The Seven Cities of Antilia are legendary cities reputed to have existed on the island of Antilia situated somewhere in the Atlantic. Medieval cartographers show Antilia (with a variety of spellings) at different locations in that ocean. Belief in its existence was firmly established by the time of Christopher Columbus. His son, Ferdinand, wrote of the many attempts to find it.
In the early 20th century geographer, W. H. Babcock, identified Cuba as Antilia, while later in 2000, Andrew Collins, in his Gateway to Atlantis devoted two chapters to the subject of the Seven Cities and also concluded that Cuba was its most likely location and by extension was also the home of Atlantis.
Denisovan is the name given to an extinct sub-species of hominid(a). Their name is derived from the Denisova cave in the Altai mountains of Siberia. Only fragments of four individuals have been identified so far. However, it has been determined that they interbred with Neanderthals, a sister race.
It did not take long for the speculative history brigade to jump on this new bandwagon. Andrew Collins has now prepared for publication The Cygnus Key in which he claims to present “compelling evidence showing that the earliest origins of human culture, religion, and technology derive from the Denisovans, the true creators of the lost civilization long known to exist but never before proved.”
This comment is nearly identical to that expressed by the late Colin Wilson relating to the Neanderthals whom he claimed had possessed highly sophisticated mathematical and astronomical knowledge and were precursors of the Atlantis civilisation. This extremely speculative assertion is made in Wilson’s Atlantis and the Kingdom of the Neanderthals.
Pseudoarchaeology is described in Wikipedia as referring to interpretations of the past from outside of the archaeological science community, which reject the accepted datagathering and analytical methods of the discipline(a). In recent times it appears to have been used as a derogatory epithet and frequently applied to successful authors such as Graham Hancock or Andrew Collins, I suspect sometimes with a tinge of jealousy.
However, there are many independent researchers who think that they can replace evidence with assertion, reason with rant or commonsense with nonsense.
The abandonment of the scientific method as most pseudoarchaeologists have done is just foolish. A recent article(b) on the subject is worth a look.
Gunung Padang is a megalithic site on the Indonesian island of Java, which was first surveyed in 1914 by the Dutch colonial authorities and published as Rapporten van de Oudheidkundige Dienst (Report of the Department of Antiquities). A post-war Australian investigation concluded that the site was much older than previously believed. Now, with presidential support, local archaeologists are carrying out an extensive investigation of the site.
The site has recently been claimed as part of Atlantis. A few years ago the late Arysio dos Santos was the leading proponent of Sundaland, which included Indonesia, as Atlantis. Now Danny Hilman Natawidjaja an Indonesian geologist has made a similar claim in his Kindle ebook, Plato Never Lied: Atlantis Is in Indonesia. In it Gunung Padang plays an important role. Mount Padang has also been claimed as the world’s oldest pyramid!
Nevertheless, a recent (May 2017) assault on Natawidjaja’s theories in an open letter(i) from Rebecca Bradley has laid bare the weaknesses in his claims.
Andrew Collins has now added an article(h). to his website that examines the preliminary claim that the lower levels at the site could be 12,000 years older than Gobekli Tepe. If confirmed, it will undoubtedly require some rewriting of history books. Do not lose sight of the fact that radiocarbon dating has limitations, being accurate for up to around 6,000 years with increasing unreliability up to perhaps 50,000 BC after which it is generally useless.
We now (Nov. ’14) have a report(e) that some type of ‘electrical device’ has been discovered at the site ‘made out of gold and copper and seems to resemble a primitive electrical capacitator.’ Until further information is available this claim must be treated with caution.
There are, however, dissenting voices as reported by journalist, Michael Bachelard(g), such as vulcanologist Sutikno Bronto, who says “Gunung Padang is simply the neck of a nearby volcano, not an ancient pyramid.Danny Hilman is not a vulcanologist. I am.” As for the carbon-dated cement between the stones, on which Hilman relies for his claims about the age of the site, Sutikno believes it is simply the byproduct of a natural weathering process, ”not man-made”. Other sceptics are even tougher. One archaeologist, who does not wish to be named since the President took such an interest, says the presidential taskforce is deluding itself. ”In the Pawon cave in Padalarang [about 45 kilometres from Gunung Padang], we found some human bones and tools made of bones about 9500 years ago, or about 7000 BCE. So, if at 7000 BCE our technology was only producing tools of bones, how can people from 20,000 BCE obtain the technology to build a pyramid?” the archaeologist asks.
The Cygnus Constellation was the location of a supernova which inspired the story of Phaeton, as related to Solon by the priets at Sais, according to Michael A. Cahill in his two-volume Paradise Rediscovered [818/9].
