Newgrange is a Neolithic monument in Ireland’s Boyne Valley, County Meath. It was constructed around 3,200 BC, which makes it older than Stonehenge and the Pyramids of Giza. Newgrange is a large circular mound 85m (279ft) in diameter and 13m (43ft) high with a 19m (63ft) stone passageway and chambers inside. The mound is ringed by 97 large kerbstones, some of which are engraved with megalithic art.
Newgrange was built by a farming community that prospered on the rich lands of the Boyne Valley. Nearby are Knowth and Dowth which are similar mounds that together with Newgrange have been designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO(a).
Both Robert Hensey(f), who has studied and written about Newgrange [1766.6] and Mike Parker Pearson, Stonehenge’s leading authority, have endorsed the idea of a French origin for megalith building(g).
Newgrange is best known for the illumination of its passage and chamber by the winter solstice sun. Above the entrance to the passage at Newgrange, there is an opening called a roof-box. This baffling orifice held a great surprise for those who unearthed it. Its purpose is to allow sunlight to penetrate the chamber on the shortest days of the year, around December 21st, the winter solstice.
Like all ancient monuments, the Boyne Valley cluster has generated its collection of wild speculation, such as Freddy Silva’s claim that there is a connection between Knowth and Sacsayhuaman near Cuzco in Peru and who also hints at a possible link with Egypt’s Osirion(b)!
The unaccredited Keystone University in Ireland published a video in 2020 in which it claimed that “the neolithic tomb at Newgrange in the Boyne Valley is, in fact, the famed temple of Atlantis and one of the oldest temples on earth as a result(i).” This daft claim is a development of Ulf Erlingsson‘s theories published in 2004.
The winter solstice event is not the only astronomical link proposed for Newgrange. Anthony Murphy and Richard Moore have written(c) about the Cygnus Constellation and a possible link with Newgrange . Paul Dunbavin also touched on the possible connection between swans in Irish mythology and astronomical events(d).
Even more unlikely is the suggestion from E. A. James Swagger in The Newgrange Sirius Mystery  in which the author endeavoured to link Ireland’s most important megalithic site with both an early understanding of precession and the symbology of the Dogon.
Furthermore, the imaginative Frank Joseph has speculated that “the early date for Newgrange, its circular construction, sophisticated solar orientation and mythic tradition all point to Atlantean origins.” [0636.70]
>A common feature of most of the great megalithic monuments, such as Stonehenge, The Maltese Temples or Newgrange is the incorporation of astronomical alignments into their design. Recent years have seen the development of archaeoacoustics and the study of the sound characteristics of various ancient structures. Arguably the most famous site is the Hal Saflieni Hypogeum in Malta, about which Linda Eneix has written an interesting paper(j). She notes that there is a suggestion that sounds there, and possibly elsewhere, might lead to a release of the ‘feel-good’ hormone dopamine. Any inference that this was a deliberate design feature will require evidence. Eneix just touches on Newgrange acoustics that are discussed elsewhere(k).<
The Coligny Calendar is the name given to a fragmented bronze plaque discovered in 1897 near Coligny in France. It is a calendar that has been attributed to the Celtic Sequani tribe. It is dated to the 2nd century AD, written in Roman script in Gallic and is the longest known document in that language.
Paul Dunbavin in his Atlantis of the West proposed that the Coligny Calendar might be considered a lunisolar calendar. Some years later in 2005 he returned to the subject in Under Ancient Skies and devoted Chapter 5 plus Appendices A & B to a discussion of Critias 119d, which relates how the kings of Atlantis met alternatively every five and six years. Dunbavin suggests that this is reflected in the Coligny Calendar and that it possibly had antecedents that would bring its functions back to the time of Bronze Age Atlantis>(d), if not earlier(e).<Dunbavin’s reaction to the Calendar is best quoted – Now it is this passage more than any other that convinces the present author (Dunbavin) of the authenticity of the Atlantis myth“. He touches on the subject again in his latest offering, Towers of Atlantis  and Prehistory Papers .
Alexios Pliakos, a Greek student of ancient calendars, presented a paper to the 2008 Atlantis Conference entitled A hidden Calendar in the Atlantis Story. He focused on the same Critias 119d text and like Dunbavin has independently concluded that the reference to the five and six years is strong evidence “that Atlantis did not lie in Plato’s imagination.”
There have been attempts to link the Coligny Calendar with the much earlier stone engraving found at Knowth near Newgrange in Ireland(a). An extensive and more speculative discussion of the Calendar is to be found on a New Zealand website(b). Perhaps the most exotic explanation for the source of the Calendar, questions the presumed Celtic origins and offers reasons to consider a claim that it can be traced back to ancient India(c).
