it's not uncommon to be struck dumb by some of the creepiest mysteries and examples of distorted human nature ever.
Here are six examples that will ensure you don't sleep soundly tonight:
1. Taman Shud Case
The Taman Shud Case is the unsolved case of a mysterious man who was found dead at 6.30am in South Australia in 1948. To this day, he remains unidentified but is named 'tamám shud' (a term meaning 'ended' in Persian) for the sole scrap of paper found in the corpse's trousers. It turned out to have been taken from the final pages of a particular copy of poems attributed to 12th century poet Omar Khayyám.
Today, this case remains "one of Australia's most profound mysteries."
2. Dyatlov Pass Incident
In 1959, nine Russian hikers disappeared in Dyatlov Pass in Russia. Days later, their camp was discovered with their tents ripped open and their bodies without shoes. There was absolutely no sign of struggle.
3. Rat King
The 'Rat King' is a grotesque phenomenon that occurs when a great number of rats do the following:
"[They] get stuck together with, for instance, blood, dirt, ice, horse-hair, or feces—or simply knotted. The animals reputedly grow together while joined at the tails."
Don't worry, I feel like vomiting too.
4. The Flatwoods Monster
In 1952, three young boys witnesses an entity crashing down to earth. When they tracked it, they found a creature surrounded by mist that was "emitting a shrill hissing noise."
According to Wikipedia:
"Witnesses described the creature's head as elongated, shaped like a sideways diamond, and as having non-human eyes; a large, circular cowling appeared behind the head. The creature's body was inhumanly-shaped and clad in a dark pleated exoskeleton, later described as a shadow."
The boys breathed in the mist and apparently experienced "vomiting and convulsions" for many weeks thereafter. To this day, nobody has solved the mystery.
5. June and Jennifer Gibbons
The curious case of two inseparable twins from Wales continues to haunt the area, and rightly so. Born in 1963, these two girls earned the nickname 'The Silent Twins' since they refused to communicate with anyone apart from each other. By their teens, they had begun writing works of fiction and turned to crime to become more recognized -- both were committed to Broadmoor Hospital where they remained for over 14 years.
According to reports, the girls had an agreement that if one was to die, the other would have resume a normal life of speaking. After much discussion, Jennifer agreed she would sacrifice herself. Days later, June was said to utter:
"I'm free at last, liberated, and at last Jennifer has given up her life for me."
6. Cotard Delusion
The Cotard Delusion is a very rare mental illness, in which the person who has it is convinced they are dead, or simply do not exist, having lost organs and blood. In 1996, a man from Scotland who had been brain damaged in a motorcycle article showed symptoms of the disease. The case was described as such:
"[The patient's] symptoms occurred in the context of more general feelings of unreality and [of] being dead. In January 1990, after his discharge from hospital in Edinburgh, his mother took him to South Africa. He was convinced that he had been taken to Hell (which was confirmed by the heat), and that he had died of septicaemia (which had been a risk early in his recovery), or perhaps from AIDS (he had read a story in The Scotsman about someone with AIDS who died from septicaemia), or from an overdose of a yellow fever injection. He thought he had "borrowed [his] mother's spirit to show [him] around hell", and that she was asleep in Scotland."
Which Wikipedia entry scarred you the most?