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

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    September 2023. Hi Atlantipedes, At present I am in Sardinia for a short visit. Later we move to Sicily and Malta. The trip is purely vacational. Unfortunately, I am writing this in a dreadful apartment, sitting on a bed, with access to just one useable socket and a small Notebook. Consequently, I possibly will not […]Read More »
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    Joining The Dots

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Egyptians

Pre-Columbian America *

 Pre-Columbian  America continues to generate books and articles at an ever-increasing rate, fed by dramatic improvements and discoveries in many sciences. Nevertheless, the resulting theories still range from the serious to the silly.

This compilation has frequently touched on the subject pre-Columbian America as a number of Atlantis related theories have proposed what are only peripheral connections with America, although in the immediate aftermath of America’s rediscovery, some European commentators were content to designate America as Atlantis itself.

Since then a range of claims have been made as to the identity of  European visitors to America, often long before Columbus, sometimes with an underlying suggestion of nationalism. Richard Callaghan, an archaeologist at the University of Calgary, In the June 2015 issue of the journal Antiquity, “presented the results of computer simulations of 1,200 voyages of small boats drifting with the currents from northern Africa to the Americas. About 82 percent of Callaghan’s simulated boats made landfall in the Americas, many in 70 to 120 days. Since watercrafts have been around for at least 8,000 years, Callaghan says there could have been a “significant number” of successful pre-Columbian voyages to America.” Another archaeologist, Bradley T. Lepper, ironically writing in the Columbus Dispatch, rejected Callaghan’s data as evidence(l).

John L. Sorenson writing in the Journal of the Book of Mormon Studies(m) identifies evidence for transoceanic exchanges of 98 plant species, including tobacco and peanuts! I assume that he was driven by a very different agenda.

The weight of evidence so far favours the idea that most of the earliest pre-Columbians came from Asia either by sea or over what is now the Bering Strait. See the Arysio Dos Santos article(a) about Americas peopled by from an Asian Atlantis.

The online World History Encyclopaedia outlines the prehistory of North America from 40,000 BC when the Paleo-Indians arrived until 8,000 BC(i). Of course this statement begs the question – where did they come from?

The discovery of further early trans-Atlantic links was announced in February 2012(n) by two archaeologists, Professors Dennis Stanford & Bruce Bradley, in a newly published book – Across Atlantic Ice [1516]. Their claim is based on ‘Solutrean’ tools recently found in Delaware and five other east coast sites dated between 26,000 and 19,000 years ago. They offered “archaeological and oceanographic evidence to support this assertion, the book dismantles the old paradigm while persuasively linking Clovis technology with the culture of the Solutrean people who occupied France and Spain more than 20,000 years ago.”

In 2014, Stephen Oppenheimer endorsed the work of Stanford and Bradley(s).

However, a sceptical view of their work should also be read(o). However, by 2016 the Soultrean Hypothesis had been contradicted by genetic studies(p). Nevertheless, a recent documentary on the hypothesis has raised some controversy, as the program failed to refer to the use of the Soultrean Hypothesis by white supremacists(q). Jennifer Raff, who appeared in the documentary, has also rejected the Stanford & Bradley theory in a new article(r).

In 2014 Michael J. O’Brien et al published another critical review of  Stanford & Bradley’s theory on the Researchgate website and added a response from Stanford and Bradley(t).

Finally, I suggest that there may be more to Stanford & Bradley’s theory, when combined with the story of the Red Paint People.

Harry Bourne is the author of a series of lengthy papers(c) relating to African maritime history. Until I read some of his work I was unaware of the subject, with the only suggestion of Africans voyaging to the Americas was the existence of the mysterious Olmec stone heads. Bourne advised(d)   that Columbus noted “that blacks were also trading on the far side of the Atlantic in the Caribbean”, but does not cite the reference.

This whole subject could fill a library of its own and in no way is this entry intended to be a substitute for a comprehensive study of pre-Columbian America.

