From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Richard Trott)
I came across the following in Martin Gardner's 1957 _Fads &
Fallacies_ on page 327: "It was also in Germany that pseudo-science
recently took a drubbing. A West German patent attorney, Godfried
Bueren, boldly offered 25,000 marks (about $6,000) to anyone who could
disprove his hollow sun theory. According to Herr Bueren, the sun's
flaming outer shell surrounds a cool inner sphere. Covered with
vegetation, the dark core can be glimpsed occasionally through
sunspots which are nothing more than temporary rents in the blazing
shell. The German Astronomical Society carefully ripped the theory
apart and when Bueren refused to pay, the society took legal action.
Incredible as it may seem, the court decided in favor of the
astronomers. Herr Bueren was ordered to pay the sum he had offered,
plus court costs and interest. See _Time_, Feb. 23, 1953."