Mad, Bad And Totally Loony: History’s Most Eccentric People

Published April 5, 2015
Updated November 7, 2023

Whether they were weird, crazy or just a little bit bizarre, history's most eccentric people make for hilariously unbelievable stories.

The Most Eccentric People in History

Eccentricity is a loosely-defined term. Sure, it describes odd behavior, but who’s to say what’s normal and what’s not? We all have our own quirks and it’s those quirks that make us interesting. Luckily for us, history is full of eccentric people who’ve always kept us guessing.

History’s Most Eccentric People: John “Mad Jack” Mytton

John Mytton inherited a huge sum of money and a giant estate at a young age, allowing him to indulge all of his eccentric tendencies.

For starters, he was a massive drunk who enjoyed between six to eight bottles of port each day. He drank so much that upon his death, one of Mytton’s friends claimed that he had spent the last 12 years of his life inebriated.

Jack Mytton

Source: The Study

Jack came from a long line of aristocrats who were involved in politics. Wanting to follow in the family tradition, Mytton secured a seat as a Tory MP by offering voters £10 notes. Once he was elected, Mytton attended one 30-minute meeting in the House of Commons before getting bored, leaving and never returning again.

This occurred after he spent £10,000 (over $1,000,000 today) to get elected in the first place.

History's Most Eccentric People

The gag ended when the bear bit off a chunk of Mytton’s leg. Source: Rogues Gallery

Two bizarre stories involving Mad Jack deserve a mention here. One involved Mytton setting his nightshirt on fire because he wanted to cure his hiccups.

The other involved him showing up at his own dinner party dressed in full hunting gear and riding a bear called Nell. Mytton was actually an avid hunter, though he preferred hunting completely naked—even during winter.

Kiri Picone
Kiri Picone holds a B.A. in English and creative writing from Pepperdine University and has been writing for various digital publishers for more than 10 years.
John Kuroski
John Kuroski is the editorial director of All That's Interesting. He graduated from New York University with a degree in history, earning a place in the Phi Alpha Theta honor society for history students. An editor at All That's Interesting since 2015, his areas of interest include modern history and true crime.
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Picone, Kiri. "Mad, Bad And Totally Loony: History’s Most Eccentric People.", April 5, 2015, Accessed June 21, 2024.