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

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Mycenaeans

Sea Peoples

The Sea Peoples is the name given by modern scholarship to a group of allies who caused havoc among the nations of the Eastern Mediterranean including Egypt, which they invaded at least twice, in the 2nd millennium BC. The phrase ‘Sea Peoples’ was never used in ancient records, in fact, the coining of the term in 1855 is now generally attributed to French Egyptologist, Emmanuel de Rougé who used the term peuples de la mer (literally “peoples of the sea”) in a description of reliefs at Medinet Habu. The phrase was later popularized by another French Egyptologist, Gaston Maspero (1846-1916). Eckart Kahlhofer has recently suggested that even earlier, J. F. Champollion (1790–1832) employed an equivalent term gens navales to describe the occupants of the invading swan-necked boats.

Also related to the carvings at Medinet Habu is an interesting study of the Sea Peoples’ ships depicted there, by the nautical archaeologist Professor Andrea Salimbetti’s website has a lengthy paper on Aegean Bronze Age ships(al) as well as the Sea Peoples(am).

Cyprian Broodbank in The Making of the Middle Sea [1127] argues that the Sea People “never actually existed as a single people. Instead, small roving bands were a symptom of the collapse, not the cause, and they were blown out of proportion by Egyptian propagandists working for Ramasses III.” (ai)

Broodbank is a co-author with Giulio Lucarini of a paper(av) about Mediterranean Africa that “draws on a new surge in data to present the first up-to-date interpretative synthesis of this region’s archaeology from the start of the Holocene until the threshold of the Iron Age (9600–1000 bc).”

Motivation

One website(h) describes the Sea People as groups of dispossessed raiders driven by hunger following crop failures resulting from climate change. The same idea is expanded on by Lu Paradise in an extensive article(v).

A different view was expressed by the Egyptologist Robert Anderson who commented “It would seem that, rather than bands of plunderers, the Sea People were probably part of a great migration of displaced people. The migration was most likely the result of widespread crop failures and famine.”(d)

Evidence is mounting that climate change played a significant part in the Late Bronze Age collapse of civilisations in the Eastern Mediterranean region. There is a school of thought that believes that the widespread societal disintegration was more the result of environmental factors rather than the depredations of the Sea Peoples(ag).

Origins

The Sea Peoples’ exact origin continues to be a matter of intense speculation(ad). The debate regarding their true identity has been ongoing for a long time and will probably continue as long as the chronologies of the Middle East are not fully harmonized to the satisfaction of most. There is, however, some agreement that the Sea Peoples mounted two separate invasion attempts on Egypt around 1208 & 1176 BC (Facchetti & Negri).

Mycenaean Sea Peoples

The Oxford Companion to the Bible [0605] is certain that the Sea Peoples were originally Mycenaean, who moved south, following the collapse of their civilisation at the end of the Late Bronze Age. They were repelled by the Egyptians and then moved on to the Levant where they later became known as the Philistines. A paper(ab) that also links the Philistines with the Sea Peoples from a biblical perspective is available.

Shelley Wachsmann(aj), who also offers evidence that at least some Mycenaeans were involved with the Sea Peoples(ak).

There is a claim that the Sea Peoples also attacked Mycenaean Greece on two occasions and that Athens survived both(ae). Contrast that with the contention that there was a Mycenaean group within the Sea Peoples. The confusion surrounding the Sea Peoples is exemplified by the response to a question on the quora.com website(af).

Sea Peoples from Anatolia (Northern Levant)

Erick Wright, formerly a regular contributor to the now-defunct Atlantis Rising forums has concluded(b) that Atlantis was located in what today is Southern Turkey and that Atlanteans were among the Sea Peoples who attacked Egypt in 1200 BC. Another Atlantis Rising forum(e) on the subject is also worth a look as is another illustrated site(f) which includes a map of the homelands of the Sea Peoples.

The historian, Sanford Hoist, published a paper in which he argued(j) for an Anatolian origin for the Sea Peoples together with other groups such as the Phoenicians.

David Rohl, a high profile archaeologist, has proposed an Anatolian homeland for most of the Sea Peoples listed by the Egyptians in his book, The Lords of Avaris [0232].

The most recent addition to our knowledge of the Sea Peoples appears to be imminent with the publication of a paper in the December 2017 issue of the journal Proceedings of the Dutch Archaeological and Historical Society. Written by Frederik Woudhuizen and Eberhard Zangger, the authors offer a translation of a 3200-year-old inscription That may refer to the Sea Peoples and link them with western Turkey. You can read more, now, on the Livescience website(z). In a 2006 paper(ac), The Ethnicity of the Sea Peoples, Woudhuizen included some groups from the Central Mediterranean as part of the Sea Peoples.

Erich Fred Legner offers an extensive paper(au) on the diversity of the Sea Peoples. Brian Janeway explored the idea that the Sea Peoples originated in the Northern Levant(aw).

