Some inaccuracies in scientific illustrations are due to the time they were made, as is the case with sketches of "real-life" unicorns and outdated anatomical models. Others occur because it's simply too difficult to convey a concept correctly in two dimensions. Maps of the world, for example, often distort the actual sizes of the continents.
Here's What Some Common Scientific Illustrations Get Wrong
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Key Facts In This Video
Some historians believe that Benjamin Franklin flew his kite before a thunderstorm, collecting electricity from the clouds and not a bolt of lightning. 01:40
There are at least 100,000 asteroids with a diameter longer than one kilometer in the asteroid belt, but they are spaced millions of kilometers apart. 04:15
Leonardo da Vinci's anatomical illustrations of the female reproductive system had many inaccuracies. 07:04