Historical figures that got blamed for something they didn't do.

Aug 2018
39
Southern Indiana
#1
Can you think of a historical figure that got a bad rap?

Michael Cresap was blamed for the massacre at Yellow Creek even though his force had nothing to do with it. He became immortalized in Logan's Lament and the massacre was the main incident that started Dunmore's War.
 
May 2017
1,147
Syria
#2
I'm not sure if this qualifies as an answer because it's more likely the case of someone involved in something with other people being solely blamed so I answered twice. In the Arab world at least, I think Ariel Sharon's role in the Sabra and Shatila massacre is way too emphasized. Yes, Israel gave air coverage, support and backing for the militias which committed the massacre and are to blamed as well but the true culprits were the far-right Kataeb militias of Elie Hobeika, a fact that not only isn't emphasized as it should be but also forgotten in some circles (deliberately?). In fact, Hobeika later became a minister in the Lebanese government and was hailed a 'martyr' by his following after his death. Israeli complicity is undeniable in the massacre but to solely attribute it to Sharon is wrong.

Another one is that many members of the Syrian opposition can't stop talking about how President Hafez al-Assad "sold" the Golan Heights to Israel and actually received profit from it. Which is also wrong as you'd think such an exchange would be massively publicized, settle the sovereignty issue, cede the Golan completely to Israel and be internationally recognized when 3 security council resolutions still affirm the illegality of Israeli occupation and Syrian sovereignty over it, Syria continues to stress its rightful ownership of the Golan heights and not one country recognizes it as a part of Israel. None of that would be happening if the Golan was sold a la the Louisiana purchase which it was not.
 
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Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
6,648
#4
Richard III and killing the boys.
The princes were under Richard III control, and they disappeared without Richard offering any explanation to what happened to them. He was responsible for their safety, so if something happened to them, even if he personally didn't order it, he was still responsible. At the very best, Richard III was guilty of negligence, and worse he was guilty of murder.

If Richard III receive a blame, it is really his own fault for making no effort to explain what happened to the princes.
 
Aug 2015
2,200
uk
#5
The princes were under Richard III control, and they disappeared without Richard offering any explanation to what happened to them. He was responsible for their safety, so if something happened to them, even if he personally didn't order it, he was still responsible. At the very best, Richard III was guilty of negligence, and worse he was guilty of murder.

If Richard III receive a blame, it is really his own fault for making no effort to explain what happened to the princes.

Richard imprisoned and killed their half brother and uncle Rivers and Grey. He compelled their mother to seek sanctuary with her other children before forcing her to hand over her othrr son. The other powerful person who could have protected them (Hastings) was also arrested and murdered. Richard delayed the date of the coronation just long enough for them to be declared bastards, and then took the throne for himself. It's not too much of a leap of faith to say that he then had them killed; because that's what you did back then - when you took the throne you killed the one you took it from, and anyone you thought conspire against you. Richard had been a part of the chaos and bloodshed caused by having rival claimants to the throne, and he wasn't about to let it all start again.
 
May 2018
61
Houston, TX
#6
I think Churchill received more blame for Gallipoli than he deserved; although certainly he deserved a measure. Faulty decisions and procrastination by the commanders and admirals at the front were most of the problem to me.
 
Likes: Lord Fairfax

Linschoten

Ad Honoris
Aug 2010
14,647
Wessex
#9
It was exaggerated, but he did suffer from scoliosis of the spine, so there was some factual basis for it, this is good:



I love Shakespeare's Richard III, a wonderful character who inspires you to connive in his own villainy and speaks in pure poetry.

But I, that am not shaped for sportive tricks,
Nor made to court an amorous looking-glass;
I, that am rudely stamp’d, and want love’s majesty
To strut before a wanton ambling nymph;
I, that am curtail’d of this fair proportion,
Cheated of feature by dissembling nature,
Deform’d, unfinish’d, sent before my time
Into this breathing world, scarce half made up,
And that so lamely and unfashionable
That dogs bark at me as I halt by them;
Why, I, in this weak piping time of peace,
Have no delight to pass away the time,
Unless to spy my shadow in the sun
And descant on mine own deformity.
And therefore, since I cannot prove a lover,
To entertain these fair well-spoken days,
I am determined to prove a villain
And hate the idle pleasures of these days.