HORRIFIC MASSACRES IN HISTORY
Added on: 29th Dec 2014
MASSACRE OF THESSALONICA
One of the earliest recorded large-scale massacres in world
history happened in the year 390 when Roman Emperor Theodosius I
sent troops to Thessalonica in order to quell some civil unrest.
Apparently he was very angry when he gave them their initial
instructions because he almost immediately dispatched a messenger
telling the troops to disregard his previous orders. The messenger,
however, arrived too late and 7,000 innocent men, women, and
children had already been murdered.
On December 30, 1066 Muslim mobs stormed the royal palace where
Jewish vizier Joseph ibn Naghrela had sought refuge and crucified him.
In the ensuing massacre of the Jewish population, many of the Jews of
Granada were murdered. The massacre was apparently started by a
rumour that Joseph was going to have the Muslim king assassinated.
MASSACRE OF THE LATINS
The Massacre of the Latins was a large-scale massacre of the
Roman Catholic or “Latin” inhabitants of Constantinople, the capital
of the Byzantine Empire, by the Eastern Orthodox population of
the city in May 1182. The Roman Catholics of Constantinople at that
time dominated the city’s maritime trade and financial sector. Although
precise numbers are unavailable, the bulk of the Latin community,
estimated at over 60,000 at the time, was wiped out or forced to flee.
SAINT BARTHOLOMEW’S DAY MASSACRE
The St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre in 1572 was a targeted group
of assassinations followed by a wave of Roman Catholic mob violence,
both directed against the Huguenots (French Calvinist Protestants),
during the French Wars of Religion. Modern estimates for the number
of dead vary widely from 5,000 to 30,000.
Also known as the “Storming of Bolton,” this was an episode in
the English Civil War when Royalist forces led by Prince Rupert of
the Rhine stormed and captured the Parliamentarian town of Bolton
on May 28, 1644. A staple in the Parliamentarian propaganda, it
resulted in the death of 1,600 defenders and innocent inhabitants.
The atrocities that happened on May 20, 1645 against the local
residents of Yangzhou, China by the Qing troops led by Prince Dodo
of the Qing Dynasty had led to the death of as many as 80,000 people.
After their recent success against the forces loyal to the Southern Ming
regime of the Hongguang Emperor, they plundered the city for ten days to
punish the residents for their resistance and as a warning to the
population of Jiangnan on the consequences of resisting invaders.
The September Massacres were a wave of mob violence which
overtook Paris in late summer 1792 during the French Revolution.
By the time it had subsided, half the prison population of Paris had
been executed: some 1,200 trapped prisoners including many women
and young boys. Sporadic violence, in particular against the
Roman Catholic Church, would continue throughout France for
nearly a decade to come.
MASSACRE OF ELPHINSTONE’S ARMY
Also known as the 1842 retreat from Kabul, the massacre which
happened during the First Anglo-Afghan War occurred when
Major General Sir William Elphinstone attempted to lead a military
and civilian column of Europeans and Indians from Kabul back to the
British garrison at Jalalabad more than 90 miles (140 km) away.
Afghan tribes launched numerous attacks against the column as it
made slow progress through the winter snows of the Hindu Kush.
Out of more than 16,000 people from the column commanded by
Elphinstone, only one European, an Assistant Surgeon named
William Brydon, and a few soldiers would eventually reach Jalalabad.
The retreat has been described as “the worst British military disaster
until the fall of Singapore exactly a century later.”
The massacre of the Bulgarians in Batak by 8,000 Ottoman troops on
April 30, 1876 at the beginning of the April Uprising was described as
“the most heinous crime to stain the history of the 19th century.”
Although at 15,000 dead, the total number of people killed was less than
some of the other massacres on this list, the brutality was unparalleled.
The majority of those killed were women and children who were raped,
tortured, and then beheaded.