The respective English and Welsh theft by Fellow of the Royal Society, Charles Darwin (FRS), and Alfred Wallace of the discovery of the theory of natural selection from the Scottish botanist and farmer Patrick Matthew (see Sutton 2014) is not the first time that a Royal Society member from south of the border managed to steal the great discoveries of one their northern neighbours. Darwin and Wallace got away with it for 154 years. However, an earlier science swindler, Sir Charles Wheatstone, was less successful at evading detection.
In 1840 Sir Charles Wheatstone (FRS) dismissed the worth of the invention of the electric clock by the Scottish genius Alexander Bain with a wave of the back of his hand. Bain, who had little money to promote his invention had hoped for Wheatstone's support. Instead, Wheatstone capered off to "independently invent" an electric clock of his own. A few weeks later Wheatstone slyly demonstrated his new invention of the electric clock to the Royal Society, which he claimed to have invented all by himself. Next, Wheatstone followed-up that conscienceless rip-off by trying to have Bain’s patent expunged.
Though born a humble crofters son, Bain litigated and Wheatstone lost and was ordered to make restitution to Bain.
Unsurprisingly, Wikipedia, at the time of writing (26 May 2014), typically has the facts of this matter nicely Victorian-smog-mixed with another issue and so has conveniently obfuscated the court's finding of guilt very neatly in favour of Sir Charles Wheatstone (FRS) Wikipedia page on Wheatstone May 26 2014::
‘On 26 November 1840, he exhibited his electro-magnetic clock in the library of the Royal Society, and propounded a plan for distributing the correct time from a standard clock to a number of local timepieces. The circuits of these were to be electrified by a key or contact-maker actuated by the arbour of the standard, and their hands corrected by electro-magnetism. The following January Alexander Bain took out a patent for an electro-magnetic clock, and he subsequently charged Wheatstone with appropriating his ideas. It appears that Bain worked as a mechanist to Wheatstone from August to December, 1840, and he asserted that he had communicated the idea of an electric clock to Wheatstone during that period;but Wheatstone maintained that he had experimented in that direction during May. Bain further accused Wheatstone of stealing his idea of the electro-magnetic printing telegraph; but Wheatstone showed that the instrument was only a modification of his own electro-magnetic telegraph.’
Warning: don’t trust Wikipedia!
As we can see in the above example - some Wikipedians are as biased as Darwinists when it comes to failing to equally weigh and honestly present any evidence against their Royal Society idols. Moreover, in my personal experience, some Wikipedia senior editors are as morally bankrupt as Wheatstone when it comes to stealing the discoveries of others and effectively passing them off as their own - see Sutton 2013 for details.
‘Bain died poor at 67, in a home for the terminally ill. And we're left asking why things work this way. In fact, our sense of justice recoils. Yet creating ideas and making money are two separate human enterprises. Bain managed only the idea part. Yet history might be more just than it first seems. For when we trace the story of these devices, we find Bain wearing the crown for having changed his world after all. And that's really no small reward.’
Interestingly, the science swindler Wheatstone can be seen in this picture sitting close to another famous Royal Society science crook - Charles Darwin (FRS).
For more details on this and further examples of great science frauds you could do worse than read Grant, J. ( 2007) Corrupted Science: Fraud, ideology and politics in science. Wisley. Artists and Photographers Press Ltd.
Click here to read the book that dropped the bombshell on the history of science. Big data analysis proves Darwin and Wallace stole the theory of natural selection from Patrick Matthew: