Tales Of A Flat Earth

rynner2

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Yesterday and today I saw something I've never seen before. It's not Fortean in itself, but is just a sidelight on beliefs like a Flat Earth. What did I see? The tennis in Ecuador, around noon, at the equinox. And yes, as science tells us, the sun was overhead, so people's shadows were small and directly below them.

There was a flat earth society once, although one of its leaders died in the last year or two. If the society survives, its members must find it hard to reconcile pictures from space, and live TV news reports from world-wide correspondents, which clearly show how it can be one time of day here and another in Australia.

Are there any hard-liners still hanging on?
 

Aben_Zin

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Ok so we know the Earth isn't flat. Unless all the people who have sailed around the world etc. are lying.
But is the Universe flat?

Of course we might not know until we've sailed around it...

AZ
 

carole

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I prefer the idea of a hollow earth myself - it's more economicaly having people living on the inside and the outside!:)
Carole
 

FelixAntonius

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About twelve years ago, I flew on Concord, (at maximum altitude you can just about see the curvature of the earth).

When I mentioned this to a dedicated flat earther & showed him my wife's photos, all he said was: "You photographed the edge of the world".

He also considered the likes of Francis Chichester & Robin Knox-
Johnson, to have sailed round the PERIMETER of the world!!!!!

Shades of Mr T. Pratchett, I think!!!!!!!!!
 
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Anonymous

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There is one group of "flat earthers" for whom it is more an intellectual challenge than a true belief. The challenge is to come up with counter-arguments for each of the proofs that the earth is round.:)

Mind you, I don't think that this approach applies to the hollow earth views of David Icke. :rolleyes:
 
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Anonymous

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David Icke is an idiot...

Everyone know the Universe is a squigly, cylinder, wormish thing with lots of little lights in it...

Anyway, I beleive that all the galaxies in the universe are simply particle on a huge scale in another, massive world outside the universe...!:confused:
 

carps13

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You don't need to fly on concorde at maximum altitude (around 35,000ft I believe) to see the curvature of the earth. Stand on some coastal cliffs - not even particularly high ones - and visually align the horizon along something straight, such as a fence or bench...

You'll see the fall-off of the horizon at either end, minimal but definitely there.
 

rynner2

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It's also easy to experience the Earth's curvature by watching ships sail over the horizon through a pair of binoculars. A clear day near a busy port would be ideal. There's no need to be up high - standing at he water's edge the horizon is only about 3 miles away, so it doesn't take long for the ship to reach the horizon and begin disappearing below it.

Sailing across the Western end of the English Channel one time, we saw the coast of Devon sinking into the sea astern. The weather was incredibly clear, and when night fell we were about halfway across. We could see the loom of the Lizard light to the north, and the loom of Ile Vierge in Brittany to the south, although neither light itself was visible, both being well below the horizon and about 50 miles away. That certainly gave me a feeling for a round Earth!
 
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Anonymous

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Carps said:
You don't need to fly on concorde at maximum altitude (around 35,000ft I believe) to see the curvature of the earth.

Sorry for being predantic, but Concorde achieves a cruise height of around 60.000'. I flew on it in 1989 to 54,000'. Not only can you see the curvature of the world, but beyond the edge of the disc, protruding just above, the tips of the elephants' tusks and trunks...

:D :blah: :p
 

bagins_X

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Hermes said:
Sorry for being predantic, but Concorde achieves a cruise height of around 60.000'. I flew on it in 1989 to 54,000'. Not only can you see the curvature of the world, but beyond the edge of the disc, protruding just above, the tips of the elephants' tusks and trunks...

:D :blah: :p
So You say the world is flat......... and round:D

Wm.
 
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Anonymous

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Bagins said:
So You say the world is flat......... and round:D

Wm.
Ah, you see the earth only "looks" curved, because light doesn't travel in straight lines. It travels in curves due to the combination of gravity, and the principle of "sheer bloody-mindedness".:blah:
 
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Anonymous

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What's more, the world could be shaped more like a curved roof tile than either a globe or a flat disc. The curvature we've established in the posts above, but we now have to consider that other ancient clue to its true shape - 'the Four Corners of the Earth'. Anyone for the Curved Square Earth Society?

;)
 

hachihyaku

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Just because it has four corners, doesn't mean it's flat...


It could be a tetrahedron ^_^
 
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Anonymous

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The world is flat and god has the automatically scroll humanity checkbox ticked. Saves the hastle of recovering floaters.
 
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Anonymous

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Dont be stupid...!! Of course the earth is flat; have you ever tried standing on a foot ball....! How on earth ( no pun ) could you stand on something spherical...you may say that we are smaller, well I tried a mouse on a football ( which you have to agree is correct proportianally to a human/Earth ) and it also had trouble !

