Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

16th century

Gilles Garnier, the Werewolf of Dole

 Gilles Garnier, the Werewolf of Dole

Sixteenth-century France had a serious case of werewolf panic. Did Garnier really transform into lupine form and attack and eat humans? Or were the gruesome deaths of several children merely the work of wild animals? See more »

Charles IX of France

 Charles IX of France

Much like many of the other mad royals that have been discussed on the podcast through the years, Charles IX of France was prone to fits of rage so intense that people at court feared for their lives. See more »

Artemisia Gentileschi

 Artemisia Gentileschi

She's often called the greatest female painter of the Baroque period, though there were only a few to compare her to. Her work is extraordinary, and reflects the influences of her father Orazio Gentileschi and Caravaggio. See more »

Henry Hudson, Part 2

 Henry Hudson, Part 2

This episode picks up in the middle of Hudson's thrid voyage, as the Half Moon is making its way down North America's east coast. As Hudson doggedly pursues the idea of a northern sea route from Europe to Asia, he makes a number of poor decisions. See more »

Henry Hudson, Part 1

 Henry Hudson, Part 1

Henry Hudson's voyages have all the makings of a juicy episode: maritime exploration, horrible treatment of indigenous peoples, treacherous waters, treacherous shipmen, a mercenary switch in loyalties to countries, mutiny -- even a mermaid sighting. See more »

Suleiman the Magnificent and the Siege of Vienna

 Suleiman the Magnificent and the Siege of Vienna

The Ottoman Empire’s Suleiman the Magnificent was a head of state, a poet, a reformer of the military and a goldsmith. His reign had a significant impact on the law, literature and art of the Ottoman Empire. See more »

King Eric XIV of Sweden

 King Eric XIV of Sweden

A handsome playboy who once courted Queen Elizabeth I, Eric started his time as king with focus and ambition. But his paranoia and led him to alienate the aristocracy, fall into violent rages and stab a captive noble to death. See more »

 Emperor Rudolf II of Austria

He was an art patron. He loved science. He spoke many languages. He was also known for a dark temper and instability, and his poor decisions as a ruler are credited with leading to the Thirty years War. See more »

 India's Karni Mata Rat Temple

Though it's most famous for its rats, the story of this temple starts with Hindu goddess Durga and Karni Mata, a 15th-century mystic believed to be her incarnation. The reason for the rats in Karni Mata's temple is a combination of legend and devotion. See more »

Why was Juana called "la Loca"? Part 2

 Why was Juana called "la Loca"? Part 2

In this second part of our series, Juana has become her mother’s unlikely heir. Just a few years after inheriting Castile, she is declared insane and imprisoned. But was she actually mad? And why didn’t her son free her when he came to power? See more »