The number of twins born in the United States has risen every year in the past decade. According to the CDC National Vital Statistics Report, there were 50,375 pairs of twins born in 1996. By 2002, that number had reached 125,134. Women who become pregnant commonly have a 1 in 80 chance of giving birth to a pair of babies instead of just one. Just being a twin gives each baby an automatic bit of prominence. Some of these baby pairs have taken that fame several steps further. Find out who made the list of 10 of the most famous twins in history by reading this informative article!
1. Ann Landers and Abigail Van Buren
Although this list is given in no particular order, Ann Landers and her twin sister Abigail Van Buren have been household names for decades. Born on the Fourth of July in 1918, Landers (who was born “Esther Pauline Friedman”), wrote a syndicated advice column for 45 years. She passed away in 2002 from Multiple Myeloma. (Wikipedia.com)
Landers’ twin sister, who was born “Pauline Esther Friedman” adopted the pen name of “Abigail Van Buren” when she began writing her “Dear Abby” advice column in 1956. (Wikipedia.com) After a successful career that spanned nearly fifty years, twin Van Buren finally put her pen down in 2003. Her daughter Jeanne then took over the “Dear Abby” column.
2. Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen
“The Olsen Twins”, as they are commonly known, were #37 in the list of “The Top 100 Celebrities in 2006” by Forbes magazine. Born on June 13, 1986 in California, the twins began their shared acting careers on the set of TV’s “Full House” before they had reached their first birthday. Both girls shared the part of Danny Tanner’s youngest daughter Michelle.
Since that time, the twins have continued to act. They have appeared in nearly twenty movies such as “It Takes Two” and “New York Minute”. Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen also have their own line of clothing.
3. Jenna and Barbara Bush
These twins made this “10 of the Most Famous Twins in History” list not so much because of what they have done, as much as who they are. They are “The First Twins” of the United States. Jenna and Barbara were born on November 25, 1981 to George W. and Barbara Bush. (The twins have no siblings.) Being the children of the President of the United States and the First Lady have automatically placed these twins into the public light.
4. Jacob and Esau
Jacob and Esau are not only two of the most famous twins in history, but they probably hold the honor of being the first pair born at the same time. Their exact birthday is unknown, but it was sometime during the biblical times.
These twins were born to Isaac and Rebekah. She had been unable to become pregnant until she was blessed by God. As the story goes, Esau was born first, so he stood to inherit more than Jacob. Jacob fooled his hungry twin into giving him his larger legacy in trade for some food. After having a dream where God promised this twin He would take care of him, Jacob turned his life around. He married, fathered 12 sons and his name was changed to “Israel”. His sons became known as “The 12 Tribes of Israel.”
5. Kevin and Cory Lidle
This famous pair of twins were born on March 22, 1972 in Hollywood. They say twins often have the same interests, and these two both loved playing baseball. Kevin was also an Olympian in 1992. He was a catcher who played in the Western Division of the American League for the Oakland A’s. Kevin Lidle retired from baseball in 2005.
His twin brother Cory Lidle pitched for seven Major League baseball teams, the last being the New York Yankees. His life ended when his small airplane crashed into a high-rise building in New York City on October 11, 2006.
6. The Weasley Twins
Fred and George Weasley are the brainchild of reknown author J.K. Rowling. The Weasley Twins are fictional characters in her “Harry Potter” series of books. Both boys are more interested in playing tricks and practical jokes than attending school and taking life seriously.
Oliver and James Phelps brought the roles of Fred and George Weasley to life when the “Harry Potter” books first hit the big screen in 2001. Born on February 25, 1986 in Birmingham, England, UK, the twins both acted in high school before they were chosen for the coveted rolls.
Note: According to Wikipedia.com, there have been an estimated 86.1 million copies of J.K. Rowling’s books sold in the United States alone.
7. The Minnesota Twins
Though the team isn’t actual birth twins per se, The Minnesota Twins have been making headlines since 1961. They hold the distinction of being the “first professional baseball team to be named for a state rather than a city”, (Wikipedia.com). Even more importantly, this Major League Baseball team won the American League Pennant in 1965 and the World Series in 1987, among other honors.
The Minnesota Twins, which is anchored in Minneapolis, had a roster that once included Harmon Killibrew, Rod Carew and Kirby Puckett, just to name a few of their more famous players.
8. The Brothers Gibb (The Bee Gees)
Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb are well-known for their successful singing group called the “Bee Gees.” The latter two members of the group are twin brothers who were born December 22, 1949 in Douglas, Isle of Man, UK (imdb.com). Besides contributing their vocals to the group, Robin and Maurice have also written and co-written many hit songs as well.
Sadly, Maurice Gibb passed away on January 12, 2003, in Florida after he suffered a heart attack.
9. The Bobbsey Twins
Not just one, but two pairs of fictitious twins who made this list of 10 of the most famous twins in history were named “The Bobbsey Twins”. Author Edward Stratemeyer- who used the pen name “Laura Lee Hope”- brought them into existence in when he wrote the first book in the series in 1904.
The kids in the Bobbsey Twins’ family consisted of Bert and Nan, and the younger twins Flossie and Freddie. The first books of the series were written chronologically: The Bobbsey Twins In the Country, The Bobbsey Twins At the Seashore and The Bobbsey Twins at School for a few examples. The long-running series is made up of 72 books, most of which are were not written by Stratemeyer.
10. Remus and Romulus
There are many romantic Roman legends and myths, and twin brothers Remus and Romulus are the famous subjects of one of them. The story was originally written by a historian named “Titus Livy” in the first century B.C. It goes that these twins’ father was Mars, the god of war. They were brought up by a she-wolf who found them.
When Remus and Romulus grew up, they decided to build a community where the she-wolf had happened upon them. Soon, though, the famous twins got involved in an argument. The altercation turned violent, and Remus ended up being killed.
Afterwards, the community was known as “Rome” in honor of Romulus.