David Hatcher Childress
Tuatha De Danaan
The Tuatha Dé Danaan according to tradition as recorded in the Book of Invasions (Lebor Gabála Érenn) were the fifth group to ‘settle’ in Ireland. The name translates as ‘the people of the goddess Danu’.
The pre-Hellenic Greeks were known as the Danai and were, according to an Egyptian source, the descendants of Danaus. Furthermore, the Danai have been linked with the legendary Tuatha dé Danaan of Ireland as well as the Shardana of Sardinia.
Egerton Sykes thought that the Tuatha de Danaan were refugees from Atlantis, an idea he expressed in his 1949 edition of Ignatius Donnelly’s Atlantis.
Another popular belief is that the Tuatha dé Danaan were descendants of the Hebrew tribe of Dan. Walter Baucum and in particular Yair Davidiy have written extensively on the people of Dan and their possible migration routes. Leonardo Melis also links the Shardana with the lost tribe of Dan as well as the Tuatha Dé Danaan.
In The Megalithic Odyssey  Christian O’Brien proposed that an order of Sumerian ‘Sages’ brought advanced knowledge to Egypt, Britain and Ireland and further afield. Along the way, they or their leaders are remembered by different names, Osiris, Tuatha dé Danann, Druids or in Mexico as Quetzalcoatl!
>David Hatcher Childress referred to the Tuatha de Danaan in Lost Cities of Atlantis, Ancient Europe & the Mediterranean , listing a range of theories, often conflicting, relating to their origins. Unexpectedly, Robert Charroux was of the opinion that they were Mayans from Central America [p425]. Childress relates that Jacques Valleé proposed that the de Danaan were ‘interdimensional fairy-folk that arrived in glowing UFOs’! He also quotes the equally entertaining comments of N.L. Thomas, who wrote that ‘the Tuatha were a people possessed of magic wonders, the supreme artists of wizardry, who came to Ireland, not by ship, but descended from the northern sky [1952.81]. Childress, apparently beguiled by this added “it is fascinating to think that the Tuatha de Danaan arrived by airships, rather than boats. This may be merely a legend, or perhaps it actually chronicles the landing of ancient airships in Ireland.” I think it is far more likely that they arrived on flying pigs.<
The Osirion Civilisation is a term recently concocted to describe the peoples of the antediluvian Mediterranean region including pre-dynastic Egypt. The Osirion at Abydos is offered as an example of their architecture. The concept has been promoted by David Hatcher Childress in one of his books in the ‘Lost Cities’ series. Inevitably, the internet has taken up this highly speculative idea.
A 2021 video clip(a) presented by Jimmy Corsetti offers evidence that the Osirion was built 7,000 years ago allegedly by a civilisation that not only flourished before pharaonic Egypt but was global in extent!
(a) It’s impossible for the ancient Egyptians to have built this about 7,000 years ago – News 47 Daily *
Nan Madol is a large stone city on the Micronesian island of Pohnpei in the Western Pacific. The entire site covers 170 acres and according to Frank Joseph is comprised of an estimated 250 million tons of basalt!(b) An article on the Smithsonian website offers very different figures(c).
The city has a series of canals connecting the structures, which were built on nearly a hundred artificial islands. It has been called both the ‘Venice’ and the ‘Atlantis’ of the Pacific. Conventional archaeology dates the site to around 1200 AD.
James Churchward claimed Nan Madol as part of his concocted Mu. David Hatcher Childress has proposed that the site was part of Lemuria, another invention. Erich von Däniken in his The Gold of the Gods was happy to claim that as a result of extraterrestrial intervention, the ancient Micronesians, had mastered flight and used this ability to transport the stone for the construction of the city!
In 1979, Bill S. Ballinger published Lost City of Stone , following the author’s visit to the island a few years earlier. In common with other commentators, he could not offer any credible explanation as to the identity of the site’s builders or its purpose.
Recent archaeological research in 2017, led by Mark McCoy from Texas Southern Methodist University, has, not unexpectedly, regenerated foolish speculation that the remarkable site might in some way be connected with Plato’s Atlantis(a).
