By around 500 BCE most an­cient Greeks be­lieved our planet was round. For a long time be­fore this it was be­lieved to be flat. It was only when we started to map the tra­jec­tory of the Sun and the stars and ap­plied math­e­mat­ics to spec­u­la­tion that we re­jected the disc model and ac­cepted the spher­i­cal model. You can see the ev­i­dence of this curve your­self. Just sit on a clear day and watch a sail­ing boat as it cruises over the hori­zon, and you will see it slowly dis­ap­pear as it dips be­neath the hori­zon and even­tu­ally out of sight. This was just one ar­gu­ment made by Aris­to­tle (circa 384–322 BCE), who was pos­si­bly the first per­son to pro­pose a spher­i­cal Earth based on phys­i­cal ev­i­dence in around 350 BCE.

So what ev­i­dence do mod­ern flat Earth so­ci­eties have to con­tinue to be­lieve claims that are flat out un­sub­stan­ti­ated? These con­spir­acy the­o­rists re­ject the ir­refutable ev­i­dence of grav­ity and in­stead favour the po­si­tion that we are on a disc that is be­ing pushed up­wards through space by a mys­te­ri­ous force called dark en­ergy. They be­lieve that our planet is a disc-shaped world with the Arc­tic Cir­cle in the mid­dle, with a ro­tat­ing dome of stars over our heads. Among other ab­sur­di­ties are the­o­ries that the Sun is only sev­eral hun­dred kilo­me­tres away from us, the Moon is trans­par­ent and a gi­ant mag­net un­der the ocean con­trols the tide.

Per­haps the most out­landish as­pect of the flat Earth con­spir­acy the­ory is the be­lief that our planet is sur­rounded by a huge, 45-me­tre-high ice wall on the coast of Antarc­tica that holds our ocean in and pre­vents us from fall­ing off the planet. Flat Earth con­spir­acy the­o­rists not only re­ject the shape of the Earth but also deny the ir­refutable ev­i­dence of al­most all of the sci­en­tific ev­i­dence un­der­pin­ning our un­der­stand­ing of physics, math­e­mat­ics and our ori­gins.

The model of a flat Earth is in­cor­rect and has no sci­en­tific sup­port

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