With their understandable Eurocentric view of the world a variety of commentators  have advocated a range of pre-Columbian visitors to the Americas from this side of the Atlantic . There are a wide range of claims suggesting that such contacts included the SumeriansPhoenicians, Egyptians(k), Ancient Greeks, Minoans(j) and Romans(b)(e)(f). After that, there appears to have been an endless parade of transatlantic tourists proposed – Basques(g) , Scots [1769], Irish [2086] and Vikings [1824].

There is also a suggestion that Marco Polo visited America before Columbus(h) .

No investigation of early visitors to America should ignore the work of the controversial epigrapher Barry Fell, particularly his two books, America BC [1769] and Saga America [1770].

 

(a) Atlantis in the New World. – Atlan.org

(b) Ancient Romans May Have Discovered Americas Before Columbus | Gaia

(c) Black History WEB – African Maritime History Archive (50webs.com)

(d) West Africa & The Sea In Later Antiquity: Short intro. & plan (modernghana.com)  (4/5ths down page)

(e) http://mexicolesstraveled.com/comalcalco.html

(f) http://www.andrewcollins.com/page/mysteries/deccott.htm

(g) https://www.archyde.com/did-the-basques-arrive-in-america-before-columbus/

(h) https://www.dailygrail.com/2014/09/did-marco-polo-discover-america-in-the-13th-century/

(i) Pre-Colonial North America – World History Encyclopedia

(j) Minoans have been to America before Columbus (bristolgreeks.com)

(k) Egyptian statuette recovered from Mexico is authentic: Antiquities ministry – Ancient Egypt – Antiquities – Ahram Online

(l) Bradley T. Lepper The Columbus Dispatch  •  Sunday September 20, 2015

(m) https://scholarsarchive.byu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1383&context=jbms

(n) http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/new-evidence-suggests-stone-age-hunters-from-europe-discovered-america-7447152.html?printService=print 

(o) http://www.academia.edu/5119515/On_thin_ice_Problems_with_Stanford_and_Bradley_s_Solutrean-Clovis_hypothesis 

(p) Genetic data does not support ancient trans-Atlantic migration, professor says | The University of Kansas (archive.org) *

(q) http://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/critics-blast-cbc-documentary-on-solutrean-hypothesis-for-ignoring-racism  

(r) https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/feb/21/rejecting-the-solutrean-hypothesis-the-first-peoples-in-the-americas-were-not-from-europe  

(s) Solutrean hypothesis: genetics, the mammoth in the room: World Archaeology: Vol 46 , No 5 – Get Access (tandfonline.com)  

(t) (PDF) On thin ice: Problems with Stanford and Bradley’s proposed Solutrean colonisation of North America (researchgate.net)  

 

 

 

Michigan *

Michigan entered the Atlantis gazetteer when Frank Joseph claimed that copper was at the heart of Atlantean wealth. He further maintained that a major source of this copper was the Michigan North Peninsula from where millions of pounds of the metal were extracted. Conventional wisdom has never Michigan Copperexplained the source of the vast quantities of copper required to feed the needs of the European Bronze Age. Researchers, such as Joseph, are convinced that the abandoned Michigan mines were exploited by pre-Columbian trans-Atlantic mariners, possibly Atlanteans, in order to satisfy the demands of the Mediterranean Bronze industry.

A 2014 paper by David Hoffman offers an interesting history of the Michigan copper story from 1536 until 1879(e). Adding to that is the early claim in 1867, by Bishop Patrick Nieson Lynch of Charleston, South Carolina that the ancient exploitation of the Michigan copper had to be carried out by the Phoenicians.

A short paper in the Migration & Diffusion website(d) by Gerard Leduc in 2017, suggests a possible route that may have been used for the exportation of the Michigan copper to the Atlantic Ocean, before heading for the Mediterranean and/or Northern Europe. 

Professor Ilias Mariolakos in a 2010 paper(c) supported the idea of Old World miners in Michigan, identifying prehistoric Greeks as participants.