Sea Peoples from Southern Levant (Modern Syria, Lebanon, Israel & Palestine)

Joseph Morris in his thesis(m) presented to the Classics Department of Florida State University in 2006 defined the Sea Peoples as “a coalition consisting of the indigenous populations of Syria-Palestine led by the neo-Hittite states.”

Eric Cline has noted that the only member of the Sea Peoples alliance whose identity has been ‘firmly established’ is that of the Peleset [1005] who are accepted as Philistines. He also comments that identifying the Shekelesh with Sicily and the Shardana with Sardinia is based in part on the ‘consonantal similarities’ [p.4].

Sea Peoples or North Sea Peoples?

Until the middle of the 20th century, there was a consensus that the Sea Peoples originated in the Mediterranean region. That is until Jürgen Spanuth published his claim that Atlantis had been located in the North Sea and equated the Atlanteans with the Sea Peoples. This radical idea, with some variations, was adopted by several commentators and unsurprisingly, many were from Northern Europe. Spanuth referred to them as the North Sea Peoples [0015] and offered a range of evidence from the Egyptian inscriptions at Medinet Habu to support this idea. This evidence includes a variety of features that Egyptians used to portray the Sea Peoples such as types of swords, the shape of ships, shields and helmets as well as hair, clothing and shaving fashions. He then identified these Scandinavians as Atlanteans who later attacked Egypt. His opinion in this regard was strongly supported by Felix R. Paturi [1339.218]. More recently, Spanuth’s ideas have also been echoed by Walter Baucum in his Bronze Age Atlantis [0183].

Similarly, Ellis Peterson endorses Spanuth’s Scandinavian location for Atlantis(ax).

Before the emergence of these Bronze Age seafarers, there was a history of Northern Boat-Peoples who gradually expanded globally after the last Ice Age. A paper by Andres Pääbo charts their story(k). Zach Zorich is a freelance journalist and contributing editor at Archaeology magazine. In January 2016 he wrote an article(r) that would seem to contradict the idea of Northern European ‘Sea People’ invading Egypt, for the simple reason that sailing boats were not developed in Scandinavia until around the time of the Vikings! – “The plank boats and log boats being built in northern Europe were not the most advanced watercraft of their time. The Greeks, Egyptians, and other cultures around the Mediterranean Sea used sailing ships to conduct trade, and sails wouldn’t be used in Northern Europe until the Iron Age, during the seventh or eighth century CE.”

Another site(an) also describes the various ships of the period used by the Egyptians, Greeks and the Sea Peoples. One unusual suggestion on the same site is that some of the Sea Peoples, although allied with groups from across the Mediterranean, came from Britain and Northern Europe(ao)!

The Sea Peoples’ Alliances

I have used the plural because the evidence suggests that over the extended period of the Sea Peoples activities the alliances did experience some change of members.

Federico Bardanzellu offers several papers on his Museo dei Dolmen website(n) in which he suggests specific homelands for many of the members of the alliance(o).

Bob Idjennaden along with co-author, Mebarek S. Taklit, have produced The Mysterious Sea Peoples attack Egypt [1195], which provides an overview of the various incursions against Egypt during the 2nd millennium BC. The prominent part played by the Berbers or their ancestors in varying alliances that constituted the Sea Peoples is highlighted.

According to Raffaele D’Amato & Andrea Salimbeti [1152.20], the Denyen were one of the major groups of the Sea Peoples and have been known in ancient sources by different names; Danai, Danaoi, Danaus, Danaids, Dene, Danaids, Danuna. Others have linked them with the Danaan of Irish mythology. The Tuatha de Danaan invaded Ireland in prehistoric times. Having noted that Dan/Don/Danu were ancient words for water, it is not such a wild supposition that the Tuatha de Danaan were at least a constituent part of the Sea Peoples, an idea promoted by Leonardo Melis.

On the other hand, 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. He was convinced that Murias one of the four legendary cities of the de Danann had been located in Bimini. This highly speculative idea failed to bear fruit as have all efforts to identify the location of the other three cities, Falias, Finias and Gorias.

Speculation regarding the identity of individual tribes in the federation can be found on various websites(i)(f). One of the most comprehensive is provided by two Italian military historians, D’Amato & Salimbeti in their 2015 booklet and on the internet(l) and both are to be highly recommended. They highlight the complexities involved in definitively identifying the members of the varying alliances that were loosely described as the ‘Sea Peoples’ over a three hundred year period.

Atlantis and the Sea Peoples

The German classical scholar, Wilhelm Christ, was probably the first to identify the invading Sea Peoples with the Atlanteans(p), predating Jürgen Spanuth’s theory by the better part of a century. Christ’s idea was also supported to varying degrees by Theodor Gomperz, Spyridon Marinatos, John V. Luce, and Herwig Görgemanns.

