by Patrick Hughes • February 8, 2001
"Utter, damned rot!" said the president of the prestigious American Philosophical Society.
"If we are to believe [this] hypothesis, we must forget everything we have learned in the last 70 years and start all over again," said another American scientist.
Anyone who "valued his reputation for scientific sanity" would never dare support such a theory, said a British geologist.
Thus did most in the scientific community ridicule the concept that would revolutionize the earth sciences and revile the man who dared to propose it, German meteorological pioneer and polar explorer Alfred Wegener. Science historians compare his story with the tribulations of Galileo.
On the Shoulders of Giants
Top: A portrait of Alfred Wegener. (Drawing by Hailey King)