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

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  • NEWS September 2023

    NEWS September 2023

    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 »
  • Joining The Dots

    Joining The Dots

    I have now published my new book, Joining The Dots, which offers a fresh look at the Atlantis mystery. I have addressed the critical questions of when, where and who, using Plato’s own words, tempered with some critical thinking and a modicum of common sense.Read More »
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National Geographic

Jacobovici, Simcha

Simcha Jacobovici (1953- ) is an Israeli-born film director and producer as well as a best-selling author. One of his more controversial books was The Jesus Family Tomb [1709], co-authored with Charles Pellegrino. Jacobovici subsequently directed a documentary, The Lost Tomb of Jesus, with James Cameron as executive producer.

>Following in the footsteps of Dan Brown, Jacobovici (with Barrie Wilson) published The Lost Gospel [1931] in which they recycle an old claim that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and had two children with her.<

The Jacobvici-Cameron collaboration goes back further to 2006 when they worked on The Exodus Decoded, a two-hour documentary in which, among other matters, it claims that the biblical Exodus took place a couple of hundred years before the generally accepted date(c).

Cameron also joined Jacobovici on the 2017 National Geographic documentary, Atlantis Rising. The documentary did not produce anything of substance despite a lot of pre-broadcast hype. During the programme, Jacobovici threw in the extraordinary claim that the Jewish menorah represents the concentric circles of the Atlantean capital cut in half(b), a daft idea, already suggested by Prof. Yahya Ababni(a).

(a) https://mosestablet.info/en/menorah-tablet.html

(b) https://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/5/5/1659107/-Descendants-of-Lost-Atlantis-may-be-wait-for-it-Jews

(c) https://www.jpost.com/Jewish-World/Jewish-Features/Documentary-sets-new-date-for-Exodus

Bee, The

The Bee and its place in many cultures from prehistoric times is outlined in three lengthy articles(a)(b)(c)  by Andrew Gough. Much of what he has written is news to me as I’m sure it will be to most readers here. They should be read along with an equally fascinating article in National Geographic magazine of March 2020. All three of Gough’s papers are highly informative and worthy of a read.

An article(c) on the BBC website refers to studies that indicate “that humans have been exploiting honeybees for almost 9,000 years” also noting that traces of beeswax found on ancient pottery from Europe, the Near East and North Africa suggest the first farmers kept bees.”

Its medicinal and nutritional qualities have been identified in ancient societies as far apart as early Aboriginal Australia and Sumeria. The bee also featured “as the symbol of the constellation presently occupied by Libra” in the zodiac of the Dogon of Mali. Gough deals extensively with the place of the bee in ancient Egypt where the bee ideogram represents honey, and “Intriguingly, Northern Egypt – the land stretching from the Delta to Memphis was known as “Ta-Bitty”, or “the land of the bee”. Similarly in the bible, the Lord promises to bring the Israelites out of Egypt and into a land flowing with milk and honey.”

Gough, who had earlier been attracted to the Minoan Hypothesis, noted that the Minoans of Crete, like the Egyptians, also venerated the bee and added that “Although speculative, the notion of Atlantis as a centre of bull and Bee worship is alluring, and based on the evidence, not entirely unfounded.”(a) Throughout his three articles, Gough touches briefly on the subject of Atlantis including the books of Jürgen Spanuth and his North Sea Atlantis. In the same way, I should point out that in the case of another Atlantis candidate, Malta, its name is generally thought to be derived from the Greek word for honey meli and was later known to the Romans as Melita, the Latin equivalent. Malta was renowned in ancient times for the quality of its honey, which may explain why the light-fingered, 1st century BC Roman governor, Verres, stole 400 amphorae of it (about 2800 gallons) over a three-year period.

>Eire Rautenberg has offered a more speculative Malta/Bee connection claiming “The first humans came 11,000 – 6,000 BC. BC, historically very early. ‘Malet’, the Punic name for Malta , means refuge and the Greek interpretation ‘Melita’ of -melas means a honeyed dark goddess. The bee structure of the Megalithic Temples of Malta everyone can study at the temple stones; they sometimes look like huge honeycombs that have been proven to be artificially created. The owl as a symbol of the dark, all-seeing eye goddess can also be found on a stele of the megalithic temple Hagar Qim on the southwest coast.(f)<

Antoine Gigal, the French researcher, has drawn attention to a possible link between Egypt and Malta based on the bee and its honey.(d)

Eva Crane (1912-2007) the renowned British expert on bees and beekeeping has authored many papers and books on the subject among which is the 682-page tome The World History of Beekeeping and Honey Hunting [1870], a must for anyone with a keen apiarian interest.

(a) https://andrewgough.co.uk/articles_bee1/

(b) https://andrewgough.co.uk/articles_bee2/

(c) https://andrewgough.co.uk/articles_bee3/

(d) EGYPT BEFORE THE PHARAOHS (gigalresearch.com)

(e) Prehistoric farmers were first beekeepers – BBC News

(f) Poseidon is not a Greek god! – Atlantisforschung.de (atlantisforschung-de.translate.goog) *

 

National Geographic *

National Geographic or Nat Geo are the registered trademarks of the National Geographic Society and are now, sadly, part of the Murdoch communications empire. Its magazine and TV channel enjoy global recognition. Undoubtedly, NG has enhanced our view of the world around us. One piece of NG trivia is that the word ‘tsunami’ first appeared in an English language publication in the September 1896 edition of National Geographic Magazine.

In May 1922 NG published its first picture of Stonehenge, now a century later it returned to this remarkable monument for its cover story in its August 2022 edition. It highlights how the use of new technologies has greatly enhanced our knowledge of the site and the people who built it. Jim Leary, a lecturer in field archaeology at the University of York admits that “a lot of the things we were taught as undergraduates in the 1990s we know now simply aren’t true.”  This beautifully illustrated article is a useful update on developments at this huge UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Generally, NG has avoided controversy, but not always(a), so it will be interesting to see how its new chief James Murdoch, a climate change denier(b), will deal with the NG views on the subject up ’til now(c). However, for me, it was something of a surprise when NG tackled the subject of Atlantis.

In 2004 NG News published a short article(d) highlighting the theories of Ulf Erlingsson and Rainer Kühne, who, respectively, were advocates for Ireland and Spain as Atlantis locations. Also in 2004, Zeilitsky and Weinzweig claimed to have found submerged man-made structures near Cuba and subsequently sought US government funding for further research there. It has been suggested that NG objected and further exploration did not take place! In 2006 NG gave the Atlantis in America theory of Zapp & Erikson an airing(e).

However, in 2012, Andrew Collins offered a different account of the Zelitsky funding difficulties(m).

In a short 2011 article(l)., NG trotted out the now generally abandoned idea that Atlantis had been a continent. The idea was obviously later dumped by NG as well when James Cameron et al. went looking for Atlantis in Malta, Sardinia and Santorini in 2016.

December 2012 saw NG publish an article on Doggerland, without any reference to the suggestion that there might be an Atlantis connection. NG has also voiced the scepticism of well-known commentators, such as Robert Ballard and Charles E. Orser jnr(f).

However, I find that the NG treatment of Atlantis is inconsistent. In October 2011 an anonymous article(k) on one of their sites, entitled The Truth Behind Atlantis: Facts, declared that Atlantis was continental in size (and so must have been located in an Ocean?) This is based on a misinterpretation of the Greek word meison. Nevertheless last year NG had Simcha Jacobovici, remotely guided by James Cameron, scouring the Mediterranean, from Spain to Sardinia, Malta, and Crete for evidence of Atlantis. This attention-seeking exercise found nothing but a few stone anchors that proved nothing and inflicted on viewers an overdose of speculation!