Quite a number of other writers have identified the Atlanteans as the Sea Peoples whose invasion of the Eastern Mediterranean has been recorded in some detail by the Egyptians. One such high profile identification in the 20th century was by Spyridon Marinatos. One of the latest to join this school is Dr Rainer W. Kühne who not only makes the same identification but, using satellite images, believes that he has pinpointed the capital of Atlantis in Southern Spain. His website has a list of comparisons of Atlanteans to the Sea Peoples(a), which is worth consideration.

‘Rider’, the anonymous author of an article(ae)  concerning ‘the campaigns of the Sea Peoples’ on the allempires.com website also suggests that Plato’s Atlanteans can be identified with the Sea Peoples.

Frank Joseph contends that conflict between the Egyptians and the Sea Peoples was part of the Trojan War [0108.11] and has identified the Meshwesh, one of the Sea Peoples, as Atlantean [1535].

Eberhard Zangger argues that the Sea Peoples were survivors of the Trojan War that fled to various parts of both the central and eastern Mediterranean(g). He has written further on this identification and more on the Luwian Studies website(s). Zangger claims that the Sea Peoples were an alliance of Libyans and Western Anatolian (Luwian) states(w)(y), which seems odd since Plato describes the Atlanteans as mightier than Libya and Asia combined. If Zangger is correct in identifying Troy as Atlantis [0483], he is also implying that according to Plato, a part (Troy) is greater than the whole (Libya and Asia combined), Troy being part of Asia! Something is wrong with his theory.

In 2020, Sean Welsh maintained that survivors of the eruption of Thera, which held the capital of Atlantis ‘morphed’ into the Sea Peoples [1874].

Other Theories

A more recent (2017) paper(aa) on a conservative website suggests that the Sea Peoples were ‘early Western Europeans’.

The most radical suggestion regarding the Sea Peoples has come from Jim Allen, who promotes a South American location for Atlantis. He also seemingly equates at least some of the Sea Peoples with his South American Atlanteans [077.123], has drawn attention to the similarity of some of the Sea Peoples’ headgear with that of Amazonian ‘Indians’(c)!

The Malagabay website published a lengthy article(t) in July 2016, offering evidence along with some conjecture, supporting the equally extreme idea that the Sea Peoples had originated in India and having migrated westward, some of them reached the Aegean and became known as Dorians! The author of the article appears to have followed the ideas of Edward Pococke (1604-1691) published in his India in Greece [1231].

Another unexpected twist is the claim by the discoverer of the Phaistos Disk, Luigi Pernier, that the characters used on the Disk are similar to the representations of the Sea Peoples at Medinet Habu.

W. Sheppard Baird in a lengthy paper (ap) concluded that “The Minoan Diaspora from Spain gave birth to the Sea Peoples”

Two contributors to the Sea Peoples debate in the 1970s were Alessandra Nibbi (1923-2007) [1670] and Nancy K. Sandars (1914-2015) [1671] who, although they had their differences, appear to have agreed on: “(a) the ‘Sea Peoples’ were not one particular people, (b) their label as being ‘of the sea’ is misleading, and (c) earlier attempts to blame the cataclysmic collapse throughout the East Mediterranean in the Late Bronze Age on the Sea Peoples is untenable.”

Sources

The earliest book devoted to the Sea Peoples that I am aware of was Immanuel Velikovsky’s Peoples of the Sea. However, Velikovsky was more concerned with revising the chronologies of the Middle East and so focused on dating the invasion of the Sea Peoples rather than identifying their origins. Velikovsky has an interesting footnote in his Peoples of the Sea [758.4], which reads; “When Ramses III speaks of ‘Peoples of the Sea’ he specifies the Tkeker, the Shekelesh, the Teresh, the Weshesh and the Sherden (or Sardan); he specifies the Denyen as ‘Peoples of the Isles.'”  It would be interesting to know the reason for the distinction.

Trude & Moshe Dothan have added another valuable book to the Sea Peoples literature with their People of the Sea which has the interesting sub-title of The Search for the Philistines[1524]. Related to their work, is the result of recent excavations at Ashkelon, an important Philistine city, which suggests that the city had received migrants from southern Europe during the Bronze Age, who may have constituted a component of the Sea Peoples(ah). Clearly, further investigation will be required to confirm these indications.

An extensive review of all the available material relating to the Sea Peoples was also published online in October 2015(q). The MalagaBay website (now closed) had also a wide-ranging illustrated article(u) about the Sea Peoples, although without reaching any firm conclusions.