In 1982, an ancient shipwreck was discovered near Uluburun in Turkey. On board were 10 tons of copper ingots whose purity led some to conclude that it could only have come from the Michigan mines. J.S. Wakefield has written a paper supporting this view(a), although he does not directly attribute this copper trade to Atlanteans. An isotopic analysis of the Uluburun copper ingots clearly showed them to have originated in Cyprus(k). This scientific fact undermines those seeking to link the Uluburun copper with the Michigan mines.

John Jensen has noted that “curiously, North American Indian mounds have been found to contain copper sheets made in the shape of animal hides. Called “reels,” their function, if any, is unknown. The reels do, however, resemble oddly shaped copper ingots common in European Bronze Age commerce. Their peculiar shape earned these ingots the name “oxhides” and has been found in Bronze Age shipwrecks, and are even said to be portrayed on wall paintings in Egyptian tombs. The standardized hide-like shape, with its four convenient handles, was useful in carrying and stacking the heavy ingots. Could the reels from the North American mounds have been copied from the oxhides? It is tempting to speculate that the Copper Culture miners were actually an Atlantic rim colony.(j)

However, Gavin Menzies in The Lost Empire of Atlantis claims that Minoan Crete was in fact Atlantis and that the Minoans not only discovered America but were also responsible for the extensive exploitation of the Michigan copper mines.

Nevertheless, this remarkable claim was endorsed by science writer, Jeff Danner(f), who cites Plato’s reference to an ‘opposite continent’ as an allusion to America. More recent support has come from marine Captain, Richard deGrasse in his 2021 book, The Influence of Stonehenge on Minoan Navigation and Trade in Europe [1923](g).

It must be stated that this idea of the Michigan copper mining being the work of Old World traders is hotly disputed by local Michigan archaeologists(b).

Nevertheless, the late Bernhard Beier published two articles(h)(i) on the debate surrounding the astounding quantity of copper apparently mined in Michigan. It is clear that he is sympathetic to the idea that Old World miners, such as Phoenicians, Berbers or Egyptians were involved.

(a) https://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?id=174

(b)  See: Archive 2102

(c) https://www.geology.upatras.gr/files/diavgeia/geology_congress/XLIII,%20Vol%201.pdf (link Broken Oct 2010) See: http://greeceandworld.blogspot.com/2013_08_01_archive.html

(d) https://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?year=2017&id=528

(e) https://web.archive.org/web/20200930072819/https://ancientamerica.com/missing-prehistoric-michigans-half-billion-pounds-of-copper/

(f) https://chapelboro.com/town-square/columns/common-science/bronze-age-part-ii-the-case-of-the-missing-copper 

(g) The Influence of Stonehenge on Minoan Navigation and Trade in Europe: How Michigan Copper Arrived in the Mediterranean During the Bronze Age (bookpump.com) (first 25 pages)

(h) Prähistorischer Kupferbergbau in Nordamerika und eine frühe Transatlantik-Connection (I) – Atlantisforschung.de (atlantisforschung-de.translate.goog)

(i) Prähistorischer Kupferbergbau in Nordamerika und eine frühe Transatlantik-Connection (II) – Atlantisforschung.de (atlantisforschung-de.translate.goog) 

(j) (99+) Ancient Canal Builders – Overview | John Jensen – Academia.edu (p.32) 

(k) Isotope analysis reveals origins of Uluburun shipwreck cargo | The Past (the-past.com) *

Moreux, Abbe Théophile (L)

Abbe Théophile Moreux (1867-1954) was a renowned French astronomer and meteorologist. He was ordained a Abbe Moreuxpriest in 1891 and became a professor of Mathematics and later, in 1907, he built his own observatory.

In 1924 he published L’Atlantide A-T-Elle Existé? [0716] (Atlantis does it Exist?) in which claimed that the Atlantis legend must have had an historical foundation.

He also argued that the civilisations of the Maya, Inca and Egyptians were incomprehensible without Atlantis. He wrote on the subject of alchemy in a separate work.

