In our list 25 Science “Facts” That Were Proven Wrong, we showed you that if science gets something wrong, that doesn’t mean that science is bad. Science is supposed to make mistakes. That’s how science works. The whole point is to disprove that which we think we know. If we can disprove it, then it’s wrong. If we can’t, it is probably right. Having said that, there are lot of crazy obsolete scientific theories. Ready to hear more of these no-longer-believed theories? Thanks to the advance of science, here are 25 Things Science Got Totally Wrong.
The Four Humours
For physicians and scientists of antiquity, the body was composed of four humours – phlegm, yellow bile, black bile, and blood. If your body wasn’t producing a healthy balance of these humours, then you would get sick. This is why blood letting was so common up until the 1800’s (then we found out about germs).
This was the idea that miasma (bad air) is responsible for disease. Prior to the introduction of germ theory in the late 1800’s, this was the most widely accepted explanation for why people got sick. The results of this theory led to some rather interesting medical solutions. During the Middle Ages doctors would prescribe “fart smelling.” Apparently it was believed that like cures like, and if bad air caused the disease…bad air could cure it.
The Earth as the Center of the Universe
Thanks to Nicolaus Copernicus, the Ptolemaic model of the Solar System (with the Earth at the center), was replaced with our current understanding.
Hypothesized in the 1600’s by Johann Joachim Becher, this “element” was meant to explain burning. Also, it was believed that humans didn’t breathe to get oxygen…they breathed to expel phlogiston so they wouldn’t start burning.
Neanderthals and Humans Didn’t Mix
Actually, after the neanderthal gene was sequenced in 2010, scientists found that up to 4% of people living outside of Africa have neanderthal DNA. This means that there was some cross breeding.
Photos: Featured Image: Bird (Pexels); Ape (Pixabay) both public domain; text added, 25. The original uploader was Jakob Suckale at English Wikipedia, Four Humours, CC BY-SA 3.0 (unported), 24-22. pixabay (public domain), 21. Matt Celeskey via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, 20. shutterstock. 19. wikimedia commons (public domain), 18. pixabay (public domain), 17. wikimedia commons (public domain), 16. pixabay (public domain), 15. Varsha Y S, Varsha 2, CC BY-SA 4.0, 14-6. pixabay.com (public domain), 5. t-bet via flickr, CC BY-ND 2.0 , 4. AquilaGib, Neanderthal skull from Forbes’ Quarry, CC BY-SA 3.0, 3-1. pixabay (public domain)