QED
 
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Anonymous

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I hope this is the right place for this discussion - it's certainly an earth-related oddity, possibly the oddest of the lot. I just saw this quoted in a discussion on another BBS:

"An important site in the flat earth debate is a long, straight stretch of canal in Cambridgeshire known as 'the Old Bedford Level'. In particular, there is an uninterrupted length of water about six miles long. Over such a distance, according to the globularists, an object placed near the water-line at one end should be rendered invisible from the other by the curvature of the earth. For nine months of 1838 Rowbotham lodged in a wooden hut on the canal bank and conducted a long series of experiments with markers and a telescope to disprove the globularist point of view.

The Old Bedford Level was the scene of further experiments over the years, until in 1904, photography was used to prove that the earth is flat. Lady Blount, a staunch believer in the zetetic faith hired a photographer, Mr Cifton of Dallmeyer's who arrived at the Bedford Level with the firm's latest Photo-Telescopic camera. The apparatus was set up at one end of the clear six-mile length, while at the other end Lady Blount and some scientific gentlemen hung a large, white calico sheet over the Bedford bridge so that the bottom of it was near the water. Mr Clifton, lying down near Welney bridge with his camera lens two feet above the water level, observed by telescope the hanging of the sheet, and found that he could see the whole of it down to the bottom. This surprised him, for he was an orthodox globularist and round-earth theory said that over a distance of six miles the bottom of the sheet should bemore than 20 feet below his line of sight. His photograph showed not only the entire sheet but its reflection in the water below. That was certified in his report to Lady Blount, which concluded: "I should not like to abandon the globular theory off-hand, but, as far as this particular test is concerned, I am prepared to maintain that (unless rays of light will travel in a curved path) these six miles of water present a level surface." "


Now, I live in Cambridgeshire and could probably find out the location of this place quite easily. Would anyone be interested in helping with an investigation? If so, please PM me!

Cheers,
Razorwire
 

Bilderberger

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Alfred Wallace (Darwin's colleague who coined the phrase "survival of the fittest") undertook a £500 wager to prove that the world is not flat and used a very similar experiment - as you can see from the extract below, all did not work out well for him!

"In 1870 Wallace took up a £500 challenge from a flat-earther to produce a proof that the earth was not flat; he won the challenge with a neatly conceived demonstration but, on a technicality, not a penny of the wager, and was seriously harassed by the loser for over ten years. Eventually his financial situation degenerated far enough to cause a friend to intervene; in 1881, with help from Darwin (see Colp 1992), the government was convinced to grant him an annual civil list pension of £200 for his services to science. It was not enough to live on, but it helped. "

I will try and find more details on the exact experiment performed........
 
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Anonymous

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razorwire said:
"An important site in the flat earth debate is a long, straight stretch of canal in Cambridgeshire known as 'the Old Bedford Level'. In particular, there is an uninterrupted length of water about six miles long. Over such a distance, according to the globularists, an object placed near the water-line at one end should be rendered invisible from the other by the curvature of the earth. For nine months of 1838 Rowbotham lodged in a wooden hut on the canal bank and conducted a long series of experiments with markers and a telescope to disprove the globularist point of view.
could it be that the globularist's calculations are simply wrong? i dont think disproving their calcualtions is evidence of the world being flat, its more evidence of them making a boo boo with their sums.
If the world is flat then where are the edges? i guess the edges could be invisable and when you go thru them they transport you thru time and space to the other edge. :D sounds too much like star trek for me.
 

rynner2

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I hadn't heard of this experiment with the sheet before, but googling turned up several references to it. The quote in the first post seems to come from a website that bases its information on a book by John Michell.

But the Bedford Level was also the site of experiments that DID show the curvature of the earth! (These were often mentioned in science text-books.) Clearly, one would need to find the original documentation, including the photograph(!), to understand how Mr. Clifton of Dallmeyers got such an anomalous result!

Few things are certain in this world, but as both a navigator and an astronomer I am pretty sure the Earth is round - some of my reasons for this belief are on an earlier Flat Earth thread.

(Incidentally, one of the websites I turned up claimed that the Bedford Level is in Yorkshire, which should be a reminder that the web is an amazing source of information AND disinformation!)
 

Bilderberger

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I have checked on Alfred Wallace's experiment that proved the earth to be round - and it was also at the Bedford Levels.

