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

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    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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R.A. Fessenden

Caucasus Mountains

The Caucasus Mountains lie between the Black and Caspian Seas and contain the highestCaucasus_Borders4 mountain in Europe, Mount Elbrus (Russia). In ancient times it was the location of several kingdoms of whom two were known as Albania and Iberia

Delisle de Sales was probably the first to suggest the Caucasus as the home of the original Atlantis, with refugees from there establishing Plato’s Atlantis in the Central Mediterranean. However, the greatest proponent of the Caucasus location for Atlantis was R.A. Fessenden who wrote an extensive multi-volume work[1012] on the subject early in the 20th century.

More recently, Ronnie Gallagher, an admirer of Fessenden, has studied the Caucasus region, in particular, Amazons.Caucasus 1895the hydrology of the Caspian Sea(a), where he identified strandlines up to 225 metres above sea level, which he considers to be evidence of a vast inland Eurasian sea at the end of the last Ice Age. In Azerbaijan, he also found cart ruts similar to those on Malta as well as stone circles on the Absheron Peninsula(b).>Professor E. N. Badyukova has offered some critical comments regarding Gallagher’s claims(k).<

Flinders Petrie also referenced Fessenden in his (1926) paper The Origins of the Book of the Dead(f), in which he concluded that that the cultural connections of the earliest Egyptians, as well as the physical descriptions in their mythology, point to the Caucasus region. When, further, we find there the names of the principal places of the mythology in their relative positions, it gives strong grounds for regarding that region as the homeland of the earliest civilisation of the Egyptians.”

A few years later, an article by M. A. Murray in Antiquity (Volume 15 – Issue 60 – Dec. 1941)  noted that Petrie’s “opinion was based entirely on literary and philological evidence” resulting in archaeologists being slow to accept it. To partially counter this Murray offered two pieces of evidence in support of Petrie’s proposed Egyptian-Caucasus connection.(i)

However, I must point out that in 1874 Hyde Clarke delivered a paper to the Royal Anthropological Institute in which he claimed that the Colchians in the Caucasus had been an Egyptian colony(h). Clarke also employed language similarities to support his contention. So we can reasonably ask, who was right or were both wrong?

>A forum on Graham Hancock’s website offered some more discussion about an Egyptian link with the Caucasus(j).

Jean-Michel Hermans has claimed that the megalith builders of Brittany originally came from the Caucasus, and arrived there after a stop in what is now Bulgaria around 5000 BC(l).<

The Amazons of Greek mythology are thought by some to have originated in the Caucasus and as late as 1671, Sir John Chardin reported that a tribe of Amazons existed in Georgia. Interestingly, a 19th-century photo shows two armed ladies from Armenia captioned as ‘Amazons of Armenia 1895’.

An added mystery was offered by Alexander Braghine, who recounted that “I was present when a former Russian officer of Georgian origin found himself able to talk with the natives of Vizcaya immediately upon his arrival in Northern Spain: he spoke Georgian, but the Basques understood this language.” [156.187]

Currently, Bruce Fenton has claimed the Caucasus as the home of giants. However, Jason Colavito has demonstrated the unreliability of his claims(c).

In the Krasnodar region of southern Russia hundreds (3,000 and counting) of dolmens are to be found on both sides of the Caucasus. Interestingly, they show a distinctive form of megalithic architecture(g).

I feel that the Caucasus will have a lot more to tell us.

(a) https://www.isjss.com/upload/file/2_2011/Gallagher.pdf

(b) https://www.azer.com/aiweb/categories/magazine/ai103_folder/103_articles/103_cart_ruts.html

(c) https://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/did-bruce-fenton-find-the-homeland-of-bible-giants-in-the-caucasus-mountains

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

(e) https://www.academia.edu/37625564/Observations_of_Caspian_strandlines_their_use_as_highstand_indicators_with_consideration_for_their_implications_with_regard_to_regional_geomorphology_paleodrainage_and_biodiversity 

(f) Archive 6947 | (atlantipedia.ie)

(g) The mysterious dolmens and megaliths of the Caucasus – The Tapestry of Time (larazzodeltempo.it) 

(h) https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/2841305.pdf  

(i)  Antiquity, Vol. 15, Issue 60, Dec. 1941 p.384-386

(j) New article: Observations on Late Pleistocene Flooding of the… – Graham Hancock Official Website *

(k) Recall.pdf (isjss.com) *

(l) Amazon.fr *

Fessenden, Reginald Aubrey

Reginald Aubrey Fessenden, (1866-1932), was a remarkable Canadian ReginaldFessendenlrgwho, at the age of 24, had been head chemist to Thomas Edison. He was Professor of postgraduate Mathematics and Electrical Engineering, Western University of Pittsburgh and Engineering Commissioner, Ontario Power Commission. While there he took on the challenge of wireless communication and he made his first radio voice ‘broadcast’ on Christmas Eve, 1906, at a time when Marconi was still signalling in Morse code. In fact, his first voice transmission was on December 23rd 1900 which was heard one mile away.

