Apply known concepts to new phenomena

from The Memoirs of Casanova by Casanova nonfiction ~1 min read

My mother rose at day break, opened one of the windows facing the bed, and the rays of the rising sun, falling on my eyes, caused me to open them. The bed was too low for me to see the land; I could see through the window only the tops of the threes along the river. The boat was sailing with such an even movement that I could not realize the fact of our moving, so that the trees, which, one after the other, were rapidly disappearing from my sight, caused me an extreme surprise. "Ah, dear mother!" I exclaimed, "what is this? the trees are walking!" At that very moment the two noblemen came in, and reading astonishment on my countenance, they asked me what my thoughts were so busy about. "How is it," I answered, "that the trees are walking." They all laughed, but my mother, heaving a great sigh, told me, in a tone of deep pity, "The boat is moving, the threes are not. Now dress yourself." I understood at once the reason of the phenomenon. "Then it may be," said I, "that the sun does not move, and that we, on the contrary, are revolving from west to east." At these words my good mother fairly screamed. M. Grimani pitied my foolishness, and I remained dismayed, grieved, and ready to cry, M. Baffo brought me life again. He rushed to me, embraced me tenderly, and said, "Though are right, my child. The sun does not move; take courage, give heed to your reasoning powers and let others laugh."

—Casanova, The Memoirs of Casanova, p. -1