NatGeo TV aired a documentary(g) in 2015 relating to earlier excavations in the Doñana Marshes of Southern Spain by a Spanish team and partly hijacked by Richard Freund. A new NG documentary, hyped with the involvement of James Cameron and Simcha Jacobovici, was filmed in 2016, and later broadcast at the end of January 2017. Initially, it was thought by Robert Ishoy to be in support of his Atlantis location of Sardinia, but at the same time, Diaz-Montexano was convinced that his Afro-Iberian theory was to be the focus of the film. To coincide with the airing of the new documentary D-M has published a new book, NG National Geographic and the scientific search for Atlantis[1394] with both English and Spanish editions.

Jason Colavito was promised a screener but had the offer subsequently withdrawn. One wonders why.

Once again NG promotes the region of the Doñana Marshes as a possible location for Atlantis(i), based on rather flimsy evidence, such as six ancient anchors found just outside the Strait of Gibraltar. They estimate the age of the anchors at 3,000-4,000 years old. unfortunately, they are not marked ‘made in Atlantis’. Rabbi Richard Freund, never afraid to blow his own shofar, makes another NG appearance. Jacobovici throws in the extraordinary claim that the Jewish menorah represents the concentric circles of the Atlantean capital cut in half, a daft idea, previously suggested by Prof. Yahya Ababni(k).

What I cannot understand is why this documentary spends time dismissing Santorini and Malta as possible locations for Plato’s Atlantis and at the same time ignoring the only unambiguous geographical clue that he left us, namely that the Atlantis alliance occupied part of North Africa and in Europe the Italian peninsula as far as Tyrrhenia (Tuscany) and presumably some of the islands between the two.

Overall, I think the NG documentaries have done little to advance the search for Atlantis as they seem to be driven by TV ratings ahead of the truth. Perhaps, more revealing is that Cameron is not fully convinced by the speculative conclusions of his own documentary.

Jason Colavito, an arch-sceptic regarding Atlantis has now published a lengthy scathing review(j) of  NG’s Atlantis Rising, which is well worth a read. While I do not agree with Colavito’s dismissal of the existence of Atlantis, I do endorse the litany of shortcomings he identified in this documentary.

For me, NG’s credibility as a TV documentary maker has diminished in recent years.  Just one reason is the “2010 National Geographic Channel programme, 2012: The Final Prophecy, enthused about an illustration in the Mayan document known as the Dresden Codex (because of where it is now kept), which was claimed to show evidence of a catastrophic flood bringing the world to an end in 2012. This illustration included a representation of a dragon-like figure in the sky spewing water from its mouth onto the Earth beneath, which has been taken by some, although by no means all, experts in Mesoamerican mythology to indicate the onset of a terminal world-flood. However, no date was given, so the link with 2012 is entirely spurious (Handwerk, 2009; Hoopes, 2011).”(n)

(a) National Geographic Shoots Itself in the Foot — Again! (archive.org) 

(b) https://gizmodo.com/national-geographic-is-now-owned-by-a-climate-denier-1729683793

(c) https://web.archive.org/web/20200717231929/https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/climate-change/

(d) See: Archive 3582

(e) https://www.dcourier.com/news/2006/oct/02/atlantis-theory-by-local-anthropologist-makes-nat/ (not available in EU) *

(f) http://science.nationalgeographic.com/science/archaeology/atlantis/

(g) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nyEY0tROZgI & https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=choIyaPiMjo

(h) https://mosestablet.info/en/menorah-tablet.html

(i) https://www.ibtimes.co.uk/more-signs-mythical-city-atlantis-its-mysterious-civilisation-found-spanish-marsh-1603470

(j) https://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/nat-geos-atlantis-rising-a-stew-of-fake-experts-motivated-reasoning-and-weird-claims-that-judaism-contains-atlantean-theology

(k) https://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/5/5/1659107/-Descendants-of-Lost-Atlantis-may-be-wait-for-it-Jews

(l) https://channel.nationalgeographic.com/the-truth-behind/articles/the-truth-behind-atlantis-facts/

(m) https://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread374842/pg11

(n) Doomsday Cults and Recent Quantavolutions, by Trevor Palmer (q-mag.org)  (about 2/3rds down page)

Bering Strait *

The Bering Strait between Asia and America has been a source of ongoing controversy regarding the peopling of America.

James Howell (1594-1666) relates how even in the 17th century the existence of the strait, then known as the Anian, was disputed, although, at the same time, there was also a theory that the nomadic Scythians had originally crossed over the Strait from America[1313].

In 1985, Nicholas Flemming published an article(y) in the Woods Hole Oceanographic magazine Oceanus in which he touched on the matter of the Bering Strait. “There was dry land from Siberia to Alaska, the Bering Land Bridge, for most of the time from 80,000 to 14,000 years ago. Shallow episodes of flooding occurred at about 45,000 and 35,000 B.P Cores from the land and the sea bed provide evidence for the pollen types at different dates, the sediment movements, and the stages of marine transgression or emergence. From the point of view of human occupation, the inhospitable nature of Beringia was not just because of the cold, but also the severe dryness for most of the time from 60,000 to 14,000 B.P.” Contrast this with the next paragraph.

A 2022 report of A new study that reconstructs the history of sea level at the Bering Strait shows that the Bering Land Bridge connecting Asia to North America did not emerge until around 35,700 years ago, less than 10,000 years before the height of the last ice age (known as the Last Glacial Maximum).”(x)

By the end of the 18th century, the importance of the Strait had been recognised, when Paul Felix Cabrera wrote “That most troublesome of all the difficulties hitherto started by authors respecting the passage of animals to America, particularly of the ferocious kinds at enmity with man, even retaining in full force the plausible reasons so ingeniously urged, if not entirely removed, is nearly surmounted by the discovery and examination of Anian or Behring’s straits’ which are of no greater breadth than thirteen leagues from shore to shore, and where, by means of the ice, the two continents of Asia and America are connected; this would afford a practical route not only for animals but men, from whom it is possible to suppose that those who inhabit the most northerly countries from the straits as far as Hudson’s and Baffin’s Bays, and from the Frozen Sea to California, New Mexico, and Canada to the southward, are descended.” (s)

In certain circumstances, it is still possible to walk across the Bering Strait. “A 2.5-mile stretch divides Russia’s Big Diomede island from Alaska’s Little Diomede island. In the winter, the water separating the two islands freezes, allowing you to trek from one destination to the other.”(n) Wikipedia notes that “numerous successful crossings without the use of a boat have also been recorded since at least the early 20th century.” (o)

There is little doubt that at some point in prehistory a landbridge linked the two continents.

Although it is frequently claimed that the Hadji Ahmed Map of 1559 shows a landbridge between the two continents, it only appears to be so because of the way the map is drawn.

A recent paper(a) by Heather Pringle and Krista Langlois offers evidence that the link was more than just an isthmus but was in fact a vast area of land, Beringia, the size of Australia, and that it provided a crossing point, for humans and animals earlier and for longer than previously believed (See map above right).

After crossing the Strait there were two southward routes, one along the coast and the other via what is known as the Ice-Free Corridor Route which ran between two vast ice sheets, the Laurentide to the east and the Cordilleran to the west(c). According to a 2018 report(i), the coastal route which followed deglaciation was physically and environmentally viable for early human migration to the Americas.” Another report in 2018 claims that the earliest settlers in America were island-hopping seafarers from Asia(j)(k).

However, there is now compelling evidence that people reached South America before the existence of the northern ice-free corridor, suggesting the alternative coastal migration route, which, so far, has little evidence to support it. This recent report is the result of excavations at the Huaca Prieta ceremonial mound, 600 Km north of the Peruvian capital, Lima. Human activity there has now been dated to around 15,000 years ago(e). Further evidence has now emerged(p) that the peopling of America was not carried out by a single group, but by immigrants from different geographical areas.

Professor Jody Hey of Rutgers University published in 2011 the results of his North American DNA studies, which confirmed the arrival of the first migrants from Asia around 14,000 years ago in a group of not more than 70 people(r).

