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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Sonchis

Pateneit

Pateneit is the name of the Egyptian priest that Solon spoke to in Sais, according to Proclus (5th cent. AD) in his Commentary on Plato’s Timaeus (Vol I). He adds that he also spoke to two other priests, Ochlapi at Heliopolis and Ethimon at Sebbynetus. However, Plutarch (2nd cent. AD) gives the names of the priests at Sais and Heliopolis as Sonchis and Psenophis respectively. It is frustrating that we no longer have access to the sources used by Plutarch and Proclus, but they do seem to enhance the provenance of Plato’s account.

The Thomas Taylor translation of Proclus’ commentary can be read online(a)(b).

(a) https://archive.org/details/proclusontimaeus01procuoft

(b) https://archive.org/details/proclusontimaeus02procuoft

 

Plutarchus, Mestrius

Mestrius Plutarchus (c. 46 – 119 AD), more generally known as Plutarch, was a Greek biographer and historian who produced plutarchan impressive 227 works. His most important being Parallel Lives(a).

Although he wrote of Atlantis (Solon32.1-2) as if an historical fact, he does imply that Plato embellished the basic story. In the same passage, he laments the fact that Plato died before finishing Critias. Plutarch also recorded that Solon learned the story of Atlantis from Psenophis of Heliopolis and Sonchis of Sais (Solon 26.1). This additional information has clearly added to the credibility of Plato’s narrative.

He alsomentions Saturnia as being around five days sailing west of Britain and added that westwards from that island, there were the three islands to where proud and warlike men used to come from the continent beyond the islands, in order to offer sacrifice to the gods of the ocean. Commentators have seen this as a possible reference to Atlantis or even America.

(a) http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Plutarch/Lives/home.html

Sonchis

Sonchis was the elderly Egyptian priest of Sais, who, according to Plutarch(a), related to Solon the story of Atlantis as recorded in their temple. These conversations took place around 590 BC. Additionally, Plutarch records that Solon also spoke with Psenophis a priest of Heliopolis.

Over four hundred years after Plutarch, Proclus named three priests that Solon had met in Egypt, Pateneit in Sais as well as Ochlapi at Heliopolis and Ethimon at Sebbynetus.

Lewis Spence notes that Clement of Alexandria also gave Sonchis as the name of the Egyptian priest who related to Pythagoras details of the science of the Egyptians.

Another name suggested by Paulo Riven is that of Udja-Hor-res-ne (Wedjahor-Resne) which might relate to another priest or an alternative name for Sonchis. This person was not only a priest and physician but also an admiral. A headless statue of Udja-Hor-res-ne is to be found in the Vatican Museum. I would urge caution regarding this identification.

(a) http://ancienthistory.about.com/library/bl/bl_text_plutarch_solon.htm

(b) http://grahamhancock.com/phorum/read.php?1,181064,181241#msg-181241