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’!
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.
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).
Unexpectedly, the orbital speed of the Moon appears to vary on its trip around the Earth(e).
Jacques Pauwels (1920-1997) & Louis Bergier (1912-1978) were the authors of the bestselling The Morning of the Magicians and its sequel Impossibilities Possibilities. Pauwels was the founder of the Planéte magazine and Bergier was a nuclear physicist. It is reported that Nostra magazine (20-26, April, 1977) carried an article by Bergier (real name, Mik Ezdanitoff)where he discusses the possibility of a Hollow Earth(a).
Their books rush from subject to subject like a train going from station to station without stopping long enough to pick up passengers. Uncharacteristically, they devoted quite a number of pages to Hörbiger’s strange lunar theories. This in turn led on to Tiwanaku that the authors refer to as ‘Atlantis of the Andes’ having great antiquity, but suggest that there was second Atlantis in the Atlantic that was destroyed later by “waters from the north”, which inspired the story of the Flood of Noah in the Bible.
Rafael Videla Eissmann is a Chilean historian and lecturer(a). He has published two books (in Spanish) on Atlantis based on conversations with the Chilean nazi Miguel Serrano. The theories of Hanns Hörbiger are investigated and supported. Eissmann has also lectured on Hörbiger and other heroes and supporters of the Third Reich such as Edmund Kiss. Eissmann’s most important contribution to Atlantean studies was arguably his resurrection of the work of Robert Rengifo who along with Arthur Posnansky were possibly the first people to suggest Antarctica as the location of Atlantis.
Uwe Topper (1940-) was born in Wroclaw, Poland (formerly Breslau, Germany) and currently living in Berlin where he earns a living as an artist. However, he is better known as a researcher and author in the fields of history, ethnography and anthropology. Towards the end of the last century he turned his attention to chronology and produced his own version of New Chronology which incorporates some of the views of Anatoly Fomenko and Heribert Illig.
‘New Chronology’ is also a term applied to the realignment of the chronologies of the Middle East as expounded by David Rohl.
A paper(b) by Topper on the subject is worth a read as is a critical review(g) of Topper’s work by Jason Colavito.
Topper seems to thrive on controversy, because not content to deconstruct our chronology, he has denounced, Beowulf, the cave paintings of Chauvet, and the Lady of Elche as all fakes. He has also written an extensive paper(f) on cart ruts, usually associated with just Malta, which are found around the Mediterranean and further afield.
Topper has also written about Atlantis, placing its capital on the site of modern Cadiz surrounded by nine other cities between Lisbon and Tarragona (see Richard Cassaro) and has identified possible references to Atlantis in the Qur’an and also speculated that by 11,000 BC Atlantean culture had spread as far as the Americas and Asia! He dealt with these matters in his 1977 book, Das Erbe der Giganten. Untergang und Rückkehr der Atlanter (The legacy of the giants, fall and return of the Atlantean)
He has also attempted to revive interest in Hanns Hörbiger’s ‘world-ice theory’(d).
My instincts tell me that Topper’s views should be treated with great caution.
Topper’s son, Ilya, is following in his father’s footsteps with articles on New Chronology as well as papers with provocative titles such as; The Christian Koran and The Sumerians did not exist(c).
(e) http://www.newchronology.eu/ (offline April 2016)
(f) http://www.ilya.it/chrono/pages/gleisedt.htm (german)
Edmund Kiss (1886-1960) was a German archaeologist, who with Arthur
Posnansky advanced the idea that Tiahuanaco had been built by Nordic refugees from Atlantis. He had worked with Posnansky at Tiahuanaco in the 1920’s including a search for evidence to support the theories of Hanns Hörbiger.
During the Third Reich was requested by Heinrich Himmler to take a team of researchers from the Ahnenerbe to continue his studies at Tiahuanaco but the expedition was called off. Following that he briefly joined the Waffen SS. After the war he continued his interest in Atlantis, writing a book on Plato’s Critias and contributing to Egerton Sykes’ Atlantean Research newsletter in the 1950’s.
Rafael Videla Eissmann is an historian at the Catholic University of Chile, has written a number of articles in Spanish(a) regarding Kiss, as well as a wide range of other historical subjects.
Hanns Hörbiger (1860-1931) was an Austrian mining engineer by profession and in his spare time was an amateur astronomer. Today, he is probably better know as the father of the actors Paul and Attila Hörbiger.
By gazing at the moon he became convinced that he was looking at a bright outer layer of ice. Hörbiger published his “Doctrine of Eternal Ice” around 1913 in a book co-authored with a schoolteacher named Philip Fauth. Hörbiger proposed an early form of catastrophism that saw the Earth capture a number of moons in succession. Periodically, each of these moons disintegrated and as they spiralled to earth producing enormous ‘ice showers’ followed by meteors of iron. He saw the effects of these impacts as the source of Flood myths and claimed that when our current Moon was captured around 9500 BC it triggered earthquakes that led to the destruction of Atlantis. His theories were hailed in Germany during the 1930’s and 1940’s and officially backed by the Nazis (see Ahnenerbe). Heather Pringle notes[0032.180] Hitler’s personal support for Hörbiger’s theories. There was a Viennese Hörbiger Institute for World Ice Science founded in 1932(p). Their publication Mitteilungen had two volumes published from 1941 to 1944 and a third volume 1971-1976(o).