Pre-Columbian contact between Asia and Alaska was confirmed by a report(b) from Purdue University in September 2016. artefacts were discovered in a house dated between 700 and 900 years old. The bronze items were identified as having been smelted in Asia, while a leather strap was radiocarbon-dated to between 500 and 800 years old.

Another 2016 report(d) added genetic evidence for the Beringia migration route, when the remains of two infants, dated to around 10,000 years ago were discovered at the Upward Sun River site in Alaska.

Further supportive evidence of the use of the Beringia landbridge was uncovered at Alaska’s Swan Point site where human occupation has been dated as far back as 14,000 years ago. “Another notable aspect of Swan Point is the role it has played in understanding the prehistoric migration of peoples into the Americas. A type of stone tool, the microblade, which was unearthed at the site, has been found to resemble those used by the Dyuktai people, who lived in Siberia around the same period. This shows that people crossed from Siberia to Alaska on the  Beringia land bridge.”(t)

The ‘received wisdom’ regarding the origins of the Clovis people was that they had crossed into the Americas from Asia via the Bering Strait 12,000 years ago. This has been challenged in a book[1516] by two archaeologists, Dennis J. Stanford and Bruce A. Bradley, who claim “that the first Americans crossed the Atlantic by boat and arrived earlier than previously thought. Supplying 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(h). Coincidentally, an article(m) in the August 2017 edition of Antiquity offers evidence that humans lived in Brazil more than 20,000 years ago, which is many millennia before the Clovis people arrived in North America.

A sceptical view of their work should also be read(f). Furthermore, in 2016 the Solutrean Hypothesis also appears to have been contradicted by recent genetic studies(g).

Late August 2019 saw the dating controversy surrounding the arrival of the First Americans re-ignited with a study that pushes the date back to over 16,000 years ago(l). This is based on archaeological discoveries at Cooper’s Ferry in Idaho. This earlier date suggests that the ice-free corridor would not have been available to these people, but are more likely to have used the coastal route from Asia via the Bering Strait. A secondary matter raised by these finds is that “Based on their analysis of the stone tools from Cooper’s Ferry, the researchers suggest that they are most similar to artifacts of the same general period found on the other side of the Pacific. Specifically, they appear to share many traits with tools produced on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido 13,000-16,000 years ago!”

The idea that the Clovis people were the first Americans is gradually losing support as the evidence found at Cooper’s Ferry and other sites indicates otherwise. A recent paper on the National Geographic website supports such a revised view(q).

Itztli Ehecatl published a two-part paper(u)(v) on the Atlantisforschung website denouncing the Bering Strait theory with the complaint that Although some archaeologists have good intentions, most do not want to consider that Native Americans preserved an ancient history in their oral traditions. The unwillingness to reach a compromise between archaeological and indigenous knowledge is a tragedy that the discipline should work hard to overcome, otherwise, archeology will perpetually rely on flawed data.”

Michael Collins, a Texas State University archaeologist, is one of a number of academics who question whether the Bering Strait was the route used by the First Americans. Although the theory has been generally accepted for at least a century, support is weakening in the face of mounting evidence. An article in the journal Archaeology(w) (Aug.10, 2014) reports on Collins’ evidence up to that date.

It was depressing to read that ” the few scholars who dared challenge the Clovis lace theory on the basis of solid evidence were furiously ostracized and their careers destroyed. In 1951 Dr. Thomas Lee, working at the National Museum of Canada, identified a site in Sheguiandah, Canada. When the site was analyzed it was dated between 30,000 and 100,000 BP. Because his work conflicted with accepted Clovis doctrine, the museum he had worked for fired him, and his records of the finds were mysteriously stolen. Lee explained that both Canadian and American scholars blacklisted him and enforced an eight-year professional ban on him.” This period also saw the academic arrogance that Velikovsky had to endure in the USA.

The first direct connection of the Bering Strait with Atlantis has been suggested by Albert. M. Chelchelnitsky, who proposed that Atlantis had been situated in Alaska and placed the Pillars of Herakles in the Strait itself.

More recently, Michael Szymczyk, the author of Atlantis & Its Fate In The Postdiluvian World [1964], in which, like Chelchelnitsky, he makes some extraordinary claims without providing any evidence.  He pinpoints an underwater site near Kodiak Island off the northwest Pacific coast of Alaska as the location of Atlantis!

(a) https://www.hakaimagazine.com/article-long/sunken-bridge-size-continent

(b) Asian Metal Found in Alaska Reveals Trade Centuries Before European Contact – Western Digs (archive.org)

(c) https://web.archive.org/web/20151114195842/https://www.sfu.museum/journey/an-en/secondaire1er-middle/route_libre_de_glace-ice_free_route

(d) https://www.ancient-origins.net/ancient-places-americas/children-upward-sun-river-11500-year-old-remains-shed-light-alaska-s-021109

(e) Traces of South America’s earliest people found under ancient dirt pyramid — Secret History — Sott.net 

(f) https://www.academia.edu/5119515/On_thin_ice_Problems_with_Stanford_and_Bradley_s_Solutrean-Clovis_hypothesis

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

(h) https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00438243.2014.966273?journalCode=rwar20

(i) https://popular-archaeology.com/article/along-alaskas-pacific-coast-early-humans-could-have-migrated-to-the-americas/

(j) Boulder-Size Clues to How Humans Settled the Americas – The New York Times (archive.org)

(k) https://gizmodo.com/humans-may-have-reached-north-america-by-more-than-one-1828194893?lR=T

(l)  First Americans Arrived More Than 16,000 Years Ago, According To Find In Idaho | Discover Magazine (archive.org)

(m) https://www.sciencenews.org/blog/science-ticker/stone-age-people-brazil-20000-years-ago

(n) https://www.farandwide.com/s/amazing-geography-facts-d9d661749cad43df?utm_campaign=geographyfacts-784179a2ed294a2c&utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=out&aid=008d034cf1b163e30d943e921a0636ed90&utm_term=The+Primary+Market+%28Wazimo%29&dicbo=v1-29f4a6cf44bc9d8c64c5f64ebad4fcf4-008d034cf1b163e30d943e921a0636ed90-gu4taylemmygkllgmu3toljugnswcllbgmytmljxgmztcyjrmezdmojwmi

(o) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bering_Strait

(p) https://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/skeleton-mexico-tulum-paleoindian-population-americas-anthropology-a9319641.html

(q) https://www.nationalgeographic.com/culture/2019/08/coopers-landing-idaho-site-americas-oldest/

(r) https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1385290/North-America-populated-70-people-claims-stunning-new-DNA-research.html

(s) https://olivercowdery.com/texts/1822DRio.htm

(t) Swan Point Alaska’s Unique Stone Tools Are Proof of Beringia Theory | Ancient Origins (ancient-origins.net)

(u) Bering Strait Theory and Native American Traditions (I) – Atlantisforschung.de (atlantisforschung-de.translate.goog) 

(v) Bering Strait Theory and Native American Traditions (II) – Atlantisforschung.de (atlantisforschung-de.translate.goog)

(w) https://www.archaeology.org/issues/150-1409/features/americans 

(x) Bering Land Bridge formed surprisingly late during last ice age, study finds – Search (bing.com)

(y) https://www.academia.edu/21168111/Ice_Ages_and_Human_Occupation_of_the_Continental_Shelf  

Cameron, James

James Cameron the renowned director of Titanic has now worked James Cameronas executive producer on a documentary about Atlantis for National Geographic(a). Simcha Jacobovici, who previously teamed with Cameron on the 2006 TV movie The Exodus Decoded  also joined the production team.