Andrew Collins has also written on the place of the constellation Cygnus in prehistoric consciousness. Arising from this study, it appears that the position of the Cygnus stars correlate more accurately with the Giza pyramids than those of Orion, which was proposed some years ago by Robert Bauval. Collins continues with the Cygnus-Giza connection in a subsequent offering, Beneath the Pyramids. Derek Cunningham has echoed(a) some of Collins’ work suggesting that there existed in ancient times a World Map based on the the Cygnus constellation!
Anthony Murphy and Richard Moore have also written(b) about the Cygnus Constellation and a possible link with Ireland’s Newgrange.
Peter Daughtrey is a British researcher and the author of Atlantis and the Silver City in which he identifies a location in Portugal, where he lived until recently, for Atlantis. The publicity blurb looks promising as it reads as follows: “Over 2000 books have previously attempted to find the answer but invariably stumbled by matching only a handful of Plato´s clues for this fabled lost civilisation. This book matches almost 60 and includes the discovery of the ancient capital with its harbour that Plato described in great detail and the great sunken plain with at least one group of submerged ruins. Everything fits – the precise location, climate, topography, crops and animals, even the incredible wealth. It sits uneasily by one of the world’s most lethal seismic fault lines which in the past has wreaked havoc up to ten times more powerful than the recent quake off Japan with tsunamis 100 feet high. The great Atlantis empire is traced together with their leaders odysseys to civilize South America and Egypt. The unique Atlantean physical characteristics are pinpointed and an ancient alphabet traced from which Phoenicians and Greek developed.” However, a pre-publication critique(a) has been rather less than encouraging.
Now that I have read the book I must declare that Daughtrey has produced a work that offers a spirited argument for considering Portugal’s Algarve as the location of Plato’s Atlantis. In fact he designates not just the Algarve and the submerged area in front of it as Atlantis, but the whole of that south-west Iberian region, starting immediately outside the straits of Gibraltar. The first half of it is the Costa da Luz in Spain. I note that Greg Little has written a positive review of Daughtrey’s book.(f)
Daughtrey recently elaborated that his “position for the great plain that Plato referred to is now the seabed front of southern Portugal and southern Andalucia as far Gibraltar. I think it would also have extended onto the submerged area of northern Morroco and onto the existing mainland .There would only have been a much extended narrow straits from Gibraltar dividing it for a good length.”
More specifically he identifies the town of Silves, just west of Faro, as the Silver City in the title.
In order to compile Atlantipedia I have had to read many books supporting a wide range of theories. I can say that Daughtrey’s offering would be in my top dozen Atlantis titles, along with those of Jim Allen, Andrew Collins, Anton Mifsud, Otto Muck and Jürgen Spanuth. They have all made valuable contributions to Atlantology even though I do not accept all their conclusions.
Neverthe less, without going into a string of nitpicking comments, I would prefer to clearly state where I believe Daughtrey is fundamentally wrong. Which is in accepting Plato’s (or should that be Solon’s) 9,000 years literally. He is not the first to take this approach as the consequence is that either Atlantis attacked an Athens (and Egypt) that did not even exist as organised societies at the time or the science of archaeology as we know it must be abandoned. It is interesting that when it suits him, Daughtrey is prepared to revise Plato’s dimensions for the Plain of Atlantis. I prefer to reinterpret all of Plato’s numbers, which I believe are seriously flawed.
In spite of the above, this book is a valuable addition to any Atlantis library.
September 2014 saw the History Channel preparing to broadcast a documentary on Atlantis in the Algarve that includes extensive interviews with Daughtery(b). However, following airing of the program he seemed rather disappointed(c) that many of what he considered his most important arguments had been omitted from the final cut and that the producers were more interested in extraterrestrials.
Daughtrey’s book is supported by a website(e) that includes updates and additional articles.
J. Rufus Fears (1945-2012) was an American historian at Oklahoma University and a contributor to the well-known Atlantis: Fact or Fiction edited by Edwin S. Ramage. Fears is quoted by Andrew Collins[0072.41] for his criticism of the Minoan Hypothesis where he states that: “It is disturbing that, in the last quarter of the 20thcentury, serious scholarship is still called upon to debate the possibility that Plato’s Atlantis is a remembrance of Minoan Crete. Even at a superficial glance, the equation of Atlantis with Minoan Crete is revealed as a tissuework of fabrications, a flimsy house of cards, constructed by piling dubious hypothesis upon pure speculation, cementing them together with false and misleading statements and with specious reasoning.” While I feel that Fears was a little too harsh, I agree that the Minoan Hypothesis require some industrial strength shoe-horning of Plato’s data to give the idea any traction.
