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Sunday, December 10, 2023

The Most Cruel Rulers In History

From tyrannical kings to high-handed dictators, history has witnessed several cruel rulers. While many rulers exhibited cruelty in order to achieve certain goals, some exercised cruelty just to show off their power over others. Some of these rulers were downright brutal, so much so that their actions were stranger than fiction! Take a look at the list below to see for yourself.

1.  Vlad the Impaler

Also Known As: Vlad III, Vlad Dracula

Birthday: 1431

Born In: Sighișoara, Romania

Died On: December 1476

After Vlad the Impaler’s death, many books describing his cruel acts became bestsellers in the German-speaking territories. It is said that he strengthened the central government with the aid of brutal punishments. His reputation for cruelty inspired the name of the popular character ‘Count Dracula’ as he was also known as Vlad Dracula.

2.   Genghis Khan

Also Known As: Temüjin, Emperor Fatian Qiyun Shengwu

Birthday: 1158

Born In: Khentii Mountains, Mongolia

Died On: 18 August 1227

Often regarded as the greatest conqueror of all time, Genghis Khan’s invasions often included large-scale massacres of the civilian populations. As a result, his bloody invasions have a fearsome reputation in history.

3.   Maximilien de Robespierre

Also Known As: Maximilien François Marie Isidore de Robespierre

Birthday: 06 May 1758

Born In: Arras, France

Sun Sign: Taurus

Died On: 28 July 1794

Century: 18th Century

A period of the French Revolution, when Maximilien Robespierre was an important member of the ‘Committee of Public Safety,’ was called the ‘Reign of Terror.’ During this period, numerous public executions and a series of massacres took place.

4.  Leopold II of Belgium

Also Known As: Leopold II, Leopold Lodewijk Filips Maria Victor

Birthday: 09 April 1835

Born In: Brussels, Belgium

Sun Sign: Aries

Died On: 17 December 1909

Century: 19th Century, 20th Century

Leopold II’s administration was characterized by atrocities, such as torture and murder. Millions of the Congolese people died under his rule. After a hike in the price of natural rubber, he forced people to harvest and process rubber. The hands of men, children, and women were cut off when they failed to produce the amount of rubber desired.

5.  Ivan the Terrible

Also Known As: Ivan IV Vasilyevich, Ivan the Fearsome, Ivan Vasilyevich

Birthday: 25 August 1530

Born In: Kolomenskoye, Moscow, Russia

Sun Sign: Virgo

Died On: 28 March 1584

Century: 16th Century

Ivan the Terrible was prone to episodic outbreaks of mental instability, paranoia, and rages. The later years of his reign were marked by the massacre of Novgorod, an infamous attack launched by him on the city of Novgorod, Russia.

6.  Qin Shi Huang

Also Known As: Shi Huangdi

Birthday: 18 February 259

Born In: China

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Died On: 210

Whenever Qin Shi Huang captured people from other countries, he castrated them and made them his slaves. He also killed several scholars who disagreed with his ideas and ordered the burning of many important books.

7.  Talaat Pasha

Also Known As: Talat Paşa, Mehmed Talaat

Birthday: 01 September 1874

Born In: Kardzali, Bulgaria

Sun Sign: Virgo

Died On: 15 March 1921

Century: 19th Century, 20th Century

Talaat Pasha ordered the arrest and deportation of Armenian intellectuals who were eventually murdered. These events initiated the Armenian Genocide and Pasha was widely regarded as the main perpetrator of the genocide. He is held responsible for the death of almost 1,800,000 Armenians.

8.  Pol Pot

Also Known As: Saloth Sâr

Birthday: 19 May 1925

Born In: Prek Sbov, Cambodia

Sun Sign: Taurus

Died On: 15 April 1998

Century: 20th Century

Under Pol Pot’s rule, mass killings took place in Cambodia. These killings, along with poor medical care and malnutrition, killed between 1.5 and 2 million people. Internationally, he was considered a totalitarian dictator and was guilty of crimes against humanity.

9.  Timur

Also Known As: Timūr Gurkānī, Shuja-ud-din Timur

Birthday: 09 April 1336

Born In: Shahrisabz, Uzbekistan

Sun Sign: Aries

Died On: 18 February 1405

It is said that Timur’s military campaigns wiped out 17 million people, about five per cent of the world population at the time. Hence, his armies were feared throughout Africa, Europe, and Asia.

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