Robert Charroux (1909-1978) was the pen-name of Robert Grugeau who originally was a fiction writer and whose critics unkindly claim that he never deviated from that genre. During World War II he was Minister for Cultural Affairs in the French Vichy government. In the 1960’s he turned his attention to a study of ancient history and proceeded to publish a series of best-selling books on forgotten civilisations, ancient astronauts and a range of historical mysteries.*[He placed Hyperborea between Hudson Bay and Greenland[875.98] where it had been the home of a blond blue-eyed Nordic race.]*
He frequently touched on the subject of Atlantis*[in a number of his books, The Mysterious Unknown, The Mysterious Past and Lost Worlds,]*suggesting that Atlantis was located in the Atlantic and possibly known as Antilia, the Fortunate Isles or the island of the Seven Cities. He suggested that the final remnants of Atlantis may have existed on the Canary Islands and may have lasted until the fifteenth century AD in the form of the Guanches.
Charroux also thought that the Azores had been part of Atlantis but was adamant that the ‘geological convulsions’ in the region will have destroyed any physical evidence[875.93].
The Hesperides in Greek mythology were the daughters of Atlas. They lived on an island in the far west guarding a tree that bore golden apples made famous in the story of the twelve labours of Hercules who was charged with obtaining some of the apples.
The Hesperides have also been referred to as the Fortunate Islands and is the name applied by classical writers to islands off the west coast of Africa that have been variously identified with the Azores, Canaries or Cape Verde islands. Other opinions place the garden at Gades or on the Atlantic coast of Morocco.
While the majority of opinion is that the name specifically refers to the Canaries, a minority view espoused by Andrew Collins(a) is similar to that of Oviedo, namely that Hesperides refers to the Caribbean, where he is convinced that Cuba had been the home of Atlantis.
Fortunate Isles or Isles of the Blest is a term that has been applied to many islands over the ages but has been consistently described as being ‘in the west’. It is most commonly believed that the term was originally used to describe the Canary Islands, which in turn are considered by many to be remnants of Atlantis.
Marinus of Tyre, writing around 120 AD wrote of the Fortunate Isles as the western boundary of the known world and he was followed by Claudius Ptolemy (90-168 AD) who used the Fortunate Islands as the prime meridian for his Geographia(a) . However, although there is a general acceptance that the Canaries should be considered the Fortunate Isles, Ptolemy’s prime meridian runs more closely to the Cape Verde Islands!
Macaronesia which is derived from the Greek meaning ‘islands of the fortunate’ is a modern geographical term used to collectively describe the islands of Madeira, Azores, Canaries, Cape Verde and the Savage Islands. The term ‘Fortunate Isles’ is also applied to the Scilly Isles off the coast of Cornwall.
Eugene Pégot-Ogier (1824-1895) was the author of The Fortunate Isles translated into English in 1871. He unequivocally identified the Canaries as the Fortunate Isles referred to in antiquity. He went further and offered his view that the aboriginal Guanches of the Canaries had been part of the Atlantean empire, together with the Berber peoples across North Africa.
The Fortunate Isles was republished in 2009, while the 1871 edition can now be read or downloaded online(a).