The Moon has little connection with Plato’s Atlantis story apart from the more extreme speculations of some writers. One of the wildest is that the Atlanteans had established a research facility on the Moon(a), an idea rivalled by that of Alan Butler & Christopher Knight in their book, Who Built the Moon, in which they propose that the Moon was ‘constructed’! This idea has now been revived by Rob Shelsky. In 1965, the Umland brothers proposed that the Moon was a communications relay station for the Maya to make contact with their home planet!
In 1970, Michael Vasin and Alexander Shcherbakov, of what was then the Soviet Academy of Sciences, advanced a hypothesis that the Moon is a spaceship created by unknown beings.(k)
The idea that the Moon was to some extent hollow was given impetus in the 1970’s, when a study of moonquakes revealed that the Moon ‘rang like a bell’ (i). Now, nearly half a century later, Wallace Thornhill, a leading Electric Universe proponent, has endorsed the hollow Moon idea and seems sympathetic to the idea of a hollow earth. This was expressed at a recent EU conference and be viewed at the 40-minute mark of a YouTube video.(j)
The origins of the Moon have also been the subject of extensive controversy with one side claiming that it had been ‘captured’ by the earth, while the other extreme argues that it had been ‘expelled’ from our planet. The expulsion theory posits(b) that a collision with another celestial body tore material from the Earth, which in time became our Moon(h). Nils Olof Bergquist writing in the 1940’s supported the expulsion scenario and had his original Swedish book on the subject translated into English as The Moon Puzzle.
The most radical of the captured moon school was Hanns Hörbiger, who proposed that there had been a series of Moon captures. Many of his ideas were adopted by H.S. Bellamy, who added that the capture of our current satellite had caused the destruction of Atlantis. Nikolay Bonev, the astronomer, caused a stir in 1961 when he expressed the view that our Moon had once been an independent planet(d) that had experienced violent volcanic eruptions that were powerful enough to have produced a ‘recoil’ effect, which nudged it towards our Earth’s orbit and was eventually captured as our satellite.
More recently Emilio Spedicato expressed similar ideas(c), claiming that material taken from another large extraterrestrial body around 9450 BC became our Moon, but that the event also led to the destruction of Atlantis. Stuart L. Harris has proposed(m) that the planet Nibiru had a close encounter with our Earth in 9577 BC that resulted in the destruction of Atlantis, followed by another visit in 9417 BC during which it lost one of its satellites, which became our Moon!
The Moon controversies continue with the recent suggestion by Erik Asphaug, a professor of earth and planetary sciences at the University of California, Santa Cruz, who claims that originally the Earth had two moons that coalesced into a single satellite (n)!
Gary Gilligan, the catastrophist, also supports the concept of moon capture but dated this event to as recent as 2000 BC(f) and then later advanced it to 1200 BC(g). Researcher, Mark Andrew commenting on Gilligan’s claims wrote that “Although Gilligan promises more evidence to come, his theory has to contend with the varied evidence of an earlier Moon, including the earliest known written myth of the Moon’s death and rebirth, the epic poem Descent of Inanna (dating from 1750 BC), and also the oldest known map of the moon (dating from 2800 BC).”(l)
Unexpectedly, the orbital speed of the Moon appears to vary on its trip around the Earth(e).
*Some of the ideas above regarding the origin of the Moon are clearly extremist and are far more radical than a recent theory regarding the Sun proposed by Ev Cochrane, a comparative mythologist, in a YouTube clip(o), where he offers evidence that the Sun as observed in ancient times seemed quite different to how we see it today. This is borne out by the related mythologies and petroglyphs from our ancient past and show a global consistency that cannot be explained by imagination.*
(a) See: Archive 3334
Mediterranean Sea Level. There is general acceptance that, on more than one occasion, the Strait of Gibraltar was closed completely. Tectonic plate movement, worldwide sea level drops due to the onset of Ice Age glaciation or a combination of both, could have caused this. There is also clear undisputed evidence that the Mediterranean Sea has dried out completely on a number of occasions. What is not clear is when the last desiccation or partial drying-out of the Mediterranean ended. The conventional date given for the last breaching of a Gibraltar Dam is 5 million years ago. However, there is a small but growing opinion that there was a more recent breach of a dam within the memory of modern man and preserved in history and myth.
Where one theory on the location of Atlantis is concerned, the existence of a Gibraltar dam before the end of the last Ice Age is critical, namely that Atlantis was situated near modern Cyprus. The site chosen by author Robert Sarmast is 1650 metres beneath the present level of the Mediterranean. His theory is totally dependent on proving the existence of this dam. It would seem prudent to have carried out a more detailed study of the evidence for a relatively recent removal of the dam before engaging in a very costly exploration over a mile under the eastern Mediterranean.