His ideas were adopted and developed further by Hans Bellamy in a number of his books. During the first half of the 20th century, many beyond the Nazi realm frequently referred to Hörbiger’s moon theory as authoritative.
Hörbiger refused to accept the evidence that his ‘icy’ moon had a daytime temperature of 100°C. Followers of Hörbiger existed in Germany, Britain and France after the war, until an actual landing on the Moon demonstrated that it was composed of neither ice nor cheese.
A number of other writers developed theories that were variations on Hörbiger’s ideas. 1954 saw the publication of The Moon Puzzle by the Swedish engineer, N.O. Bergquist, in which he suggested that earth had a close encounter with a planetoid which caused the ejection of a large amount of matter, which became our Moon leaving a huge scar we call the Pacific. Although many details of Berquist’s theory differ greatly from Hörbiger’s, he never refers to the then widely supported views of Hörbiger.
In 1955, G. Demortier published a theory of cosmic catastrophe that was similar to Hörbiger’s. It is even more astounding that as late as 1964, Egerton Sykes, the leading British atlantologist of the day, still clung to a belief in Hörbiger’s concept of an ice covered lunar surface. In fact re-reading the old editions of Sykes’ Atlantis newsletter, I am amazed at the number of contributors that offered so many articles based on Hörbiger’s flawed ideas.*My personal view is that having read Sykes’ newsletters, he can only considered a gullible British gentleman.*
Egerton Sykes founded and promoted an English post-war Hoerbiger Institute through his Atlantis magazine(q). In March 1948 Bellamy contributed a short article (Hoerbiger Monograph No. 1. 2nd Edition)(n) to the newsletter, reiterating his support for the idea that the capture of our moon led to the destruction of Atlantis.
Uwe Topper, the controversial German researcher has continued to support much of Hörbiger’s ideas. Additionally, in 2003 Gary Gilligan, a prominent catastrophist, first proposed that our Moon had been captured around 2000 BC, which he has now revised to 1200 BC(I)!
The August 2010 edition of the BBC’s Focus magazine (p.81), informs us that the Moon is moving away from Earth at a rate of 3.8cm per year, completely destroying the foundation of Hörbiger’s basic theory. The 9th Nov. 2011 issue of New Scientist published further evidence supporting this view(h), with further claims that this recession will reverse in the very distant future as the Earth’s rotation slows(r).
In the 17th century Johannes Kepler demonstrated that when an object’s orbital velocity increases, its orbital radius will expand; thus, the Moon slowly recedes from Earth(d). This idea was discussed further in a BBC documentary broadcast on Feb.1st 2011(b).
Nevertheless, updated Moon capture theories have been developed since Hörbiger. Emilio Spedicato has publisheda brief overview of recent contributions on the subject as well his own version(c), dating it to around 9450 BC, triggering the end of the Ice Age and the destruction of Atlantis!
It was long accepted wisdom that a moonless earth would have made the development of complex life more difficult because of greater climatic fluctuations. However, a new study challenges this calculating that Jupiter together with other factors would minimise the effect of not having our satellite(g)
The story of lunar history took an unexpected turn in 2011 when the journal Nature published a paper by planetary scientists Erik Asphaug of the University of Santa Cruz and Martin Jutzi of the University of Berne who proposed that originally the Earth had two moons that later collided and formed our present satellite(e). At the end of 2011 two NASA lunar probes were launched(j) which may resolve this particular question.
In America the WEL-Institute is dedicated to investigating Hörbiger’s ‘World Ice Theory’(k). I note that the U.S. is also home to associations concerned with both a Hollow Earth(l) and a Flat Earth(m)!
(o) http://antiques.gift/mitteilungen-des-hoerbiger-instituts-beitrage-zur-physik-des-kosmos-und-der-erde-zur-geologie-und-zur-meteorologie-auf-grund-der_8747633.html (offline Oct. 2016)
(p) http://www.lonsea.de/pub/org/1055 (Offline November 2017)
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).
Denis Saurat (1890-1958) was born in Toulouse and educated in Britain and France. He was a professor of French literature and lectured in both countries. He also had a lifelong interest in the occult among a wide range of subjects. One of his conclusions was that the worldwide megalithic remains of prehistory are evidence for the existence of a race of giants in our dim and distant past. His books discuss this idea in detail including supporting hints from the Bible and then link the entire concept with Plato’s story of Atlantis. Saurat also suggested that the use of electricity in ancient Egypt produced gleaming eyes in the statues of Isis in her temples.
Unfortunately Saurat also seems to have borrowed many of the exotic concepts of Hans Hoerbiger such as a succession of moons crashing to earth. Saurat has added little to the solution of the Atlantis mystery.
He suggests two Atlantises, one about 30,000 years ago in the Andes around Lake Tititaca and the second 12,000 years ago described by Plato. Fortunately, Saurat is not arrogant and so in recognition of how scientific advances have a way of destroying previously held ‘certainties’, he admits in his summation (p118) that “despite all the evidence marshalled in this book, at no point can we say that we are absolutely sure.”
A further book deals with the religion of the giants.
In 2003 the Canadian author, John Robert Colombo published a biography of Saurat.
A blog(a) from Jason Colavito offers further details of Saurat’s daft ideas.