Derek Cunningham is the author of a website(a) with an extensive amount of material devoted to archaeoastronomy. His core idea is that there existed in ancient times a World Map based on the the Cygnus constellation, echoing some of Andrew Collins’ work.
Included on his site is an article that somehow links a painting, allegedly a map, in the Lascaux Cave with a site in Viet Nam’s Gulf of Tonkin, which Cunningham describes as having “dimensions and geographical features similar to Plato’s description of Atlantis.” He later adds that “of all the various locations proposed, this is the only site that appears consistent with Plato’s description.” As a layman I found the article and the site in general, totally confusing, forcing me to lie down in a darkened room.
However, I cannot deny that Cunningham has put a lot of work into his site and he does have fans(b), but his ideas are too ‘way out’ for me.
His most recent ‘discoveries’(c) include an association of the layout of the Stonehenge complex with the Milky Way!
He has now extended his studies to the remarkable terraced walls of Sacsayhuamán near Cuzco in Peru. In a 2014 illustrated article in Popular Archaeology online magazine, he claimed that the angles of the adjoining ends or sides of the irregular yet tightly fitting stones have astronomical significance!
Cunningham, has now turned his attention to angles inscribed at ancient sites, which he now claims can be associated with astronomical features and events. His extensive article(e) on the Migration and Diffusion website deals with a great many numbers that I shall leave others to evaluate.
(a) http://www.midnightsciencejournal.com/?s=derek+Cunningham (offline Nov. 2017)
(c) http://www.midnightsciencejournal.com/2013/10/24/the-ancient-world-map-of-the-paleolithic-stonehenge-avenue-map/ (offline Nov. 2017)
John Ora Kinnaman (1877-1961) was an American Bible archaeologist, who, among other claims to fame, maintained that he was one of the group who first entered the tomb of King Tutankhamen with Howard Carter in 1922(a). He also claimed to have known Sir William Flinders Petrie and having met him on a trip to Egypt began a 45 year relationship during which they spent 11 years working together on the Great Pyramid. None of this has ever been confirmed.
Even more serious was a claim during a private lecture in 1955 that he and Petrie discovered a secret entrance into the south face of the Pyramid. Stephen Mehler, another ‘maverick’ archaeologist(b), claims to have heard a recording of this talk in 1979 [Issue 10 of Atlantis Rising magazine]. I think it better to quote a small part of Mehler’s article;
“He casually mentions that he and Petrie discovered a secret entrance into the Pyramid, on the South face, quite by accident. The traditionally accepted entrance is the one on the north face. Dr. Kinnaman then describes several interior chambers in which were found ancient records from Atlantis and anti-gravitational machines, that were used by the Atlanteans to construct the Great Pyramid. Furthermore, Dr. Kinnaman declared that manuscripts they found stated the Great Pyramid was built over 35,000 years ago and was never intended to be a tomb for a king. This is a fact I have maintained as true for the last 20 years!”
Mehler, an ardent fan of Crystal Skulls, UFO’s and astrology (d) , understandably swallowed all this garbage, as it confirms his own weird beliefs. Andrew Collins has also commented(e) on Mehler and Kinnaman, advising caution. Even more revealing is an old article(f) by Jason Colavito who concluded it with a letter from Sharon Bochkay, a relative of Kinnaman’s
“I am a great niece of John Ora Kinnaman. He married my great Aunt Flossie. I spent time with him when I was young and my father was raised by John and Flossie in Georgia as a young boy. He was a very bright man and had many good qualities but unfortunately was not truthful about many things. He copied the works of others and took them on as his own. His biography is full of untruths, his travels to Europe and the Middle East for instance. My family and I are amazed at some of the things we have read. In his day people never checked facts: no computers, etc. When I log on to the Kinnaman Foundation and see how they are trying to get donations for this “research” it really bothers my family and myself. I hope all of these “theories” will be debunked. Thanks.”
Sarah Steiner was a Swiss student who had opted for the Caribbean as the most likely location for Atlantis, in a German language 2002 graduation paper(a). Her contribution is fairly standard with a brief overview of the more popular theories. She seems strongly influenced by Charles Berlitz, Klaus Aschenbrenner and Andrew Collins, concurring with latter’s thesis. Atlantisforschung has an extensive review of her paper(b). See Archive 5042
(a) http://mou.ksz.ch/school/maturaprojects/Sarah%20Steiner%20-%20Atlantis%20-%20Mythos%20oder%20Wirklichkeit%20-%20Eine%20physisch-geografische%20Betrachtung.pdf (link broken 15/06/14)