An A-Z Guide To The Search For Plato's Atlantis

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Joining The Dots


Joining The Dots

I have now published my new book, Joining The Dots, which offers a fresh look at the Atlantis mystery. I have addressed the critical questions of when, where and who, using Plato's own words, tempered with some critical thinking and a modicum of common sense.


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Sahara

Sarkar, Pabhat Rainjan (L)

SarkarPabhat Rainjan Sarkar (1921-1990) was an Indian philosopher and spiritual leader with followers in over 130 countries. I am reliably informed that he expressed a number of beliefs regarding Atlantis, the core of which was that it was a huge continent that existed in the Atlantic. He also believed that Atlantis joined Africa and Iberia with a landbridge at Gibraltar. The destruction of Atlantis by an extensive earthquake separated Europe from Africa and also led to the creation of the Sahara.

In the book, Travels with the Mystic Master(a) by Dada Dharmavedananda, Sarkar is quoted as saying that ” The old Atlantis is now underwater except for parts of Spain, Portugal, Ireland and Iceland.”[1209.208]

(a) https://www.scribd.com/doc/11386818/Travels-With-the-Mystic-Master

Karam, Christian C.

Christian C. Karam is a Brazilian archaeology student who has written a paper with the controversial, if not provocative, title of Phoenicians in Brazil(a). In it he proposes that an encounter with an extraterrestrial body caused a global catastrophe, which caused a large part of the Andes to be uplifted, the Sahara to be dried out and Atlantis in the Atlantic to be submerged. He dates this event to around 9500 BC and believes that the Atlantean survivors fled to Africa.

Perhaps the first to suggest that the Phoenicians visited Brazil was Georgius Hornius in the 17th century. The matter was dealt with in greater detail(d) by the Austrian professor of history, Ludwig Schwennhagen, who flourished at the beginning of the 20th century. A Hungarian website(c) offers more on the development of this claim.

Karam names the Phoenicians as the thalassocratic successors to the Atlanteans. The main portion of his paper concerns the possibility or as he sees it, the probability, of Phoenician visits to and even colonisation of Brazil.

Ross T. Christensen (1918–1990) an American archaeologist supported the idea of Phoenicians in America. However, in my view, his early work as a Mormon missionary must bring into question his objectivity. Further evidence in support of Phoenicians in Brazil is presented elsewhere(b).

*(a) https://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/ciencia/ciencia_phoenicians01.htm*

(b) http://www.cristobalcolondeibiza.com/2eng/2eng16.htm

(c) http://tist-fla.blogspot.com/2013/12/foniciaiak-kozep-es-del-amerikaban.html (Hungarian)

(d) http://www.academia.edu/7848641/Fen%C3%ADcios_no_Brasil_parte_1_Ludwig_Schwennhagen (Portuguese) (offline Feb. 2016)

*(e) http://www.ancientamerica.org/library/media/HTML/1ofnf5kk/15.%20THE%20PHOENICIANS%20AND%20THE%20ANCIENT%20CIVILIZATIONS%20OF%20AMERICA.htm?n=0*

Sarantitis, George

George Sarantitis (1954- ) was born in Athens and is by profession an electronics Sarantitisengineer. He is also a serious student of Ancient Greek history and literature whose research(a) enabled him to present three papers to the 2008 Atlantis Conference. These included a revised translation of many of the key words and phrases in Plato’s Atlantis texts. He quotes Strabo’s Geographica (3.5.5.20) to demonstrate the multiplicity of locations on offer for the Pillars of Heracles. He places Atlantis in North Africa at the Richat Structure, with the Pillars of Heracles situated in the Gulf of Gabes which formerly led to an inland sea where the chotts of Tunisia and Algeria are today,  as well as a number of other lakes and rivers in what is now the Sahara.

He posits a number of large inland seas in Africa including a much larger Lake Chad. The 2014 May/June edition of Saudi Aramco World has an article(c) on the remnants of the ‘Green Sahara’, during what is known technically as the African Humid Period (9000-3000 BC). Sarantitis also claims that at one stage in the distant past Libya had been a peninsula. In a June 2015 report the University of Royal Holloway in London revealed that the size of Lake Chad was dramatically reduced in just a few hundred years(d). A similar map showing enormous inland North African lakes 13,000 years ago are included in Taylor Hansen’s The Ancient Atlantic[0527.36].