>A 2020 paper by Helen Mckay entitled The Coligny Calendar: A Full Reconstruction with Modern Dates from 30 April 2020 to 4 May 2025 is freely available.(f)<
(a) https://www.sequanicalendar.com/egg.html (Link broken Nov. 2018)
The Cygnus Constellation was the location of a supernova that inspired the story of Phaeton, as related to Solon by the priests at Sais, according to Michael A. Cahill in his two-volume Paradise Rediscovered [818/9].
Andrew Collins has also written on the place of the constellation Cygnus in prehistoric consciousness. Arising from this study, it appears that the position of the Cygnus stars correlates more accurately with the Giza pyramids than those of Orion, which was proposed some years ago by Robert Bauval. Collins continues with the Cygnus-Giza connection in a subsequent offering, Beneath the Pyramids. Derek Cunningham has echoed(a) some of Collins’ work suggesting that there existed in ancient times a World Map based on the Cygnus constellation!
Collins has also suggested that a suspected Black Hole in Cygnus Constellation is thought to be the source of cosmic rays that changed evolution and kick-started religion(d)!
Anthony Murphy and Richard Moore have also written(b) about the Cygnus Constellation and a possible link with Ireland’s Newgrange.>This idea was echoed in a recent episode of Ancient Aliens (S18E17)(f).<Paul Dunbavin also touched on the possible connection between swans in Irish mythology and astronomical events(e).
Freddy Silva has endeavoured to link Cygnus with the Osirion in Abydos in a 2019 article(c) in which he dated the structure to 10,500 BC.
>A Lunisolar Calendar is regulated by the positions of both the moon and the sun and have been in use since ancient times in many cultures(b), indicating the phases of the Moon as well as the passage of time through the solar year. The Jewish calendar is an example of an ancient lunisolar calendar still in use.<
It is claimed that a lunisolar calendar is hidden within the Atlantis story according to a paper presented to the 2008 Atlantis Conference by Alexios Pliakos. Lunisolar calendars have been in use since ancient times in many cultures(b), indicating the phases of the moon as well as the passage of time through the solar year.
Pliakos believes[750.631] that Critias 119 d2-d4, which refers to the convening of the Atlantean kings every five and six years, contains a previously unknown lunisolar calendar of 11 years duration with an accuracy of 0.09 days per year. As he also claims that it could have been applied in both 9600 BC and 12th century BC, it cannot be used to date the time of Atlantis. However, he points out that this 11-year lunisolar calendar conforms with the development of calendars generally adding to the improbability of the Atlantis story being an invention.
In a recent paper by Ashley Cowie, he explains how the Hittite shrine of Yazilikaya, at least in part, could have been used as a lunisolar calendar. Eberhard Zangger, an expert on the ancient history of the region, has also identified astronomically related features at the site (d).
Paul Dunbavin, in his Atlantis of the West[0099.319], has offered a speculative explanation for the fifth and sixth-year meetings of the Atlantean kings based on the fragments that make up the French ‘Coligny Calendar’(a).
David Ohrenstein has a short blog on the significance of ‘five and six’ from megalithic times to that of the Egyptians and later the Maya(c).
Wales, or more precisely an area off the west coast of Wales, is considered by Paul Dunbavin to be the location of sunken Atlantis(c). His well researched books  investigate in detail the mythology of the region together with the underwater topography of the Irish Sea and relates these to Plato’s narrative. It is generally accepted that at the end of the last Ice Age, Ireland and Britain were joined and that the Irish Sea was a much reduced inland lake. As the ice melted the seas gradually advanced separating the higher land into what are now geographically known as the British Isles. A memory of these events is possibly contained in the ancient Welsh Triads(a), where reference to great floods can be found. However, Dunbavin’s attempt to link these floods with the inundation of Atlantis is not fully convincing. Similar floods occurred all over the world including the Baltic, Caribbean and Indonesia but in common with Wales there is no connection between any of them and a war with Athens or Egypt.
Nevertheless, in October 2004 the British newspaper,The Guardian, perhaps slightly tongue-in-cheek, compared some of Wales’ features with Plato’s description of Atlantis, although the reference to elephants ended the comparison (b).
The Atlantis Researches , by Paul Dunbavin, discusses in great detail the myths of the British Isles and, in particular, the Welsh legends that refer repeatedly to sunken kingdoms. Dunbavin concludes that these myths are a memory of a submerged Neolithic civilisation around the coasts of the British Isles.
