Articles | Volume 25, issue 2
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 25, 851–866, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-25-851-2021

Special issue: History of hydrology (HESS/HGSS inter-journal SI)

Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 25, 851–866, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-25-851-2021

Review article 22 Feb 2021

Review article | 22 Feb 2021

The era of infiltration

Keith Beven

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Short summary
Inspired by a quotation from Howard Cook in 1946, this paper traces the evolution of the infiltration theory of runoff from the work of Robert Horton and LeRoy Sherman in the 1930s to the early digital computer models of the 1970s and 1980s. Reconsideration of the perceptual model for many catchments, partly as a result of the greater appreciation of the contribution of subsurface flows to the hydrograph indicated by tracer studies, suggests a reconsideration of hydrological nomenclature.