Sarantitis offers details of his theories on his extensively illustrated Plato Project website(a), which I wholeheartedly recommend readers to visit. He includes a rather technical forensic analysis of Plato’s use of myth. Sarantitis also suggests that the ‘unfinished’ Critias is in fact continued at the beginning of Homer’s Odyssey (1.32-34).

Some of Sarantitis’ section on Methodology of Mythology will be difficult for non-academic readers, such as myself, to fully comprehend. For me his proposal that there were two Atlantean Wars, which took place in 9600 BC and 8600 BC(e) is extremely difficult to accept, since those wars were with an Athens and Egypt that did not even exist at those dates! I find it difficult to accept this apparent abandonment of commonsense and the science of archaeology.

In 2010, Sarantitis published his theories in The Apocalypse of a Myth in Greek. Now (2017) that work has been translated into English and is currently being prepared for publication with a new title of Plato’s Atlantis: Decoding the Most Famous Myth.

There is now an extensive video clip Q & A session available on Sarantitis’ website(b).

(a) http://platoproject.gr/

(b) http://platoproject.gr/faqs/

(c) http://archive.aramcoworld.com/issue/201403/last.lakes.of.the.green.sahara.htm

(d) http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/06/150629162542.htm

(e) Proceedings of the 2008 Atlantis Conference[750.389](editor S.Papamarinopoulos)

Hamy, Ernest Theodore (L)

Dr. Ernest Theodore Hamy (1842-1908) was a French doctor of medicine, Hamyalthough he was better known as an anthropologist. Alexander Braghine[156.42] quotes Hamy as locating Atlantis in the Atlantic between Spain, Ireland and North America.

Hamy also gave his name to the famous King-Hamy Map (c.1502), which he purchased in 1885. One of the remarkable features of the map is that it shows the Sahara as a fertile region with rivers, lakes and cities!

Lake Tritonis

Lake Tritonis is frequently referred to by the classical writers.* Ian Wilson refers to  Scylax of Caryanda as having “specifically described Lake Tritonis extending in his time over an area of 2,300 km2.” He also cites Herodotus as confirming it as still partly extant in his time, a century later, describing it as a ‘great lagoon’, with a ‘large river’ (the Triton) flowing into it.[185.185]*

Lake Tritonis was considered the birthplace of Athene, the Greek Goddess of Wisdom, after whom Athens is named. The exact location of the lake is disputed but there is some consensus that the salty marshes or chotts of central Tunisia and North-East Algeria are the most likely candidates. It appears that these marshes were originally formed a large inland sea connected to the Mediterranean but due to seismic activity in the area were cut off from the sea. Diodorus Siculus records this event in his third book.

*I should also mention that Lake Tritonis along with the Greek island of Lemnos and the river Thermodon in northern Turkey, now known as Terme Çay, have all been associated with the Amazons(d).*

Edward Herbert Bunbury, a former British MP, included a chapter(a) on Lake Tritonis in his 1879 book on the history of ancient geography[1531.v1.316].

In 1883, Edward Dumergue, published[659] a brief study of the Tunisian chotts, which he concluded were the remnants of an ancient inland sea that had been connected to the Mediterranean Sea at the Gulf of Gabes.

Lucile Taylor Hansen in The Ancient Atlantic[572], has included a speculative map taken from the Reader’s Digest showing Lake Tritonis, around 11.000 BC, as a megalake covering much of today’s Sahara, with the Ahaggar Mountains turned into an island. Atlantis is shown to the west in the Atlantic.

In modern times, Alberto Arecchi has taken the idea further[079] and suggested that the inland sea, where the chotts are now, was the original ‘Atlantic Sea’ and that the city of Atlantis was situated on an extended landmass to the east of Tunisia and connected to Sicily due to a lower sea level. Arecchi’s identification of the chotts with Lake Tritonis has now been adopted by Lu Paradise in a May 2015 blog(c). The Qattara Depression of Northern Egypt also contains a series of salt lakes and marshes and is believed by others to have been Lake Tritonis.