There are a number of facts that appear to suggest a more recent Mediterranean inundation but even collectively they do not offer any more than circumstantial evidence.
(i) The Mediterranean sea level must have dropped by as much as from 150 to 300 meters or more. Several years ago, by chance divers found submerged entrances (below sea level) in Southern France, which subsequently led them to discover the now famous prehistoric cave paintings there. There are many man-made stone structures around the Mediterranean that are now under water as well.
Cosquer Cave, near Marseilles, has its entrance 37 metres underwater. It contains several dozen works painted between 25000-17000 BC. The opening was once several miles inland until about 10000 BC when the sea began to rise at the end of the last Ice Age. It has been estimated that that it was originally at a height of 80 metres above sea level, according to anthropologist, James Q. Jacobs(a). This cave art depicts the Auk, which had never been found this far north.
(ii) Submerged Maltese structures, although their inundation may have been caused by local seismic activity rather than global sea level changes.
(iv) A modern Guide to Provence(b) also claims a relatively recent removal of the Gibraltar land bridge.
(vi) The sunken port of ancient Syedra in Turkey.
*(b) Landmark Visitors Guide – Provence & Côte D’Azure by Richard Sale. (p.16)*
Eridanus is the name of a constellation in the Southern Hemisphere as well as the name of the only Atlantean river named by Plato (Crit. 112a). It has been identified with a number of waterways(b) including the Nile (Eratosthenes), the Eider (Spedicato)(d), the Rhine(f), the Istros (Danube) of Hungary(g) and the Po (H. S. Bellamy). Mythology has fiery Phaëton crashing into the Eridanus, which means ‘early burnt’.
Adding to the confusion is the existence of the River Eridanos, referred to by
Plato (Phaedrus 229) which is a tributary of the Ilissos and still partly visible in the centre of modern Athens(e).
Jürgen Spanuth was convinced that it was as either the Elder or the Eider, which flow into the North Sea opposite Helgoland. Emilio Spedicato echoed Spanuth’s views in a number of more recent articles(c) and opted for the Eider as the original Eridanus. The similarity of the two names also adds some credence to this idea.
The late Walter Baucum quoted[183.159] the Swiss historian and geographer, Frederic de Rougemont (1808-1876), who, in his 1866 book, L’Age de Bronze, ‘proved’ that originally the Rhine had been known as the Eridanus.
Apollonius of Rhodes in his Argonautica refers to the River Eridanus as flowing into the Cronian Sea(a), generally accepted as the North Atlantic. The Eridanus is frequently referred to in ancient Greek texts as an amber rich river in Northern Europe. Amber was claimed by Spanuth to have been the Orichalcum of Plato’s Atlantis.
Kai Helge Wirth, a German geographer, has advanced the controversial theory that the configuration of the constellations were chosen to conform with the outlines of various Mediterranean and Atlantic coasts and were used as navigational aids to ancient mariners. As part of this radical idea, Wirth has pointed out that the constellation Eridanus closely follows the meandering Eider rather than the Po.
Geologists have given the name Eridanus to a river which flowed where the Baltic is now located. Claudius Ptolemy identified the River Duna, which flows into the Gulf of Riga in the Baltic, as the Eridanus.
Critias is the title of one of the two dialogues of Plato that gave the world its first unambiguous mention of Atlantis. Benjamin Jowett’s English translation of 1871 is widely available on the Internet(a) as it is now out of copyright.
The Critias dialogue ends in the middle of a sentence while on the point of revealing more about Atlantis. This fact has generated regular comment over the centuries and some have concluded that Plato grew tired of the Atlantis story, while others suggest that he was at the end of his writing career and old age or illness prevented him from finishing the dialogue. However, since it is accepted that Plato’s Laws, which also ends abruptly,was written later than Critias the idea that death prevented its completion does not hold up.
*Perhaps relevant to the incomplete Critias, is the suggestion that there is an entire intended dialogue missing, apparently with the possible title of Hermocrates. This would appear to be confirmed by Critias 108 which twice mentions, in the same passage, that Hermocrates is due to make a contribution of some substance, which the repetition implies!*
H. S. Bellamy in his book The Atlantis Myth points out that there is no evidence of any classical writer commenting on the unfinished nature of Critias until Plutarch, at the beginning of the second century AD. The implication of this is that the original manuscript was completed but somehow over the centuries the final part of Critiaswas lost. It is easier to believe that the final incomplete sentence was originally at the end of a line of text at the bottom of a page that became separated from the following leaves than imagine that a person of Plato’s literary stature was incapable of finishing a sentence. I am tempted to subscribe to this theory and hope that somehow a copy of the ‘missing’ pages turn up in some obscure library.
