Ancients. The very meaning of this word has been dragged into the Atlantis debate. The argument claims that (i) ’ancient’ means ’of times long past’ (ii) its Latinised form is ’antiants’ (iii) this is linked to ‘atl-antiants’ (iv) in turn this is stretched to mean ‘those that came from Atlantis’. It is this sort of convoluted nonsense that has continued to provide Atlantis sceptics with an endless supply of ammunition.
In reality, the word is derived from a compound of two Latin words ‘ante’ and ‘annus’ that mean ‘before’ and ’year’. It originally had a specific historical meaning of ‘years prior to’ (the fall of the Western Roman Empire).