The author is convinced that the destruction of this civilisation was the result of a change in the Earth’s axis, as a consequence of a cometary impact, around 3100 BC. This date coincides with the conclusions of other writers who have also identified this date as one of global cataclysmic events. However controversial his ideas may be, the book is well worth a read.
This book was republished in 2003 as Atlantis of the West.
James came to public attention when, in collaboration with Nick Thorpe, Nikos Kokkinos, Robert Morkot and John Frankish, he authored Centuries of Darkness  in which he explored the problems of the chronology of the Mediterranean and Near East in the second millennium BC. It generated much controversy, which continues as the authors’ website(c)(d) demonstrates.
The following years saw the production of an impressive three-volume work by David Rohl offering similar ideas on a New Chronology for the region. In fact, James and Rohl had collaborated until they had divergent views regarding the identification of the biblical Shishak, Rohl favouring Ramesses II, while James opted for Ramesses III.
James has also been studying the Atlantis question since the early 1970s. Paul Dunbavin recounts that James had originally favoured Megalithic Britain as Atlantis. Francis Hitching in The World Atlas of Mysteries notes how James calculated the date of the demise of Atlantis as 3600 BC. He arrives at this by accepting the commonly agreed date for the beginning of Egyptian civilisation of 3100 BC. He then adds the 1,000 years, which Solon was told by the Egyptian priests, was the time that had elapsed between the Atlantean Athenian war and then arbitrarily subtracts 500 years to compensate for an assumed nationalistic exaggeration of Egypt’s antiquity; a habit common to many ancient kingdoms.
However, when he finally published his work on the subject, The Sunken Kingdom , he controversially offered a site in Anatolia in western Turkey as his preferred location for Atlantis. Unfortunately, he has been unable to obtain permission from the authorities to dig at the site and hopefully substantiate his theory. The book is supported by a website(a).
>A few years earlier, Eberhard Zangger published The Flood From Heaven, in which he also placed Atlantis in western Anatolia, specifically in Troy. James offers a few critical comments including what he considers a major weakness in Zangger’s theory, namely that Troy did not ‘sink beneath the waves in a single day and a night’. [p.201]<
James was highly vocal in disputing the dendrochronological dating of the Uluburun shipwreck discovered in 1982 off southwestern Turkey. The initial date given was 1315 BC, later revised to 1305 BC but due to a lack of bark on the piece of wood tested a definitive date was impossible. Even if the bark had been attached it would still only have provided the date that the tree had been felled not the date of the shipwreck(b). Subsequently, the more imprecise radiocarbon dating gave a date of ‘around’ 1300 BC.
James is also co-author, again with Nick Thorpe, of Ancient Inventions , which is a 672-page tome that offers a fascinating account of the inventive capabilities of ancient civilisations. In this 1994 book, he comments that “Plato’s yarn is largely a work of fiction” [p.455], >which makes you wonder why, just a year later, he published The Sunken Kingdom!<
Paul Dunbavin (1954- ) is a data and business analyst. “His interest for over 35 years has been cross-disciplinary research into prehistory, which he has occasionally published in his books and various articles and papers.”
He is the author of controversial but well-researched books relating to the ancient history of Britain. In one of these, he identified the Picts of Scotland as being originally from the Baltic. In another he investigated the possible origins of Plato’s story of Atlantis. Using mythological, geological and archaeological sources he concluded that an asteroid or comet collided with the Earth around 3100 BC resulting in the tilting of the Earth’s axis. Dunbavin argued that this impact caused dramatic climate and sea-level changes that led to the submergence of a Neolithic civilisation on a low-lying plain off the coast of Wales. He believed that this destruction was the inspiration for the Atlantis legend. David Furlong claimed to have independently arrived at the same conclusion.
In 2005, Dunbavin published another volume on ancient catastrophes and their possible connection with cometary impacts or near-collisions. In this connection, he briefly refers to the work of George F. Dodwell.
In 2019, Dunbavin expanded his website, which also includes a more extensive review of Dodwell’s work(c). 2019 also saw the publication of his latest book, Towers of Atlantis . There is more information about this and his other books on his website(a), which also includes links to other related sites(b).
