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jfos's avatar

In your opinion, what is the most impressive historical event?

Asked by jfos (7370points) July 12th, 2010

It can be from any time (in the past) or any place (that has been proven to exist).

Is it a certain battle? A protest? The publishing of a document? Also, it doesn’t necessarily have to be “impressive,” it can just be your favorite. Also, if you feel like it, give a little explanation for those who may not be familiar with it.

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44 Answers

marinelife's avatar

The writing of the Magna Carta.

rpm_pseud0name's avatar

The tearing down of the Berlin Wall.

aveffects's avatar

The formation of the earth and the moon

chyna's avatar

The writing/signing of the Declaration of Independence.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

The Battle of Thermopylae in 480 BCE. A moldy oldy, perhaps? Western culture derives from that of the Greeks and the Romans. Had King Xerxes and his forces conquered and held the region, the high cultures that gave us the foundation of our language, our law, and much of our knowledge might have been lost forever.

Aster's avatar

I was going to say when Lincoln freed the slaves but then I remembered marriage.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

Neil Armstrong’s footprints on the lunar surface.

jfos's avatar

@Aster I don’t mean to be picky, but Lincoln did not “free the slaves.”

bob_'s avatar

The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Aster's avatar

@jfos Damn; really? Who did it then? Napoleon?

jfos's avatar

@Aster
Representatives James Mitchell Ashley and James F Wilson, and Senator John B. Henderson are credited for the original Thirteenth Amendment, which ” officially abolished and continues to prohibit slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime.”

Thirteenth Amendment

Aster's avatar

@jfos Aw, that’s too bad for Lincoln. He can’t get no respect just like Dangerfield.

dynamicduo's avatar

The Industrial Revolution. Not really much of a concrete event, but in my mind certainly the most impressive and important time in human history.

Seek's avatar

The invention of the Gutenberg Printing Press was hands down the most important invention of Human History.

My favorite historical event to study, however, was the Black Death, the Blue Sickness, the Bubonic Plague of the 1340s. The way man reacts to the perceived end of the world is utterly fascinating.

ragingloli's avatar

The noble soldiers of the magnificent Union of Socialist Soviet Republics raising their glorious flag atop the Reichstag.

BoBo1946's avatar

Declaration of Independence! For Americans, nothing even close! in my humble opinion!

john65pennington's avatar

When a caveman first rolled down a wheel, after carving it out of stone.

The invention of the wheel.

CMaz's avatar

My birth.

frienemies0113's avatar

The chaos U.S.S. Indianapolis. caused. Only several hundred marines survived from the cannibals, shipmate’s insanity, starvation, thirst and sharks during that week out in the abandoned ocean. USA’s greatest submarine had been lost in the middle of war. The captain ended comitting suicide after he went to trial for the manslaughter of 300 marines. In my thought it caused more pain and suffering than Pearl Harbor. I was amazed any marines had survived at all.

Mtl_zack's avatar

@IchtheosaurusRex Actually the Persians won the battle of Thermopylae. The Spartans (as well as a few hundred soldiers from other cities) died with honour instead of facing the shame of surrender.

I think that the revolt against Alexander the Great by his soldiers while he was in India changed the world. Alexander wanted to see the end of the world, which at the time, was called Ocean. It is believed by modern scholars that Ocean was actually the Ganges River, which separated the Indians from the Chinese. If Alexander would’ve gone to the end of the world, and seen the Chinese, and tried to conquer them, the Chinese definitely would have won, and everything would be different. Too bad his soldiers were tired and wanted to go home.

majorrich's avatar

I believe landing on the moon was the most significant achievement of man to date. I remember watching it on Television as a child.

mandybookworm's avatar

The invention of the Printing Press
Books were available to more people for less money. and it was the beginning of faster communication. It was a major point in The History of Music, and information could be shown to more people through newspapers.

Nullo's avatar

The Battle of Kursk can out-epic entire wars, just in terms of men and matériel that were involved.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

The writing and signing of the Magna Carta in 1215. It established the basis for democracy. My of its contents have been honoured in the laws and practices of many democracies.

George W. Bush abolished or greatly weakened protections derived from the Magna Carta in order to impose such repressive policies as he needed to get away with policies and actions that democracies has honoured for over 800 years. Of course he had to assistance of his co-conspirators Dick Cheney and Carl Rove.

Sadly most Americans ignore or fail to respond to these permanent violations of their fundamental human rights. The leaders of the American Revolution would never have stood still for such violations.

Maximillian's avatar

Whether or not you believe in God, I believe the birth and death of Jesus of Nazerath was the most significant. His life has influence most of the world, lead to the life styles of billions of people, and has influenced a lot of society again even if you don’t believe in God, I think this is pretty big.

Nullo's avatar

@Maximillian Impressive, not significant, is the thing. Fireworks are impressive, and aren’t terribly significant.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I imagine the big bang would be an impressive firework display :)

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

@Maximillian The life and death of Jesus is not as influential in the lives of the majority of humans on Earth as some Christians may think, unless you consider all the brutality and violence committed by his followers on Jews, Muslims and people of other faiths during the Crusades, the Inquisition, the Holocaust and centuries of discrimination, and forced conversions at sword point. The majority of the world’s population does not believe in or worship Jesus and where they have not been victims of the events mentioned above, their lives have been untouched by his life and death. The development of the wheel benefited more lives. The printing press did so as well.
By all means believe in whatever faith you want. Just don’t assume the whole world sees things are you do.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

@Mtl_zack , yes, the Persians vanquished the Spartans at Thermopylae, but the delay, the casualties inflicted, and the change of strategy it caused ultimately lost them the war.

BoBo1946's avatar

The birth of Jesus!

ragingloli's avatar

When Prometheus stole fire from the gods and gave it to humans.

jfos's avatar

@ragingloli What about the establishment of the Vulcan Science Directorate?

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

@ragingloli , no, that was Rae Dawn Chong giving it to Everett McGill. Don’t you ever go to the movies?

Seek's avatar

@IchtheosaurusRex Lurve for the Quest for Fire reference. ^_^

“Hotra!”

Maximillian's avatar

Of course. I wasn’t Trying to force Christianity on anyone. I was simply implying that his life was in fact very influential.

Nullo's avatar

@Maximillian You weren’t, don’t worry.
You’re going to offend someone, somewhere, no matter what you say or don’t say, so you’re better off not worrying about it.

Maximillian's avatar

Good point. :D

mattbrowne's avatar

The foundation of the ancient Greek cities and towns allowing philosophy and science to prosper. If you’re looking for a single event I’d name the construction of the Great Library of Alexandria in the late 3rd century BCE.

shpadoinkle_sue's avatar

I gotta say, for me, it’s the initiation of the New Deal programs in the 1930’s. I just think that it was one of those times where the whole nation came together and made progress in a depressed time.

Seek's avatar

@mattbrowne

Wasn’t the Library at Alexandria burnt, and all of its contents lost?

mattbrowne's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr – It was. Most likely in 642 CE. But many articles and books were manually copied and stored elsewhere as well. A good example is the work of Aristarchus of Samos. Copies of the Greek original were translated to Arabic during the Golden Islamic Age and later found their way to Spain. Copernicus sought confirmation for his growing doubts about the heliocentric model through close reading of Greek and Latin authors such as Pythagoras and Aristarchos of Samos.

See http://www.archive.org/stream/aristarchusofsam00heatuoft#page/n5/mode/2up

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