Marion McMurrough Mulhall (? -1922) was the wife of a famous Irish statistician, Michael George Mulhall (1838-1900) (his Dictionary of Statistics(b) was last published in 1970). She has written a number books, particularly about South America, but in 1911 she published Beginnings or Glimpses of Vanished Civilizations. In this interesting, if rather dated work of 136 pages, the author suggests that “The gods and goddesses of the ancient Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Hindoos, and the Scandinavians were simply the kings, queens, and heroes of Atlantis, and the acts attributed to them in mythology are a confused recollection of real historical events. The mythology of Egypt and Peru represented the original religion of Atlantis, which was sun worship. The oldest colonies from Atlantis were probably the Akkadians and Sumerians, who are thought as yet, according to Messrs.King and Halpto have been the original founders of the Babylonian and Egyptian civilization. The implements of the ” Bronze Age ” of Europe were derived from Atlantis. The Atlantians were also the first manufacturers of iron, and we know that Parthelon, when he visited Ireland, came in iron vessels of occidental blackness.”
The author discusses a number of aspects of ancient history including Atlantic landbridges. She argues that Ireland was Plutarch’s Ogygia and also comments on Lemuria and Easter Island. The full text can be read online(a).
The Deluge is the term usually used when referring to the biblical flood of Noah. It might perhaps be more accurate to use the plural, as there is evidence of several large-scale catastrophic inundations within the memory of man. The Noachian deluge has been the subject of continuous debate: was it real or pure fantasy, was it a local, regional or global and is the Ark to be found on Mt. Ararat.
The most recent controversy concerns a Babylonian tablet which, unlike the biblical record, describes an ark 70 metres in width and round in shape(c)(e). This would have been recorded a thousand years before the Genesis story was written down. Understandably, this has caused the knickers of some fundamentalist Christians to be seriously twisted! This has now been expanded on by Irving Finkel in The Ark before Noah. Another eye-catching theory is that of Thomas J. Krupa (1930- ), author of Biblical Flood: Noah’s Ark and the Star of David, in which he claims that the keel of the Ark was shaped like the Star of David! Equally radical is the result of a high-tech study of fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls which suggest that Noah’s Ark was pyramidal in shape(j)! Commenting on this report, Jason Colavito, has pointed out that the concept of a pyramid shaped ark is not new(k).
A life-sized replica of Noah’s Ark was due to cross the Atlantic Ocean from Holland in the summer of 2016(i). It was built over a four year period by carpenter, Johan Huibers, completing it in 2012. It is 410 feet long, 95 feet wide and 75 feet tall. It weighs 2,500 tons and is said to hold more than 5,000 people at any one time. However, there is no provision for animals!*As of today (July 2019) I can find no recent information on the project.*
An interesting overview of traditional as well as modern thinking regarding the possible historical reality behind the Deluge of Genesis is presented(f) by Robert Squillace on the New York University website.
Even more radical is the claim by Hebrew scholar Richard Seary that the Ark never actually existed, but that conventionally accepted understanding of the Genesis text is the result of a number of incorrect translations(d). One example being that there is no such material as gopher-wood and that the word ‘gofer’ means lava!
The Flood of Noah is an echo of the Babylonian Gilgamesh epic, which in turn has a resonance with the deluge story of Manu in Indian mythology. If all three relate to the same event it would be of interest to discover its origin.
Many Atlantologists have sought to link the Deluge with the inundation of Atlantis. Egerton Sykes was a keen supporter of the idea. Joseph S. Ellul has interpreted the biblical story to support the idea of a landbridge at Gibraltar that eventually collapsed when the waters of the Atlantic rose after the last Ice Age.
Ellul maintained that Genesis 7:11 ‘All the springs of the Great Deep broke through’ is a reference to the percolation of the Atlantic waters, through the Gibraltar dam, that eventually led to its collapse as the sea level rose or was shattered by seismic or tectonic movements. I find it hard to accept this, because the pressure that is exerted by the Atlantic, would have rapidly changed any such seepage into a major breach and the subsequent collapse of the dam. Gerhard F. Hasel, Professor of Old Testament and Biblical Theology offers a more conventional interpretation of “the fountains of the great deep” in a paper with the same name(h).
