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The war didn't happen

Brits Think Churchill Didn't Exist

Britons are losing a grip on fact and fiction - with nearly one in four believing Winston Churchill and Florence Nightingale are myths and more than half thinking Sherlock Holmes actually existed.

In a new survey, 47% of people thought that Richard the Lionheart, the 12th-century English king, was a myth.

They were also under the impression that Charles Dickens, one of the most famous writers in English literature, was a fictional character himself.

Britons thought fictional characters like Sherlock Holmes and pilot Biggles were real, according to the survey of 3,000 people commissioned to celebrate UKTV Gold's forthcoming Robin Hood season.

Over half of those questioned (58%) believe that the detective created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle for his novels of the late 1880s actually lived in Baker Street, with sidekick Watson.

:: Historical figures and the percentage of Britons who believe they are myths:1. Richard the Lionheart (47%)2. Winston Churchill (23%)3. Florence Nightingale (23%)4. Bernard Montgomery (6%)5. Boudica (5%)6. Sir Walter Raleigh (4%)7. Duke of Wellington (4%)8. Cleopatra (4%)9. Gandhi (3%)10. Charles Dickens (3%)

:: Fictional figures and the percentage of Britons who believe they are real:Sherlock Holmes (58%)Biggles (33%)

Re: The war didn't happen

I blame information overload

Re: The war didn't happen

I think these kind of surveys are a bit of a myth. Why the hell would UK Gold be interested in any results that weren't controversial and therefore didn't create cheap publicity?

Re: The war didn't happen

Mind you, UK Gold said that Lady Godiva and King Arthur didn't exist ... when they did.
The dumb laughing at the stupid!

Re: The war didn't happen

King Arthur was fiction.

Re: The war didn't happen
Re: The war didn't happen

Biggles ?!

Re: The war didn't happen

King Arthur most definitely was not fiction. He was a historical figure sure enough, it's just we don't know much about him apart from his name.

Non-Welsh-speaking historians (i.e. dumbo English professors) couldn't find him on the Welsh-language lists of kings because he was always referred to by the Welsh for "High King". Hence, they thought he was merely a legend or perhaps at best some sort of outstanding warrior. This reflects badly on historians, of course.

Similarly, the fact you've heard about a dinosaur called brontosaurus doesn't actually mean that it ever existed ... because it didn't. But that's another story.

Re: The war didn't happen

We must agree to disagree on this one.

Re: The war didn't happen

Surely this is a bit like the myth of santa claus. Based I think on a generous man who was apparently a bishop in what is now Turkey. The red and white santa image is apparently from an old coke commercial in the US. No idea where the lapland idea emerged. Not many reindeer in turkey.

Re: The war didn't happen

The Arthurian romances of the Middle Ages, Round Table etc, is all poppycock.

The real King Arthur (5th century, I seem to remember) died in battle near a place in France called Avallon, but his body was never found. Not uncommon in such slaughter - his army was annihilated. Anyway, after his death, there seems to have been an upsurge in the popularity of his name - Arthur.
I can't for the life of me remember his title - it's some Celtic thing meaning high king anyway and sounds like thymus (!!) - and can't be bothered to look it up.