Also See: Illyrians,

(a) Location and Dating of Atlantis (archive.org)

(b) https://web.archive.org/web/20130718184625/http://forums.atlantisrising.com:80/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000855.html

(c) http://www.atlantisbolivia.org/headgear.htm

(d)  https://web.archive.org/web/20181014190855/http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/seapeople.htm

(e) https://web.archive.org/web/20080820154251/http://forums.atlantisrising.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000911.html

(f) http://www.artsales.com/ARTistory/Ancient_Ships/17_sea_peoples.html

(g) http://archive.aramcoworld.com/issue/199503/who.were.the.sea.people.htm

(h) http://www.historyfiles.co.uk/KingListsMiddEast/AnatoliaSeaPeoples.htm

(i) Archive 2813

(j) http://www.phoenician.org/sea_peoples.htm

(k) Archive 2337 (all three parts)

(l) http://www.salimbeti.com/micenei/index.htm

(m) (99+) (PDF) JOSEPH MORRIS-The origins of the sea people | Vedran Grubeši? – Academia.edu

(n) http://www.museodeidolmen.it/englishdefault.html

(o) http://www.museodeidolmen.it/englishpopomare.html

(p) Abhandlungen der bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Vol.. XVII, 2nd part, Munich 1886, pp. 451-512. (German)

(q) http://www.salimbeti.com/micenei/sea.htm *

(s) https://luwianstudies.org/the-sea-peoples-inscriptions-and-excavation-results/

(t) https://malagabay.wordpress.com/2016/07/07/catastrophic-english-india-in-greece/

(u) https://malagabay.wordpress.com/2016/02/18/deja-vu-vikings/

(v) https://ancientpatriarchs.wordpress.com/2016/05/23/were-sea-peoples-invading-egypt-from-atlantis-due-to-global-climate-change/

(w) http://luwianstudies.org/sea-peoples/inscriptions-excavations/

(x) http://rlebling.blogspot.ie/2012/03/where-was-ogygia-isle-of-calypso.html

(y) http://www.ancient-code.com/3000-years-ago-the-mysterious-sea-peoples-civilization-was-wiped-out-by-world-war-zero/

(z) https://www.livescience.com/60629-ancient-inscription-trojan-prince-sea-people.html

(aa) Archive 3429

(ab) https://img.4plebs.org/boards/tg/image/1498/88/1498880873171.pdf

(ac) https://www.academia.edu/7287651/The_Ethnicity_of_the_Sea_Peoples_dissertation_

(ad) https://listverse.com/2016/06/06/10-theories-regarding-the-sea-peoples/

(ae) http://www.allempires.com/article/index.php?q=campaign_sea_peoples

(af)  https://www.quora.com/Where-did-the-Sea-Peoples-the-people-who-invaded-Greece-Egypt-and-the-Hittite-Empire-in-the-Late-Bronze-Age-come-from

(ag) http://www.q-mag.org/cyprus-salt-lakes-exonerate-peoples-of-the-sea-from-causing-the-destruction-of-bronze-age-civilizations.html 

(ah) https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/5/7/eaax0061

(ai) https://www.reddit.com/r/history/comments/c3fm5j/who_were_the_mysterious_sea_people_during_the/  (halfway down page)

(aj) https://www.academia.edu/4594906/The_Ships_of_the_Sea_Peoples

(ak) https://www.academia.edu/4635111/Were_the_Sea_Peoples_Mycenaeans_The_Evidence_of_Ship_Iconography  [6094]

(al) http://www.salimbeti.com/micenei/ships.htm

(am) http://www.salimbeti.com/micenei/sea.htm

(an) http://www.artsales.com/Ancient%20Ships/aTableofContents.htm

(ao) http://www.artsales.com/ARTistory/Ancient_Ships/17_sea_peoples.html

(ap) https://minoanatlantis.com/Origin_Sea_Peoples.php

(aq) https://www.nationalgeographic.com/history/magazine/2020/03-04/pirates-once-swashbuckled-across-ancient-mediterranean/

(ar) https://www.academia.edu/173946/M_J_Adams_and_M_E_Cohen_The_Sea_Peoples_in_Primary_Sources

(as) Cambridge Ancient History Ist edition, Vol.II, p.8

(at) https://www.academia.edu/34555497/The_Sea_Peoples_Superior_on_Land_and_at_Sea      

(au) http://www.faculty.ucr.edu/~legneref/bronze/seapeopl.htm#introduction  

(av) (99+) (PDF) The Dynamics of Mediterranean Africa, ca. 9600-1000 bc: An Interpretative Synthesis of Knowns and Unknowns | Giulio Lucarini – Academia.edu     

(aw) https://www.academia.edu/38648258/Sea_Peoples_of_the_Northern_Levant      {6104P}           

(ax) https://hiddenhistorysecrets.blogspot.com/2008/01/hidden-history-scandinavia-atlantis.html

Horned Helmets

Horned Helmets have been worn by various warrior groups from ancient times but , in spite of popular belief, not by the Vikings. Jürgen Spanuth, the leading proponent of a North Sea Atlantis, has identified the Sea Peoples who attacked the Egyptians as North Sea Peoples. The attack was recorded by the Egyptians on the walls of Medinet Habu and where they depicted some of the invaders with horned helmets. Spanuth claimed that “The only known Bronze Age horned helmets come from north Europe”[0015.55]. The illustrations from the Danish National Museum used by Spanuth[0015.31] were more likely to have been for ceremonial use and show no signs of having been used in battle. A January 2018 article highlights a horned figure on the so-called Oseberg Tapestry, who appears to be leading a religious procession, contributing to the theory that the few horned helmets found so far were probably used for ceremonial purposes(e). Another textile fragment found at the same site also depicts a horned person, which to my mind is more reminiscent of a nordic shaman than a warrior.