This was NG’s second film on the subject and it was hoped, better than the first. Although Spain and Santorini featured in the two-hour show, the focus seemed has moved from Spain to the Central Mediterranean, where filming is taking place on Malta, Sardinia and Sicily.>In my view, this region contained most, if not all, of the Atlantean territory, from southern Italy to northwest Africa along with a number of the islands. This accords completely with Plato’s description (Tim.25 a-b & Crit.114c).<

Cameron and Jacobovici joined forces again as co-producers for this new NG documentary, which was expected by Robert Ishoy to explore his belief that Atlantis was situated on Sardinia(b). I think it reasonable to question why NG did not approach Sergio Frau who has done more than Ishoy in terms of publicising the possible relevance of Sardinia to the Atlantis mystery. It has now emerged that Georgeos Diaz-Montexano has also been interviewed, which suggests that Sardinia may not be the sole focus of the documentary as Ishoy was apparently led to believe.

This new NG offering aired early in 2017. However, in subsequent interviews Cameron expressed continuing scepticism(c), which begs the question; if Cameron was not fully convinced by the documentary, why should the viewers be?

Readers might find Jason Colavito’s critique of the NG documentary enlightening(d). 

(a) https://www.thestar.com/entertainment/television/2016/06/13/james-cameron-joins-search-for-atlantis-project.html

(b) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20190331144818/https://www.myheraldreview.com/free_access/national-geographic-calls-on-sierra-vista-researcher-about-atlantis/article_c3685cf8-7229-11e6-9512-b390b32f6ba7.html

(c) https://calgaryherald.com/entertainment/television/blockbuster-filmmaker-james-cameron-searches-for-atlantis

(d) https://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/nat-geos-atlantis-rising-a-stew-of-fake-experts-motivated-reasoning-and-weird-claims-that-judaism-contains-atlantean-theology

 

Cartography

Cartography is defined by The International Cartographic Association “as the discipline dealing with the conception, production, dissemination and study of maps.” The earliest land maps can be traced back to Babylonia around 1400 BC. In 2017, Evangelos Livieratos, Professor Emeritus of the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki Cartography Department, offered evidence that the ancient Greeks were the first to develop a primitive GPS system, using the stars and their relationship with the earth’s surface(g).

O.A.W. Dilkie (1915-1993) was an English classical scholar and the author of a well-regarded paper Greek and Roman Maps [1753]. The BBC offered an overview of the development of cartography since the 15th century(k).

The subject entered the Atlantis arena in 1665 with the publication of a speculative map(a) of Atlantis, situated in the Atlantic, by Athanasius Kircher. It was allegedly based on earlier Egyptian maps, but unfortunately, there has been no corroborative evidence to support this contention. Kircher’s map had been used to bolster a variety of location theories – Azores, Russia, Baffin Bay and Greenland, Kircher himself favoured the Azores.

Hy-Brasil was reputed to be an island to the west of Ireland and frequently associated with the story of Atlantis. The Genoese cartographer, Angellino de Dalorto (fl.1339), placed Hy-Brasil on a map as early as 1325. It is further claimed that Dalorto, sometimes known as Angelino Dulcert, also depicted Australia on his 1339 portolan chart(l).

However, on some 15th-century maps, the islands of the Azores appear as Isola de Brazil, or Insulla de Brazil. Apparently, it was not until as late as 1865 that Hy-Brasil was finally removed from official naval charts.

Another feature on ancient that can confuse is the placing of the south at the top of old charts, two examples of which are Kircher’s map of Atlantis and Al-Idrisi’s Tabula Rogeriana. Caroline Williams has an interesting article(e) on the BBC website relating to the history of map orientation.

California_island_Vinckeboons5The unreliability of early maps is highlighted by the manner in which California has been depicted. In the 16th century, the maps of both Mercator and Ortelius correctly show Baja California as a peninsula, but in the following 17th and 18th centuries, it became an island on many charts despite written evidence to the contrary. There is a website dedicated to a study of the ‘island of California’(I), which incongruously ends with a brief reference to Atlantis, placing it in the Atlantic in the Region of Bermuda.

Donald S. Johnson in his well-illustrated Phantom Islands of the Atlantic[0652] discusses in detail the history of seven legendary islands. This fascinating book offers every reason to treat the details of early cartography with extreme caution.

Further difficulties with old cartography are the result of early mapmakers having a dread of blank spaces, a view outlined in a recent (Nov. 2017) National Geographic online article(h).

The most widely referred to map in relation to Atlantis as well as advanced ancient civilisations is the Piri Reis chart. This arguably depicts an ice-free Antarctica and has been used to develop the idea that Atlantis had been located there and was destroyed when a sudden pole shift caused the southern icecap to move to its present position. Rose and Rand Flem-Ath are the leading proponents of this idea based on the findings of Charles Hapgood. Other maps such as that of Phillipe Buache, the renowned French geographer, published in 1737, are claimed to show an ice-free Antarctica.

It is claimed by Ivan Petricevic that The Ben Zara Map of 1487 “displays remnants of glaciers in Britain, but also extremely detailed depictions of islands in the Mediterranean and Aegean seas. Today, these islands still exist, but due to rising water levels, these are now underwater.”(j)

Dale Drinnon had an interesting if speculative, article on ancient maps and their possible relevance to the story of Atlantis(b).  Another article in Atlantis Rising magazine (July/August 2014) argues that the quality of medieval navigational charts (portolans) of the Mediterranean exceeded the capabilities of the instruments and knowledge in the region at that time and must have originated elsewhere. However, Roel Nicolai at Holland’s Utrecht University, who expressed these sentiments, was unwilling to nominate Atlantis as the source of the maps(c).

When asked in a recent interview what he meant by ‘advanced civilisation Graham Hancock revealed(u) that “I think we’re talking about a civilization – more than 12,000 years ago – which was as advanced as our civilization was, say in the late 18th century or early 19th century. In other words, they could navigate the world, they could explore the world, they could measure the world accurately, they had precise astronomy, they could create beautiful maps that were accurate in terms of latitude and longitude. That kind of level of civilization.”

Enrique García Barthe is an Argentinian cartographer who has an interesting Spanish/English website(d) dealing with pre-Columbian maps. Although many people have heard of the Piri Reis Map and the controversy surrounding it, García Barthe introduces a lot of new maps that appear to complement Piri Reis.

In 2015, Melissa Brooks used the data in the Atlantipedia chronology of location theories to develop a map(f) showing the distribution and level of support for the various theories on offer.

(a) https://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=19800.100

(b) See: Archive 3591

(c) https://web.archive.org/web/20160805113251/https://atlantisrisingmagazine.com/article/maps-from-before-history/

(d)  https://web.archive.org/web/20111026020513/https://globalizacion.no.sapo.pt/ingles/pon_ing_1.htm

(e) https://www.bbc.com/future/story/20160614-maps-have-north-at-the-top-but-it-couldve-been-different

(f) https://www.guerrillacartography.org/?s=Atlantis

(g) https://www.tornosnews.gr/en/greek-news/culture/22876-cartography-professor-ancient-greeks-in-ionia-first-used-gps-method-to-navigate.html

(h) Why Ancient Mapmakers Were Terrified of Blank Spaces (archive.org) *

(i) https://californiaasanisland.org/

(j) 9 Extremely Ancient Maps That Should Not Exist | Ancient Code (archive.org)

(k) https://www.bbc.com/travel/story/20180819-the-travel-guides-that-charted-our-world

(l) https://www.dailygrail.com/2015/01/ancient-maps-reveal-a-thread-of-truth-weaved-through-antiquity/

(m) https://www.dailygrail.com/2019/04/watch-graham-hancock-discuss-his-new-book-america-before/

Freund, Richard

Professor Richard Freund is the latest academic to enter the Atlantis debate. FreundFreund is a rabbi and the director of the Greenberg Centre for Judaic Studies at the University of Hartford. He is the author of Digging Through the Bible in which he recounts his experiences excavating in the Middle East.

Freund ‘led’ (see below) an expedition of Spanish, American and Canadian scientists in 2009 and 2010 to investigate satellite images of the Doñana Marshes, showing circular and rectangular features, discovered by Werner Wickboldt in 2003. National Geographic has included the findings of the expedition in a 2011 documentary entitled Finding Atlantis(a).

