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List of Silly Deaths
by Alexandra Pereira
2009-07-30 09:43:03
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I was always fascinated by silly deaths, and I certainly would like my own (hopefully many years from now) to have lots of humor involved and cause people to laugh – perhaps because when one laughs about such a serious matter, that relieves the pain of the loved ones. It's fascinating how some people seem to inadvertently find the most stupid ways to die. So here is a list of silly deaths compiled by Wikipedia.

Al-Musta'sim died wrapped in a rug and trampled to death by the horses of Hulagu Khan. The Duke of Clarence was executed by drowning in a barrel of Malmsey wine at his own request (1478). Molière died after being seized by a violent coughing fit, while playing the title role in his play ‘The Imaginary Invalid’. Tennessee Williams (5 February 1983) and Attila the Hun died due to choking. Thomas Urquhart, Scottish aristocrat, is said to have died laughing upon hearing that Charles II had taken the throne (1660). Martin I of Aragon died from a lethal combination of indigestion and uncontrollable laughing (1410). Empedocles, Pre-Socratic philosopher, secretly jumped into an active volcano (Mt. Etna) – according to Diogenes Laërtius, this was to convince the people of his time that he had been taken up by the gods on Olympus (430 BC). Philitas of Cos is said by Athenaeus of Naucratis to have studied arguments and erroneous word-usage so intensely that he wasted away and starved to death (270 BC).

Eleazar Maccabeus was crushed to death at the Battle of Beth-zechariah by a War elephant that he believed to be carrying Seleucid King Antiochus V – charging in to battle, Eleazar rushed underneath the elephant and thrust a spear into its belly, whereupon it fell dead on top of him (162 BC). John Kendrick was killed in the Hawaiian Islands when a British ship mistakenly used a loaded cannon to fire a salute to Kendrick's vessel. Bruce Lee is thought to have died by a severe allergic reaction to Equagesic, his autopsy was written as “death by misadventure” (I wonder when is death ever adventurous?). David Douglas, Scottish botanist, fell into a pit trap accompanied by a bull (1834). Jim Creighton, baseball player, died when he swung a bat too hard and ruptured his bladder (1862). Franz Reichelt, tailor, fell to his death off the first deck of the Eiffel Tower while testing his invention, the coat parachute (1912). Chrysippus, Greek stoic philosopher, is believed to have died of laughter after watching his drunk donkey attempt to eat figs (207 BC).

Salomon August Andrée, Knut Fraenkel and Nils Strindberg died in 1897 after a failed attempt to reach the North Pole in a balloon – their deaths might have been due to eating insufficiently cooked polar bear meat causing trichinosis, or carbon monoxide poisoning from the miniature kerosene stove when snow made it difficult to air out the fumes. Clement Vallandigham, U.S. Congressman, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound suffered in court while representing the defendant in a murder case (demonstrating how the murder victim could have inadvertently shot himself – 1871). Béla I of Hungary died when his throne's canopy collapsed (1063). Julien Offray de La Mettrie died of overeating at a feast given in his honor (1751). Professor Georg Wilhelm Richmann, of Saint Petersburg, was struck and killed by a globe of ball lightning while performing electrical experiments (1753).

Isadora Duncan, dancer, died in the French Riviera of a broken neck when one of the long silk scarves she was known for (a gift by a friend, painted by a Russian artist) caught on the wheel of a car in which she was a passenger, after declaring “Goodbye my friends! I’m on my way to [make] love!” (1927). Zishe Breitbart, a circus strongman and Jewish folklore hero, died as a result of a demonstration in which he drove a spike through five one-inch (2.54 cm) thick oak boards using only his bare hands – he accidentally pierced his knee, the spike was rusted and caused an infection which led to fatal blood poisoning (1925). Gustav Kobbé, writer and musicologist, was killed when the sailboat he was on was struck by a landing seaplane off Long Island, N.Y (1918). Finnish actress Sirkka Sari died when she fell down a chimney – she was at a cast party celebrating the completion of a movie –, she mistook a chimney for a balcony and fell into a heating boiler (1939). Inventor and chemist Thomas Midgley, Jr. accidentally strangled himself with the cord of a pulley-operated mechanical bed of his own design (1944). Langley Collyer died by falling victim to a booby trap he had set up, causing a mountain of objects, books, and newspapers to fall on him (1947). Georgi Markov was assassinated in London with a specially modified umbrella (1978).

Sherwood Anderson, writer, swallowed a toothpick at a party and then died of peritonitis (1941). Margo Jones, theater director, was killed by exposure to carbon tetrachloride fumes from her newly cleaned carpet (1955). Yukio Mishima committed seppuku after failing to inspire a coup d'état at the headquarters of the Japanese Self-Defence Forces in Tokyo (1970). Keith Relf, former singer for the band The Yardbirds, died while practicing his electric guitar –  he was electrocuted because the amplifier was not properly grounded (1976). Jean-Baptiste Lully, composer, died of a gangrenous abscess after piercing his foot with a staff while he was vigorously conducting a Te Deum, as it was customary at that time to conduct by banging a staff on the floor – the performance was to celebrate the king's recovery from an illness (1687). François Vatel, chef to Louis XIV, committed suicide because his seafood order was late and he could not stand the shame of a postponed meal – his body was discovered by an aide, sent to tell him of the arrival of the fish (1671).

Alexander Bogdanov, a Russian physician, died following one of his experiments, in which the blood of a student suffering from malaria and tuberculosis was given to him in a transfusion (1928). Baseball player Len Koenecke was bludgeoned to death with a fire extinguisher by the crew of an aircraft he had chartered, after provoking a fight with the pilot while the plane was in the air (1935). Lee Seung Seop, a 28-year-old South Korean, collapsed of fatigue and died after playing the videogame StarCraft online for almost 50 consecutive hours in an Internet café (2005). Sergey Tuganov, a 28-year-old Russian, bet two women that he could continuously have sex with them both for twelve hours. Several minutes after winning the $4,300 bet, he suffered a heart attack and died. Martin Cassidy, a 44-year-old stand-up comedian from Blackburn, died from asphyxia caused by breathing in large quantities of laughing gas while watching pornography on his laptop computer, according to a coroner (2009). And finally Marcus Garvey died after suffering either a cerebral haemorrhage or a heart attack while reading his own obituary.

Source: Wikipedia

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Emanuel Paparella2009-07-30 17:03:06
It would be even more humorous to attend one's own funeral and listen to what people remember and what they say about oneself and one's life..., as in Joyce's Finnegan's Wake.

Asa2009-07-30 22:39:09
Hmmm, I may feel my ears burning and that is before the furnace has been fired up.

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