>Dr Heinrich Kruparz, the Austrian author of Atlantis und Lemuria  has also penned a paper (in English) on the mysterious megaliths of Nan Madol(d).<
(b) Atlantis Rising magazine #51 p.46 https://atlantisrising.com/product/issue-51-atlantis-in-the-bahamas/
(d) https://migration-diffusion.info/pdfdownload.php?id=445&file=1 · *
Foerster, Brien *
Brien Foerster is an American writer who now lives in Cuzco, the former Inca capital in Peru. He has studied the ancient cultures of the Andes and believes that many predated the Incas and had advanced technologies that permitted the precise drilling of stone(a). His fully illustrated Kindle book, Lost Ancient Technology of Peru and Bolivia, provides many examples. The book is worth purchasing for the images alone. There is now a video(d) that complements Foerster’s book.
Foerster has now studied the stonework of the ancient Egyptians and like Chris Dunn concluded that their level of accuracy could not have been achieved without possession of a high technology, now lost(i). He has expanded on this in his 2014 book, Lost Ancient Technology of Egypt.
However, Foerester has recently stepped out of line when he apparently chipped fragments from stones at the Bolivian Puma Punku site with a view to having them tested for age. The laboratory refused to test the fragments as Foerester did not have the appropriate export document from Bolivia(e). It would appear that Foerster is either stupid or criminally irresponsible or both. Apparently, Foerester now claims that the details of this report are inaccurate and may be libellous(f).
This episode is reminiscent of the two German scientists who in 2013 were wrongfully accused of removing part of the ‘Vyse cartouche’ in the Great Pyramid and illegally smuggling it out of Egypt. This was subsequently shown to be a false claim by Zahi Hawass(l).
Elsewhere with regard to Atlantis, he claims “the most plausible idea is that Atlantis was not a single land mass that sank, but was a series of smaller states in the Atlantic area 12,000 years ago.”
In recent interviews, Foerster has proposed that the story of Atlantis is based on an Ice Age civilisation(g). His latest attention-seeking claim is that the Maya visited ancient Egypt, a trip that had some form of Atlantis connection(h).
He has also co-authored with David Hatcher Childress a book on South American cranial deformation and elongated skulls. These are reminiscent of similar skulls found in Malta(c) and Egypt as well as elsewhere around the world and date back many thousands of years(b).
Carl Feagans’ website(j) has a number of articles that are highly critical of Foerster’s methods and motivation. Equally critical is a posting and comments on the newagefraud.org website(k).
(h) https://verumetinventa.wordpress.com/2016/06/28/brien-foerster-good-evidence-of-maya-culture-in-egyptian-pyramids/ (offline October 2017)
(k) http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=5345.0 *
(l) URGENT URGENT! BREAKING NEWS: EGYPT – Atlantisforschung.de (atlantisforschung-de.translate.goog)
Geodesy is usually defined as the measurement and mapping of the Earth.>James R. Smith, the author of Introduction to Geodesy  has conflated several definitions to produce “Geodesy, from the Greek, literally means dividing the earth, and as a first objective, the practice of geodesy should provide an accurate framework for the control of national topographical surveys. Thus geodesy is the science that determines the figure of the earth and the interrelation of selected points on its surface by either direct or indirect techniques. These characteristics further make it a branch of applied mathematics, one that must include observations that can be used to determine the size and shape of the earth and the definition of coordinate systems for threedimensional positioning; the variation of phenomena near to or on the surface, such as gravity, tides, earth rotation, crustal movement, and deflection of the plumb line; together with units of measurement and methods of representing the curved earth surface on a flat sheet of paper.”<
>Geodesy as a science can be traced back to Pythagoras (6th cent. BC), who was thought to be the first to propose the sphericity of the Earth. Aristotle & Archimedes were apparently the first the offer a figure for the diameter of the Earth, suggesting 400,000 and 300,000 stades respectively. The difference might be partly explained by the use of a different length of stade.<
Later, Eratosthenes (276 BC– 195 BC) offered another early attempt to determine the dimensions of our Earth and succeeded with remarkable accuracy.