Alexander and Edith Tollman link the Noachian Deluge with the consequences of a cometary impact in 7552 BC. On the other hand, G. F. Dodwell the Australian astronomer, after studying ancient gnomons, concluded that it was a worldwide catastrophe in 2345 BC that altered the earth’s tilt, leading to the Deluge. This is comparable with the 1696 claim by William Whiston that the earth had an encounter with a comet in 2346 BC, which caused the Flood of Noah. Emilio Spedicato advocates 3161 BC as the date of the biblical deluge(l). which has also been endorsed by Stuart L. Harris(n).
On a more controversial level, Donald Patten and Samuel Windsor present evidence for a series of close encounters between Mars and the Earth during the 1st millennium BC. David Rohl, the Egyptologist, dates Noah’s Flood at 3114 BC and links it with the climatic consequences of a major catastrophe in the Aleutian Islands.
Ancient flood stories are to be found around the world with a remarkable similarity of detail. It is worth pointing out that none of these legends ever recount the ‘hero’ of their particular tale returning to his former home. One simple explanation for this might be that the original homelands no longer existed. This would not normally be the case if the floods in question were tidal, storm driven or even giant tsunamis. However, if the inundations were the result of rising sea levels, resulting from the melting of Ice Age glaciers, we could expect two principal effects. The first would have been the gradual submergence of all low-lying flood plains that are now identified as continental shelves. Two of the best known of these would be the Sunda Shelf (Sundaland) and the area stretching from the west coast of mainland Europe across the North Sea encompassing the British Isles and into the Atlantic beyond Ireland. The second effect would have been the dramatic inundation of valleys and basins protected by low land bridges or dams. Again, we have examples, some debatable, such as, the Baltic, the Red Sea, the Persian Gulf, the Black Sea, the Mediterranean and perhaps the Caribbean, the Gulf of Mexico and the Sea of Japan. It is very interesting that so many of the deluge stories include a scenario where the ’hero’ is warned beforehand of the impending doom. To me, this would make sense that where a land bridge was threatened by gradually rising waters on one side, simple observation would have provided adequate time to warn those at risk on the other side.
The flooding of all these worldwide locations would have occurred quite slowly over an extended period following the last Ice Age, possibly providing the basis for the widespread existence of these flood myths.
*Nevertheless, there is one rather disturbing element to be found alongside some of the flood myths, namely that the deluge event was concurrent with the sun seemingly standing still and in some cases it is recorded that the Moon also appeared to stop(o)(p)! One explanation on offer is that it is a reference to an eclipse(q). This might be acceptable if it was compatible with other myths from different parts of the world, which does not appear to be the case. Furthermore, it does not explain the association of the stopping of the sun with the global deluge. A very close encounter between the Earth and another large celestial body might.*
Nick Thom, an Engineering lecturer at Nottingham University, has written The Great Floodwhich gives an overview of Flood myths, but more importantly identifies the emptying of glacial Lake Agassiz around 6250 BC as the mechanism which caused a tilting of the Earth, which in turn generated a global deluge remembered by the survivors in myth and later recorded in scriptures.
A website with a huge collection of worldwide flood myths is available online(b). However, one omission from all such collections is a contribution from Egypt who inexplicably has no such tradition,*apart from the predictable annual flooding of the Nile.*
*Greek mythlogy includes reference to three major floods affecting Geece, those of Ogyges, Deucalion and Dardanus(o).*Plato’s story of Atlantis makes mention of a number of major floods during the ‘9,000’ years following the war with Atlantis, one of these being the flood of Deucalion. However, it may be worth mentioning that with so many ancient cultures having recorded flood myths, Egypt is notable by having none!
Stephen Oppenheimer mentions three sudden ice-melts, 14,000, 11,500 and 8,000 years ago that would have had a global effect. It should be noted that the earliest date is close to the date given by Plato for the destruction of Atlantis.
As I see it, we are left with two explanations for the global flood myths, either a close encounter with an extraterrestrial body that created a mega tsunami that was on such a scale that it swept around the globe, perhaps a number of times before dissipating or the melting of the Ice Age glaciers produced the cyclical bursting of ice-dams and landbridges and the inundation of vast areas of low-lying land(a). I’m inclined to believe that the balance of probabilities favours the latter explanation, although I find it difficult to accept that gradual deglaciation would have generated floods that ‘covered mountains’ (Gen. vii.19)!
Kirk Kirchev in a recent (April 2018) two-part article(m) “offers a unifying scientific hypothesis that connects diverse ancient flood myths with mainstream scientific fact.”
T. R. Holme has an interesting article(g) on the flooding of the Black Sea and the migration from the region that resulted. He also links that event with the work of the late Marija Gimbutas.
