Nikola Tesla Once Set Fire to a Bunch of Butterflies


This article now comes in video form and features new, additional facts touching on Nikola Tesla’s obsession with pigeons and that time he paid off a large debt with a death ray. As usual, the original article the video is based on can be found below. 

Nikola Tesla was a remarkable man who did more for science than the bottle of wine Einstein’s parents drank on the night he was conceived. Lost amongst the reams of data talking about his many contributions to science is a fascinating tidbit about the time he set fire to butterflies, for science.

While Tesla dabbled in many area of science during his career, it is his work with electricity for which he is most famous and despite his many useful contributions to the world of energy, it’s the eponymous Tesla Coil that has become synonymous his work. If you’re not familiar with what exactly a Tesla Coil is, they can be used to make actual bolts of lightning, why? Because how rad is that shit?

Actual picture of Nikola Tesla reading via the light of his LIGHTNING MACHINE!
Actual picture of Tesla calmly reading a book near his giant lightning machine.

Naturally as the device’s inventor, Nikola Tesla of course had a huge Tesla Coil that could discharge lightning bolts bigger than Zeus’ erection. During one experiment dicking around with the oversized machine at Tesla’s lab in Colorado Springs, the scientist created an artificial bolt of lightning that was over 135 feet long. The resulting sound produced by the the lightning tearing apart the atmosphere itself was heard well over 15 miles away and it was so powerful it literally caused the air itself to become electrified.

Eye witnesses from the time reported seeing a number of curious phenomenon including water taps that spat out sparks, floors that crackled when stepped on and Afros randomly appearing on white people. Perhaps the most amazing thing that happened that day was what the discharge did to the butterflies near Tesla’s lab.

Again, according to eye witnesses who likely experienced arguably the most metal fucking thing ever, Butterflies near the lab became electrified, which caused them to “helpless swirl in circles” which alone would be pretty funny. In addition to this though the electricity in the air, along with confusing the butterflies, also caused them to SPONTANEOUSLY CATCH ON FUCKING FIRE which is, well, still pretty funny to be honest.

Of course, this is just a silly footnote in the life story of one of the greatest scientific minds in history, but you have to admit, flaming butterflies is a pretty fucking amazing footnote.