posted on Sep, 8 2010 @ 09:59 PM
I've been meaning to throw something up about this for quite some time now, only been putting off due to laziness, but a recent post has motivated me
to make it happen.
To frame where I'm coming from here's the post in which I refer:
I find it so funny that these "FLAT EARTHers" refuse to acknoledge the simple fact that Chemtrails are real. Even when the evidence is so plain to
see, all one has to do to know Chemtrails exsist is to look up, couldn't be any easier than that. But they still think the Earth is Flat, and if you
sail to far out Monsters will get you, and you will fall of the edge
I won't mention the thread or the poster but rest assured this kind of argument is quite common on ATS and usually written by those who err on the
non-skeptical side of things, unsurprisingly (no offence).
The fact is, humans have believed the world to be spherical since at least the sixth century BC, the likes of Pythagoras, Plato and Aristotle all
subscribed to this.
It is also the time that Hellenistic astronomy was created, placing the sun and not the earth at the centre of the known (at the time) universe.
From this point on, a spherical earth was the accepted norm.
Enter Washington Irving, an American historical fiction writer...
It was he who invented the indelible picture of the young Columbus, a "simple mariner," appearing before a dark crowd of benighted inquisitors and
hooded theologians at a council of Salamanca, all of whom believed, according to Irving, that the earth was flat like a plate. Well, yes, there was a
meeting at Salamanca in 1491, but Irving's version of it, to quote a distinguished modern historian of Columbus, was "pure moonshine. Washington
Irving, scenting his opportunity for a picturesque and moving scene," created a fictitious account of this "nonexistent university council" and "let
his imagination go completely...the whole story is misleading and mischievous nonsense."
But in reality, the issue in the 1490s was not the shape of the Earth, but its size, and the position of the east coast of Asia, as Irving in fact
points out. Historical estimates from Ptolemy onwards placed the coast of Asia about 180° east of the Canary Islands. Columbus adopted an earlier
(and rejected) distance of 225°, added 28° (based on Marco Polo's travels), and then placed Japan another 30° further east. Starting from Cape St.
Vincent in Portugal, Columbus made Eurasia stretch 283° to the east, leaving the Atlantic as only 77° wide. Since he planned to leave from the
Canaries (9° further west), his trip to Japan would only have to cover 68° of longitude.
So next time you see such an argument pop in a thread, please, shut that nonsense down quick smart, it just encourages the lack of critical thinking
embraced by too many here.
Sources and further reading:
edit on 8/9/10 by Chadwickus because: (no reason given)