>Baruch Halpern in a footnote in his paper(f) on the Sea Peoples informed us that “Sherden-like horned helmets have also been found along the northern shore of the Black Sea and on statuettes in Sardinia, but that these lack the central disks, and may reflect coincidence, appropriation, trade or migration rather than indicate a place of origin. The iconographic connections of the horns and disk would suggest devotion to a lunar god; see Bernett and Keel (1998).”<

It is noteworthy that the ‘Gjermundbu Helmet’, discovered in 1943 in Nazi-occupied Norway, is the only helmet documented to have existed during the Viking period and is clearly hornless(d).

Furthermore, he was incorrect in claiming that horned helmets were only used in northern Europe during the Bronze Age. Archaeologist Roger Grosjean (1920-1975) has demonstrated(a) that the Torreans of Corsica did use such helmets during that period. The Sherden/Shardana, considered to be one of the Sea Peoples depicted at Medinet Habu are shown as wearing horned helmets and in every instance, except three, they include a round additional piece on the crest. The Shardana are generally accepted to be from Sardinia and are possibly related to the Torreans on neighbouring Corsica. However, the Sardinian examples do not appear to have the accoutrement at the helmets’ crest depicted at Medinet Habu.

Andrea Salimbeti’s website(b) devoted to the Greek Bronze Age has a section on the helmets used in the Aegean during that period, which depicts some horned helmets used by the Mycenaeans(c).

In conclusion, I think Spanuth’s horned helmet evidence is flawed but also that the Sardinian theory is not watertight. Furthermore, his core claim of an invasion from the North Sea into the Eastern Mediterranean is equally untenable. Bronze Age territorial expansion was always into adjacent or nearby territory. A journey of over 4,000 miles from Heligoland to attack Egypt makes no sense.

(a) https://medium.com/the-bronze-age/the-mysterious-horned-warrior-torreans-of-the-isle-of-corsica-853b5e98c677

(b)  https://www.salimbeti.com/micenei/index.htm

(c) https://www.salimbeti.com/micenei/helmets1.htm (Also see helmets2 & helmets3)

(d) https://thornews.com/2014/06/07/why-is-this-the-only-existing-viking-age-helmet/

(e) https://thornews.com/2018/01/11/the-confusing-horned-helmets-depicted-in-the-oseberg-viking-age-tapestries/

>(f) https://scholarsphere.psu.edu/downloads/0k643b005g<

Aldamiz, Luis

Luis Aldamiz (aka Maju) is an independent Basque researcher who has 666concluded that the Atlantean Empire was at the centre of the VNSP (Vila Nova de São Pedro) culture in ancient Portugal(a)(b).  Its capital Zambujal was situated near the modern city of Torres Vedras, just north of Lisbon. He bases his idea on a number of topographical and historical parallels between the VNSP region and Plato’s description of Atlantis(c).

In order to have Plato’s account of the Atlantean War conform to his location theory, he suggests that the Mycenaean Greeks fought alongside the El Argar people in southeast Spain against VNSP Atlanteans! The evidence for such a military alliance is at best tenuous or more likely, purely speculative.

VNSPHowever, the idea is not as farfetched as it might seem when combined with the views of W.Sheppard Baird who claims that Minoans had been the colonisers of Los Millares  in Andalusia as early as 4000 BC. In due course, the culture of Los Millares was superseded by that of El Argar. This begs the question as whether the Mycenaeans who had succeeded the Minoans on Crete also replaced them in their Andalusian colonies!

Nevertheless, no matter how interesting the theories of Aldamiz and Baird may be, they have still to explain Plato’s claim that the Atlanteans ‘controlled’ Europe as far as Tyrhennia, along with part of North Africa, before their eastward invasion! Furthermore, the part that Egypt played in their alliance with Athens in the war with Atlantis is totally ignored by them.

*(a) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20160611101052/https://allempires.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=8257&PN=1*

(b) https://www.geocities.ws/luis_aldamiz/Atlantis/Atlantis.html

(c) https://atlantisforschung.de/index.php?title=Atlantis_in_der_portugiesischen_Estremadura_%28Basics%29

Migration and Diffusion

Migration and Diffusion is the brainchild of Dr. Christine Pellech who wrote that “the basic theme of my website is cultural contacts and migration covering the time range from human origins up to the discovery of America by Columbus in 1492.” For over ten years it has been regularly publishing articles by a range of writers on subjects that frequently touch on aspects of Atlantology. While Pellech does not refer directly to Atlantis, she does claim that the Caribbean had been the centre of an extensive maritime trading culture, millennia before Columbus. I highly recommend the site(a) for anyone interested in our ancient past.

