Soil science, the study of soils and their relationships, involves in a goodly number of its aspects, the application of geographic principles and discipline to the solution of certain problems of soil genesis, soil character, and soil distribution. Most of such problems are directly related to place and its attributes, the essential concept about which the science of geography is crystallized. Insofar as soil science relates to the attributes of place it is distinctly geographic in its discipline, that is, the same criteria must be applied to its principles as to the principles of geography.
For, in its essence, geography is the science of place and its attributes. Facts and principles and relationships which include in their composition the concept of place, or which depend upon attributes of place, are geographic. Just as time and time sequence constitute the fundamental concept of history, or rocks and rock relationships constitute the essence of geology, or plants and their functions form the core of botany, so place, and the attributes of place,•constitute the essential concept of geography. All controversy and dogma, all definitions and classifications to the contrary notwithstanding, place, with its attributes, has, throughout history, remained, the popular and continuous criterion by which geography has been defined as a science.