"on the morning of 5 March 1870, Wallace set up three objects - a telepscope, a disc and a black band - along the 6 mile stretch of the Old Bedford Canal......such that "if the surface of the water is a perfectly straight line for the 6 miles, then the three objects, being all exactly the same height above the water, the disc would be seen in the telescope projected upon the black band; whereas if the 6 mile surface of the wateris convexly curved, the the top disc would appear to be decidely higher than the black band, the amount due to the known size of the earth.

Wallace's experiment clearly showed that the curvature of the earth was very nearly of the amount calculated from the known dimensions of the earth"

Quite why it should become flat again in 1904 will remain a mystery!
 

ECPE1

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Maybe there was some sort of temperature inversion that allowed the photographer to see the bottom of the sheet. Something akin to a mirage, or fata morgana. On an interesting note, the atmosphere of Venus is so dense that if one could see far enough(it is too cloudy), it would look like you were standing in the middle of a large deperession because the thick atmosphere would bend the light in such a way as to cause this mirage.
 

Mythopoeika

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ECPE said:
Maybe there was some sort of temperature inversion that allowed the photographer to see the bottom of the sheet. Something akin to a mirage, or fata morgana. On an interesting note, the atmosphere of Venus is so dense that if one could see far enough(it is too cloudy), it would look like you were standing in the middle of a large deperession because the thick atmosphere would bend the light in such a way as to cause this mirage.
I think this is the most likely explanation.
 

ColtFarmer

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Re: David Icke is an idiot...

-Oracle- said:
Everyone know the Universe is a squigly, cylinder, wormish thing with lots of little lights in it...

Anyway, I beleive that all the galaxies in the universe are simply particle on a huge scale in another, massive world outside the universe...!:confused:
I read a Wierd Science comic with exactly that theory in it...
 
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Anonymous

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There were some stories where The Hulk was shrunk down and ended up on some atom worlds.
 

rynner2

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I'm currently re-reading Joshua Slocum's "Sailing Alone Around the World". In 1897 he arrived at Natal, South Africa:
It seems odd to hear scholars and statesmen say the world is flat; but it is a fact that three Boers favoured by the opinion of President Kruger prepared a work to support that contention. While I was at Durban they came from Pretoria to obtain data from me, and they seemed annoyed when I told them they could not prove it by my experience. With the advice to call up some ghost of the dark ages for research, I went ashore, and left these three wise men poring over the Spray's track on a chart of the world, which, however, proved nothing to them, for it was on Mercator's projection, and behold, it was "flat".

...

A pamplet by these Transvaal geographers, made up of arguments from sources high and low to prove their theory, was mailed to me before I sailed from Africa on my last stretch around the globe.
But before leaving Slocum met the President himself:
At [Pretoria] I met Mr. Kruger, the Transvaal president. His excellency received me cordially enough; but my friend Judge Beyers, the gentleman who presented me, by mentioning that I was on a voyage around the round, unwittingly gave offence to the venerable statesman, which we both regretted deeply. Mr. Kruger corrected the judge rather sharply, reminding him that the world is flat. "You don't mean round the world," said the president; "it is impossible! You mean in the world. Impossible!" he said, "impossible!" and not another word did he utter either to the judge or to me. The judge looked at me and I looked at the judge, who should have known his ground, so to speak, and Mr. Kruger glowered at us both. My friend the judge seemed embarrassed, but I was delighted; the incident pleased me more than anything else that could have happened. It was a nugget of information quarried out of Oom Paul, some of whose sayings are famous.
(I highly recommend this book - it is a treasure trove of little oddities, and the humour is reminiscent of that of Mark Twain.)
 
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Anonymous

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Well here people are, taking the mick out of flat-earthers, and then having the audacity to suggest that the earth is round. :confused:
Planet Earth is of course not round but spherical - an oblate spheroid actually. But some credit to the flatlanders, because large parts of the earth are flat. Australia in particular is a very flat continent - the highest mountain there is only 7,000 feet tall. The earth itself is relatively smoother than a billiard ball, I read somewhere.
It's interesting to try to grasp the model that flat-earthers have in their minds. Do they believe that the earth is disc-shaped? Is Australia on the other side of the disc? I don't remember going round such a sharp corner when I flew there. Wouldn't all the seawater just flow off the edge?
By the way Rynner, didn't you mean "equator" rather than "equinox"?

Bill Robinson
 

rynner2

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No, I meant the equinox (note date of post).

The sun is overhead, at the equator, on the equinoxes, at noon.
 

brianellwood

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When I was at film school we had to put forward suggestions for making documentaries and I chose the flat earthers. Sadly it was never taken up, but I made contact with the president of the society who at the time lived in Burnage in Manchester. Fascinating, but alas now the chance to make it has gone.... :sob:
 
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