It’s really no secret that Earth is spherical. After all, hundreds of images taken from space have proved as much over the past few decades. What’s more, prominent thinkers had even come to the same conclusion two millennia ago. But according to some conspiracy theorists, our planet is actually in the shape of a disc. And when one proponent of the “flat Earth” hypothesis gave his argument to a real-life astronaut, the other man was left in absolute disbelief.
Up until around a couple of thousand years ago, though, people predominantly thought of Earth as a flat plane. Things began to change in the sixth century BC, however. That was when philosopher Pythagoras introduced the idea of a round planet to his fellow Greeks. Then, a few hundred years later, Aristotle would give his own conclusive empirical proof of Pythagoras’ theory.
From then on, word started to spread, and people gradually accepted that Earth is in fact spherical. And while it took different lengths of time for the world’s various societies to catch up – China, for instance, didn’t come round to the idea until the 1600s – eventually everyone appeared to be unanimous on the truth.