Most of us like to think that we're not easily fooled, but, every now and then, a story comes along so fantastical that we can't help but get caught up.
Some hoaxes are just too great, too audacious, not to be believed. Many of history's biggest stunts were completely taken up by a willing public, ready to believe in the fantastic, the scandalous and the downright astonishing. Indeed, even after being revealed as hogwash at the time, many of them are still hanging around, having since passed into public consciousness as sort-of-half-truths that probably happened in the dim, distant past.
Of course, there is a chance that some of this uncertainty is not entirely by accident. A lot of the evidence that people use to prove the existence of supernatural phenomena - ghosts, fairies, aliens - actually began as hoaxes that have been picked over and retold so often, that they have gone through the domain of "stunt" and passed straight into the realms of legend - or worse - fact. So, with all that misinformation out there, it's time to get our facts straight as we embark on a journey through the history of the world's biggest hoaxes.