George Sarantitis offers a novel explanation for the sudden ending of Critias. He proposes that Plato finished his narrative where Zeus was about to speak in the expectation that his audience would have been guided by the earlier content of Timaeus to complete the text with an utterance by Zeus in Homer’s Odyssey (1.32-34) “O alas, the manner in which the mortals put the blame on the gods. For they claim that from us do derive their misfortunes, yet often they themselves with their wicked deeds (hubristically behaviour) fall into grief beyond what can be written.” (Sarantitis’ translation).
His full argument can be read online(c).
A few years ago a Greek by the name of Keramidas produced what he claimed was the missing ending to Critias(b). It was an unconvincing piece that was quickly dismissed as spurious.
(c) http://platoproject.gr/mom-1/ (section 5)
The Credibility and Veracity of the Atlantis story must be considered on three levels. Was the story true and did Plato himself believe it to be so and is it credible to us today? Any reading of the text reveals that Plato did believe it even though he had reservations about some of its contents. Plato’s faith is clearly based on the fact that he traced the tale back to Solon whose reputation placed him beyond question for the Athenians of Plato’s era. For Plato to claim Solon as the primary conduit for the Atlantis story is the equivalent of an American writer today claiming George Washington as a source. Unless the citation is factually correct, any such writer would be committing literary suicide. In Plato’s case he not only quoted the ‘canonised’ Solon but also included two of his own dead relatives in the chain of transmission from Egypt. This combination of Solon and his own relatives in the provenance of the narrative has led many to conclude that it is highly improbable that Plato would have done so in the perpetration of a literary fraud, leading to the reasonable assumption that there must be some basis to the story. The fact that the chain of transmission is so convoluted, has also added to the view that the Atlantis story is to be believed.
To my mind, if Plato had invented the Atlantis story he would have had no reason to refer to childhood memories. In fact, unless we are to attribute very great deviousness to Plato, his very reference to Mnemosyne reinforces the veracity of his narrative.
The account of how Plato received the story contains no logical contradictions, which further enhances its credibility. In addition to this, as H.S. Bellamy pointed out, it is remarkable that Plato was able to credit the Egyptians with knowledge and antiquity superior to that of the Greeks.
Plato relates how the priests of Sais told Solon that the last flood to engulf Athens led to the art of writing being lost and not regained for some considerable period. That the Egyptians were aware of this seems to come as a surprise to Solon. It was not until the 19th century that it was confirmed that the Greeks had possessed writing prior to the ‘Dark Age’, a discovery that adds further credence to the whole narrative.
In addition to all this, is the fact that Plato unambiguously claimed on four occasions in Timaeus that the story was true, as if anticipating the incredulity of some of his audience. It is not impossible, in fact it is more than likely, that Plato added his own elaboration to the Atlantis story in keeping with the norms of literary licence of his time. However, he has never been shown to be guilty of wholesale fabrication. Interestingly, Plato declared that his Republic is a fiction but that Atlantis is true.
John Michael Greer[0345.15] notes that Plato stated “three times in the Timaeus alone that the story Solon heard from the Egyptian priest is true, ‘not a mere legend but an actual fact (Tim.21a).’ This is the only place anywhere in Plato’s dialogues that he puts this much emphasis on the factual nature of one of his stories. This dosen’t guarantee the truth of his account of Atlantis, of course, but it does suggest that he wanted to make sure that his story was not dismissed as ‘a mere legend’.”
The Greek researcher, Anthony N. Kontaratos, listed twenty-two instances of Plato asserting the truthfulness of the Atlantis story, directly and indirectly, in a paper delivered to the 2005 Atlantis Conference on Melos.*This led him to ask the question; “How many times in a narration does an author have to insist that his story is true and then again use a credible side plot to drive the point home? Why would Plato go to such lengths to convince his readers that his story is real, if it were not?” [p.80]*
A common criticism is that Plato was merely using the Atlantis story to advance his own views of an ideal state. In fact, he had no need to concoct a country unknown to his listeners to promote his political philosophy when he had already expounded them more than once in other works without resorting to historical or geographical invention. It does seem far-fetched to suggest that Plato used the exotic story of Atlantis to highlight his ideal state system while his prehistoric Athens as outlined in Timaeus was already available for this very purpose.
If Plato had invented the Atlantis story it makes no sense that he included in the narrative his disquiet at some of the details contained in it. In Critias 118c he has the speaker, Critias, declare “now as regards the depth of this trench and its breadth and length, it seems incredible that it should be so large as the account states, considering that it was made by hand, and in addition to all the other operations. But none the less we must report what we heard”. Galanopoulos and Bacon drew attention to this extract as an inexplicable comment by a ‘fabulist’ intent on misleading an audience. They surmise that Plato was torn between the reputation of his source, Solon, and the incredibility of the content of his tale and opted for reputation over reason. If Plato had invented the story he would have devised more credible dimensions. They very fact that he offers such seemingly exaggerated numbers, which in other circumstances might have generated open derision, is in itself evidence that he accepted their veracity and believed that he was relaying a true story.