A controversial aspect of modern geodesy is the claim that many ancient sites were deliberately established at locations that had a specific geodetic relationship to each other and/or the dimensions of the Earth. For example(a) in ancient Egypt, from Giza to the Equator is 1/12th the circumference of the Earth, Amarna to the Equator is 1/13th, Luxor 1/14th and Philae 1/15th! Graham Hancock in his Heaven’s Mirror pointed to similar relationships around the globe suggesting a possible world grid. This idea of a world grid has a number of supporters but is often classified as a ‘fringe’ interest due to the attempt by some to link gridlines with UFOs and their use of the grid as a power source(w).
Possibly related features may be the ley lines identified by Alfred Watkins in Britain(c)(g), the Alesia alignments in France discovered by Xavier Guichard(b) and/or the Heilige Linien of Germany claimed by Wilhelm Teudt(aa).
Heinz Kaminski claimed to have discovered a megalithic grid system that stretched from Stonehenge across Europe with an east-west and north-south orientation and referred to as the Stonehenge/Wormbach System(h).
Even more exotic is the ancient Raetiastone navigation system rediscovered by Gerhard Pirchl (1942-2013) and outlined in a book by  Thomas Walli(ae).
Ashley Cowie has published a paper(ac) related to Alesia and the work of Guichard and others, as well as his own investigations.
I should also point out that Marcel Mestdagh also identified a form of a road system, laid out in giant ovals with radials in France. At the centre of these ovals was the ancient city of Sens. Philip Coppens informs us [1275.184] that a further strange discovery by Mestdagh was that this ancient road network, centred on Sens, was mirrored by a similar network of roads in England centred on Nottingham!
‘The Way of Virachoca’ in the Andes which runs through Tiwanaku and is oriented exactly 45° west of true north and runs for over 1000 miles, has been studied by Maria Scholten d’Ebneth  in the 1970s and expanded on by a number of Spanish speaking commentators and is now the subject of an article by Dave Truman(x).
In 1973, three Russians, engineers Valery Makarov and Vyacheslav Morozov along with Nikolay Goncharov, an artist, published in Russian an article with the eye-catching title of Is the Earth a Giant Crystal? (y) This was probably the earliest presentation of an earth grid based on ancient historical sites. A brief history of the earth grid theories that emerged around this time is available online(z). There is now a Russian geodesy website with an English translation(ab).
David Hatcher Childress published his Anti-Gravity and the World Grid  in 1993, with the modest claim that he “proves that the earth is surrounded by an intricate electronic grid network offering free energy.” Obviously, Childress’ understanding of ‘proof’ is different to mine, as the only proof required is the production of some of this free energy, which he has not done.
Tom Brooks entered the fray with a study of 1500 prehistoric sites and his conclusion that the inhabitants of ancient Britain had designed a navigation system based on a grid of isosceles triangles(i). Brooks has gone a step further and speculatively claimed that the accuracy of this geometry-based system could only have been designed through “extraterrestrial intervention”(r). This concept is explored more fully in his latest book, Seeing Around Corners: Geometry in Stone Age Britain  and in a series of video clips(s). A more critical view of Brooks’ ideas is also available on the Internet(j).
Some years ago a former employee of a NASA sub-contractor, Maurice Chatelain claimed that within a 450-mile radius of the Aegean island of Delos that 13 mystical sites, when connected by straight lines formed a perfect Maltese Cross(u)!
Others such as Livio Stecchini(d) and Jim Alison(e) using geodetic calculations have identified São Tomé and Cape Verde respectively as the location of Atlantis. I must also include Hugo Kennes, a Belgian researcher with a passionate interest in global grids and sacred geometry(l). Kennes has also informed me of a new Facebook group(q) dealing with all aspects of the subject, as well as another(v) that includes submerged cities and other features.
