The World's Longest Poop Story Is a Crock of, Well ...

By: Alia Hoyt  | 

Lloyd's coprolite
One contender for "World's Biggest Poop" is this piece of stool, called the Lloyd's coprolite, that was found under the site of the future Lloyd's Bank in York. It is now at the Jorvik Viking Centre. It looks big, but it's nowhere near 26 feet! Linda Spashett/Wikipedia/CC BY 2.5

Google "world's longest poop" and the interweb will give you an answer of 26 feet (8 meters). If it seems unbelievable, it's because this "record" is a total crock of ... well, crap.

That ridiculous and sometimes misreported answer was the result of an artistic installation done in Michigan, as it turns out. A Brooklyn, New York-based artist named Michelle Hines created the installation, which was actually made up of a series of hoaxes.

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In fact, the supposed 26-foot long poop was "laid out" on a bowling alley lane, complete with measuring devices and earnest photographs in 1995. The artist explained the fake phenomenon by noting that she had "adopted a super fiber-rich diet which allowed me to successfully produce a single extruded excrement measuring the exact length of my colon: 26 feet."

Problem is, not even the Hulk could sport a colon that long. In fact, the average human colon is only 5 feet (150 centimeters) long, from top to bottom.

Don't be too sad about this dump-ster fire of a revelation, however, because the true story of one contender for the world's longest poop record is far cooler. Way back in 1972 a London bank called Lloyd's was in the process of being built when a fossilized turd (known in scientific circles as a "coprolite") was discovered. Upon further investigation, it was determined that the deuce in question was deposited by a Viking man sometime during the ninth century. Although this might seem like something of a letdown, the exceedingly rare find was actually a pretty big deal. In fact, paleoscatologist Andrew Jones even said that it's as "precious as the crown jewels," according to the Guardian.

Compared with the artist's fantastical farce, the Viking poo of "only" 7.8 inches (20 centimeters) long) and 2 inches (5 centimeters) wide is not so impressive. (Typical stool is 4-8 inches, or 10-20 centimeters in length and 0.4-0.8 inches or 1-2 centimeters in diameter.) However, it took a strict "meat and potatoes" diet to achieve a dookie that size. It was also riddled with parasitic eggs, no doubt making for a painful poop of pretty terrible proportions. This preserved specimen can be seen at the Jorvik Viking Centre in York, England.

Of course, no one (we hope) is going around knocking on public restroom doors and taking measurements to knock this fossilized turd off its pedestal. Stunningly, Guinness World Records has yet to firmly establish its own largest poop record-holder, reported Snopes. So, if you want to one-up a Viking, be our guest.

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