Apparently you can rewrite history! Several previous historical â??factsâ? that we always knew to be true have proven faulty, as theyâ??ve been modified over time to either represent the actual truth that always was, or a more accurate one as time has changed certain circumstances.
We always thought we could rely on textbooks, but unfortunately, it looks like youâ??ll have to add those to your list of not always reliable sources. Prepare to be shocked at these three seemingly true pieces of knowledge that have changed before our eyes. (One of them has validated itself yet again though, yay!)
1. A type of dinosaur that never was
I donâ??t know about you, but when I think of dinosaurs, the first one that comes to mind is the gentle giant who was known as the Brontosaurus. It was even my favorite dinosaur as a kid. A simple Google search of the name yields hundreds of images of the supposedly legitimate dinosaur. We know now that the â??Brontosaurusâ? was actually just confused with the Apatosaurus. Way back in 1877, Othniel Charles Marsh, a Paleontology Professor at Yale University, described the Apatosaurus based on findings of its skeleton. Two years later Marsh announced the discovery of a new, more complete set of bones of the Apatosaurus. Because these bones were significantly larger and different, Marsh believed they belonged to a completely new dinosaur which became known as the Brontosaurus. (Fun fact: scientific name was Brontosaurus excelcus, which means â??thunder lizard.â?) But over time, Marshâ??s theory proved to be false, and our beloved Brontosaurus was really just an Apatosaurus all those years we thought otherwise. Youâ??ll still live on in our hearts forever, Bronty.
2. Astrological sign changes
If you follow astrology at all, you may have found yourself in an astrological identity crisis when astronomer Parke Kunkle announced there is a new 13th astrological sign Ophiuchus, which caused a shift in all of the dates that defined the previous 12 signs because of the change of the starsâ?? alignment due to the moonâ??s gravitational pull on the Earth. For example, if youâ??re a Scorpio, under this new astrological system you would actually now be a Libra. You would basically be changed to whichever sign comes before yours. A little irritating, considering your whole life you were bursting with Scorpio pride and now suddenly you have to completely re-learn your astrological identity.
But fear not, because in the wake of this â??newâ? discovery, modern astrologists have fired back to prove that there really is no sign change at all. Itâ??s a tad complex, but in a nutshell Kunkleâ??s theory of a new astrological system was based on discrepancies the former signs had with the constellations. However, modern western astrologers say constellations have little to do with the signs. Modern astrology relates signs to movement of the planets, not constellations, so nothing has actually changed. Youâ??re still the same olâ?? Scorpio, Virgo, or Aries you always were. Whew.
3. Salem witches were hung, not burnt
Weâ??ve learned through multiple sources (including textbooks) that the witches of Salem, Massachusetts were burnt at the stake if found guilty. Because of this, vivid imagery of girls being burnt alive has been burned into our minds when thinking of the Salem witch trials. However, this was not actually the case, according to Richard Trask, Town Archivist for the former-Salem (now Danvers), Massachusetts. Trask contends that at the time of the witch trials, English law was followed, which commanded guilty witches to be hung for their crimes, not burnt at the stake. Elsewhere in Europe, the church for the crime of heresy would deem witchcraft punishable by burning at the stake, but English law did not subscribe to this.