It is relevant to refer you to a paper(b) delivered to the 12th International Congress of the Geological Society of Greece in 2010 by Professor Ilias D. Mariolakos. In it he concluded that the Mycenaeans had extensive knowledge of the Atlantic and its islands as well as the Michigan copper mines which they exploited for their bronze industry. He believes that this lasted from the beginning or middle of the 3rd millennium BC until some time after the Trojan War at the end of the 2nd millennium BC. There then followed the Dark Ages which resulted in this maritime knowledge being lost and the succeeding Greek civilisation began again from scratch.

(a) https://www.migration-diffusion.info/index.php

(b) https://www.researchgate.net/publication/313128161_THE_FORGOTTEN_GEOGRAPHIC_AND_PHYSICAL_-_OCEANOGRAPHIC_KNOWLEDGE_OF_THE_PREHISTORIC_GREEKS  (p.92)

Linear B

Linear B is the name given to the script used in Mycenaean Greece from 1450 BC until around 1200 BC. It was deciphered in 1952 by the British architect, Michael Ventris, who found it to be based on archaic Greek. What is not generally known is that in America at the same time, classicist Alice Kober was engaged in a parallel quest but unfortunately died of cancer in 1950, before she could complete her work(b).

Edo Nyland in his Linguistic Archaeology controversially claimed that the same texts translated by Ventris using archaic Greek could also be translated using Basque! Examples are given on the University of California, Riverside website(c).

The script is similar to Linear A(a) used in Minoan Crete, which has still to be decoded. Writing disappeared from Greece in the 12th cent. BC and did not reappear until the 9th cent. BC, when an alphabetic script came into use. Those three centuries are known as the ‘Dark Ages’ of Greek history. Plato explained the lack of writing as a consequence of a catastrophic flood which left just a few illiterate ‘mountaineers’ as survivors, who orally transmitted  their history until literacy returned.

The scale of Greek catastrophes during this period is indicated by the work of V.R.Desborough[908][909] who  gathered comparative data on the number of population centres on the Peloponnese in the 12th and 13th centuries that shows an average drop of 80%. Spanuth lists those figures in Atlantis of the North[015.161].

Plato is often denounced by Atlantic sceptics as just a philosopher and therefore unreliable as an historian. However, in Critias he outlines quite accurately a number of features of ancient Greece that were only verified in recent times, such as the layout and earthquake damage to the Acropolis as well as the ‘Dark Ages’ mentioned above. This like saying that an historian cannot have valid philosophical views or a philosopher should not discuss historical matters.

It has been suggested that the Atlantis story was brought to Egypt written in the Minoan scripts. Both employed numerals where the symbol for ‘hundred’ was very similar to that for ‘thousand’, leading to later transcription errors that eventually gave us Plato’s apparently exaggerated numbers! Both James Mavor and Rodney Castleden have advocated this explanation.

(a) https://jarnaes.wordpress.com/1-minoan-crete-linear-a/

(b) https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22782620

>(c) https://web.archive.org/web/20190605060214/https://faculty.ucr.edu/~legneref/bronze/linerb.htm<

Sweden

Sweden was claimed to be the location of Atlantis by Olaus (Olaf) Rudbeck in the 17th century. Before him another Swede, Johannes Bureus, expressed similar views. His friend Carl Lundius supported Rudbeck’s theories, but received none of the acclaim.

In the 18th century Carl Friedrich Baër was happy to follow a fashion, which placed Atlantis in the Holy Land. I am not aware of any major Swedish contribution to Atlantology in the 19th century.*However, the following century saw a number of Swedish researchers make valuable contributions to the subject.*

The discovery of the Mid Atlantic Ridge led René Malaise and Hans Pettersson to suggest the Azores as remnants of Atlantis, an idea still popular today. Around the same time Gunnar Rudberg proposed that Syracuse in Sicily had inspired some of Plato’s description of Atlantis. Arvid Högbom advocated the North Sea as the location of Atlantis in 1915, long before Jürgen Spanuth. In the same region Nils Bergquist opted for the Dogger Bank as has Ulf Erlingsson.

More recently, we seem to have come full circle as Bertil Falk has revived some of Rudbeck’s ideas(a) and a short illustrated 2007 paper (updated 2015)(b) by Robert Fritzius also added some additional modern support. However, for something quite different we have Carl Festin promoting a Mediterranean location.