Anyone interested in pursuing a study of this subject might like to look over James Q. Jacobs’ archaeogeodesy website(f) as well as the BioGeometry website (m).
If you have pursued all the links so far, you can pamper yourself further with a paper(k) by William Becker and Beth Hagens(n). Another researcher in this field is Dan Shaw whose website(o) gives a good overview of the subject.
Jean-Pierre Lacroix added his weight to the debate with his 1998 paper entitled The Mapmakers from the Ice Age(t).
A global network of sacred sites was also put forward by Rand Flem-Ath & Colin Wilson in The Atlantis Blueprint . This book was intended as a sequel to When the Sky Fell , but generally wandered off into other areas after the first couple of chapters.
I am somewhat sceptical about certain aspects of geodesy, particularly some of the claims of a world grid. However, it does raise many questions that require further study and explanation. In this connection, I would recommend John Sase’s Curious Alignments  as a good starting point. He confirms the work of Guichard and also offers a range of his own discoveries in the Great Lakes region.
In February 2020, Frank Maglione Nicholson, Ken Phungrasamee & David Grimason, collectively known as The Nazca Group(ad), published The Nazca Great Circle Map Hypothesis. Their claim is that “The lines and geoglyphs carved into the Nazca plateau represent a map of the Earth. The map is a Great Circle Map: a gnomonic projection with the center of the Earth as its cartographic viewpoint. Each line on the Nazca Plateau represents a great circle of navigation centred at the centre of the Earth and encircling the entire planet. The majority of the lines on the Nazca Plateau radiate from five loci of origin called radial centres.” I found this rather esoteric proposition difficult to absorb.
Arturo Villamarin has published many books  and papers(af)(ag) in which the geometry and astronomy of archaeological monuments; Göbekli Tepe, Stonehenge, Teotihuacán and Mohenjo Daro, among others, are discussed.
(d) http://www.metrum.org/mapping/atlantis.htm (link broken Dec. 2020)
(i) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20160628154229/https://www.prehistoric-geometry.co.uk/
(l) https://web.archive.org/web/20210518205346/http://users.telenet.be/kenneshugo/alternative history sciences.htm *
(n) Bethe Hagens – Geometry, Anthropology anf the Arts of Consciousness (archive.org)
(r) https://www.prehistoric-geometry.co.uk/ [See (i)]
(ac) Solstice Axis Of The Ancient Gauls — ASHLEY COWIE (archive.org)
(ad) The Nazca Solution – The final solution to what the Nazca Lines represent (archive.org)
(af) (99+) (PDF) THE GEOMETRY AND ASTRONOMY OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL MONUMENTS | Arturo Villamarin – Academia.edu
(ag) (99+) (PDF) THE GEOMETRY AND ASTRONOMY OF GOBEKLI TEPE | Arturo Villamarin – Academia.edu
Otto Kuntze (1843-1907) was a renowned German botanist(e) who wondered about the distribution of the banana and arrived at the radical conclusion that the banana was brought to America when the North Pole had a tropical climate(a)!
His ideas were referenced in William F. Warren‘s Paradise Found(a). However, Ignatius Donnelly decided to modify Kuntze’s ideas and speculated on whether it was “more reasonable to suppose that the plantain, or banana, was cultivated by the people of Atlantis, and carried by their civilized colonies to the east and the west?”
However, Donnelly’s claim was trumped decades later by Erich von Däniken, who claimed the banana was a gift from his extraterrestrial gods(c) and when David Hatcher Childress claimed the fruit was an example of ancient genetic engineering!(b)(d)
<Ray Comfort, a Christian creationist and televangelist, used the banana to demolish the theory of evolution. In 2006 video clip(f) he offered up the ‘ironclad argument’ that bananas are proof of God’s intelligent design of the natural world because “the banana and the hand are perfectly made, one for the other.”
“Behold, the atheists’ nightmare!” declares Comfort, before detailing the many user-friendly features of bananas, which include its “non-slip surface”, “tab at the top” for easy opening, and convenient shape which is “even curved toward the face to make the whole process so much easier.”
