Chaos and conflict in the world is still minting such people today. I imagine quite a few such stories will be revealed when we have time to collect them from people who have emigrated due to the conflicts in Iraq and Syria.
Of course they're disconnected. The latter protest came about after the man was elderly, having spent the remainder of his life in isolation well after he'd gone "completely insane", to borrow the article's phrasing.
Considering the toll life must've taken on him, there's really no surprise there.
There are mathematicians today who learn french solely to read his works.