The National Geographic debunks the legend that St Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland - just in time for St Patrick's Day. A kind of early-spring equivalent of those bishops that like to claim there were 24 wise men, or Jesus was born in a bouncy castle, at Christmas.
But I wonder. The story is based upon the fact that they've never found a fossil. Well, fair enough. But they'd never seen a living coelacanth until they discovered a living coelacanth. Finding something is positive proof, but negative proof is always a bit trickier. It's only 300 years ago that you could have said there was no evidence of bog bodies in Ireland. But it didn't mean there weren't any, did it?
And then the claim that snakes never got to Ireland, and then couldn't get across from Britain because of the sea. Let's consider.
Galapagos Tortoises crossed 1,000 miles from South America to breed. And they can barely swim. Unless Noah dropped them off, of course.
It's about 100 miles from England to Ireland. And snakes can swim pretty well.
So I'm thinking - maybe there were snakes in Ireland. Probably weren't, on the basis of evidence, but not impossible.
And then let's consider - St Patrick throwing the snakes out of the Emerald Isle is called "a legend" by everybody.
So the National Geographic is using scientifically dodgy reasoning to go out of its way to debunk what everybody knows is a "legend".
Frankly, thinking about it, I don't know why I've bothered.