Why did people believe that water was an element? Some cultures, like in Hinduism, still believe there are five elements: Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Ether.
It really depends on definition. We assume the word “element” has a specific definition that is universal in the English language, when that is not the nature of English. English evolves differently in the different areas of the world where it is spoken. Thus the letter we pronounce “zee” (Z) in America is pronounced “zed” everywhere else in the world that they speak English. Aluminum in the States is Aluminium in England. A gallon of milk in America is not the same size as an Imperial Gallon of milk in the U.K. In India if you say, “I am liking you too much,” it is a compliment. In the United States it would seem like an insult.
In the Hindustani version of English, an element is a state of matter. Thus you have solid, liquid, fire, gas and the mythical ether they say space is made of.
So I believe the answer to your question is it’s a question of regional definitions of the word.
Well, from personal experience, from science, from math, from the fact that long bridges are wider at the top than at the bottom, from the fact that the sun doesn’t disappear due to perspective – it clearly sets and rises as you can see for yourself, from the fact that I can see a ship sail out to see and disappear below the horizon, from the fact that in the middle of the Lake Pontchartrain bridge for 8 miles you can see neither shore, from the fact that that in the middle of the ocean you can see no shore…. what makes you think it’s anything other? Because it always “looks” flat to you?
The other day I was barreling down the highway at almost 1/10 the speed of sound! Mach 0.0977493 to be precise. Would you believe I was actually going over 33 and 1/2 meters per second! That’s 120 km per hour!
Alas, I was going 75 mph, the speed limit around here.
My friend Jake Thompson makes videos on YouTube. Here’s one of them!