10 of The Biggest Mistakes Ever Made IN History

Mistakes are an important part of human or every living being’s life. Even some big mistakes do not matter, but some small mistakes prove to be so big that the entire future changes. Some of our small mistakes or wrong decisions sometimes take away immense wealth, luck etc. Then we spend our whole life regretting these small mistakes. In today’s article, we will take a look at the biggest mistakes ever made so far in history.

Biggest Mistakes Ever Made

Here are some of the known biggest mistakes ever made so far in history:

1. Great Chinese Famine

Biggest Mistakes Ever Made
People's commune canteen

The “Great Chinese Famine” was a tragic time in China in the late 1950s and early 1960s when millions of people suffered and died due to not having enough food.

This happened because the government led by Chairman Mao Zedong made some big mistakes. One of the mistakes was a campaign to kill thousands of sparrows, thinking they damaged crops.

However, sparrows also eat insects that damage crops. Therefore, when the sparrows were gone, insects like locusts became a major problem, causing even more damage to crops.

Another mistake was the “Great Leap Forward” policy, which focused farmers on making steel rather than growing food. This resulted in crop failure and food shortage.

The combination of these mistakes led to a severe food crisis, making the “Great Chinese Famine” one of the deadliest man-made disasters in history, causing enormous suffering and loss of life. That’s why we’ve ranked it among the biggest mistakes ever made in history.

2. Hitler’s life spared

Hitler (far right, seated) with his army comrades
Hitler (far right, seated) with his army comrades

Source: CC BY-SA 3.0

Adolf Hitler, a young German soldier, narrowly escaped death during World War I in 1916. He was serving on the Western Front when he and his unit came under heavy fire.

A British soldier named Henry Tandy had the chance to shoot Hitler, but he did not. This act of mercy allowed Hitler to survive and later rise to power as the dictator of Nazi Germany, causing enormous suffering and leading to World War II.

Tande’s decision unknowingly saved Hitler’s life, and the moment is often seen as a turn of fate with significant historical consequences. This small kindness has been ranked among the biggest mistakes ever made of all time in history.

3. Offer of buying Google Rejected

Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 2003
Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 2003

Source: CC BY 2.0 DEED

Google is one of the largest and most valuable technology companies in the world, best known for its search engine, YouTube, and various other digital services.

In 1998, the company was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin.. Although there have been rumours and speculation over the years about possible offers to buy Google, the company has never been sold or any such offer has been officially acknowledged or rejected.

One such story or speculation about the biggest mistake ever made of rejecting the buyout of Google offer is as follows:

In 1999, Larry Page and Sergey Bin, founders of Google, offered George Bell, CEO of Excite company to buy Google for $1 million but George rejected the offer.

Larry and Sergey even came down to $750,000,000 but Bell still refused to accept the offer. However, Google’s current value is now over $1500 billion.

4. Japanese Airlines plane crash

Biggest Mistakes Ever Made
JA8119, the Boeing 747 involved in the accident, seen at Haneda Airport in 1984

Source: CC BY-SA 3.0

The Japanese Airlines plane crash of 1985 is one of the biggest mistakes ever made in aviation history. Flight 123, a Boeing 747, suffered a catastrophic failure when an improperly repaired tail fin gave way mid-flight.

The tragic incident, caused by an earlier repair error, resulted in the loss of 524 lives, making it the deadliest single-aircraft accident. After the incident, the President of Japan Airlines resigned and the maintenance manager committed suicide.

This accident is a reminder of the critical importance of careful maintenance and safety procedures in aviation. Which subsequently led to significant changes in the industry’s safety protocols and regulations.

5. Losing of Mars Climate Orbiter

Artist's conception of the Mars Climate Orbiter
Artist's conception of the Mars Climate Orbiter

One of the biggest mistakes ever made in space exploration was the loss of the Mars Climate Orbiter in 1999. The spacecraft, a joint project of NASA and Lockheed Martin, failed to reach Mars due to a navigation error.

Engineers used different units of measurement (metric and imperial), which led to miscalculations in its trajectory. As a result, the orbiter disintegrated in the Martian atmosphere.

This costly accident highlights the need for accurate communications and unit stability, underscoring the importance of careful planning and cooperation in space missions.

Mars Climate Orbiter had an estimated cost of approximately $125 million and was part of NASA’s Mars Surveyor program, designed to study the climate of Mars.

6. Facebook rejected Brian Acton and Jan Koum for a job

Jan Koum and Brian Acton
Jan Koum and Brian Acton


In 2009, Facebook rejected Brian Acton and Jan Koum for jobs at the company. Acton and Koum later created WhatsApp, one of the most popular messaging apps in the world.

This decision is now widely considered one of the biggest mistakes ever made by Facebook, as WhatsApp was eventually acquired by the social media giant in 2014 for $19 billion.

If Facebook had hired him earlier, he would have been part of a team that could have changed the history of messaging and social media.

7. The Trojan Horse

Biggest Mistakes Ever Made
The Procession of the Trojan Horse in Troy by Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo

The Trojan Horse is one of the biggest mistakes ever made in ancient warfare.

According to Greek mythology, during the Trojan War in the 12th century BC, the walls of the city of Troy were so high and strong that the Greek army could not pass through. So, they planned a trick, they pretended to end the war

The Greeks gifted a giant wooden horse to the city of Troy as a peace offering. However, it hid Greek soldiers inside.

The Trojans, considering it a gift, brought it within their city walls, inadvertently allowing the Greeks to infiltrate and conquer Troy.

This cunning deception is a classic example of strategic deception making it one of the most famous and influential military strategies in history.

8. Terra buys Lycos

Biggest Mistakes Ever Made
Lycos Web Portal

Source: CC BY-SA 3.0

In 2000, Terra, a Spanish Internet company, made one of the biggest mistakes ever made by purchasing Lycos, a web portal and search engine.

This billion-dollar acquisition proved to be a disastrous investment. Terra acquired Lycos in 2000 in a deal worth approximately $12.5 billion. This purchase was one of the major transactions during the dot-com boom.

The dot-com bubble burst shortly after the acquisition, causing the value of Lycos to decline, resulting in substantial financial losses for Terra.

Terra later sold Lycos to South Korean web portal Doum Communications in 2004. The sale price was well below the original acquisition cost. Terra sold Lycos for approximately $95 million, taking a significant loss on their initial investment in the company.

This is a prime example of a costly corporate mistake during the dot-com era.

9. France ordered trains that were too wide

TGV France
TGV France

Source: CC BY-SA 4.0

In 2014, France ordered new trains at a cost of approximately 15 billion euros.

France made one of the biggest mistakes ever made in transportation because the ordered trains were too wide for their regional platforms.

The mistake occurred due to a failure in communication between various departments responsible for railway infrastructure. The wider trains could not fit on some tracks, causing delays and costly changes to platforms.

This mistake led to an additional expenditure of approximately 50 million euros to adjust the station platforms and tracks to accommodate the wider trains.

10. The Beatles rejected by Decca

Biggest Mistakes Ever Made
The Beatles members at New York City in 1964

In one of the biggest mistakes ever made in the music industry, the Beatles were rejected by the Decca record label in 1962.

Decca A&R executive, Dick Rowe, famously rejected them, saying “Guitar groups are on their way.”

However, shortly afterwards, the Beatles signed with EMI’s Parlophone and became one of the most iconic and influential bands in music history.

Decca’s decision is often cited as a big mistake in the history of popular music.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

One Comment