Francisco López de Gómara
Joseph-François Lafitau (1681-1746) was a French Jesuit, who was engaged in missionary work among the Iroquois in North America during the early 18th century. Unlike Francisco López de Gómara who considered the native Americans as descendants of refugees from Atlantis, Lafitau attributed their origins to have been eastern Mediterranean. He specifically linked the language of the Iroquois with that of Lycia. Lafitau is sometimes referred to as an early diffusionist [1285/6].
Christopher Columbus (1451-1506) is not known to have made any specific statements regarding Atlantis, but a number of commentators have suggested that he was not only aware of Plato’s story but had consulted charts, such as Toscanelli’s(a), that depicted a mid-Atlantic island. De Gomara was insistent that Columbus had read Plato’s Timaeus and Critias, while the historian, Bartolomé de las Casas (1484-1566), claimed that Plato’s story inspired Columbus to embark on his voyages of discovery!
>It is claimed that two of Columbus’ ships were built by Basques and that a quarter of their crews were Basque(b).<
The Flem-Aths in their Atlantis Beneath the Ice, which is a 2012 revised version of When the Sky Fell, begin the book with a reference to a memorandum sent by Charles Hapgood to President Eisenhower. In it Hapgood sought the president’s assistance in locating a map used by Columbus, which he believed to still exist in Spanish archives.>This map(c) was apparently one of a number used by Piri<to produce his famed Piri Reis Map, which allegedly depicts an ice-free Antarctica. The Columbus map was not found.
Francisco López de Gómara (1510-1566) was born in Seville and later retired there in 1557 where it is believed he also died. He was an ordained priest and in 1540 he became private and domestic chaplain to Hernando Cortez. He wrote a number of historical works including a general history of the Indies. Prince Philip, later Philip II of Spain, banned all his works in 1553. The relevant chapter in Hispania Victrix, in which he expressed his views on Atlantis is available in English online(a), as is the original Spanish text(b).
Gómara, following the Spanish invasion of America, was probably the first, in 1553, to suggest that the newly discovered continent was either Atlantis itself or the land beyond it. He cited Plato to support the proposition that the Native Americans were survivors of Atlantis. This was an idea that was adopted by many of his contemporaries.
Gómara was certain that Christopher Columbus had read Plato’s Timaeus and Critias suggesting that they gave added impetus to his westward voyage of discovery.
The Aztecs of Mexico are believed by many writers to have originated as refugees from Atlantis. Their own traditions claim that they came from Aztlan, a land to the east. Francisco López de Gómara was the first European to suggest this link with Atlantis in 1551. Ignatius Donnelly wrote at length on the subject and had his views frequently reflected in the work of writers at the beginning of the 20th century. Even today, some still associate Atlantis with the Aztecs(b), while others think that the Olmecs, predecessors of the Aztecs and Maya were Atlantean refugees(c).
Tenochtitlan was the capital the Aztec Empire and at the time it was captured by the Spanish it was probably one of the largest cities in the world with an estimated population of 200,000.
It is remarkable that the descendants of Moctezuma, the last Aztec emperor are alive and well and living in Spain today as the noble house of Grau-Moctezuma de Toleriu(a).
The Aztec drawing below is interpreted as representing the migration of the Aztecs from an island in the Atlantic to the mainland of America. The assumption is that the island in question was Atlantis! The case for a clear Aztec-Atlantis connection is far from proven.