I can only say that with such an idiotic statement, Mr. Comfort himself, cannot claim to be the result of intelligent design.<
(c) forgetomori » Erich von Daniken: Fraud, Lies and Bananas (archive.org)
(d) Mondo Ernesto: WHO GENETICALLY ENGINEERED THE BANANA?
(e) Kuntze, Carl Ernst Otto | Encyclopedia.com
(f) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/24/ray-comforts-banana-argument_n_4847082.html *
The Commercialisation of the Atlantis name took off in a dramatic fashion during the second half of the 20th century. Film and television programmes, usually with a totally distorted slant on Plato’s original story, became very popular. Manufacturers, shops and even what was once the largest brothel in Germany(a), all exploited the universal recognition of the Atlantis name.
What would Plato have thought?
Book publishers have cynically republished books with new titles that included the word ‘Atlantis’. Arguably the worst example of this was The Round Towers of Ireland  by Henry O’Brien, who referred to neither Atlantis or Plato in it. Over a century and a half later, Adventures Unlimited Press, founded by David Hatcher Childress, published O’Brien’s text again as The Round Towers of Atlantis  .
What would O’Brien have thought?
(a) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20190403172539/https://everything2.com/title/Atlantis%252C+German+brothel
Churchward, ‘Colonel’ James
‘Colonel’ James Churchward (1851-1936) was a British engineer and patent holder. However, his most famous invention was ‘the land of Mu‘, an imaginary counterpart of Atlantis, supposedly situated in the Pacific. He wrote six books +++++ between 1926 and 1935 to promote this brainchild. Although based on material dating back to 1927 the last volume, Books of the Golden Age, was not published until 1997.
He also gave more than two dozen radio lectures on New York’s station WNYC between 1924 and 1925(q).
Churchward claimed to have gained his knowledge of Mu from the so-called Naacal Tablets which were translated for him by an Indian priest. Jason Colavito has recently expanded on this matter in a recent blog(i).
Readers might be interested in reading a newspaper report from 1932 in which he claimed the existence of flying machines in ancient India(k). This idea was subsequently adopted by Pauwels & Bergier, copied by Von Däniken and more recently stolen by Hatcher Childress. Colavito has written a valuable piece(l) on the origin and evolution of the story of vimanas in ancient Indian literature and debunked the suggestion that they were some early UFO.
On April 23, 1933, The New York Times described “Mr Churchward is an authority, the only authority there is, on the Lost Continent of Mu. It is, in fact, his continent, by all the rights there are of discovery, invention, evidence, conviction of reality that deal with intangible things.”
The kindest thing that I can say is that Churchward’s most valuable contribution to literature was A Big Game and Fishing Guide to Northeastern Maine, published in 1898. Two of the many gems offered by Churchward are (1) “Christ’s last words on the cross were in the language of Mu” and (2) “the sun is not a superheated body; it is a cool body but highly magnetic”(b) !!!
Fortunately, geological knowledge today clearly demonstrates that Churchward’s vast island of Mu is as impossible as Donnelly’s Atlantic Atlantis. However, although Churchward also accepted that Atlantis was a mid-Atlantic continent, I am tempted to think that he invented Mu in the Pacific in the hope of emulating Donnelly’s publishing success with Atlantis. A critical review(h) of Churchward’s theories, in French, is available on the Internet.
James Churchward’s younger brother, Albert (1852-1925)(right), was a Masonic writer, who was the author of The Origin and Evolution of the Human Race. It is interesting that this book, now available online(j), does not refer to either Mu or Atlantis.
An extensive paper written by his god-daughter, Joan Griffith, about his life and work is available online(a). Churchward’s great-grandson, Jack, also has a website(d) dedicated to telling his story. This includes an acceptance(c) that the rank of ‘colonel’ used by his great-grandfather was, on balance, another invention. Jack also admitted(m) the unreliability of James’ translation of the Troano Manuscript, influenced as it was by the earlier seriously flawed attempts by Bishop Diego De Landa (1524-1579), de Bourbourg and LePlongeon. Jack has also written a couple of articles comparing the ideas of Churchward and LePlongeon(o).
