Distinguishing fact from fiction: here are 5 of the biggest errors that have developed as well-known facts:
Truth: With a peak at 8,848 meters above sea level, Mount Everest may look like the tallest mountain in the world. But actually, it’s Mauna Kea on Hawaii being the tallest. From its underwater base to its top (above sea level), the mountain is 10,200 meters.
2. Mother birds will abandon babies if you touch them
Truth: Birds don’t smell that well. So picking a baby up to move it to a safer place won’t encourage its parents to abandon the little bird, that’s probably trying to fly. Plus, they have invested so much time and energy raising it, that a change in smell wouldn’t motivate the parents to turn their backs on the baby bird.
Truth: You may have studied the tongue map during school – an image of the tongue and its areas of taste sensitivities. But recently, researchers have found that this “zones theory” is nonsense. Most people can sense different tastes all over their tongues.
4. People thought the world was flat before Columbus
Truth: As early as the sixth century B.C., Pythagoras — and later Aristotle and Euclid — wrote about the Earth as a sphere. Ptolemy wrote “Geography” 1,300 years before Columbus sailed, and considered the idea of a round planet as fact. Later the book became a standard reference, and Columbus himself owned a copy. It was the size of the ocean he wanted to cross, that was a mystery to him. Not the shape of the Earth.
Truth: The classical 5 senses include hearing, seeing, feeling, tasting and smelling. But actually we have countless of other senses that – consciously or unconsciously – work to keep us alive. Nociception, for instance: the ability to sense pain.