During World War II, at the age of 76, he was imprisoned for a few weeks for criticising Herr Hitler.

Zapp, Ivar

ZappIvar Zapp is a former professor of design at the architecture school of Universidad de Costa Rica and co-author, with George Erikson, of Atlantis in America[244] that links Atlantis with the ancient cultures of Central America.

Zapp gave a talk in 2005 in which he identified a location in southwest Costa Rica as the site of Plato’s Atlantis(b). The Amazon customer reviews are worth a look(a).

In 2012 Zapp revealed that he was planning to publish a second book, Babel Deciphered, which will reveal that a maritime civilisation existed globally thousands of years before the Greeks, Egyptians and Sumerians and that this civilisation created the world’s first language(c). It appears that so far he has not found a publisher.

Regarding Atlantis, the same report noted that Zapp commenting on the fall of Atlantis,  “said that (it) was not the literal collapse of a continent into the ocean, but the collapse of knowledge that plunged the world into a dark age where people forgot the language and navigation techniques pioneered by a civilization in the Americas.”

(a) https://www.amazon.com/Atlantis-America-Navigators-Ancient-World/product-reviews/0932813526

(b) See Archive 2537)

(c) https://www.prestige-ocean-properties.com/blogs/michael_mills/archive/2012/10/13/unusual-theory-about-stone-spheres-in-costa-rica.aspx

Stallbaum, Johann Gottfried

Johann Gottfried Stallbaum (1793-1861) was a German classicist who isStallbaum best known for his two Latin editions of Plato’s complete works – Platonis Opera omnia of which Volume 7 contains Timaeus and Critias. His Latin texts have been frequently used in the production of vernacular translations.

In 1838 he was content to accept America as Atlantis and suggested that the American continent was probably known to the ancient Egyptians and their Asian neighbours.

Clarke, Hyde

 

Hyde Clarke (1815-1895) was English philologist, engineer and historian who Hyde Clarkesuggested[242] in 1885, that “the head seat of the great king (of Atlantis) was possibly in the Caribbean Sea; it may be in St. Domingo (Hispaniola)”. His book can be read online(a).

Clarke also held the view that ‘Atlantis’ was the name of the king rather than the kingdom. Another of his odd suggestions was that the elephants of Atlantis were in fact tapirs! He further claimed that Australia had been known in remote antiquity(d).

>In 1874 Clarke delivered a paper to the Royal Anthropological Institute, in London, in which he claimed that the Caucasus had been home to an Egyptian colony(f). A few decades later Flinders Petrie suggested that the Egyptians had originated in the Caucasus(e). Both cannot be right!<

Jason Colavito reviewed Clarke’s Atlantis ideas in a June 2014 blog(b), the following day, Colavito’s article was republished under the name of author Gabriel Cohen!(c)

(a) https://www.archive.org/stream/examinationlege00clargoog#page/n6/mode/1up

(b)  https://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/hyde-clarkes-unusual-opinions-about-atlantis

(c) See: Archive 2466

(d) https://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/63616237?searchTerm=Plato Atlantis&searchLimits=sortby=dateAsc

(e) https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/antiquity/article/abs/connexions-between-egypt-and-russia/5CC9FECE9A13B6B336F6F4A57386B2DC Antiquity, Vol. 15, Issue 60, Dec. 1941 p.384-386 *

(f)  https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/2841305.pdf *

Chariots

Chariots numbering ten thousand are mentioned as an important part of Atlantis’ armed forces. However, it is generally accepted that chariots first appeared in Mesopotamia around 3000 BC and became fairly commonplace by the middle of the second millennium BC. There is no evidence of any of the major Late Bronze Age nations having any more than a few hundred chariots. It would also appear that these chariots were normally reserved for nobles, wearing full bronze armour. War chariots were only effective over open and relatively flat ground.

