Inventions by Mistake: 5 that Changed History

Inventions by Mistake: 5 that Changed History

There is a thing with inventions – they either fail without a whimper, or they create history. The most astounding of them, that the human race has witnessed, include telephones, safety-pins, chocolate and gravity (oh no..that was a discovery) 😛

Let’s take a look at some that ‘happened’ totally by mistake:





Believe me you, it is a lot more fascinating to read how the drug was invented rather than to read about its components.  He discovered that the mold, which had apparently contaminated the experiment, had been possessing the wonder drug, Penicillin. The bacterium Staphylococcus aureus could have been killed by penicillin, is what he found out. If Alexander Fleming wouldn’t have discovered it by mistake, we would have been a lot sicker. His discovery by chance has kept the race going.

Post-It Notes

All that Spenser Silver was trying to do was develop a super-strong adhesive at the time he worked with 3M. Guess what? He ended up making the Post-it notes while trying how his “glues” are working on the paper. Eureka!


That “Goodyear” accidentally left rubber and sulpher on the flames. I guess, he was trying to check their “compatibility” quotient, but what we got instead was a brilliant output that we know as plastic.


Hygiene will get you nowhere; the lack of it might. It would have been a gross scene to witness saccharin being discovered by Constantin Fahlberg, but we will save you the horror. It will suffice to know that Fahlberg put a little thought and more of wonder to discovering this unusually sweet substance.


How often do you come across such an instance when you want to go to Florence but end up in India? One such case happened when William Perkin, who was to create an artificial version of Quinine. What he discovered instead was a beautiful variant of purple that the world acknowledges as mauve.

Some of the greatest Eureka moments were lost in the spur of time. They say that some of the most interesting things happen when you are completely unaware. While it might not be true for love but as far as inventions are concerned, we now know that it was nothing but carelessness confused for creativity!

Also Read: Top 5 Reasons to Believe El Dorado Exists

Inhabiting the Reminisces of Wodehouse

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