If we compare the manner in which Plato presents Atlantis in Timaeus and Critias with his introduction of the myth of Theuth and Thamus in his dialogue Phaedrus, where the speaker, Socrates, announces “I can tell you a story from the men of former times but only they know whether or not it is true”, we can see an element of doubt which he does not apply in the case of the Atlantis story. Although Plato clearly accepts that the Atlantis account is a ‘strange’ one, he is adamant that it is true, ‘having been attested by Solon, the wisest of the Seven Sages’. In his dialogue Timaeus, Plato has the speaker, Critias, twice emphasise that his story is about something that actually happened and he has Socrates himself welcome the story on that understanding.
The weight of evidence is that Plato believed the story to be true and if doubt is to be cast anywhere it should be directed towards Plato’s source, Solon, the Egyptian priests or the subsequent line of transmission. And so, the key questions are: (i) did the Egyptian priests tell Solon the truth and (ii) did Solon fully understand what he was being told and (iii) was the story transmitted intact to Plato?
In a March 2014 interview George Sarantitis gave his reasons for accepting Plato’s credibility, “So, going back to its author, Atlantis was written almost 2.360 years ago by the Greek philosopher-scientist Plato. He wrote about it in two separate books, Timaeus and Critias. Plato was renowned in his time and is considered to be of the greatest thinkers ever. Many believe Atlantis to be a figment of his imagination, written to illustrate a point. But Plato was an arch exponent of rationalism and logic, renowned and acclaimed philosopher-scientist of wide interdisciplinary knowledge and he wrote about Atlantis in the latter part of his life. It was in his last works. So the question is; would one like him, at his age and reputation and in that era, write a work of pure fiction, a fairytale? The logical answer is no. It’s illogical to expect that one under his circumstances would spend time to write such an incredible story solely for philosophical instruction. Would one reasonably expect Einstein or Hawkins for example, to write fairytales as part of their life’s work and especially while approaching the end of it? Besides, Plato’s account of Atlantis contains geographical directions, mathematical descriptions and precise measurements; hardly the stuff of fairy stories. Why (did) he write about it in two separate books?”(a)
Lewis Spence pointed out[259.41] that Sais, which had a Greek quarter, had very strong religious, social and commercial links with Athens that would have generated regular traffic between the two cities. It is highly unlikely that the Atlantis story was related to Solon alone and further remarks that as a consequence, “if Plato’s account had not been inherited from Solon, and had its Egyptian form not been current in Sais, there were thousands of Greeks there who could have contradicted it, and that some negative of the kind would have reached Athens sooner or later.”
Eberhard Zangger contends that there is no reason to believe that Plato saw the Atlantis story as anything other than an actual historical account. He argues that the length and specificity of detail would render the tale purposeless as fiction.
*Rhys Carpenter pointed out “A remarkable detail that should convince the most skeptical of the genuineness of Solon’s conversation with the Saite priests is the latter’s unambiguous statement that the older Greek race had been reduced to an unlettered and uncivilized remnant which, like children, had to learn its letters anew. This claim we know to be entirely exact, but we have no reason to believe that Plato himself was aware of it.” [629.498]*
The strongest case that can be brought against the credibility of Plato’s tale is perhaps the high numerical values given to both architectural dimensions and the antiquity ascribed to Egypt, Athens and Atlantis alike. Since Plato did not treat his audience as fools, we can only attribute these apparent exaggerations to a transmission error as the narrative passed through many persons from the Egyptian priests to Plato or, as some have suggested, from even earlier sources such as Sumeria or the Indus Valley.
The fact that Plato incorporated such excessive numbers into his Dialogues only enhances the view the Plato really believed the data given to him and that they were not the outpourings of a deluded romantic.
Finally, had Plato’s intention been to totally deceive his listeners then it is reasonable to expect that he would have used the long recognised ploy of carefully mixing the false with large dollops of commonly accepted truths, thus luring his audience into accepting everything presented as fact. There is no evidence of such a strategy, instead we have Plato doubting some of his own story but obviously compelled to relate it as given to him out of regard for its source, Solon.
Nevertheless, in spite of all this we cannot ignore the fact that there is a high level of scepticism regarding the Atlantis story, particularly among academics. I suspect that in many instances that this intellectual cowardice stems more from a need to protect careers rather than engage in controversy.