Cindy Clendenon is the author of a book[801] on hydromythology in which she concludes that “the now-extinct Lake Tritonis once was a Cyrenaican lagoon-sabkha complex near today’s Sabkha Ghuzayyil and Marsa Brega, Libya.”(b).

(a) http://www.argonauts-book.com/lake-tritonis.html

(b) http://finelinesciencepress.com/hydromythology.html#author6

(c) https://ancientpatriarchs.wordpress.com/2016/05/23/were-sea-peoples-invading-egypt-from-atlantis-due-to-global-climate-change/ 

*(d) http://www.myrine.at/Amazons/mobilIndex.html*

Sahara Desert

The Sahara Desert and in particular its northern regions have attracted its share of attention from Atlantis investigators. However unlikely it may appear as a possible location for Atlantis it must be kept in mind that the Sahara of prehistory was very different from what we see today. Not only was it wetter at various periods in the past, but also there is clear evidence for the existence of a large inland sea extending across the borders of modern Algeria and Tunisia. This evidence is in the form of the chottsor salt flats in both countries. This proposed sea is considered by some to have been the Lake Tritonis referred to by classical writers. It is suggested that some form of tectonic/seismic activity, common in the region, was responsible for isolating this body of seawater from the Mediterranean and eventually turning it into the salt flats we see today.

An even more extensive inland sea, further south, was proposed by Ali Bey el Abbassi and based on his theory a map was published in 1802 which can be viewed online(c).

More recently, Riaan Booysen has published an illustrated paper on the ancient inland Saharan seas as indicated on the 16th century maps of Mercator and Ortelius(i). King’s College London runs The Sahara Megalakes Project which studies the Megalakes and the Saharan Palaeoclimate record(m).

A 2013 report in New Scientist magazine(d) revealed that 100,000 years ago the Sahara had been home to three large rivers that flowed northward, which probably provided migration routes for our ancestors.

Other studies(h) have shown the previous existence of a huge river system in the Western Sahara, which flowed into the Atlantic on the Mauritanian coast.

An article in the Sept. 2008 edition of National Geographic pointed out that the Saharan climate has been similar for the past 70,000 years except for a period beginning 12,000 years ago when a number of factors combined to alter this fact. A northerly shift by seasonal monsoons brought additional rain to an area the size of contiguous USA. This period of a greener Sahara lasted until around 4,500 years ago. Henri Lhote contributed an article to the Reader’s Digest’s, The World’s Last Mysteries[1083], regarding the ‘green’ Sahara that existed prior to 2500 BC. 

An interesting question might be; what happened circa 2500 BC to cause this reversal? Some have suggested a connection between the aridification of the Sahara and the destruction of Atlantis!

More recently, human activity has been blamed as a major contributory factor for the desertification of the Sahara region less than 10,000 years ago.(n)

Related to the above is a recent study of sediments off the west coast of Africa, which resulted in the discovery of what was “primarily a new “beat,” in which the Sahara vacillated between wet and dry climates every 20,000 years, in sync with the region’s monsoon activity and the periodic tilting of the Earth.” (o) 

In Mauritania a huge natural feature known as the Richat Structure has been claimed as the remnant of Atlantis by George Sarantitis[1470as well as by Alexander & Rosen. 

In 1868, it was proposed by D.A. Godron, the French botanist, that the Sahara was the location of Atlantis. In 2003, the non-existent archaeologist Dr.Carla Sage announced that she was hoping to lead an international expedition to the Sahara in search of Atlantis. Her contention was that “Atlantis was the capital of a vast North African empire with ports on the Gulf of Sidra”. This report is now confirmed to have been a hoax! I am indebted to Stel Pavlou for uncovering the origin of this story(e).

Gary Gilligan, the well-known catastrophist, wrote a thought-provoking article(k) on the origin of the Saharan sands, which he claims are extraterrestrial in origin and expands on the idea in his 2016 book Extraterrestrial Sands[1365].