>Paul Dunbavin in his Atlantis of the West  proposed that the Coligny Calendar might be considered a lunisolar calendar. Some years later in 2005 he returned to the subject in Under Ancient Skies  and devoted Chapter 5 plus Appendices A & B to a discussion of Critias 119d, which relates how the kings of Atlantis met alternatively every five and six years. Dunbavin suggests that this is reflected in the Coligny Calendar and that it possibly had antecedents that would bring its functions back to the time of Bronze Age Atlantis(d), if not earlier(e). Dunbavin’s reaction to the Calendar is best quoted – Now it is this passage more than any other that convinces the present author (Dunbavin) of the authenticity of the Atlantis myth“. He touches on this matter again in Towers of Atlantis  and Prehistory Papers .<
Once again, Dunbavin has returned to the subject of the British Isles during the Neolithic period and their possible association with Plato’s story of Atlantis. He draws on the ancient Egyptian concept of a paradisaical afterlife comparable with the Greek ‘Elysian Fields’, both believed to be located in the far west. These notions are seen by Dunbavin to have possible parallels in Plato’s description of the Plain of Atlantis.
The author highlights the value of mythology, which he employs in conjunction with classical writers such as Herodotus, Diodorus Siculus as well as others to lead us to his considered belief that the Irish Sea before its eventual inundation after the last Ice Age had been home to the Plain of Atlantis, stretching from the island of Anglesea to the Isle of Man. This book should be read in conjunction with his previous offering, Atlantis of the West. Rather than wild speculation, Dunbavin has again offered evidence, although subjectively interpreted, which offers a coherent hypothesis.
Dunbavin updates his website from time to time, the latest was November 2019. Anyone interested in his theories should check his site regularly.
In 2020, Dunbavin published Prehistory Papers, “which provides a permanent repository for the various articles or papers originally published on the author’s website; together with some older articles; they expand on the cross-disciplinary research in the author’s earlier books.“
George F. Dodwell (1879-1963) was a leading Australian astronomer, who made an extensive study of ancient gnomons and discovered that they deviated from what had been anticipated. A gnomon is the part of a sundial that casts the shadow. He concluded that there was consistent evidence that the tilt of the earth’s rotational axis was altered around 2345 BC. This view supported those that have claimed that the poles shifted within the memory of man, possibly as a result of a close encounter or impact with an extraterrestrial body such as a comet. Some have gone further and attribute the destruction of Atlantis to this clash. Dodwell’s complete work on the subject can now be read on Barry Setterfield’s website(a).
Dodwell, a devout Christian, concluded that it was this sudden shift of the earth’s axis that led to the Flood of Noah. Reinaud de Jonge proposed a similar linkage between the 2345 BC cosmic encounter and the biblical Deluge. He also claimed that a large collection of petroglyphs at Mougau-Bihan in Brittany were inspired by this event.
Rene Noorbergen (1928-1995) mentions in his Secrets of the Lost Races [612.20] that Dodwell wrote to Professor Arthur J. Brandenberger of Ohio State University, outlining his theory in the following manner; “I have been making during the last 26 years an extensive investigation of what we know in astronomy as the secular variation of the obliquity of the ecliptic. From a study of the available ancient observations of the position of the sun at the solstices during the last three thousand years, I find a curve which, after allowing for all known changes, shows a typical exponential curve of recovery of the Earth’s axis after a sudden change from a former nearly vertical position to an inclination of 26½ degrees, from which it was returned to an equilibrium at the present inclination of 23½ degrees during the interval of the succeeding 3,194 years to A.D. 1850. The date of the change in the Earth’s axis, 2345 B.C., is none other than that of the flood recorded in the Bible, and the resulting conclusion is that the Biblical account of the flood as a universal one, together with its story of Noah’s Ark, is historically true.”
Dodwell was also impressed by the work of the creationist, George McCready Price (1870-1963), who had also concluded that the Earth’s axial tilt had been altered as a result of an impact with a celestial body. Price also linked the event with the biblical Deluge.
Dodwell referred to a paper of F.S.Richards on the orientation of the Temple of Ammon at Karnak(b), which indicated an anomalous obliquity of the ecliptic of 25°9’55”. This led to considerable debate regarding the age of the temple. William Fix drew attention[871.264] to the widespread reuse of very ancient sacred sites by successive cultures, which might explain the incompatibility between the apparent age of the most recent temple and the greater antiquity suggested by the obliquity of the ecliptic. Alternatively, it might also indicate an encounter with an extraterrestrial body that affected the Earth’s axis and caused widespread destruction, including, according to some theories, the destruction of Atlantis!
S.F. Wells published a paper(h) on Graham Hancock’s website in which he investigated the Avebury stone circle and its associated monuments and found evidence that they “show knowledge of past Polar positions”.