(a) http://wapedia.mobi/en/Deluge_(prehistoric) (offline March 2015)
(d) Fortean Times, April 2014, p.55
Professor Hans Pettersson (1888-1966), was a renowned Swedish scientist, who became the first full professor of oceanography in Sweden and in 1938 founded the Institute of Oceanography in Gothenburg.
Thorwald C. Franke has written a short paper(b) on Pettersson’s important contribution to the Atlantis debates, offering scientific reasons for dismissing the idea of Atlantis being located in the Atlantic. In the process he refuted the earlier theories of Pierre Termier and demolished the idea of transatlantic land bridges.
Although he has excluded the Atlantic, he is equally unhappy with a Mediterranean location, preferring not to accept the Atlantis story as history.
He published his views, in Swedish, in 1944 as Atlantis och Atlanten, which was subsequently translated into German by another physicist, Stefan Meyer, entitled Atlantis und Atlantik.
Pettersson led the Swedish Albatross Expedition of 1947-1948 which surveyed the Atlantic. He subsequently spoke of finding evidence of “great catastrophes that have altered the face of the Earth”(a)
(a) Exploring the Ocean Floor (Scientific American, August, 1950)
He wrote about the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and its connection with Atlantis. Malaise was dismissive of Alfred Wegener’s theories, preferring the idea of landbridges rather than continental drift as the explanation for the existence of matching flora and fauna on both sides of the Atlantic. This view was expressed in a 1972 booklet, Land-bridges or Continental Drift.
He supported the 1934 ‘constriction hypothesis’ of the paleozoologist, Nils H. Odhner, which attributed vertical crustal movement to ocean temperature change rather than isostasy.
He contended that at least parts of the Ridge were exposed during the last Ice Age and that the fossilised remains of freshwater diatoms found submerged on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge are evidence that the exposed Ridge contained freshwater lakes. Malaise believed that the Azores are remnants of Atlantis.
Malaise was also convinced that Atlantis probably traded with Egyptian colonists in England, who were responsible for Stonehenge! (Sykes’ Atlantean Research, Oct/Nov 1949)
He has also argued in a 1973 booklet, Atlantis: A Verified Myth that the similarity of arrowheads found on both sides of the Atlantic point to a common ancestry, possibly on an Atlantic Atlantis. He further suggested that Atlantis had an important trading centre at the mouth of the River Elbe.
In his 1951 offering Atlantis en Geologisk Verklighet he included a number of maps illustrating his contention that Atlantis was submerged over a long protracted period of time.
Malaise supported the idea that Plato was referring to lunar ‘years’ when he spoke of 9,000 years being the time between the war with Atlantis and Solon’s visit to Egypt. Malaise believed that Atlantis finally disappeared in the 13th/12th century BC.
Dale Drinnon offers an extensive review(a) of Malaise and his theories.
Malaise had ideas that may appear very dated today, but in the light of scientific knowledge of his day, his conclusions were as valid as any other. In the same way new ideas today, based on what we know now, will appear equally antiquated fifty years from now. Every age repeats the mistake of thinking that it has reached the pinnacle of scientific understanding.
The excellent Atlantisforschung.de website has a more comprehensive article on the work of Malaise(b).
(a) http://frontiers-of-anthropology.blogspot.com/2011/06/rene-malaise-and-geological-reality-of.html (link broken July 2018) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20170412182131/http://frontiers-of-anthropology.blogspot.com/2011/06/rene-malaise-and-geological-reality-of.html
Edgar Dacqué (1878-1945) was a leading German Professor of Palaeontology. We are told by a Dutch website(b) that he thought Atlantis to have been situated on a submarine ridge stretching from Cape Verde to the Caribbean. This sounds like a revised version of the Atlantic landbridges concept that was popular with some scientists at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries.
It is reported that he supported (1927) the idea of Cape Verde as the site of Atlantis, but I have been unable to confirm this. His adherence to Theosophy coloured his professional writings, for example with his claim that homo sapiens existed at the time of the dinosaurs. Similar ideas are promoted today by other theosophists such as John S. Gordon, who has written two Atlantis related books.
It has been claimed(a) that Dacqué wrote to Hitler in the 1920’s regarding some of his (Dacqué’s) occult ideas.
(a) http://www.freemasonrywatch.org/hitler_occult.html (offline June 2016) (see Archive 2795)
*(b) http://www.kunstgeografie.nl/atlantis/atlantis04.htm (offline Dec.’15) See: Archive 2796*