History’s Most Untameable Men

The debacherous days of their late teens and early 20s get left behind as wives, children and careers begin to dominate the picture.

But some men refuse to walk down that path. Instead, they continue to run wild, unrestricted, living a life us common folk could only dream about. These are history's most untameable men.


Blackbeard was about one thing. Being the most feared pirate in the entire world. In a time with countless marauders, he succeeded in his goal. His ship, The Queen Anne's Revenge, was considered the most dangerous pirate ship there was. But it only came to be his after he stole it from French merchants. After declaring the ship in his name, Blackbeard added 40 cannons and waged war on the Atlantic. During battle, he would burn fuses under his beard to make people think he was the Devil incarnate. And Blackbeard went out swinging. Hard. In his last battle, he was shot five times and stabbed 20 before finally succumbing.

Sir Edmund Hillary

Most of us could never climb the world's tallest mountain. Even if we somehow did, our journey would be with a team of experts whose job it was to ensure our survival. Sir Edmund Hillary said “F that noise.” He looked at Mount Everest and thought, “I got this.” So in 1953, with a single sidekick, Tenzing Norgay, Hillary attacked the highest point on Planet Earth. He and his Sherpa got all the way to the top, and then, unlike many before him, climbed back down the mountain and came out alive.

Napoleon Bonaparte

Napoleon Bonaparte had big dreams. And although all of our parents tell us we could one day grow up to be president, Napoleon listened to his, becoming emperor of France by the time he was 36. But that wasn't enough for Napoleon. No, he decided to attack literally every country in Europe, because why stop at running one when you can have them all? After a failed attempt at invading Russia (no one will ever tame Russia), Napoleon was exiled to an island in the Mediterranean. In less than 12 months, he escaped and landed back on the shores of France. An entire army was sent to kill him. Thirteen days later, he was again emperor of France. Boss.

Mike Tyson

In his prime, there was no man in the world more feared. Mike Tyson won 26 of his first 28 fights by KO or TKO, with 16 of those happening in the first freaking round. People could barely last three minutes with Tyson, let alone ever consider taming him. In his run to being the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world, Tyson would knock out Larry Holmes, who had never before been knocked out in 74 previous bouts, and Michael Spinks, who after being crushed by Tyson in 91 seconds, would never fight again.

Douglas MacArthur

General Douglas MacArthur was in charge of the Far East Division of the United States Army when World War II broke out. As Japanese forces swarmed the Pacific, MacArthur was forced to withdraw from the Philippines and take safe haven in Australia. He did so with one solemn promise. “I will return.” After two years of fighting, he liberated the Philippines. A short time later, he accepted Japan's complete surrender. Not even the fiercest military in the world could stop MacArthur from keeping his word.

King Leonidas 

If the largest army ever gathered marched towards your country, what would you do? Leonidas of Sparta took just 300 men and held off invaders for five days, dying on the battlefield, but giving his countrymen enough time to rally troops, while also inspiring them to victory. When he met the Persian army on the battlefield in Thermopylae, a million men staring down his 300, the Persian king Xerses gave him a chance to surrender, asking Leonidas to give up his arms. “Come and take them,” he said.

That is untameable. 

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