Science moves humanity forward, making more and more new discoveries. Meanwhile, it is not worthwhile to create a pedestal for scientists, they do not always have the right. They often refer to science, choosing products, things, talking about something. But after all, scientists are the same people who tend to be mistaken and mistaken. Do not expect perfection from them and always the right judgments.
During its existence, science has made quite a few mistakes. Some misconceptions of scientists’ minds for some time stopped progress. After all, people have long believed and studied what eventually turned out to be either insignificant or just plain wrong. We will tell below about the most important mistakes made by science.
Today the idea of turning a metal into gold seems simply insane. However, let’s imagine that suddenly we got into the Middle Ages. The schools did not teach chemistry, and no one had heard of a periodic system there. All that was known was based on the chemical reactions seen with their own eyes. And they can be very impressive. The substance changes its shape and color, explosions occur and sparks fly. And all this is before our eyes. Based only on this, it may seem quite logical that such reactions can turn dull and gray lead and bright, noble yellow gold. It was in the hope of realizing such a transformation that for a long time the alchemists were looking for a certain philosopher’s stone. It is this mythical substance that should greatly enhance the capabilities of scientists. They also spent a lot of time searching for the miraculous elixir of life. Only in the end did the alchemists find neither one nor the other. The very direction of science turned out to be a dead end.
Heavy objects fall down faster.
Today it is known that such a statement is wrong. But Aristotle himself, he thought otherwise. Although it can be understood. After all, until the XVI century and Galileo’s works on this subject, this question has not been investigated by anyone. According to legend, an Italian scientist measured how quickly objects dropped from the famous Leaning tower of Pisa fall. But in fact he was just doing experiments that had to prove that gravity causes all objects to fall at the same speed. Another step to debunking this theory was made by Isaac Newton in the 17th century. He described that gravity is an attraction between two objects. One of them is the planet Earth, and the other is any object or object located on it. Two hundred years passed, and the man began to think in a new direction, thanks to the works of Albert Einstein. He considered gravity as a kind of curve formed by the activity of objects in space and time. And this point of view is not final. Even Einstein has a lot of controversial issues, physicists are still trying to solve them and smooth the corners. So humanity is in search of the very theory that would perfectly explain the behavior of macroscopic, microscopic and subatomic objects.
Today, very few people have heard of this term. This is understandable, because such a substance never existed in nature. The term itself appeared in 1667 thanks to Johann Joachim Becher. Flogiston was added to the canonical list, in addition to which water, earth, fire, air and sometimes ether were present. The phlogiston itself was regarded as something from which fire was created. Becher believed that all combustible materials consist of this substance. When they burn, then they produce the same phlogiston. Such a theory was accepted by the learned world, with the help of it some things concerning fire and burning in general were explained. So, the thing ceased to burn if the phlogiston was running out. Fire requires air, as it is absorbed by phlogiston. We breathe in order to remove from the body all the same phlogiston. Today we already know that we are not breathing at all for this – oxygen saturates our cells.And burning objects need oxygen or other oxidant to support the fire. And the phlogiston itself does not exist in nature.
After the field is weeding, it will start to rain.
Yes, for a long time scientists seriously believed this. In fact, everything is not so simple. And today we are very surprised why people generally believed in such a situation for so long. After all, it was enough just to look around and see that there are quite a lot of arid lands around which no weeding helps. This theory was very popular during the Australian and American expansion. People believed in it and still believe, in part because it still works sometimes. But this is just an accident! Now science clearly states – weeding fields to rain has nothing to do with it. The amount of precipitation is affected by completely different factors, it is necessary to take into account long-term weather conditions. In dry areas, there are prolonged cyclical droughts, which can be replaced by a succession of rainy years.
Age of the Earth – 6 thousand years.