Some years ago Frank Joseph wrote an article for Atlantis Rising magazine #30 in which he claimed that Churchward had been ‘corroborated’! In fact, the article title is misleading and in my opinion, its content is just blather padded with waffle(p).
>Most of Churchward’s Mu books can be read or downloaded online using the links below.<
+Sacred Symbols of Mu Index (archive.org) *
+ https://archive.org/details/cosmicforcesofmu00chur_2/page/10/mode/2up *
(f) Wayback Machine (archive.org)
(h) http://ukko.free.fr/mu.htm (French)
(k) https://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/73524361?searchTerm=Atlantis discovered&searchLimits=
(o) Reconciling the Evidence Part 1 : My-Mu Blog
(p) Atlantis Rising magazine #30 http://pdfarchive.info/index.php?pages/At
Childress, David Hatcher
David Hatcher Childress (1957- )(d) is a prolific writer on the subject of ancient civilisations, having written a series on ‘Lost Cities’. He describes himself as a ‘rogue archaeologist’. He has had an exciting life(a) worthy of a book itself. His literary output, which deals extensively with ‘ancient technologies’, is somewhat speculative and inclined to veer close to the ravings of Erich von Däniken.
A link to several of Childress’ papers is available(h).
In 2016, Childress, in Ark of God , repeated old speculation that the Ark of the Covenant was capable of flight, suggesting that the Ark was an example of advanced ancient technology!
Childress extended his interest in the possibility of advanced ancient technology in Vimana Aircraft of Ancient India and Atlantis . I can only assume that ‘Atlantis’ was added to the title as a marketing ploy, as it would be more recognisable than ‘vimana. He also offers some of the content in a short paper(g).
>Some time ago Jason Colavito tackled the matter of Childress’ vimanas, noting the development of the use of the word in Hindu mythology, but crucially pointing out that “The concept of these flying chariots as UFO-style airships originates in a fraud, the Vaimanika Shastra, allegedly an ancient Sanskrit epic, but one “channeled” from the astral realm by a Hindu psychic in 1918. No evidence of this text exists prior to 1952, and even the “translator” of the text makes explicit that it was channeled from the spirit world between 1918 and 1923. The fake text specifically compares the vimanas to modern aircraft, describing their propulsion systems and other modern technological achievements.” (i).<
However, on the subject of Atlantis, he has kept his options open by listing ten possible locations for Atlantis(b). You would imagine that an archaeologist ‘rogue’ or otherwise would be prepared to express a clearer opinion. However, if you are a book publisher as well, there is no point in competing with your clients, so it is safer to sit on the fence. Nevertheless, in the 2007 DVD, Atlantis: Secret Star-Mappers of a Lost World, Childress identifies the Baltic as the original home of the Sea Peoples, reminiscent of the theories of Jürgen Spanuth, half a century earlier.
His Lost Cities of Atlantis, Ancient Europe and the Mediterranean is a volume that does not lead to any firm conclusions as it tends to see evidence of Atlantis everywhere. Nevertheless, although Childress has written at least six books in the ‘Lost Cities’ series, only the one dealing with Europe and the Mediterranean that includes Atlantis in the title, which may indicate his belief that it had existed in that region of the world! However, he does offer a number of interesting tidbits such as his view [p.61] that the ancient Egyptians and the Hittites were successors of the Atlanteans and his suggestion that the landbridge linking Europe and Africa at Gibraltar was breached around 9000 BC [p.261]. Unfortunately, he offers nothing by way of evidence to support these claims.
Childress claims that he was researching a book on Atlantis [p.450] but nowhere does he unequivocally reveal his conclusions on the subject. On the other hand, he may have wished to avoid conflicting with the opinions of his clients as he was also the founder of Adventures Unlimited Press, which has published a number of books on Atlantis including reprints of many of the classic books on the subject.