Fessenden investigated an ancient civilisation in the Caucasus and identified it as Atlantis. The famous Egyptologist Flinders Petrie was interested in his work, which revealed evidence that people from the Caucasus had an influence on the development of ancient Egyptian culture(b). Dr Margaret Murray (1863-1963), who worked with Petrie, was also sympathetic to this view. More recently, Ronnie Gallagher has taken up this cause(c) and has gone further by suggesting the possibility that not only were migrants from the Caucasus responsible for kick-starting the development of Egyptian culture but that people from the same region had a similar influence on the early inhabitants of Sumeria and the Indus Valley.

>Fessenden approached the Smithsonian seeking help with organising an expedition to Russia to search for evidence in support of his theories. Their response of March 1924 is available online(e).<

Fessenden was also the author of The Deluged Civilisation of the Caucasus Isthmus published in three parts between 1923 and 1933 and now available on the Internet(a). In this extensive work, he discusses an alternative interpretation to the geography of early Greek myths and its consequences for Plato’s story of Atlantis.

In 1940, Fessenden’s widow, Helen, just a year before her own death, completed Reginald’s unfinished autobiography [1615]. In Chapter 28, his support for Atlantis being situated in the Caucasus is reiterated.

Jason Colavito has written a short critique of Fessenden’s work(d).

(a) https://www.radiocom.net/Deluge/Deluge1-6.htm

 https://www.radiocom.net/Deluge/Deluge7-10.htm

https://www.radiocom.net/Deluge/Deluge11.htm

(b) https://www.jasoncolavito.com/flinders-petrie-on-atlantis.html

(c) https://grahamhancock.com/gallagherr1/

(d) https://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/on-atlantis-berossus-and-alternative-scholarship

Black Sea

The Black Sea was known to the Greeks as the Euxine Sea and according to Strabo (1.2.10), in antiquity was often simply referred to as “the sea” (pontos).  It has also been known as the Scythian Sea after the people who lived on its northern shore. Pindar referred to it as the ‘Inhospitable Sea’.

It received little attention in connection with the Atlantis mystery until the 19th century when two French writers, André de Paniagua and Moreau de Jonnès, independently located Atlantis in the Sea of Azov. Some years later in 1923, R.A. Fessenden, a Canadian professor of BlackSeaMapMathematics and Electrical Engineering wrote about the prehistoric flooding of a civilisation in the Caucasus region, which he linked with Plato’s Atlantis. The text of this extensive work is now available on the Internet(a).

Trevor Palmer has written a useful paper (2009) on the Black Sea and the gradual development of theories relating to its dramatic connection with the Mediterranean and how it may have influenced the mythologies of the Middle East and possibly further afield.

Palmer concluded that The various groups currently investigating the area are agreed that cataclysmic flooding took place during the Late Pleistocene, but remain divided about whether similar floods also occurred during the Holocene. Eye-witness accounts of catastrophic floods in the Black Sea basin at either time could have been passed on to future generations, eventually giving rise to the later Mesopotamian legend of Uta-napishtim and, subsequently, the Biblical story of Noah. However, in the absence of any direct evidence of cultural transmission, that can presently only be regarded as plausible speculation.”(p)

Little was heard of the region again until 1998 when Ryan &  Pitman identified the flooding of the Black Sea with Noah’s Flood[025]. This was followed in 2001 by Ian Wilson‘s Before the Flood [185], which reflected a similar line of thought.

In 2004, the Bulgarian father and son oceanographers, Petko and Dimitar Dimitrov published their book, The Black Sea, the Flood and the Ancient Myths, in English, which supported much of Ryan and Pitman’s work. Unlike them, who based much of their conclusions on a study of molluscs, the Dimitrovs focused on sedimentation evidence. Their book is now available, in English, as a free pdf file(d). They also suggest that this Holocene influx into the Black Sea also triggered the Vedic Aryan migration to India(g).

