Karl Friedrich Hieronymus, Freiherr von Münchhausen (11 May 1720 – 22 February 1797) (often spelled Munchausen in English) was a German baron born in Bodenwerder, who in his youth was sent to serve as page to Anthony Ulrich II of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, and later joined the Russian military. He served until 1750, in particular taking part in two campaigns against the Ottoman Turks. Returning home, Münchhausen supposedly told a number of outrageous tall tales about his adventures. He died in his birthplace of Bodenwerder.
According to the stories, as retold by others, the Baron's astounding feats included riding cannonballs, travelling to the Moon, and escaping from a swamp by pulling himself up by his own hair (or bootstraps, depending on who tells the story).