As the saying goes, you can’t live with them and you can’t live without them! One thing’s for sure, the pages of history would be far duller if these brave, and sometimes naughty, boys hadn’t been around to make life a whole lot more interesting! Here is a rundown of our top five ‘badass geezers’…
1. William Wallace
If you don’t know anything about William Wallace, most of you will recall a certain Hollywood blockbuster starring hunk de jour, Mel Gibson. As an Englishwoman this is quite a controversial statement to make, but he was certainly a patriot…let’s be honest, we just paraded up to Scotland and attempted to rule what wasn’t ours. Wallace fought against Edward I for the freedom he and his fellow Scotsman desired. Bravely, he neither swore allegiance to Edward nor was involved in the truce between Robert Bruce, John Comyn and the English. He died a traitor’s death in 1305, and in death became an eternal national hero of Scotland. You go Mel…ahem…Wallace!
2. Lord Byron
Well my Lord Byron, scandal just follows you around doesn’t it…or rather you seek it out with your crotch! You were described as “mad, bad and dangerous to know” by a married lover, Lady Caroline Lamb, and you even had a child with your half-sister, Augusta. In marrying Annabella Milbanke, you made a bit of a mistake…but that certainly didn’t stop you! After you separated from the mother of your only legitimate child you embarked on more sordid affairs. You even wrote a letter telling your mates the names of your conquests in Italy and even described the poor ladies further: “some of them are Countesses – some of them are cobblers wives – some noble – some middling – some low – & all whores”. Now, that’s hardly gentlemanly is it!
You may remember a certain Gerard Butler taking on the role of Leonidas in the visually stunning, 300. Why, I hear you ask, was Leonidas a badass? Well, he basically took a small force of 300 men to greet the Persian army, ruled by Xerxes I. Although Leonidas was joined by circa 14,000 more Greeks, it has been said that Xerxes army may have been as large as 200,000 – those are odds many would be in fear to contend with! However, remembering the words of the Oracle who told him he would have to die in order to defeat the Persians, Leonidas bravely soldiered on. Now that took some guts!
Oh Willoughby! Although a fictional character, dearest Willoughby deserves a mention for being a real heartbreaker! Poor Marianne Dashwood never stood a chance with his dark (complete guess) looks and £700 a year. Although he maintained that he loved Marianne, and would have married her…he put his own fears above his supposed love and married Miss Grey and all her riches. Unforgivably, he also impregnated Colonel Brandon’s ward, Eliza, and left her utterly scandalised! Willoughby, you’re naught but a cad! We poor girls would have never stood a chance!
5. Thomas Culpepper
Culpepper, Culpepper. His master was none other than King Henry VIII, so when he fell in love with Henry’s young wife, Katherine Howard, that really took some nerve!
Before Katherine relented, and owing to intense sexual frustration, Culpepper raped a park-keepers wife and ran a sword through her husband – naughty! Eventually, Lady Jane Boleyn helped Culpepper into the Queens bed, but their secret affair was rumbled. Sentenced to a traitor’s death alongside Francis Dereham, the King decided to commute Culpepper’s sentence to beheading. Lucky for Culpepper but not so lucky for Katherine’s childhood love Dereham who was hung, drawn and quartered!
Source: Canal Plus