Another documentary, along with a transcript, which also ‘stars’ Freund, entitled “Atlantis – The Lost City” is available(e). Freund has also inveigled his way into the 2017 National Geographic documentary, Atlantis Rising.

Frank Joseph, the former leader of the American Nazi Party, probably jealous of the media coverage that Rabbi Freund got, following the 2011 documentary, disputed Freund’s conclusions in an article in the Atlantis Rising magazine Number 88.

Freund believes that these structures discovered at Doñana are related to Atlantis/Tarshish. Freund has pointed out that the large amounts of methane emanating from the site suggests that only a tsunami could have suddenly trapped the large quantities of organic matter required to generate that quantity of methane!

However, a more sober view is presented by Juan Villarias-Robles, a Spanish anthropologist working with the Spanish team investigating the Doñana site. He recounts(b) how Professor Freund spent less than a week on the site and was not the leader of the Hinojos Project.

“Richard Freund was a newcomer to our project and appeared to be involved in his own very controversial issue concerning King Solomon’s search for ivory and gold in Tartessos, the well-documented settlement in the Donaña area established in the first millennium BC.

He became involved in what we were doing and provided funding for probes through his connections with National Geographic and Associated Producers.

He left and the film company told us the documentary would be finished in April or May. But we did not hear from him and are very surprised it has appeared so soon and makes such fanciful claims.”(b)

Concerning the features identified by Wickboldt, Villarias-Robles explains that so far anything found has been smaller than anticipated or dated to the Muslim period. He declares that no remains of Tartessos or Atlantis have been found.

>Jason Colavito has published a free ebook entitled Golden Fleeced (f) in which, among other matters, he discussed Freund’s  2011 claim of Atlantis in Spain. He notes that apparently Freund dropped in to an active Spanish archaeological investigation into an actual ancient city, ongoing since 2005, and has hijacked it to generate publicity for his research into the connection between Solomon and Atlantis to prove the Bible true.”<

Equally moderate are the comments of archaeologist Philip Reeder from the University of South Florida, who is also unconvinced that Atlantis has been found(c).

Furthermore, the respected Greek historian Ephorus described Tartessos in his day (4th century BC) as still being a rich source of tin, copper and gold(d). Since he wrote this long after Solon’s visit to Egypt, and even longer since the sinking of Atlantis, it would appear to rule out identifying Atlantis with Tartessos.

Freund also believes that the Phoenicians were descendants of the Atlanteans. No doubt these contentious claims will be explored in greater detail in his book Digging Through History: From Atlantis to the Holocaust.

(a) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytVENC4td8k

(b) https://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/natgeos-shameful-atlantis-documentary-more-atlantis-bible-nonsense

(c) https://io9.com/#!5789352/will-we-ever-really-discover-atlantis

(d) https://web.archive.org/web/20170707131215/https://www.princeton.edu/~achaney/tmve/wiki100k/docs/Tartessos.html

(e) See:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Atlantis-Lost-City-OH-Krill/dp/B01MED39GY

(f) golden_fleeced.pdf (jasoncolavito.com) *

Tozzi, Mario

mario_tozzi-276x300Mario Tozzi (1959-) is a well respected Italian geologist and environmentalist. He has written on various scientific matters and  has been a consultant on a number of television programmes. He has also had an asteroid, 11328 mariotozzi, named in his honour.

Tozzi has given his support to Sergio Frau’s theory which locates Atlantis in Sardinia. A number of video clips(a) on the Internet will be of interest to Italian speakers as will Tozzi’s blog on the Italian National Geographic website(b). He has also suggested that if Sardinia was Atlantis, then the Etruscans may have been Sardinians(c).

 

(a) >https://inostriamici.freeforumzone.leonardo.it/discussione.aspx?c=153344&f=153344&idd=9173275 (Link broken July 2020)<

(b) https://tozzi-national-geographic.blogautore.espresso.repubblica.it/2010/11/17/atlantide-sardegna/  (Italian)

(c) https://tozzi-national-geographic.blogautore.espresso.repubblica.it/2011/07/06/atlantide-sardegna-etruschisardi/comment-page-1/#comment-9421

Doggerland

Doggerland is a term applied to a shallow region (Fig.1) of the North Sea between Denmark and the North of England that covers an area of around 10,000 sq. miles. The existence of Doggerland was first suggested in a late 19th-century novel by H.G. Wells entitled A Story of the Stone Age. The appellation was coined by Professor Bryony Coles in 1998. However, the name has been applied recently(f) to nearly the totality of the Celtic Shelf (Fig.2). Ulf Erlingsson who had promoted his theory(b) that Atlantis hDoggerland2ad been located in Ireland (with 98.9% confidence!) has explained that the Egyptian story of Atlantis is the result of an account of megalithic Ireland conflated with a report of the inundation of Doggerland in 6200 BC resulting from a Norwegian storegga(ad).

According to some, this flooding may have been the inspiration behind the ‘impassable shoals’ described by Plato following the submergence of Atlantis.

However, it was Rachael Carson who was probably the first to suggest the Dogger Bank as the home of Atlantis in her 1951 book, The Sea Around Us[1267].  Later a Scandinavian writer, Nils Olof Bergquist, in his 1971 book, Ymdogat-Atlantis[785]. who appeared next to support this idea.   

Other writers such as Jean Deruelle(a), Sylvain Tristan(c) and Guy Gervis(d) have also linked the Dogger Bank with Atlantis. Gervis has written two related papers(k)(l) on the subject. The earliest suggestion of such a  connection was briefly supported by Robert Graves[342.39-3]. Rob Waugh, a British journalist, has offered an illustrated article(g) with the provocative title of Britain’s Atlantis found at the Bottom of the North Sea, in which he touches on some of the discoveries made on Doggerland.

In 2003, Georg Lohle put forward the idea that Atlantis had been situated in the North Sea between Denmark and Britain and destroyed around 2200 BC. He based this speculation on the content of the controversial Oera Linda Book(ac).

Some have combined Doggerland with exposed land further north, now known as the Viking-Bergen Banks, as having constituted the territory of Atlantis(x).

National Geographic

In 2009 a book[662] was published with the subtitle of The Rediscovery of Doggerland, based on the research of a team led by Professor Vincent Gaffney of the University of Birmingham. In July 2012 the UK’s Daily Mail published(h) an extensive article on Doggerland.

The flooding of the Dogger Bank has been attributed to a 6200 BC event apparently caused by either an outpouring of meltwater from Lake Agassiz in North America or a huge tsunami generated by a Norwegian storegga(e). This event was covered in an extensive article in the November 2012 edition of the BBC Focus magazine. The same article has a sidebar on Atlantis which suggests that there is “perhaps just one archaeological theory that has any serious claim on the myth.” Then, not for the first time, the BBC offered tacit support for the Minoan Hypothesis in spite of the fact that, at least ostensibly, it does not match Plato’s description of Atlantis in terms of either time, size or location and offers no rationale for its stance.

In December 2020, a degree of revisionism was offered in a New Scientist article, which suggested that storegga tsunami may have been less than previously thought. Furthermore, it proposes that parts of what is now the submerged Dogger Bank was not completely flooded by the tsunami, but that parts continued as dry land, perhaps for centuries!(y)

“For a long time, scientists assumed that a tsunami of this kind also caused the Dogger Bank, which was still protruding from the sea, to sink completely. According to a study by researchers at the University of Bradford, however, there was no single, all-destroying tsunami.

Rather, by examining sediments, the researchers were able to prove that only the northern part of Doggerland was submerged after the tsunami and that the destructive force of its floods was probably slowed down by hills or forests on the island.

However, after the water receded, the flooded area recovered over the years, as is demonstrated by the fact that evidence of plants and animals can be found again in the sediment layers above the disrupted tsunami layer.”  There is a suggestion that Heligoland may be the last remnant of Doggerland.(ab)

It has been estimated that over a period of a couple of hundred years, the English Channel was also created in a comparable manner(n).

