The Untold Truth Of The World's Dirtiest Man

Nowadays the prospect of weeks on end without bathing seems unthinkable and un-smellable. But as the University of Virginia details, after the fall of the Roman Empire, the Roman nose went from regal to wrinkled after bathing fell out of fashion. Using limited technology and resources to make soap and dedicating water to dirt removal weren't exactly high priorities for people trying to rise from the rubble of a ruined empire. Later, Christians would frown on bathing, calling it an unnecessary earthly indulgence and making the phrase "cleanliness is close to godliness" historically ironic. Doctors also had backwards opinions on bathing, believing it "was harmful" and potentially "dangerous" until the advent of germ theory changed their minds.

But not everybody has a nose for modern views on cleanliness. One of those undoubtedly sturdy noses belongs to an Iranian villager named Amou Haji, a man who not only pooh-poohs bathing but smokes animal poo, per UPI. He even eats "the rotten meat of dead porcupines." You might also expect him to eat skunk butts, but that might be too on the nose even for him. So what underlies Haji's extremely unclean behavior?

The world's dirtiest man made a clean break from his village

UPI reports that in 2014, Amou Haji had told the Tehran Times that he hadn't bathed in about 60 years. That totally crushes the previous record set by Kailash Singh of India, who apparently went unwashed for 38 years. Haji didn't just eschew the cleaner things in life; he would become angry when people asked him to consume clean food and water. But why?

Haji explained that he experienced "emotional setbacks in his youth," but the details pertaining to what those struggles were and if he has access to psychological help if he wants it appear to be lacking. A video by Wonder World claims that Haji believes washing causes illness, eventually leading to a life of mostly homeless isolation. After leaving his family, he settled in the outskirts of town, where he slept in a hole in the ground or occasionally in a shack that locals built for him. Though his lifestyle is unusual, he doesn't appear to harm anyone. So at least his conscience is probably clean.