15 Times The World Was Almost Completely Destroyed

These 15 times the world almost ended will shock you to the core, even though they, thankfully, left the Earth's core intact. Armageddon was almost a real-life event both in the olden days of yore and in the 21st century. These near apocalypses – whether due to mechanical failures, miscommunications, natural disasters, or brushes with cosmic and nuclear events – almost ruined everyone's day at some point in the history of the Earth.

When the Mayan calendar supposedly indicated that the apocalypse was headed for us in 2012, they weren't that far off. As it turns out, a solar superstorm in the summer of 2012 narrowly missed blasting planet Earth. That's just one of the many times humanity and all of Earth's creatures have escaped extinction by the metaphorical skin of their teeth.

In fact, our planet was familiar with "the end is near" concerns or real apocalypses well before Y2K hysteria. The Black Plague possibly killed as many as 200 million human beings, and you don't even want to hear the numbers when it comes to the Spanish Flu pandemic of the early 1900s. From comets, to volcanoes, to accidentally announcing nuclear war and setting off rockets, these are the times that the End of Days was almost just around the corner.