The December 2012 edition of National Geographic magazine also published an informative article on Doggerland and the ongoing work by archaeologists in the region. It considers the Storegga or the Lake Agassiz meltwater to be the cause of Doggerland’s final inundation. For me, it was interesting that a map in the article showed a small area around where I live as the last glaciated region of Ireland.

Alfred de Grazia’s online Q-Mag also published an overview of the Doggerland story in 2012(j) that was originally taken from the German magazine Der Spiegel. The same site has another paper(r) by Jean Deruelle in which he also argues that Doggerland was the location of the Great Plain of Atlantis that stretched from the east of the Dogger Bank and extended as far as what is now Denmark. Plato described the plain as being surrounded by a huge ditch. Then Deruelle, with a flash of ingenuity claims that it was not a ditch but instead was a dyke, designed to hold back the slowing advancing waters of the North Sea that were being fed by deglaciation. He endeavoured to reinforce this claim with the proposal that the Greek word for a ditch, ‘taphros’ can also be used for dyke. This interpretation seems possible according to W.K. Pritchett, a distinguished historian [1622.52.5].

Robert John Langdon has proposed that megalith builders from Africa came to Doggerland as the Ice Age ended and when Doggerland submerged they migrated to what is now mainland Britain, eventually constructing Stonehenge(i). But Langdon has gone further and also claims that Doggerland was actually Atlantis(aa).

A 2014 ‘Drowned Landscapes’ exhibition(m) organised by Dr Richard Bates of the Department of Earth Sciences at St Andrew’s University, reveals in greater detail the flora and fauna, as well as the lives of its inhabitants, of this submerged world. Much of the information was gleaned from data provided by oil and gas companies, combined with artefacts recovered from the seafloor.

Comparable discoveries have been made submerged deep under the waters of Hanö Bay near the coast of Havang, Sweden and dated to about 7000 BC(v).

In 2015 it was announced that €2.5 million in funding from the European Union has enabled a number of archaeologists from Britain’s top universities to team up for what will be the most intensive study of Doggerland so far(o)(q). Joined by experts from the University of Ghent and assisted by the Belgian Navy they located the first identifiable submerged settlements on the floor of the North Sea. Until now (2019) the only evidence of human habitation in the region were occasional artefacts caught up in fishermen’s nets.

In 2016, it was revealed(p) that the ancient footprints of both adults and children had been discovered off the coast of Northumberland, formerly a part of Doggerland. Their feet had apparently been shod.

On Sunday, January 13th, 2019. the UK’s Sunday Express delighted its readers with two Atlantis stories(t)(u). First, the online edition of the paper had a story by one of its reporters, with an ‘Atlantis Discovered’ headline claiming that the remains of an ancient 8,000-year-old city, home to ‘tens of thousands’ of people, had been discovered in the North Sea, in a huge region sometimes referred to as Doggerland. The reporter cites Dr Richard Bates in support of this account. Unfortunately, the 2012 comments by Dr Bates never mentioned ‘a city’, but a vast area occupied by ‘tens of thousands’ of people, presumably early farmers(s). Then the same edition of the same paper by the same ‘reporter’ with another ‘Atlantis Found?’ headline, offered a video clip of the Maltese island of Filfla, while the commentator told us that Plato had said that a devastating earthquake had destroyed Atlantis it was finished off by an eruption. This is factually incorrect as Plato never mentioned an eruption. These two accounts are a sad reflection of the quality of media reporting today.

In 2020, David Keys, author of Catastrophe [1330] wrote an article for the UK’s Independent newspaper outlining the most recent research into the 6200 BC tsunami that destroyed Doggerland. It is estimated that multiple giant waves inundated some 2,700 square miles of land – from Scotland in the north to Norfolk in the south.

New underwater research carried out by the universities of Bradford, Warwick, St Andrews and Wales has for the first time discovered that the tsunami devastated parts of East Anglia and adjacent land which is now submerged beneath the southern part of the North Sea.” (z)

>In 2021, the UK’s Guardian reported on an “exhibition, Doggerland: Lost World in the North Sea’, at the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden (National Museum of Antiquities) in Leiden, southern Holland, includes more than 200 objects, ranging from a deer bone in which an arrowhead is embedded, and fossils such as petrified hyena droppings and mammoth molars, to a fragment of a skull of a young male Neanderthal. Studies of the forehead bone, dredged up in 2001 off the coast of Zeeland, suggests he was a big meat eater.”(ae)

Graham Phillips‘ latest offering is The Mystery of Doggerland: Atlantis in the North Sea [2063], published in late July 2023.<

(a) atlantide (archive.org)

(b) http://atlantisinireland.com/

(c) http://spcov.free.fr/site_nicoulaud/en/empire.php

(d) See:  https://web.archive.org/web/20180320072706/https://nwepexplore.com/

(e) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20160303180752/https://arheologija.ff.uni-lj.si/documenta/pdf35/weninger35.pdf

(f)https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-18687504?goback=.gde_157795_member_130235946

(g) https://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/atlantida_mu/esp_atlantida_38.htm

(h) https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2167731/Britains-Atlantis-North-sea–huge-undersea-kingdom-swamped-tsunami-5-500-years-ago.html

(i) http://www.the-stonehenge-enigma.info/#!/2013/06/stonehenge-atlantis-momentous-discovery.html
Also See:https://atlantipedia.ie/samples/archive-2071/

(j) https://www.q-mag.org/doggerland-lost.html

(k) See: Archive: 2073

(l)  See: Archive 2074

(m) https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2167731/Britains-Atlantis-North-sea–huge-undersea-kingdom-swamped-tsunami-5-500-years-ago.html#ixzz374DGxUiM

(n) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doggerland

(o) https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/technology-science/science/secrets-britains-atlantis-revealed-archaeologists-6361422

(p) https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/7000-year-old-forest-and-footprints-uncovered-atlantis-britain-005913?nopaging=1

(q) https://www.q-mag.org/doggerland-to-be-digitally-repopulated.html

(r) https://web.archive.org/web/20150706130417/https://www.q-mag.org/the-great-plain-of-atlantis-was-it-in-doggerland.html

(s) https://www.guidememalta.com/en/all-you-need-to-know-about-the-mysterious-islet-of-filfla

(t) https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-18687504

(u) https://www.express.co.uk/news/weird/1071594/atlantis-found-malta-island-matches-plato-description-spt

(v) https://www.thevintagenews.com/2017/01/17/the-discovery-of-the-submerged-stone-age-atlantis/

(w) https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/atlantis-britain-stone-age-north-sea-archaeology-artefacts-discovery-a8952721.html?fbclid=IwAR2JPs3s5OvPxHyVHpOYeiSmTJiWoqSOu7_72ZOZzHhK2DaKIQCyiXoVURg

(x) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tbenuEzWgQk 

(y) Tiny island survived tsunami that helped separate Britain and Europe | New Scientist

(z) https://news.knowledia.com/GB/en/articles/how-a-giant-tsunami-devastated-britain-s-atlantis-3d966568f069ce0cc79d391c7f4a28ee51e59cfa

(aa) http://dawn-of-the-lost-civilisation.info/dlc_atlantis

(ab) https://www.dw.com/en/doggerland-how-did-the-atlantis-of-the-north-sea-sink/a-55960379 

(ac) Atlantis is a myth or real past (archive.org) 

(ad) https://www.academia.edu/437214/The_Catastrophic_Final_Flooding_of_Doggerland_by_the_Storegga_Slide_Tsunami

(ae) https://www.theguardian.com/science/2021/aug/01/doggerland-lost-atlantis-of-the-north-sea-gives-up-its-ancient-secrets *

 

 

Thera *

Thera is an ancient name for today’s Aegean archipelago of Santorini, which are the remains of a volcanic island.