Hans Schindler Bellamy (1888-1970), appears to be one of the pseudonyms of Rudolf Elmayer von Vestenbrugg, a.k.a. Elmar Brugg. H. S. Bellamy, with one exception, was the pen name used on English language books. He was probably Austrian, or Anglo-Austrian as Trevor Palmer designates him[0888.127]. Furthermore, there is no clear agreement regarding the exact year or place of either his birth (sometimes 1901)(b) or death (sometimes 1982). Atlantisforschung.de records(c) his life as (1901-1982) and refers to a lecture that Bellamy gave in 1975 to the World Congress of the Ancient Astronaut Society in Zurich, which presumably he delivered while still alive. Until now, I have also been unable to locate any photos of Bellamy.
During the Nazi reign he wrote a number of regime friendly works under the name of Elmar Vinibert von Rudolf with the SA rank of Obersturmführer including a volume of SA stories covering the war years 1939/40. After the war he was usually published in the German language as Elmar Brugg.
Bellamy is probably best known for his adoption of some of the strange cosmological ideas of Hanns Hoerbiger, with whom he developed a friendship and has written about these theories in both English and German. He gathered an extensive collection of worldwide myths to support the view that the Earth had lost a previous moon and captured our present satellite within the last 50,000 years. He developed his views in his first book, Moons, Myths and Man which was published shortly before the Second World War. After the war Bellamy was instrumental in establishing the British Hoerbiger Institute which contributed to Egerton Sykes’ bi-monthly Atlantis magazine.
Bellamy wrote a short monograph for the Hoerbiger Institute’s newsletter in March 1948, in which he reiterated his belief that the capture of our Moon caused the destruction of Atlantis(d).
In 1949 Bellamy was invited by Sykes to visit Britain, presumably from Austria, and give lectures on Hörbiger’s theories. In Vol.1 No.6 of Atlantean Research there is an article(a) written by Bellamy, he seems to be ingratiating himself with the British with glowing references to the Pound Sterling. This could be interpreted as part of a process of rehabilitation following his wartime activities.
He directly dissects the Atlantis story in his book, The Atlantis Myth, in which he never misses an opportunity to link the details of the Plato’s narrative with the ‘captured Moon’ theory of Hoerbiger. He also refers (p.78) to classical writers such as Strato and Seneca who wrote, “that originally the Straits of the Pillars (Straits of Gibraltar) did not exist, but the rock was eventually broken through in a cataclysm.” Bellamy logically comments that such an event could only be known if there were witnesses to it.
He also produced a volume, The Book of Revelation is History, devoted to demonstrating that the last book of the New Testament is in fact a coded description of the catastrophes that accompanied the capture of our moon. He claimed that the reference to the ten horns is an allusion to the ten Atlantean kings. He also interpreted the Book of Jeremiah I & II as well as Ezekiel as containing references to aspects of the Atlantis story.
Bellamy devoted a lot of his energies to the study of Tiahuanaco and co-authored two books with Peter Allan (1898-1974) on the subject. Both Bellamy and Allan were awarded honorary professorships in the University of La Paz in recognition of their work at Tiahuanaco.
He believed that he had found evidence of a shorter year of 290 days in ancient times but within the memory of man. Bellamy studied the calendar on the Sun Gate of Tiahuanaco and believed that he had found evidence of a shorter year of 290 days in ancient times but within the memory of man. He subscribed to the theory that a pre-lunar satellite orbited our planet 100,000 years ago and that it rotated so close to the Earth, eventually crashing into it, that it caused a more rapid rotation of our planet!
What appears to have been his last book was published in German shortly after his death and once again he wrote of the possibility and consequences of cosmic collisions. Unusually, this book was published with the authorship credited jointly to both Rudolf Elmayer von Vestenbrugg and H.S. Bellamy.
(d) http://www.theflatearthsociety.org/home/index.php/flat-earth-library/pamphlets-and-journals (Hoerbiger Monograph No. 1. 2nd Edition. March, 1948)
The Book of Revelation is invoked[102.121-125] by Frank Joseph, in attempts to link descriptions in it to the destruction of Atlantis. The proposed connection is rather tenuous and seems to be an attempt to expand on an idea of John Michell, who sees parallels between the destruction of Babylon and that of Atlantis.
Allan & Delair, in their book on prehistoric catastrophes have suggested that the Book of Revelation is not wholly prophetic but in fact contains references to the effect of a near miss by a large extraterrestrial body.
Others see this final book of the Bible as foreshadowing the end of the world, comparable with the Ragnarok of Norse mythology(a).
A Gibraltar Landbridge or Dam is generally accepted to have existed on a number of occasions during the earth’s history. There is a broad consensus among geologists that the last time a totally enclosed and desiccated Mediterranean had its barrier to the Atlantic breached was around 5.3 million years ago. One well-illustrated website(h) attributes this rupture to a meteor impact!