*Nils-Axel Mörner and Bob Lind, two controversial researchers, have proposed, in a number of papers, that a Bronze Age trading centre existed in southeast Sweden, which had links with the Mycenaeans, Minoans and Phoenicians in the Mediterranean. They suggest that ancient references to Hyperborea may have been generated by this trade. However, although they do not associate Hyperborea with the story of Atlantis, they delivered their theories in papers presented to the Atlantis Conferences of 2008 [750.685] and 2011(c). They also touch on a number of other peripheral subjects including Cygnus, archaeoastronomy and amber. Similar views on early Baltic trade with the Mediterranean have been expressed elsewhere(d).*

(a) https://www.vof.se/folkvett/ar-1993/nr-4/platons-atlantis-diktning-som-tagits-pa-allvar/ (Swedish)

(b) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20100807201746/https://www.datasync.com/~rsf1/vel/atlantis.htm

(c) https://file.scirp.org/Html/1-1140054_59543.htm

*(d) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20170611180721/https://www.speroforum.com/a/ROURBRXIJL49/77965-Ancient-trade-from-Mediterranean-to-Scandinavia-revealed*

 

Castleden, Rodney

CastledenRodney Castleden (1945- ) has been researching prehistory for the past twenty-five years and has written over forty books on such diverse subjects(a)  as Stonehenge, Knossos and the Mycenaeans [226] as well as criminology. He is the author of a well-received volume, Atlantis Destroyed [225] in which he advocates the idea that the destruction of Minoan Crete provided the inspiration for Plato’s Atlantis.

His book is also available on the Wayback Machine website(b).

(a) https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/475412.Rodney_Castleden

>(b) https://archive.org/details/atlantisdestroye0000cast_g7v6/page/n5/mode/2up<

Atalanta

Atalanta was a relatively insignificant island that according to Thucydides (II, 32) was “lying off the coast of Opuntian Locris”. The Athenians built a fort there in 431 BC and following an earthquake it suffered an inundation that caused serious loss of life and destruction of property (III, ChapXI par.89). The island is known today as Talandonisi. In this same area, North West of Athens, we have still the town of Atalanti and the Bay of Atalanti.

KalamianosThis report of the flooding of Atalanta is sometimes taken out of context by some supporters of Plato’s Atlantis and presented as a clear reference to it. This superficial interpretation does not stand up to scrutiny in terms of date, location, size, nor importance.

Others, such as Sprague de Camp, maintain that Plato’s Atlantis is pure fiction inspired by the destruction of Atalanta ‘in a single day’ by a flood following an earthquake. However, it would appear foolish to concoct a story such as that of Atlantis and base it on an inconsequential island, located only 50 miles from Athens, with a similar name, destroyed a few years previously and still expect it to be believed as true.

*Others claim that the sudden flooding of Tiryns (Zangger) or Helike prompted Plato to incorporate an inundation in the Atlantis story!*

A similar Mycenaean city with a sunken harbour, tentatively named Korphos-Kalamianos on the Saronic Gulf, 60 miles south-west of Athens, has recently been excavated.

In 2014, work began on the exploration of another sunken Bronze Age coastal village at Kilada Bay, also in the Argolic Gulf. The team of Swiss and Greek archaeologists returned to the site in 2015, revealing their discoveries in August of that year(a).

Acording to Apollodorus and John Lemprière, Atalanta was the name of the only female Argonaut!(b)

> (a) Bronze Age Greek city found underwater (archive.org)<

(b) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argonauts#The_crew_of_the_Argo

Hyksos

The Hyksos is the name applied to two dynasties of foreign kings who ruled Egypt around 1650-1530 BC(a). Gerard Gertoux suggests three dynasties reigning from circa 1750- 1530!(l) They are generally accepted to have been a Semitic people, from an unknown land, who invaded Egypt around 1710 BC. They ruled for over a hundred years until defeated by the Egyptian Pharaoh Amasis I.

Their name was originally taken to mean ‘Shepherd Kings, but more recently, it is accepted that the Egyptian term ‘heqa-khase’ which means ‘rulers of foreign lands’ gives us a simple but credible title of ‘Foreign Kings’. It has been suggested by David J. Gibson (1904-1966) that the modern interpretation indicated that the Hyksos ruled a vast empire and has devoted a book[1507] to justifying this view(g).>This empire lay mainly to the the east of Egypt with the possible exception of Crete. Gibson identifies the Hyksos with the biblical Edomites!<

Walter Baucum summarises his view on the subject as follows, “The Early Hyksos Shepherd Rulers of Egypt were descendants of Shem and identical with Typhon and the Titans, the peoples of Set, and to some degree with the Hebrews. The early Hyksos were to a large degree Israelites but after they left, the Amalekites conquered Egypt and were also referred to as Hyksos”.

Hyksos Pharoah

Hyksos Pharoah

There have also been persistent suggestions that there were strong links between the Hyksos and Crete, as referred to above and below, but the exact nature of the links is unclear and may not be more than you get between nations trading over an extended period. The relevance of such links, if they were ever shown to be political rather than commercial, would take on new significance for supporters of the Minoan Hypothesis. Time will tell.

E. J. de Meester has suggested links between Crete and the Hyksos, an idea an included in an article by Philip Coppens(b). In a similar vein Diaz-Montexano claims that a study of the names of the Hyksos pharaohs suggests to him that they were proto-Greek or Mycenaeans.