Only two of the islands are inhabited, the main island, Santorini and Therasia, which had been joined before the 16th century BC eruption. Recent excavations have revealed a pre-eruption settlement on Therasia(x).

Pre-eruption Thera

Pre-eruption Thera

Although it exhibited low-level activity in 1939-41 and 1950-51, it was in 1926 when it last erupted violently, destroying many hundreds of buildings in less than a minute. Eruptions of similarity intensity occurred in 1650, 1707 and 1866. Although Thera is thought to have violently erupted around 54,000 & 18,500 BC, it was not until the middle of the sixteenth century BC that it provided what was probably the most powerful and destructive volcanic explosion in the Mediterranean during the Bronze Age. Although the exact date of this event is still the subject of some controversy, the most recent evidence(a) indicates a date around 1613 BC ±13years, while archaeologists are more supportive of a date circa 1500 BC.

Professor Floyd McCoy of the University of Hawaii has written and broadcast extensively on the matter of the Late Bronze Age eruption of Thera, including a paper delivered to the 2005 Atlantis Conference. In it, he noted that “New finds of tephra – ash and pumice – both on land and on the seafloor indicate a far larger eruption than previously assumed, suggesting a volume of at least 100 km3 of tephra (bulk volume) ejected, perhaps more. Such a volume ranks the eruption on the Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI) at 7.0, equivalent or larger than the 1815 eruption of Tambora (‘the year without a summer’), ten times larger than the eruption of Krakatau in 1883, and approximately 100 times that of Mt. St. Helens in 1980.”[629.311]

The 1500 BC date was supported by David A. Warburton who edited the Acts of the Minoan Eruption Chronology Workshop in 2007(af). The workshop provided a good overview of the Theran eruption dating debates, Warburton’s comments are to be found in the Epilogue.

While the eruption of the 2nd millennium BC undoubtedly caused extensive damage and disruption in the Eastern Mediterranean, its effect may have been felt much further afield. Some scientists correlate a volcanic winter from the Minoan eruption with Chinese records documenting the collapse of the Xia dynasty in China. According to the Bamboo Annals, the collapse of the dynasty and the rise of the Shang dynasty (independently approximated to 1618 BC) was accompanied by ‘yellow fog, a dim sun, then three suns, frost in July, famine, and the withering of all five cereals’.”(at)

There was a series of eruptions that ended with a final enormous explosion that has been linked to the ending of the Minoan civilisation on Crete, the Plagues of Egypt and agricultural failures throughout the Eastern Mediterranean. For a geologist’s view of the island’s dramatic history, Walter Friedrich’s book[428] is hard to beat. His book supports a 1640 BC date for the eruption although he has subsequently revised this to 1613 BC. Sturt W. Manning supported[957] a 1628 BC date and Mike Baillie offered dendrochronological evidence for the same eruption date at the 2011 Quantavolution conference in Athens(j). This converges with McCoy’s date above. However, the dating of the eruption continues to be controversial as this December 2012 link(i)demonstrates.  At the heart of the problem is that acceptance of an early 17th century BC date for the event conflicts with established Egyptian chronology. While the exact year of the eruption continues to be debated, there is now scientific evidence that it occurred in early summer(s).

A 2014 paper published in Antiquity by Paolo Cherubini would appear to confirm the 16th century BC as the date of the catastrophic eruption ruling out an earlier date as untenable(o). In the same year, the University of Birmingham published a report(u) that supported the 1625 BC date. The earlier Antiquity paper prompted a response by a group, led by Sturt Manning later in 2014(y).

In August 2018, an interdisciplinary group led by dendrochronologist Charlotte L. Pearson published a paper(ab)(ad), which concluded that the eruption of Thera took place in the 16th century BC. This conclusion was the result of using a combination of ‘dendro’ along with high-resolution radiocarbon dating methods. In April 2020, a new report in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences explained how a new study of the wood of an ancient grove of juniper trees, which suggested that the volcano blew its top around the year 1560 B.C.”(ae)

October 2018 saw further evidence for an early 16th century BC date for the eruption emerge after the radiocarbon dating of some olive wood found on Therasia, one of the Santorini island groups (z). The same month saw the publication of a paper on the ResearchGate(aa)  website dating the event to 1727-1600 BC!

Pearson published another paper in 2023(ar) in which she highlighted the difficulties attached to using dendrochronology and olive wood, with particular reference to the dating of the olive shrub found on Therasia.  However, this sample has proved highly controversial because olive trees do not necessarily produce annual growth rings in the way that pine or oak trees might. While some studies have shown that annual growth rings in olives are possible, others have shown that the nature of olive growth may mean that a stem or branch with bark may have actually ceased to accumulate growth bands several decades before the death of the tree.” 

William Austin, an American researcher, offers, with great insistence, the precise date of 1612 BC for the eruption of Thera, in a lengthy 2016 paper (updated 2022) paper that begins with an open letter to Manfred Bietak and Sturt Manning. “The conclusion is that the radiocarbon date c.1613 BC was spot on. The Minoan eruption was in the spring of 1612 BC, via astronomy, via ice cores, via tree rings, via a stalagmite, via Babylonian chronology; all arrows point to the same exact year.” This is a carefully thought-out argument and useful addition to the literature on the subject(ap).

Nevertheless, in 2022, another report(aq) from Pearson, of the University of Arizona and her team claim that they have narrowed the eruption date to three possible dates – 1611 BC, 1562-1555 BC and 1538 BC!

After the eruption, we learn from Herodotus that Thera was resettled in the thirteenth century  BC by the Phoenicians and around a century later by the Dorians(am).

The doctoral thesis of Dr David Sewell explores the cultural effects of the Theran eruption and can be read online(h).

Many centuries later the volcanic ash deposited by the Theran eruption was used in huge quantities to manufacture cement for the construction of the Suez Canal. It was during the mining of this material that workmen encountered large stone blocks under the layers of pumice, indicating buildings of great age.

Luana Monte has written a rather ‘forced’ argument in which she claims that Thera can be identified as biblical Tarshish(ac).

It is claimed by many that a garbled Egyptian description of this devastating event was the basis for the story of the destruction of Atlantis. Louis Figuier was the first, in 1872, to publicly link the demise of Atlantis with the explosion on Thera. Opponents of this theory counter it by pointing out that Plato describes the inundation of an island much larger than Santorini or Crete, located in the Atlantic following an earthquake, not a volcanic eruption many thousands of years earlier. Various attempts have been made to reconcile this Minoan Hypothesis and its obvious inconsistencies with Plato’s text. They are discussed separately under

Date of Atlantis’ Collapse

Pillars of Heracles

Size of Atlantis

It was announced at the end of February 2010 that the BBC was about to air a dramatisation of the Theran disaster as well as a documentary on the eruption and its influence on the development of Plato’s story of Atlantis. June 2010 saw the historian, Bettany Hughes, front a disappointing BBC Timewatch Special, which also promoted the idea of the eruption on Thera as the inspiration for Plato’s story of Atlantis. The material introduced as evidence was highly selective and, for me, unconvincing. A few parallels between Thera and Plato’s description were trotted out, while the more numerous differences were ignored!

Alain Moreau has written a highly critical review(v) of the idea that the island of Thera/Santorini had been home to Atlantis.

Dr Dora Constantinidis who studied under Prof. Christos Doumas delivered a lecture in Melbourne on May 29th 2014 with the inviting title of Unravelling the Atlantis Myth at Akrotiri. However, the primary purpose of the talk was not to advance our knowledge of Atlantis but to encourage the sale of Bronze Age-inspired merchandise(p). Nevertheless, in late 2020, one commentator did speculate that Akrotiri may originally have been Atlantis!(aj)

It is noteworthy that Unlike Pompeii, no human remains have been found at Akrotiri, and only one gold object was found on the site, suggesting that the Minoans performed an orderly evacuation before the eruption, and they had time to take their valuables before they fled.”(ak)

Another twist on the Thera explosion is offered by Andis Kaulins who suggests that there is a connection Theran eruptionsbetween that event and the Biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah(g), while Riaan Booysen has linked two separate Theran eruptions with two Exodus events in the Bible(k), offering as evidence, the existence of two distinct Theran ash fallout areas, caused by different wind directions at the time of the events.