Today, we generally think of the Strait of Gibraltar as the only gateway between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, while in fact there is evidence that millions of years ago the Strait was closed but that there were other access routes between the two bodies of water(n). The Betic Corridor in the north, which later became part of the Spanish Guadalquivir Basin and the Rifian Corridor in the south, in what is now Morocco.
However, a number of experts in different fields (noted by Van Sertima) have opted to suggest a more recent landbridge, perhaps 120,000 years ago, in order to explain some of the faunal migrations from Africa to the Iberian Peninsula. The 18th century writer Georges-Louis Buffon speculated as early as 1749 on the existence of a Gibraltar Dam. Alexander Braghine refers[156.21] to a Bishop Tollerat, a contemporary of Bory de Saint Vincent, claiming that a Gibraltar landbridgen was breached by an earthquake and led to the submergence of Atlantis. Unfortunately, I have been unable to track down Tollerat.
Even popular fiction featured the idea of a Gibraltar landbridge. In 1869, Mark Twain in chapter 7 of Innocents Abroad voiced a then current theory that there had been dry land between Gibraltar and North Africa allowing the passage northward of the so-called ‘Barbary apes’ that live on the ‘Rock’ today.
In 1921, H.G.Wells, in The Outline of History, offered a graphic, although speculative, description of the breaching of the Gibraltar Dam(g). He wrote that “This refilling of the Mediterranean, which by the rough chronology we are employing in this book may have happened somewhen between 30,000 and 10,000 B.C., must have been one of the greatest single events in the pre-history our race.”
Manuel Sánchez de Ocaña was the Spanish Lieuenant General during the 1909 war in Africa. In a rare 1935 book, Accion de España en Africa(a) (Spanish Action in Africa) he refers to the ancient isthmus that linked Spain and North Africa as well as landbridges linking Europe and America on which he believed Atlantis had been situated.
François de Sarre (1947- ) a noted French evolutionary zoologist who has proposed that a landbridge had existed at Gibraltar, which was only destroyed in relatively recent times, possibly in the second millennium BC. In support of his view he quotes Pomponius Mela, Diodorus Siculus and Pliny.*He has also published a paper, in English, supporting his opinion with a spectrum of faunal evidence(k).*
Others have ventured further and proposed that a dam existed within the experience of man and that its last destruction led to the sinking of Atlantis that many claim was located in the Mediterranean. H. S. Bellamy refers to Strato quoted by Strabo, declaring that originally the strait did not exist but that the barrier was broken through in a cataclysm. Bellamy also quotes Seneca describing how Spain was separated from Africa by earthquakes. Neither of these references could have originated without human witnesses.
Alexander Braghine also added to the idea of a relatively recent landbridge when he wrote[156.139] “We possess a whole series of records of the width of these Straits, left by ancient and medieval writers of various centuries. At the beginning of the fifth century B.C. the width was only half a mile, but the writer Euton in 400 B.C., estimated it at 4 miles; Turiano Greslio, in 300 B.C., at 5 miles; and Titus Livius, at the beginning of the Christian Era, at 7 miles. Victor Vitensa, in A.D. 400, gives the width of the Straits as equal to 12 miles, and at present it is 15 miles wide.”
C. M. Hardy subscribed to the view that there had been a dam at Gibraltar that was breached around 4500 BC with such a force that it also led to the destruction of a landbridge between Tunisia and Italy. He believed that remnants of Atlantis will be found in the seas around Greece.
C. S. Rafinesque, the famous naturalist, claimed that there was a Gibraltar landbridge that was destroyed 654 years after Noah’s Flood. These claims are to be found in chapter 14 of Vol II of The American Nations published in 1836. This volume can now be downloaded for free(e). A creationist website(i) links the breaching of the landbridge with Noah’s Deluge, which the author claims not only flooded the Mediterranean but also spilled into the Black Sea, the Red Sea and also the Persian Gulf. (see below)
The standard argument against the landbridge theory is that although the Atlantic was dramatically lower during the last Ice Age it was not sufficient to expose a land bridge between Spain and Africa at Gibraltar. However, it should be noted that the underwater sill between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean would have been much higher than now. When we consider that the breaching of a landbridge at Gibraltar would have caused an incredible flow of water through the breach (hundreds of times the flow of Niagara Falls), scouring its bottom, so that by the time the levels in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean had equalised, the erosion of the sill between them would have been considerable and when viewed today would misleadingly suggest that the Mediterranean had not have been completely cut off from the Atlantic during the last Ice Age. For the future, the consequence of this is that when (not if) the next Ice Age begins the ocean levels will have to drop even lower if the Mediterranean is to be isolated from the Atlantic once again. An example of what a sudden release of large bodies of water can do is visible in the scablands of North America, created by the breaching of the glacial dam retaining Lake Missoula.