An example of the diversity of opinions regards the origins of the Hyksos is a brief article written by Emilio Spedicato who identifies them with the Scythians. Gunnar Heinsohn (1943- ) is a German professor emeritus at the University of Bremen, who presented a paper entitled ‘Who were the Hyksos’ to the 6th International Congress of Egyptology in 1993, in which he concluded that they were to be identified with the Old-Akkadians(j).

Perhaps even more radical is the suggestion by Riaan Booysen that the Hyksos were the fleeing Israelites in the biblical Exodus story(c). In fact he claims that there were two ‘exoduses’ which coincided with two separate eruptions on Thera. This idea is not as new as it might seems as something similar was proposed by the 1st century AD Jewish historian Josephus(d).

Nick Austin also identifies the Hyksos as Jews [1661.184], but is more generous than Booysen claiming that there were four separate eruptions of Thera. Like many others he has also associated the biblical Exodus and the Plagues of Egypt with the Theran eruptions.

Ralph Ellis, among others, has endorsed(e)(f) the idea that the biblical Exodus and the historical Expulsion of the Hyksos describe the same event.

There are theories, many and varied, regarding the origins and post-Egyptian settlement of the Hyksos. Arguably, the most exotic was put forward by a Chinese geochemist, Sun Weidong, who proposed that Hyksos migrants were responsible for the founding of the Chinese civilisation!(h)(i)

In July 2020, it was reported that “new research led by Bournemouth University archaeologists supports the theory that the Hyksos, the rulers of the 15th Dynasty of ancient Egypt, were not from a unified place of origin, but Western Asiatics whose ancestors moved into Egypt during the Middle Kingdom, lived there for centuries, and then rose to rule the north of Egypt.”(k)

The full facts relating to the Hyksos’ rule are only slowly emerging(m) and I expect that it will be some years before a definitive history can be agreed.>Just over a year after I wrote this, In March 2021, Diego Ratti published Atletenu, in which he identified the Hyksos as Atlanteans, with their capital situated at Avaris in the eastern Nile Delta(n).<

(a) https://web.archive.org/web/20180203181622/https://history-world.org/hyksos.htm

(b)  See: Archive 2133

(c) https://riaanbooysen.com/misc/167-book-announcement

(d) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Origins_of_the_Hyksos

(e) https://www.bibleandscience.com/archaeology/exodus.htm

(f) https://lists.ibiblio.org/pipermail/b-hebrew/2000-January/006340.html

(g) See: Archive 3468

(h) https://foreignpolicy.com/2016/09/02/did-chinese-civilization-come-from-ancient-egypt-archeological-debate-at-heart-of-china-national-identity/?utm_content=buffer7bb49&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

(i) https://www.ancientpages.com/2016/09/05/controversial-theory-suggests-ancient-egyptians-were-founders-of-chinese-civilization/

(j) https://web.archive.org/web/20111202130828/https://www.egyptologie.be/6IECT_1993_hyksos_heinsohn.htm

(k) https://web.archive.org/web/20200902181329/http://www.sci-news.com/archaeology/immigrant-hyksos-dynasty-08646.html

(l) https://www.academia.edu/2414447/Dating_the_war_of_the_Hyksos

(m) Did the Hyksos Pull Off a Peaceful Invasion of Egypt? | Ancient Origins (ancient-origins.net)

>(n)  https://www.atletenu.com<

de Grazia, Alfred

Alfred de Grazia (1919-2014 ) was a noted educator, philosopher, political Alfred de Graziascientist and catastrophist. In his latter role, he adopted many of Immanuel Velikovsky’s ideas. He met Velikovsky in 1963 and subsequently compiled and published The Velikovsky Affair[1172] which exposed the efforts by members of the academic community to block the publication of Velikovsky’s books.

>Quantavolution is a word coined by de Grazia to explain the idea of sudden and drastic changes to the Earth – to the planet itself, environment, life forms on it, culture – normally brought on by catastrophes. Instead of the idea of uniformitarianism which is very very slow changes. In his book Chaos and Creation [1894] he offered an introduction to Quantavolution.<

He clearly supported the reality of Atlantis noting that “if Plato lied in his tale of Atlantis, there would be little truth in him generally: for Plato repeatedly insisted that his story be considered seriously and literally.” He placed Atlantis in the North Atlantic and dated its demise to around 4000 BC. He identified the confederation of Atlantis as the megalithic cultures of the northeast Atlantic stretching from Scandinavia to Spain and dated its demise to around 4000 BC. In chap.18 of a more recent book, The Iron Age of  Mars[1513], available on his website, he discussed the theories of both Jürgen Spanuth and Felice Vinci and their belief that the Scandinavians had influenced the development of the Mycenaean civilisation in Greece.

He had a very extensive website(a), which is still live (Oct 2021) and covers a wide range of subjects.

(a) https://www.grazian-archive.com/