There are some biologists, such as Richard Dawkins, who still pin their faith in ideas which have resulted only in blankly negative experimental results.
In the 17th century, medical pioneer Sir William Harvey and Italian scientist Francesco Redi both proved the untenability of spontaneous generation.
Philosopher Mary Midgely pointed out the fatuousness of the “meme” hypothesis in painfully direct terms.
French writer Bernard de Fontenelle expressed the belief that there really was a man on the moon — and a whole civilisation to boot, if you please.
One might, with Darwin, theorize that the development of the biosphere was simply down to that empirically unattested variant of chance, “natural selection.”