The Spanish researcher Paulino Zamarro contends, in his 2000 book, Del Estrecho de Gibraltar a la Atlantida that a Gibraltar dam was created by silting when the Atlantic was very much lower during the last Ice Age and that it lasted until 7,500 years ago when it was breached and destroyed Atlantis, which he locates in the Cyclades, with the island of Melos containing its capital city. Details of his theory can be found on the Internet(d). A larger version of Zamarro’s map is shown below.
Other researchers such as Constantin Benetatos maintain that this idea is supported by comments of ancient writers who suggest that at one time the Mediterranean had no existence. The philosopher Strato supported by Seneca refer to the sundering of such a dam linking Europe and Africa. The same idea was expressed by Diodorus Siculus, who said that Africa and Europe were joined and separated by Heracles. Such ideas could only have arisen if there had been a Gibraltar Dam far more recently than the conventionally accepted 5.3 million years ago. The lowering of the ocean levels at the beginning of the last Ice Age and the exposure of a landbridge or dam between Spain and Morocco would have had the effect of drying out the Mediterranean due to the fact that loss of water through evaporation in the region is greater than the amount of water from rivers that feed into it.
It is worth considering that although the catastrophic breaching of the Bosporus and consequent expansion of the Black Sea is generally accepted as fact, there are no specific legends to support it apart from a reappraisal of the Flood of Noah. Therefore, it is not unreasonable to point out that a lack of local myth or legend relating to a breaching of a Gibraltar Dam is not proof that such an event did not occur. Furthermore, the area around the mouth of the Mediterranean is geologically unstable and could have been subjected to seismic activity that could have breached or even blocked the strait.
Alberto Arecchi agrees(a) with the concept of an historical land bridge at Gibraltar, but places its breach to around 2300 BC. As already intimated, Constantin Benetatos also believes(b) in the existence of the Gibraltar Dam. Joseph S. Ellul the Maltese writer was probable the first modern author to link the breaching of a Gibraltar landbridge with the destruction of Atlantis, which he claims to have been located adjacent to Malta. He identifies this submergence of Atlantis by the waters of the Atlantic with Noah’s Flood. Ellul interprets Genesis 7:11, 8:2, which refers to the “fountains of the great deep” bursting forth, as a reference to the collapse of the Gibraltar Dam. David Hatcher Childress also supports the idea of such a landbridge and has ventured a date of around 9000 BC for its collapse[620.261] and the consequent flooding of a desiccated Mediterranean.
Georgeos Diaz-Montexano, who has been searching for Atlantis off the coast of Spain and Gibraltar, has favourably referred to Zamarro’s silting theory and included the illustration, shown above, from Zamarro’s book on his websites. A further reference to silting can be read on another website(f).
When the Mediterranean eventually filled up, it is highly probable that it was then that the pressure of its waters led to the flooding of the Black Sea. It is reported that there are scouring marks at the entrance to the Black Sea that are very similar to those at Gibraltar. The date of the putative collapse of the Gibraltar Dam would therefore be marginally earlier, while the Mediterranean basins filled, than the accepted date for the breaching of the Bosporus currently calculated to have been around 5600 BC.
Robert Sarmast’s apparently dormant theory of Atlantis submerged off the coast of Cyprus under what is now a mile of water is totally dependent on the existence of a Gibraltar Dam during the last Ice Age and it being subsequently breached when the level of the Atlantic rose or the even more improbable lowering of the seafloor by a mile, as a consequence of seismic/tectonic activity in the region.
On the basis of evidence(c) offered by the quoted classical writers, the fact that sea levels rose hundreds of feet after the last Ice Age and examples of water damage to temples on elevated ground in Malta and nuraghi in Sardinia it is not unreasonable to conclude that a rupturing of a landbridge at Gibraltar within the last ten thousand year was possible if not probable.
The most dramatic suggestion regarding the creation of the Strait of Gibraltar has been offered by Terry Westerman(l), who has proposed that the rupturing of the landbridge was caused by two meteor impacts.
However, all that must be reconciled with the scientific findings of Kenneth Hsu who dated the last opening of the Gibraltar Strait to 5.5 million years ago(m).
(b) See: Archive 2365
The Bible offers no direct reference to Atlantis, but this is not to be seen as proof of its non-existence, when you consider that in spite of the fact that the Hebrews were in Egypt for hundreds of years, the Bible does not mention the pyramids either and they most certainly did then and still do, exist.
The Bible has been invoked as justification for everything from war to slavery. It has been one of the most divisive books ever, having been instrumental in the creation of hundreds, if not thousands, of competing Christian sects over the last two millennia. It is assumed that any theory, religious or secular that can be shown to have a biblical foundation will automatically have enhanced credibility.