In the interests of balance, I must refer readers to an extensive 2013 paper(f) by a creationist, Dr Danny Faulkner, who has cast doubts on Dodwell’s conclusions. More recently Paul Dunbavin also published a critique of Dodwell’s work in Prehistory Papers [1758.71]. This essay was written a few years ago and is now available on his website(k).
Another interesting comment is offered by Barry Setterfield, who wrote(a) that “ Dodwell has assumed here that the original axis tilt of the earth, before 2345 B.C., was nearly upright. For that reason, he supposed a very strong impact was necessary to jolt the earth from that position to its current 23.5-degree tilt. This is why a number of astronomers have rejected Dodwell’s work in this area. However, if the axis tilt was greater than its current axis tilt before 2345 B.C., then an impact of much less force would have been required to restore the earth to a slightly more upright position. The evidence for this greater axis tilt may be seen in the evidence of the ice age which covered most of Europe prior to 2345 B.C.”
Malcolm Bowden, the author of True Science Agrees with the Bible, also wrote a pamphlet supporting Dodwell’s findings and later produced a YouTube video explaining in detail Dodwell’s axial tilt theory(g). Paul D. Ackerman offers another review of Dodwell’s work from a creationist viewpoint(j). Ackerman is an ardent supporter of the concept of a young Earth .
In 2011, Mike Baillie, the renowned dendrochronologist, gave a PowerPoint presentation(d) at the Quantavolution Conference in Athens, which offered tree-ring evidence that clearly demonstrated an ‘event’ in 2345 BC, which has counterparts in early Chinese and Middle East records suggesting a cometary encounter/impact! Baillie also notes that Isaac Newton and Edmund Halley both thought that Archbishop Ussher’s Flood of 2349 BC was due to a comet.
More recently, Andrew Bourmistroff, a Russian researcher, has determined that the orientation of the Great Pyramid at Giza is off by 9.85 degrees west of true north(e). The full significance, if any, of all these details has yet to be fully determined.
Britain.>For as long as I can remember, received wisdom told us that the ancestors of the British (and Irish) had Celtic origins. Then in 2007, Dr Stephen Oppenheimer, professor of genetics at Oxford University ‘threw a cat among the pigeons’ when he bluntly wrote “Everything you know about British and Irish ancestry is wrong. Our ancestors were Basques, not Celts” in Origins of the British .R.Cedric Leonard reviews Oppenheimer’s claims in the book and two earlier papers(d)(e)(f).<
Britain as the home of Atlantis has been claimed by many writers and not without undertones of nationalism by some of the British authors. Nevertheless, support for the idea has been offered by a number of more disinterested researchers. Probably the first to advance this idea was John Wallis (1660-1703), who, in 1700, proposed that the Atlantis story had been corrupted over time and was a reference to the destruction of the landbridge that had existed between France and England, leaving a British Atlantis more isolated (The original Brexit!)(c). It was nearly a century before the idea was taken up by Thomas Pennant and then more than another century passed before Cooper, Spence, Beaumont and Calestani produced related theories. Fast forward to the 21st century, when Donald Ingram identifies the Wessex II culture as Atlantean and Melville Nicholls considers Britain to be one of the Atlantean islands referred to by Plato.
The precise location, the exact date and the probable cause of the destruction of Atlantis are the basis for a range of theories. There is general acceptance that following the deglaciation at the end of the last Ice Age vast regions of low-lying land that had linked Ireland and Britain to mainland Europe were gradually flooded.
One school of thought is that these flooded regions contained Atlantis, of which the most extensive was in the North Sea and is now known as Doggerland. Other offshore locations proposed for Atlantis are the Celtic Shelf (Gidon, Steuerwald & Koudroiavtsev) and the Irish Sea (Dunbavin). These lands had been settled and following the inundations, its inhabitants were forced to retreat to the higher ground of what is modern Europe and the British Isles.
David L. Hildebrandt in Atlantis-The Reawakening  proposes a reworking of the ‘Atlantis in Britain’ theory with some new perspectives. For me, his dating, location and identity of the Atlanteans do not ring true, particularly why Stone Age people in Southern Britain would want to launch an attack on Athens, over 2,000 miles away, a city-state that did not even exist at the time. Those early Britons did not have the wheel, yet Plato tells us that the Atlanteans had chariots!
E. J. de Meester on his now-defunct website postulated a link between Stonehenge and Atlantis(b). After arbitrarily dividing Plato’s dimensions by ten, he suggested that the plain described by Plato lay in a rectangle between Salisbury and Chichester.