Lost tribes of Israel
The Yoruba people of West Africa were first brought to the attention of Atlantis seekers in the early years of the 20th century by Leo Frobenius who placed Atlantis in the Yoruba region of Nigeria. Frobenius believed that the Etruscans had an Atlantean culture and were responsible for the
establishment of Benin around 1300 BC and it was a city in this region that had been described by Plato. In 1910 he published, in German, Atop the Rubble of Classical Atlantis which filled three large volumes.
Apart from some initial media attention Frobenius’ claims received little attention until a century later when an exotic suggestion regarding the Etruscans came from Xavier Séguin, who claimed that they share a common ancestry with the Yoruba of West Africa, as both originated in Atlantis(c), a concept clearly ‘borrowed’ from Frobenius! This attempted revival received little attention.
Related, but unconnected with Atlantis studies are the claims of “Dierk Lange(d), Prof. Dr Emeritus, of Bayreuth University in Germany, who has performed extensive research concerning many West African groups and their origins in the Near East. In the abstract to one of his many essays, “Dierk Lange: Origin of the Yoruba and “The Lost Tribes of Israel”,” Dierk confirms the traditions of a Levantine (Israelite) origin of the Yoruba Nigerians.”(a)(b)
Yair Davidiy is an Orthodox Jewish researcher currently living in Israel. He is a leading proponent of the Brit-Am movement(a) which promotes the idea that the descendants of the Lost Tribes of Israel are to be found in Europe but more particularly in Britain and America.
>Davidiy has also discussed the subject of Nordic Israelism(d) in a lengthy video entitled Lost Ten Tribes of Israel in Scandinavia(e).<
The Late Walter Baucum was also a Brit-Am supporter and the author of Bronze Age Atlantis in which he identified the Sea Peoples as Atlanteans. Davidiy wrote the Introduction(b), generally supporting Baucum’s ideas, although he dissents somewhat from elements of Baucum’s dating. With regard to Atlantis itself, Davidy is carefully non-committal.
Davidy makes the unusual claim on the Brit-Am website that “Dolmens and Megalithic Monuments originated in Ancient Israel. Jeremiah 31:21 says that the Lost Ten Tribes will construct a trail of Megalithic Monuments from Israel to their places of exile and evidence of this path will enable them to return. Such a trail exists! It is the Trail of the Dolmens from the Middle East to the West.”(c) As far as I’m aware Davidy has not explained anywhere the huge numbers of dolmens in places such as Korea and Japan, which are in the far east!
Charles Etienne Brasseur de Bourbourg (1814-1874) was born in Bourbourg, near Dunkirk, France. He entered the priesthood and in 1845 he left for Canada and was for a short time professor of ecclesiastical history at Quebec. He worked as a missionary in Mexico and Central America where he developed an intense interest in the native South Americans and their origins. In 1859 he published a history of the Aztecs.
Hubert H. Bancroft (1832-1918), the American historian, noted[1319.125-132]+ that initially, Brasseur was highly sceptical of the reality of Atlantis, but as his studies deepened he became an enthusiastic believer.
Brasseur de Bourbourg’s ability to track down rare manuscripts was legendary. In 1865, he discovered some of Bishop Diego de Landa‘s lost documents. He studied the thoroughly flawed interpretation of Mayan hieroglyphics by de Landa, produced in the 16th century and proceeded to develop his own faulty translation. While working on the Maya texts, he thought he had discovered the word Mu, which he claimed was the name of an inundated land with other features similar to Atlantis and proposed that they were the same. He wrote copiously on this association, without any real evidence except his own deluded ideas.
He concluded that the Maya were originally from Atlantis, based on Plato’s description of Atlantean culture. This view was expressed in his 1868 book, Quatre Lettres sur le Méxique+.
Brasseur also translated local languages into Roman script and perhaps his most important contribution was a French translation of the Popul Vuh, the sacred book of the Quiché branch of the Maya, which was published in 1861. An English translation is now available on the Internet(a).
Nigel Davies has revealed that Brasseur, as well as Lord Kingsborough (1795-1829), concluded that the native Americans were the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel. Kingsborough spent a £40,000 fortune publishing The Antiquities of Mexico in nine huge volumes, an extravagance that landed him in a Dublin debtor’s prison for non-payment of bills relating to publication costs and sadly, he died there.
This idea of the Lost Tribes in America had been suggested centuries earlier by Diego de Landa (1524- 1579), the Franciscan bishop of Yucatán.
In the mid-19th century, Brasseur proposed that Atlantis had existed on a large landmass in the Atlantic of which Hispaniola is a remnant. He believed that this vast peninsula extended to the vicinity of the Canaries. This idea was based on his own, largely incorrect, interpretation of Mayan glyphs. The American Hyde Clarke and the Guatemalan doctor Paul Felix Cabrera shared similar location theories.
Jason Colavito has pointed out that Brasseur was probably the first to suggest the possibility that some form of Pole Shift led to the destruction of Atlantis(b). This idea was published in 1873 and is available in an English translation by Colavito(c).
After what he thought was a reference to a flooded land called Mu, one of his last conclusions was that Mu and Atlantis were the same and that Mu was the correct name for the flooded land. This fantasy led Augustus le Plongeon to revise this theory, suggesting that refugees from both Mu and Atlantis were the founders of the Mayan civilisation.
[1319.125-132]+ https://archive.org/details/nativeraces05bancrich (Vol.V) *
Walter Winston Baucum (1938-2012) was a retired American teacher with a passion for ancient history. He is probably best known for his book The History and Future of Israelite America, which promotes the idea of America having been settled in pre-Columbian times by some of the lost tribes of Israel. He also wrote a number of articles on the same subject(a)(b).
He believed that Britain and the other nations of Europe are also descendants of these ‘lost tribes’. These ideas have been around for a couple of centuries and are usually supported by Christian groups. Baucum however was a member of the United Hebrew Congregation.
More recently he has ventured into the realms of Atlantology publishing his Bronze Age Atlantis,>which is a large-format, wide-ranging book with an Introduction by Yair Davidy. <In it, he follows some of the ideas of Jürgen Spanuth who placed Atlantis in the North Sea and identified the Sea Peoples who invaded Egypt as the ‘North Sea Peoples’. Baucum introduced a number of hard-to-accept ideas such as the Picts of Scotland and the Irish leprechauns (little people) were Minoan!
He concluded that Atlantis was basically “a seafaring, metal-gathering empire”, while with regard to the location of Atlantis, the capital city, he echoed Spanuth and opted for the vicinity of Heligoland, where sandbanks existed to the east as late as the 17th century (p.297). >However, he also generously included the Americas as part of ancient Atlantis [p.263]!<
Johannes Jacobi Eurenius (1688-1751) was a Swedish pastor who wrote Atlantica Orientalis, published in 1751, in which he located Atlantis in the Holy Land and argued forcefully against Rudbeck’s Swedish location. In the same book he devoted 140 pages arguing that the Norsemen were descendants of the 10 Lost Tribes of Israel!
Claude-Mathieu Olivier (1701-1736) was a French theologian and lawyer from Marseilles, who published his Dissertation sur le Critias (Essay on the Critias) in 1726. In it he developed the rather daring theory that the ten kingdoms of Atlantis should be equated with the ten lost tribes of Israel and placed Atlantis in the Holy Land. His idea was a development of the suggestions of other writers of the period, such as Baër and Eurenius who also sought to link biblical history with that of Plato’s Atlantis.