It can sometimes seem that the men and women of yore were more couth and classy, less abrasive and loud, than humans today. If you’re seen Hamilton (you’ve seen Hamilton, right?), then you know that’s not true.
They definitely told each other to f%ck off, they just did it with classier words most of the time.
Here are 12 of them that definitely deserve to make the history books.
12. He wasn’t afraid.
John Hancock making his signature giant on the Declaration of Independence for King George to read loud and clear.
11. Well this is…something.
After the English Civil War, during the trial of Charles I for treason, Charles refused to defend himself before Parliament, claiming that they have no authority by which to charge him or punish him as long as he is king. To which Cromwell counters:
“We will cut off his head with the crown upon it”
10. Hitler has several, but he got his in the end.
Hitler invading the Czechoslovakia after signing the Munich Agreement.
9. Their connection never ends.
Was just reading up on Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr… apparently much later in Burr’s life he remarried but it didn’t last because he was spending up all his wife’s money trying to reignite his political plans.
So four months after they wed she filed for divorce. The real kick in the pants is that the she got Alexander Hamilton Jr. as her divorce attorney. Talk about never escaping a shadow.
8. Why no one messes with the Swiss.
In WW1 (i think it was ww1?) Switzerland had a very small army but they were very well trained and could shoot well.
So a german commander asked the Swiss what they would do if they sent 500,000 troops against the 250,000 Swiss troops.
The Swiss said, ‘shoot twice and go home’
7. He was a jerk who had it coming.
Ford beating Ferrari in Lemans after Enzo fu’d Ford.
They even turned it into a movie!
6. A big burn from a small man.
When a Russian officer was talking to Napoleon Bonaparte, he said: “We Russians fight for honor, you French fight only for gain!”
To which Napoleon replied saying “You are quite right, each fights for that which he does not possess.”
5. I would like to say this to so many people.
“I do wish we were better strangers.”
– William Shakespeare
4. You just have to lol at some parts of French history.
So when France exiles Napoleon Bonaparte (the first time), they didn’t think to change out military personnel.
So he basically rolls up to the first French outpost he gets to, says “‘sup” and begins reassembling an army.
By the time he gets to Paris, he’s got enough forces that France is like “well. Welcome back.”
3. Imagine one word doing the trick.
A prominent example involves Philip II of Macedon. After invading southern Greece and receiving the submission of other key city-states, he turned his attention to Sparta and asked menacingly whether he should come as friend or foe.
The reply was: “Neither.”
Losing patience, he sent the message: “You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city.”
The Spartan ephors again replied with a single word: “If.”
Subsequently, neither Philip nor his son Alexander the Great attempted to capture the city.
2. Definitely negative. Ha!
“Nuts is strictly negative.”
Story goes that American troops in WWII were being defeated by German troops and the German leader offered them the option to surrender.
American corporal, sergeant, whatever upon hearing the offer says “Nuts.”
Translator relays in German to German leader.
German leader does not understand and asks “Is ‘nuts’ negative or positive?”
“Nuts is strictly negative!”
1. Gotta love the Brits and their turns of phrase.
Similarly, General Anthony McAuliffe’s famous “nuts” quote.
The 101st Airborne Division was encircled by Nazis in Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge and were sent an ultimatum by the Germans calling for their “honorable surrender.”
Gen. McAuliffe sent back the message:
“To the German Commander:
-The American Commander”
The 101st then dug in and withstood the German attack until the 4th Armored Division was able to reinforce them 5 days later.
For further context, in 1944, “nuts to you” basically meant “f%ck you” or “go to hell”
For the record, we could do a whole post on the classy eff yous offered by A. Ham alone.
What’s your favorite historical insult? Share it with us in the comments!