Etruscan_chariot_4We should also keep in mind that the invention of the wheel itself is currently dated to not much earlier than 3500 BC(c) indicating that Plato’s reference to Atlantean chariots is anachronistic if we accept his apparent claim that the war with Atlantis took place around 9600 BC.

Regarding the Atlantis story, we must comment that 10,000 chariots controlled by one army, would only be required if a battleground had large tracts of flat land and if the enemy also possessed a similar force of chariots. Since no such enemy had been identified, we are forced to consider the clear possibility that the chariot numbers, as with so many other of the figures in Plato’s story, are suspect.

The greatest chariot battle in history took place in what is now Syria at the Battle of Kadesh in 1275 BC, between the Egyptians and the Hittites. The total number of chariots involved was between 5,000 and 6,000. In other words, a literal acceptance of what Plato wrote suggests that the Atlanteans had twice the number of chariots as that of the opponents at Kadesh combined, eight thousand years earlier! On top of that, those that accept the Atlantis story literally,  try to tell us that the Atlanteans had 10,000 chariots, eight thousand years earlier than Kadesh, millennia before chariots were invented! As an aside, I should mention that the Battle of Kadesh was not the great victory by Ramses II that is often claimed(f).

The date given by Plato for the destruction of Atlantis is 9600 BC. This would make the existence of chariots at that time, not to mention in such numbers, a complete anachronism. It is not likely that Atlantis would have needed 10,000 chariots at any time without their enemies being similarly equipped, which is equally improbable at that early date and, of course, it required a battlefield suitable for such a clash.  Plato’s date would appear to be out by about 8,000 years.

Since chariots were only introduced into Britain in the 5th century BC, in other words after Solon. This would seem to rule out Britain as the home or even a colony of the original empire of Atlantis. Similarly, with no evidence of chariots in the ancient Americas or the Caribbean, it would not be unreasonable to rule them out as the Atlantis of Plato. If the reference to chariots is to be taken as a real attribute of the Atlantean military machine, we are forced to look, in very general terms, to the Mediterranean region, both inside and outside the Strait of Gibraltar as far as the Black Sea and Egypt.

I must also add that from a functional point of view the most efficient chariots required spoked wheels and that the oldest examples of which have been dated no earlier than 2000 BC(a). This alone is a reason to question Plato’s Atlantis date.

Arthur Cottrell, in his Chariot[866], discusses how the chariot lost its dominance in battle but developed as a form of entertainment with the introduction of chariot racing and was frequently used in funerary rituals of several cultures. Chariot racing as a spectator sport in Rome dates back to around the 6th century BC. It was also quite popular among the Etruscans and the Lucanians of Sicily in the 5th century BC. It was recently revealed that Roman racing chariots had an additional iron tyre fitted to the right wheel greatly enhancing the charioteer’s chance of winning(e).

The close of the Bronze Age saw an end to the supremacy of the war chariot with the introduction of new weaponry and military tactics. Robert Drews is Professor of Classics and History at Vanderbilt University has claimed in his book, The End of the Bronze Age[865], that these changes were responsible for the collapse of so many eastern Mediterranean cities around 1200 BC. A review(b) of Drews’ book should also be read.

In conclusion, Plato’s reference to 10,000 chariots being employed in 9600 BC is either a colourful embellishment or a mangled account of the military power of an unnamed Bronze Age society. If the former, supporters of this early date for Atlantis must explain the total lack of archaeological evidence of chariots as early as 9600 BC as well as its continued absence during the succeeding six or seven thousand years.