For a long time the Bible was also considered from the standpoint of scientific work. People sacredly believed that everything that is written in it is true, and the information is accurate. In this case, it was even a matter of absolutely meaningless things. For example, the Holy Book mentioned the age of our planet. In the XVII century, one sincere believer with the help of the Bible was able to calculate the birth of the Earth. According to his estimates, the planet was born approximately in 4004 BC. Until the XVIII century it was believed that the Earth 6 thousand years. But since that time geologists began to understand that the Earth is constantly changing, and its age can be calculated in a different, scientific way. Naturally with time, it turned out that the biblical scholars were very mistaken. Today, science uses radioactive calculations. According to them, the age of the Earth is about 4.5 billion years. Particles of the riddle geologists have laid down by the XIX century. They began to understand that the course of geological processes was rather slow, and taking into account also Darwin’s doctrine of evolution, the age of the planet was revised. It was much older than previously thought. When it became possible to study this issue with the help of radioactive research, it turned out that it is so.
The smallest of the existing particles is an atom.
In fact, people in antiquity were not so stupid as they seem. The idea that matter consists of some tiny particles is several thousand years old. But the idea that there is something less than the visible parts was difficult to understand. That was before the beginning of the twentieth century. Then together the leading physicists – Ernest Rutherford, Jay Thompson, Niels Bohr and James Chadwick – gathered together. They decided to finally understand the basics of elementary particles. It was about protons, neutrons and electrons. Scientists wanted to understand their behavior in atoms and what they generally represent. Since then, science has moved far ahead – quarks, neutrinos and anti-electrons have been discovered.
DNA does not make much sense.
DNA was discovered back in 1869. However, for a long time it remained undervalued. DNA was considered a simple protein helper. In the middle of the 20th century, experiments were conducted that showed the importance of this genetic material. Nevertheless, some scientists still believed that not DNA is responsible for heredity, but proteins. After all, DNA was considered too “simple” to carry so much information inside. The disagreements continued until 1953. Then the scientists Crick and Watson published their research on the importance of a double helical DNA model. This information gave the learned world an understanding of how important this molecule is.
Microbes and surgery.
Now it may seem sad to us that until the end of the 19th century, doctors did not think to wash their hands before the operation. But as a result of this careless attitude, people often acquired gangrene.But most of the Aesculapius of the time blamed this for bad air and an imbalance between the body’s basic juices (blood, mucus, yellow and black bile). In scientific circles the idea of the existence of microbes was hovering. But then the idea that they caused illness was quite revolutionary. But there was no interest in this hypothesis until the 1860s. Then Louis Pasteur started to prove it. After a while, other doctors, including Joseph Lister, realized that patients should be protected from microbes. It was Lister who was among the first doctors who began to clean wounds and apply disinfectants. This markedly improved the quality of treatment.
Earth is in the very center of the universe.
This view of the world came from the time of the astronomer Ptolemy. He lived in the second century and created a geocentric model of the solar system. As we know this is the greatest error. But it existed in science not for several decades, but more than a thousand years. Only after 14 centuries a new theory appeared. It was put forward by Nicolaus Copernicus in 1543. This scientist was far from the first to suggest that the Sun is the center of the universe. But it was Copernicus’s work that gave rise to a new, heliocentric system of the universe. A hundred years after this theory was proved, the church still maintained that the Earth is the center of the world. Old habits die with great difficulty.
Today, any more or less literate person understands how important the heart is for the human body. But in ancient Greece, you could be a doctor, but this and not guess. Living in the second century doctors, contemporaries of Galen, believed that the blood circulates through the liver, adjacent to some of the mucus and bile, processed by the same organ. But the heart in their opinion is simply necessary to create some kind of life spirit. This error was based on Galen’s hypothesis that the blood moves back and forth. This nutrient fluid is absorbed by the organs in the form of a certain fuel. And such ideas were accepted by science for a long time, practically not recovering. Only in 1628 the English doctor William Harvey discovered the science of the eye on the work of the heart. He published the work “Anatomical study on the movement of blood and the work of the heart in animals.” It was not accepted immediately in the scientific community, but then they began to rely on these provisions.