Vulcanologist Haraldur Sigurdsson of the University of Rhode Island following a 2006 study of Santorini estimated that the eruption of Thera was 120 times more powerful than the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens. Sigurdsson expressed his personal view that “the mythology born out of this largest eruption must be responsible for the Atlantis legend.”(au)

Initially, it was thought that the collapse of the Theran caldera generated very destructive tsunamis, but new studies have concluded(w) that instead of that it was the violent entry of pyroclastic flows into the sea that triggered the tsunamis. Dale Dominey-Howes has published a paper suggesting that some claims relating to tsunamis generated by the Theran eruption(s) are exaggerations. However, a 2022 report indicates that a series of four tsunamis resulting from the eruption hit the Turkish coast at  Çesme-Baglararasi, with one known fatality.(ao)

>In July 2023, National Geographic published an article on its website offering further information regarding the tsunamis generated by the eruptions of Thera and the evidence for it being investigated at a site in the resort town of Çesme on the coast of Turkey 100 miles north-northeast of Santorini. Archaeologist Vas?f ?aho?lu of Turkey’s Ankara University has worked there since 2009(aw).<

A further possible consequence of the Theran eruption(s)  was proposed after the discovery of the Nebra Sky Disk(n), which was buried about 3,600 years ago. This is suggested Nebra Sky Diskto have resulted from the volcanic ash generated by the eruption blotting out the sun for up to 25 years. It is thought that the Disk had been used to synchronise the lunar and solar calendars(l) and when this was no longer possible the Disk was buried as some form of offering. A contrary view is offered elsewhere on the Internet(m), as well as further controversy(t) led by Peter Schauer from the University of Regensburg.

Andis Kaulins has also written an extensive paper on the Nebra Sky Disk. A 2014 update(r) on the Disk was posted by Claudia Bracholdt.

2020 brought further debate with the claim, in a lengthy paper, that the date of the Disk should be brought forward to the 1st millennium BC(ag). This was followed by a shorter but vehement rebuttal(ah)(al).

In December 2020, the Discovery Channel aired a new documentary, which attempted to revive the Minoan Hypothesis, placing Atlantis on today’s Santorini. This recycled claim adds little that is new and has been taken up by several media outlets(ai), repeating an old error that claims that Plato said that Atlantis was destroyed by a volcanic eruption, when in fact he clearly states that it was the result of an earthquake.

Paul Dunbavin in Prehistory Papers [1758] discusses the Minoan Hypothesis and the extent to which it is inconsistent with the details provided by Plato. Despite the support from some academics for the idea that the story of Atlantis is linked to the Theran eruption, Dunbavin reiterates that “whenever you find a conflict between the opinion of a modern expert and that given in an ancient text then you should always prefer the source closest to the events.” [p160]  The relevant chapter 15 is available as a separate paper online(av).

Before he retired, R. Cedric Leonard published a paper listing 18 reasons why he does not support the Minoan Hypothesis(as).

An extensive bibliography of books and articles on the subject of Thera can be found on the Internet(b).

(a) https://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/April06/Bronze.age.AK.html

(b) Archive 2196 | (atlantipedia.ie)

(f) https://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/stories/2010/02_february/26/atlantis.shtml

(g) Sodom & Gomorrah & The Age of Thera and the Volcano Santorini (archive.org)

(h) See: Archive 2199

(i) See: Archive 2200

(j) https://www.qconference-athens-2011.grazian-archive.com/michaelbaillie/index.html

(k) https://www.riaanbooysen.com/thera

(l) https://www.megalithic.co.uk/article.php?sid=2146413876

(m) Nebra Speculation | Society for Interdisciplinary Studies (archive.org) 

(n) https://www.dw.de/bronze-age-sky-disc-deciphered/a-1915398-1

(o) https://greece.greekreporter.com/2014/03/08/greek-island-of-santorini-volcano-erupted-in-16th-century/

(p) https://neoskosmos.com/news/en/akrotiris-link-to-atlantis

(q) Wayback Machine (archive.org)

(r) The Amazing Sky Calendar That Ancients Used to Track Seasons – Nautilus *

(s) Fossil Insects Tweak Date of Deadly “Atlantis” Eruption (archive.org) 

(t) https://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/6722953.stm

(u) https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/10/141009100924.htm

(v) https://web.archive.org/web/20200926061503/http://www.mondenouveau.fr/continents-disparus-les-fausses-atlantides-de-santorin-partie-2/ 

(w) https://www.livescience.com/56791-santorini-tsunamis-caused-by-volcanic-flow.html

(x) https://www.tornosnews.gr/en/greek-news/culture/27727-santorini-island-excavation-unearths-bronze-age-settlement.html

(y) https://dendro.cornell.edu/articles/Manningetal_Antiquity_2014.pd

(z) https://www.archaeology.org/news/7086-181022-greece-thirasia-wood

(aa) https://www.researchgate.net/publication/7136349_Santorini_Eruption_Radiocarbon_Dated_to_1627-1600_BC

(ab) Annual radiocarbon record indicates 16th century BCE date for the Thera eruption | Science Advances (archive.org)

(ac) Archive 3919

(ad) https://uanews.arizona.edu/story/dating-ancient-minoan-eruption-thera-using-tree-rings

(ae) https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/ancient-volcanic-eruption-dated-through-rings-dead-trees-180974603/

(af) (99+) (PDF) Manning, S.W. 2009. Beyond the Santorini eruption: some notes on dating the Late Minoan IB period on Crete, and implications for Cretan-Egyptian relations in the 15th century BC (and especially LMII). In D.A. Warburton (ed.), Time’s Up! Dating the Minoan eruption of Santorini. Acts of the Minoan Eruption Chronology Workshop, Sandbjerg November 2007 initiated by Jan Heinemeier & Walter L. Friedrich: 207-226. Monographs of the Danish Institute at Athens Volume 10. Athens: The Danish Institute at Athens. | Sturt Manning – Academia.edu

(ag) https://www.dguf.de/fileadmin/AI/ArchInf-EV_Gebhard_Krause_e.pdf?fbclid=IwAR1Ej3wkUGtIAdiPY59Yh6QKCrRyCueND7LK-5IvFSZTPdbHPShD4GlcZIg (link broken)

(ah)  https://www.lda-lsa.de/aktuelles/meldung/datum/2020/09/03/himmelsscheibe_von_nebra_eisenzeitlich_eine_richtigstellung/

(ai) New Findings on Santorini Point to “Lost Island of Atlantis” Origins | GreekReporter.com

(aj) The Prehistoric Buried City of Akrotiri – Discovered in 1860 (thevintagenews.com)

(ak) https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/prehistoric-town-of-akrotiri

(al) Archaeologists Are Caught Up in an Intense Fight Over Just How Important the Mysterious Nebra Sky Disk Really Is | Artnet News

(am) https://www.santorini-view.com/history-of-santorini/ 

(an) https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0377027303002841 

(ao) First victim of the tsunami that trashed the Eastern Mediterranean found | Ars Technica 

(ap) https://www.academia.edu/30389193/Astronomy_date_of_the_Minoan_eruption_part_II 

(aq) https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2022/05/220502142621.htm 

(ar) https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-023-33696-w 

(as) Could the island of Santorini be Atlantis? (archive.org)  

(at) https://www.flickr.com/photos/guano/472552606

(au) https://www.travel-to-santorini.com/article.php?article_id=50 

(av) https://www.academia.edu/80337025/Catastrophes_from_Atlantis_to_the_Aegean

(aw) 3,600-year-old tsunami ‘time capsule’ sheds light on one of humanity’s greatest disasters (nationalgeographic.com) 

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