<<<The George Burns attribution, at least as the originator, is almost
certainly false. <https://quoteinvestigator.com/2014/07/10/old-age/>
One can understand how misattribution of quotes can happen, but what about
naming scientific discoveries after the original discoverer?
How about our good friend Johann Carl Friedrich Gauss? We use a Gaussian
function in blurring and even more imp't the "Gaussian distribution" or
Well, it was not Gauss at all. It is sometimes called a Laplace-Gauss
distribution and Gauss did cite Laplace. It wasn't Laplace either! Rather
there is strong evidence that it can be traced to a 1733 publication by Abraham
OK, now something simple like the Pythagorean theorem. Well, you guessed it,
Pythagoras was not one of the original discoverers. The theorem was well known
before his time and proved well after him. I could go on and on.
I had thought about this recently and after a bit of digging learned this is a
well-known phenomenon--known as Stigler's law of eponymy. Well, if Stigler's
law is true what about Stigler?
He readily admits the credit is better attributed to the sociologist Robert
Merton! So Stigler not only wins marks for humility, but also the law named
after him becomes self-confirming.
Moose's Law of Misattribution anyone? Mike
Themed Olympus Photo Exhibition: http://www.tope.nl/