The atomic theory was already present in ancient Greece. In the nineteenth century it was disputed only to return with a vengeance later on.
Likewise the geocentric view was replaced by the helio centric one, to be replaced by Einstein's view which stated that both are equally valid.
Are there examples of theories that suffered the same faith? Or only the first part? I'm interested mainly in theories that were introduced from the time the present view had it's main predecessors ready, say from the time of Maxwell. Later FR and QM were introduced but within these confines for sure non-realities were upheld.
I ask because I am very conspicious about the Higgs mechanism. It was introduced in the context of the unification of the weak and electromagnetic force. It gives mass to the vector bodons governing the weak force and leaves the photon massles. Four massless particles are thought to exist before the spontaneous symmetry breaking of the Higgs field. And this field has some very weird properties. Its value is zero for non-zero field variables! This is reflected in the Mexican hat potential. The theory introduces ghost particles on top of that. If that doesn't make one frown... Nevertheless it is considered an integral (integrating) psrt of the standard model.In the future, this theory will be seen as another kind of phlogiston, for sure.
The theory can be replaced by a more fundamental though. There are equal amounts of matter and antimatter (only an asymmetric distribution) in that theory and only two elementary particles (you can't have less). There is no need for some magic mechanism and the weak force is just a residue one.
So. It would be comforting to know if the Higgs mechanism (not the particle) could turn out to be not true.
I mention the Higgs mechanism because it's a present day phlogiston and contrary to phlogiston unprovable.