David Mattingly, an archaeologist at Leicester University has found that an ancient people known as the Garamantes had an extensive civilisation in the Sahara(l). He has evidence of at least three cities and twenty other settlements. The Garamantes reached their peak around 100 BC and then gradually diminished in influence as fossil water supplies reduced until in the 7th century AD they were subjected to Islamic domination. Some researchers such as Frank Joseph  have identified the Garamantes as being linked with the Sea Peoples. Bob Idjennaden has published short but informative Kindle books about both the Garamantes[1194] and the Sea Peoples[1195],*without a suggestion of any connection between the two.*

The discovery of the megalithic structures discovered at Nabta Playa (Nabta Lake) in the Egyptian Sahara has provided evidence for the existence of a sophisticated society in that area around 5000 BC. In the same region, near the Dakhleh Oasis, archaeologists have produced data that supports the idea that pre-Pharaonic Egypt had Desert Origins rather than being an importation from Mesopotamia or elsewhere(a).

Nabta Playa is not unique, in fact the largest megalithic ellipse in the world is to be found at Mzorah, 27 km from Lixus in Morocco(b). It appears that the construction methods employed at both Mezorah and Nabta Playa are both similar to that used in the British Isles. An even more impressive site is Adam’s Calendar in South Africa which has been claimed as 75,000-250,000 years old.

West of Cairo near the border with Libya is the Siwa Oasis, where it has now been demonstrated that “it is in fact home to one of Ancient Egypt’s astounding solar-calendar technologies– the solar equinox alignment between the Timasirayn Temple and the Temple of Amun Oracle in Aghurmi.”(j).

I think we can expect further exciting discoveries in the Sahara leading to a clearer picture of the prehistoric cultures of the region and what connections there are, if any, with Plato’s Atlantis. In the meanwhile in the Eastern Egyptian Desert, Douglas Brewer, a professor of archaeology at the University of Illinois, has discovered over 1,000 examples of rock art, including numerous depictions of boats although the sites, so far undisclosed, are remote from water.

Even more remarkable is the report(e) of March 2015 that a survey of the Messak Settafet escarpment in the central Sahara revealed that there were enough discarded stone tools in the region to build more than one Great Pyramid for every square kilometre of land on the continent”! Coincidentally, around the same time it was reported that over a thousand stone tools had been found in the Northern Utah Desert(g). What the Utah discovery lacked in quantity was made up for in quality with the finding of the largest known Haskett point spear head, measuring around nine inches in length.

(a) Saudi Aramco World(2006, Vol. 57, No.5 p.2-11)

(b) http://lostcities.weebly.com/1/post/2011/01/the-mysterious-moroccan-megalithic-menhirs-of-mzora.html

(c) http://catalog.afriterra.org/zoomMap.cmd?number=1036

(d) NewScientist.com, 16 September 2013, http://tinyurl.com/mg9vcoz

(e) http://books.google.com/books?id=GvMDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA46&dq=dr.+carla+sage+archaeologist&hl=en&sa=X&ei=GSENVKiaO9W0yASJgoIY&ved=0CCYQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=dr.%20carla%20sage%20archaeologist&f=false

(f) http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/saharan-carpet-of-tools-is-the-earliest-known-man-made-landscape

(g) http://westerndigs.org/over-1000-ancient-stone-tools-left-by-great-basin-hunters-found-in-utah-desert/

(h) http://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/nov/10/ancient-river-network-discoverd-buried-under-saharan-sand

(i) http://www.riaanbooysen.com/terra-aus/87-terraproof1?start=7

(j) http://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/astronomically-aligned-temple-siwa-oasis-ancient-calendar-device-006852?nopaging=1

(k)  See: https://web.archive.org/web/20170614023816/http://www.godkingscenario.com/articles/origin-sahara-desert

(l)  See: Archive 3268

(m) https://www.google.co.uk/search?sourceid=navclient&aq=&oq=&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1T4GGHP_enIE665IE665&q=the+sahara+megalakes+project&gs_l=hp..0.41l52.0.0.0.2769………..0.&gws_rd=ssl

(n) http://popular-archaeology.com/issue/winter-2017/article/did-humans-create-the-sahara-desert

(o) https://phys.org/news/2019-01-sahara-swung-lush-conditions-years.html#jCp

 

Sage, Carla

Carla Sage, a British archaeologist, announced in November 2003 her support for a North African location for Atlantis, in particular she believes that the Gulf of Sidra (Syrtis Major) in Libya holds the remains of Atlantean ports. She was apparently impressed by ancient accounts that recorded how the Mycenaean, Cretan and Egyptian civilisations all traded with Atlantis. She concluded that this was improbable if Atlantis had been located in the Atlantic(a).