Jean De Serres, the 16th century historian, was probably the first to link Atlantis with the Bible when he wrote that Atlantis had been located in the Holy Land. Lewis Spence[259.33] accused Huet, Borchart and Vossius, in the 16th and 17th centuries of using ‘ingenious misreading of the Pentateuch’ to claim that the Platonic story of Atlantis was in reality a version of patriarchal history. In a similar vein, in 1726 a French lawyer, Claude Olivier, wrote of his conviction that the ten tribes of Israel were to be equated with the ten kingdoms of Atlantis.
The Book of Genesis in particular has inspired speculation regarding a possible link between the Bible and the Atlantis narrative.
Therefore, I advise that any new scriptural interpretation must be treated with extreme caution. With that in mind, I mention that an American researcher, J. D. Brady, who claims to be a scriptural scholar and as such has identified Atlantis, drawing on chapters 26-28 of Ezekiel. He refers to the Atlanteans as Tyrrhenians and names their leader as Satan! He claims that the Tyre referred to in these chapters was in fact an island named Tyrus that Plato knew as Atlantis. He offers a range of data to suggest that this Tyrus was not the Tyre we know today located in Lebanon. Brady claims with great certainty that the remains of Atlantis are to be found in the Bay of Troy! A 2014 book by David Hershiser, Beyond the Pillars of Hercules, has taken up this idea that the reference in Ezekiel was concerned with Atlantis.
Not content with identifying Atlantis, Brady also claims to know the location of the Ark of the Covenant, saying that “It is currently secreted in an underground treasure crypt on Lemnos Island.”(b)
H.S. Bellamy, the Austrian researcher, also produced a volume, The Book of Revelation is History, devoted to demonstrating that the last book of the New Testament is in fact a coded description of the catastrophes that accompanied the capture of our Moon. He claimed that the reference to the ten horns is an allusion to the ten Atlantean kings. He also interpreted the Book of Jeremiah I & II as well as Ezekiel as containing references to aspects of the Atlantis story.
However, R Cedric Leonard does offer(a) an interesting comparison of a passage in the Old Testament with the classical writers:
“And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, that the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose…
There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same mighty men (heroes) which were of old, men of renown.” (Genesis 6:1-2,4)
Leonard points out that this coincides with Plato’s history of the Atlanteans and highlights that Hesiod referred to the Titans, of which Atlas was one, as the ‘sons of heaven’.
Leonard also offers a more rational translation of Job 26:5-6 that strengthens this view that the Atlanteans and Titans are identical:
“The Titans tremble beneath the waters and the inhabitants thereof. Hell is naked before him, and destruction hath no covering”.
2011 saw the publication of Atlantis: The Eyewitnessesby Walter Parks in which he also quoted extensively from the Book of Job, having claimed that it was written in 9619 BC and contained an eyewitness account of the catastrophe that destroyed Atlantis!
Thorwald C. Franke has reviewed a range of theories that have sought to associated various aspects of Bible history with elements of the Atlantis story. Most are rather speculative, but Franke concludes(d) that “the Bible should not be underestimated: There could indeed be indirect hints to Plato’s Atlantis in the Bible!”
The biblical references to Tarshish is also used by those who equate it with Tartessos and in turn identify it as Atlantis. The location of Tarshish is a highly contentious issue with scholars unable to arrive at any clear consensus. However, there is some agreement that Tartessos had been located in Southern Spain. Some proponents of that idea not only consider Tarshish identical with Tartessos, but with Atlantis as well. Richard Freund is a proponent of a Spanish Tartessos, which he also identifies with Atlantis and of course with the biblical Tarshish. This Bible connection was taken further in the 2017 James Cameron’s 2017 (a documentary, Atlantis Rising, shows Simcha Jacobovici also linking Tarshish with Atlantis(h) and offering as ‘evidence’ for a linkage between Atlantis and the Jewish Temple, the design of the Hebrew menorah(g), which he claims is a representation of one half the concentric rings of Plato’s city of Atlantis. This foolish idea is not new, as it has already been suggested by Prof. Yahya Ababni(f).
Turning the tables on the idea of the Bible supporting the story of Atlantis, Marjorie Braymer[198.30]wrote that Cosmas Indicopleustes (6th cent. AD) was the first to use Plato’s Atlantis to support the veracity of the Bible.
Another line of investigation might be the suggested parallels between Greek mythology and Genesis(c).
A paper on the Academia.edu website(e) by M. De Rosa argues that Atlantis was the ‘Beast’ in the Book Of Revelations!
More recently, a Dutch commentator, Leon Elshout, has also written extensively, in Dutch and English, linking Atlantis and Babylon(i) with details in the Book of Revelation. Among a number of odd ideas expressed by him is the suggestion that Tarshish was Britain(j).