Encyclopedia of Confused Historical Figures

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Can you identify the shared name of the people whose biographies the writers of this highly-inaccurate encyclopedia are mistakenly conflating?

Featured May 9, 2014

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IndexNameDescription
FB (1561 - 1992)In his early years, he was a noted English philosopher, essayist, and practitioner of the scientific method, but he later shifted his focus to art, producing dark, tortured imagery that led Margaret Thatcher to refer to him as 'that man who paints those dreadful pictures.'
RB (1821 - 1984)He lived a life of adventure, in his early years becoming one of the first Westerners to visit Mecca (which he did in disguise) and searching for the source of the Nile among the Great Lakes of East Africa. His later life was a bit more settled, if hardly less tumultuous, as he got into acting, appearing in 'The Spy Who Came in from the Cold' and 'Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?' (with his then-wife Elizabeth Taylor).
GC (1739 - Present)An American statesman who served as vice president under both Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, his commitment to representative government was later highlighted in his founding of the funk collective Parliament-Funkadelic and his philosophy 'One Nation Under a Groove.'
MC (1890 - Present)One of the most important Irish revolutionary leaders and signatory to the treaty that created the Irish Free State, he later became involved in the American space program, orbiting the moon while Armstrong and Aldrin made the first moon landing.
WC (1690 - Present)Though his tenure as colonial governor of New York marked him as an opponent of freedom of press for his actions in the John Peter Zenger trial, his reputation later mellowed as he began a career in comedy and starred in television programming such as 'I Spy' and 'Fat Albert'.
AH (1555 - Present)The wife of William Shakespeare, she supported herself after his death as an actress, appearing in films such as 'The Devil Wears Prada' and 'Les Misérables '.
JJ (1887 - Present)Often called a 'triple threat' for his athletic, music management, and singing abilities, he kept busy after his scandal-tainted years with the Chicago White Sox by managing his sons' five-piece musical group and putting out his own hits, including 'Is She Really Going Out With Him?' and 'Steppin' Out'.
JJ (1847 - Present)A notorious Missourian outlaw, bank robber, and gang leader, he tried to 'go straight' into motorcycle customization, but he couldn't escape further notoriety and public opprobrium when it was revealed that he cheated on Sandra Bullock.
JJ (1878 - Present)He was the first African-American world heavyweight champion boxer, who defeated James Jeffries in what was called the 'Fight of the Century', but after retirement from the sport he took his career in a markedly different direction as a mellow surf-influenced acoustic rocker, releasing singles like 'Upside Down' and 'I Got You'.
JPJ (1747 - Present)Though known for his spirited naval battles against the British navy in the service of the American Revolution, after cessation of hostilities he became one of the founding members of the British rock band Led Zeppelin.
FM (1930 - Present)He was an Irish-American author known for his memoir 'Angela's Ashes', which dealt with his miserable childhood. Further indignity was to come when he underwent perhaps the most expensive divorce in California history and was forced by Major League Baseball to sell the LA Dodgers.
GM (1939 - Present)A doubly-talented artist, he managed 2 careers simultaneously - one in pop music both as a member of Wham! and as a solo artist, and the other as a sportscaster on American television with his eponymous 'Sports Machine'.
MP (1794 - Present)In what can only be referred to as a bit of stunt casting, the American naval commodore who had forcibly opened Japan to the West was named as one of the principals on the TV sitcom 'Friends'.
KR (1938 - Present)The bearded American country singer was perhaps best known for his hit 'The Gambler', so it's perhaps not surprising he adopted this as his nickname upon breaking into Major League Baseball as a pitcher. He spent 20 years in the Big Leagues with 6 teams, the majority of this in his several stints with the Texas Rangers.
AS (1835 - 1965)A fixture in Illinois politics for many years, he served as vice president in Grover Cleveland's second term, but was unsuccessful as the 1900 running mate of William Jennings Bryan. He then tried his luck at the top of the presidential ticket on two occasions, but lost to Dwight Eisenhower both times.
MW (1980 - Present)Juggling a full career that seems like it would be a lot for even two people to handle, this singer-actress has done it all: member of Destiny's Child, Broadway actress, television actress on 'Dawson's Creek', and movie actress in films like 'Blue Valentine'.
BW (1942 - Present)After first finding fame as the chief songwriter for the Beach Boys, he was able to realize his childhood dream of becoming a baseball player, serving as a relief pitcher for the San Francisco Giants, always easy to pick out with his full, dark beard.
TW (1900 - Present)A prolific Southern author, he had early success with 'Look Homeward, Angel' and 'You Can't Go Home Again'. His literary style then shifted as he embraced New Journalism - perhaps his best known novel of this later period is 'The Bonfire of the Vanities'.

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Created Nov 7, 2013Report
Tags:biography, mixed, name, same