2000 finally saw Childress reveal his preferred location for Atlantis in his Technology of the Gods, where he says “Atlantis, I believe, is beneath the mid-Atlantic in the vicinity of the Azores and the Bahamas” [1355.334]
Jason Colavito has written a four-part review of this book(e) in which he is highly critical of Childress’ penchant for recycling his own work, provocatively referring to it as self-plagiarism! Colavito also records Childress’ courtroom appearances(f).
(g) Ancient Indian Aircraft Technology (bibliotecapleyades.net)
(h) The Discoveries of David Hatcher Childress (bibliotecapleyades.net)
Buffon, Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de
Georges-Louis Leclerc Comte de Buffon (1707-1788) was an eminent French naturalist who ruffled a few feathers when he carried out extensive experiments in order to calculate the age of the Earth. He arrived at a figure of 74,832 years that ran counter to the views of many of his mid-18th century contemporaries.
He also commented that the Atlantis story was an “ancient tradition that is not devoid of probability” and proposed that Atlantis had been situated on landmasses that had connected Ireland with the Azores and with America, although his reference to Atlantis is not as specific as it should have been.
In 1749 Buffon speculated in his Histoire et théorie de la terre, that the Mediterranean had been dry until an earthquake allowed the Atlantic to pour in.
John S. Bowman in his The Quest for Atlantis paraphrasing Buffon wrote that “this rush of water washed away Atlantis”(p.108), clearly reflects the ambiguity of Buffon’s words, which were intended to suggest that the inward rush of water into the Mediterranean somehow destroyed Atlantis in the Atlantic!
Buffon also proposed that the islands of Sicily, Sardinia, Malta and others were just the mountain tops of the formerly dry Mediterranean. Some have erroneously linked Buffon’s two statements and concluded that Buffon believed that Atlantis had been situated in the Mediterranean. It is understandable, given that Buffon’s statement regarding the breaching of an isthmus at Gibraltar leading to the destruction of Atlantis follows on immediately after the non-specific passage about the Atlantic. Today, it is easier to believe that water gushing into the Mediterranean could destroy a civilisation located there rather than damage land in the Atlantic, where the only effects there might be a lowering of the sea level and expansion of the land area.
However, what is not generally known is that at that time many Europeans who accepted that Atlantis existed in the Atlantic, usually at different locations, attributed its demise to events in the Mediterranean. Tournefort thought Atlantis had been submerged by an outflow of water from the Mediterranean following an earthquake there. Bory de St. Vincent proposed that volcanic events in the Mediterranean drove water out into the Atlantic drowning Atlantis. Combined with Buffon’s theory, the Age of Enlightenment seems to have been the Age of Speculation.
Paul Jordan in The Atlantis Syndrome wrote that “Buffon thought that Atlantis had been flooded when Atlantic waters poured into the Mediterranean”
David Hatcher-Childress extended the boundaries of literary licence when he claimed in his Lost Cities of Atlantis that Buffon “suggested that Atlantis had existed near Sicily when the Mediterranean was dry land (p.178). Hatcher-Childress cited Sprague de Camp’s Lost Continents where that much-quoted author wrote that Buffon “thought that Atlantis had been washed away by water flowing in the opposite direction, from the Atlantic into the Mediterranean” (p.86).
Buffon tantalisingly refers(a) to the idea of the dry Mediterranean being supported by the testimony of the elders, mentioning Diodorus Siculus and Strabo. He also notes that at the Strait of Gibraltar the geological strata on the opposite coasts of Africa and Spain are the same at comparable levels.
Buffon’s Histoire et théorie de la terre was just the first in a series that eventually became an encyclopedia of 37 volumes collectively entitled Histoire naturelle, générale et particulière.
In 1792 an English translation of the first ten volumes was published by J.S.Barr of London. Volume One (and others) are available as free ebooks(b).
(a) https://www.buffon.cnrs.fr/?lang=en (link broken) *
(b) http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/webbin/metabook?id=buffonnaturalhistory *