Sage contends that Atlantis had flourished when North Africa had been a very fertile region. However, desertification following a dramatic climate change led to the destruction of Atlantis by sand rather than water as described by Plato. Dr. Sage was reportedly planning a multinational expedition to seek concrete evidence to support her theories.

I have unsuccessfully endeavoured to locate an archaeologist named Carla Sage. The deafening silence in the intervening years has cast doubt on the factual correctness of the original press report, in fact, some are now happy to call it a hoax(b), a view that is not unreasonable. This has now been confirmed, as the Sage story originally appeared in the largely fictional US tabloid magazine, Weekly World News, now defunct. It was then picked by many less than diligent websites and took on a life of its own. I am indebted to Stel Pavlou for uncovering the origin of this story(c).

(a) http://www.hotspotsz.com/search.php?q=archaeologists&offset=143&go=4 (offline June 2018) See: Archive 2821

(b) http://atlantisonline.smfforfree2.com/index.php?topic=5834.0

(c)  http://books.google.com/books?id=GvMDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA46&dq=dr.+carla+sage+archaeologist&hl=en&sa=X&ei=GSENVKiaO9W0yASJgoIY&ved=0CCYQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=dr.%20carla%20sage%20archaeologist&f=false 

 

Lhote, Henri

Henri Lhote (1903-1991) was a French explorer and ethnologist who is best Lhote3known for his study of the remarkable cave paintings in the Sahara at Tassili-n-ajjer[442]. Lhote built on the discoveries of a French Lieutenant Brenans, who began exploring the region in the 1930’s.

Some of these depicted masked humanoid figures leading Lhote to suggest that they were evidence of prehistoric extraterrestrial visitors.

One of these was dubbed the ‘Great Martian God’ and a decade later exploited by Erich von Däniken in the promotion of his ‘ancient astronauts’ ideas.

Jürgen Spanuth notes[017.22] that in 1950 Lhote organised an expedition to Tanzerouft in the Sahara with the hope of finding Atlantis although there was no subsequent claim by Lhote of any such discovery. However, Phyllis Young Forsyth quoted Lhote as giving a somewhat contradictory view when he wrote in The Search for the Tassili Frescoes “The fact is that there is no possibility whatsoever of the Sahara having been the site of Plato’s mysterious island.”[442.184] Zhirov, noted[0458.18] that Lhote expressed the view that “it must be admitted that there is much in Plato’s idea that is positive.”

Lhote also contributed an article to the Reader’s Digest’s, The World’s Last Mysteries[1083], regarding the ‘green’ Sahara that existed prior to 2500 BC.

A recent blog(a) by Dale Drinnon expands on some of the numerous examples of Saharan rock art that we know of and their possible connection with Dynastic Egypt.

The Bradshaw Foundation has an extensive archive(b) of African rock art as well as a section on rock art along the Nile(c).

(a) http://frontiers-of-anthropology.blogspot.ie/2011/08/possible-prehistoric-prototype-of.html*(Link broken August 2018)*

(b) http://www.bradshawfoundation.com/africa/index.php

(c) http://www.bradshawfoundation.com/pyramids_of_egypt/rock_art_egypt_nile.php

Chaouat, Dr. Émile Mir

Dr. Émile Mir Chaouat follows the views of Butavand and agrees that Plato’s 9,000 years should be taken as months and consequently dates the destruction of Atlantis to 1400 BC. He agrees, in common with many other writers, that the Sahara once had a large inland sea which contained Atlantis. He believes that its Mediterranean port was located at Cerne. He points out that Athena and Neith the goddess of Sais were identical and suggests that the name of the legendary North African queen Tin Hanan may be a corruption of Athena [(A)tin-ha(nan)]. In 1925 Byron Khun de Prorok claimed to have found the tomb of Tin Hanan, renowned queen of the Tauregs, in the Hoggar Mountains. Chaouat’s published his views in a 1953 booklet, Lumiére sur l’Atlantide[227].

Robert Charroux was intrigued by Chaouat’s book[1039.122].