>Plato’s numbers are obviously flawed and are matters that I deal with more comprehensively in Joining the Dots and the Dating Atlantis entry here.<

(a)  Ron Wyatt and Those Egyptian Chariot Wheels – Dr. Michael Heiser (archive.org) *

(b) https://web.archive.org/web/20180704153826/https://alanlittle.org/weblog/chariots.html

(c) https://www.livescience.com/18808-invention-wheel.html

(d) https://www.ancient-origins.net/ancient-technology/revolutionary-invention-wheel-001713?utm_source=Ancient-Origins+Newsletter&utm_campaign=b95d000e67-Top_Trending_Stories_Oct_No2_REAL_12_10_2015&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_2dcd13de15-b95d000e67-85158329

(e) https://www.seeker.com/secret-of-roman-race-chariots-found-2187581176.htm

(f) https://phys.org/news/2018-01-evidence-pharaoh-ramses-fake-news.html

Asia

Asia is a term used by Plato, particularly in connection with his description of Atlantis being greater than Libya and Asia together. Leaving aside the various arguments that the original passage meant that Atlantis was greater in ‘power’ rather than in geographical extent or that a change of a single letter in the Greek text would indicate a location ‘between’ Libya and Asia, we must again keep in mind that many words changed their meaning over the centuries. Edward Gibbon, the renowned 18th century English historian, noted that Greek and Roman writers used the term Asia to refer to Turkey, while others identify its use as a reference to ancient Lydia, a relatively small kingdom in western Turkey, rather than the vast continent it describes today. The same confusion is found in relation to Plato’s use of ‘Libya’ and also the ‘Pillars of Heracles’.

*Complicating matters further is the fact that the Egyptians considered themselves to be Asian, a fact recorded by Plato (Tim.24b).*

Furthermore, in Tim.24e, Plato informs us that Atlanteans were intent on the domination of all of the eastern Mediterranean including ‘Asia’, a clear indication that the Atlanteans arrived from the west.

Requena, Professor Rafael

requenaProfessor Rafael Requena (1879-1946) was a Venezuelan archaeologist, doctor and politician. He was the author of several books including one in 1932; Vestigios de la Atlántida[526] in which he wrote of his belief that Atlantis was a very large island in the Atlantic that was settled by the ancient Egyptians and from there subsequently went on to develop colonies in America.

In 1934, Requena was reported in the April edition of Modern Mechanix and Inventions to have concluded that in very early times the world was divided into two large continents, North and South Atlantis and that rock inscriptions then recently discovered in Venezuela by him had been written by people from lost South Atlantis(a).

*(a) https://archive.is/zGrQQ#selection-127.0-249.179*

Gordon, John S.

John S. Gordon (1946-2013 ) was a senior fellow of the Theosophical Society of England and is the author of two books with an Atlantis connection – The Rise and Fall of Atlantis[339] and Egypt: john_gordonChild of Atlantis[338].>Mark Newbrook has written a short but critical review of the former(a).<

In his books, he considers a radical re-appraisal of the age of the Egyptian civilisation, as he was convinced that Plato’s 9000 years are to be taken literally.

Furthermore, Gordon proposed that in addition to Plato’s story recounting a real civilisation his narrative also contains ‘a complex metaphor for cosmic creation.’ However, neither book brings us any nearer to locating Atlantis and is of little value to serious Atlantis seekers. He constantly quoted Blavatsky as a reliable source and is quite happy to accept Cayce’s ‘revelation’ that the Atlanteans had flying machines. This begs the question, that with such a technological advantage, how were they defeated by the Athenians?

Gordon suggests that the region of the Canaries and the Azores was the most likely location for Atlantis, which was destroyed by the eruption of a supervolcano and suggests that Atlantean migrants founded that ancient Egypt civilisation. However, nobody has addressed the unavoidable questions that flow from that idea. Firstly, is it credible that the Egyptians would not have recorded such a pedigree and related it to Solon? and secondly, is it not strange that the Atlanteans would launch an attack on their own relatives?

In 2012 Gordon returned to the subject of very ancient origins of the Egyptians with the publication of Land of the Fallen Star Gods[1110],  which is a re-working of Egypt: Child of Atlantis. Along with recycling of earlier material he also re-introduces us to the colourful concept of ‘the cosmic dung ball’!

(a)  https://www.hallofmaat.com/atlantis/the-rise-fall-of-atlantis-and-the-mysterious-origins-of-human-civilization/ *