Ryan and Pitman’s book unintentionally triggered the imaginations of a number of people into considering the possibility of a possible link between this inundation and the sinking of  Atlantis. While Ryan and Pitman have made no such suggestion, others such as Ian Wilson[185] have seen a distorted memory of the event as a possible inspiration for Plato’s story. In 2009, Liviu Giosan, a geologist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute published a paper(e) which suggested that prior to the intrusion of the Mediterranean, the level of the Black Sea had been just 30 metres below its present level rather than the 80 metres proposed by Ryan and Pitman. This would imply a less extensive degree of flooding than previously thought. Giosan has offered a sceptical Ryan an opportunity to replicate his tests.

Although the scenario pictured by Ryan & Pitman and others is of very rapid flooding of the original smaller Black Sea, more recent studies appear to indicate a more gradual rising of the water levels. “With more data to be analysed, it supports the idea that the waters rose unnoticeably, by metres over centuries, even millennia.”(o)

Nick Thom, a British engineer, wrote The Great Flood [776] which includes a section on the Black Sea in which he suggests that the flow of water was from the Black Sea into the Sea of Marmara rather than the other way around.

Nearly two hundred years ago Josiah Priest in his 1835 book American Antiquities [1143] also offered evidence from Euclid of Megara that the flow of water had been from the Black Sea to the Aegean. Apparently, Euclid heard this from Anacharsis a philosopher from the northern coast of the Black Sea related how the inflow from the rivers of Europe and Asia raised the level of the ‘Sea’ until it breached the landbridge and spilled over into the Sea of Marmara.

>Paul Dunbavin has entered the Black Sea flood(s) debate with a 2020 paper entitled Diodorus Siculus and the Black Sea Flood(q). This lengthy essay covers a lot of ground, in particular the comments of Diodorus Siculus who described a Samothracian flood story that appears to contradict the flood described by Ryan & Pitman as it describes a flow of water in the opposite direction. Consequently, the evidence offered by Diodorus is often discounted as ‘unreliable’. Dunbavin, however, offers a possible solution with the suggestion that The Samothracian flood, as described by Diodorus, could only have occurred after the Black Sea Flood.”<

More recently, Christian & Siegfried Schoppe, two German researchers have also asserted that the Black Sea was the original ‘Atlantis Ocean and that Atlantis was located in that region [186]. They have suggested that Snake Island located east of the mouth of the Danube was the probable site of Plato’s city. Their contention is that around 5500 BC a landbridge at the Bosporus was breached causing extensive flooding that created what we now know as the Black Sea. Until that time there had only been a small freshwater lake in the region. Although their book was published in German, the Schoppes have a website(b) with a useful amount of English content.

flying eagle and whisperingThe somewhat eccentric duo of the late Flying Eagle (1920-2007) and Whispering Wind, who also advocated a Black Sea location for Atlantis(a)(f),  claimed a specific site on the Strait of Kerch between the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. Their theory was first expounded in their book [138] in 2004. They also followed the Ryan and Pitman date of 5500 BC for the inundation of the Black Sea.

The evidence to date suggests that the flooding of the Black Sea coincided with a storegga event, which would require a catastrophe on a scale not previously considered. In a 2017 paper(i), John M. Jensen offers a range of evidence to support this contention.

A rather different approach is taken by the German researcher Werner E. Friedrich[695], who pushes back the expansion and the raising of the level of the Black Sea to around 10000 BC, at the end of the last Ice Age. He believes that this led to the flooding of Atlantis, which he claims to have been situated on a plain that had lain between ancient extensions of the rivers Donau and Don. Friedrich located the Pillars of Heracles in the Sea of Marmara[p.39].

A.I. Zolotukhin places Atlantis in western Crimea on his multilingual website with the inviting title of Homer and Atlantis(j).

The legendary destroyed city of Ancomah is frequently compared to Plato’s description of the destruction of Atlantis. It was reputed to have existed in the vicinity of the ancient port city of Trabzon, which is located on the southeast coast of the Black Sea.

Michael A. Cahill in his 2012 two-volume[818][819] publication on the development of civilisation locates Atlantis near what is modern Istanbul in the pre-Diluvian Stone Age.

The concept of a Black Sea Atlantis has the support of the rather eccentric Church of Vrilology(h)!

In October 2018, an attempt was made to breathe new life into the idea of Crimea as a remnant of an Atlantis submerged under the Black Sea. Unfortunately, it offers no evidence or references in the badly translated article(k). In the same month, it was reported that the oldest intact shipwreck was discovered in the Black Sea by an Anglo-Bulgarian team. It was identified as a Greek trading vessel dated to 400 BC(l). The oxygen-free waters at the bottom of the Black Sea had preserved it and dozens of others located by the team.

In early 2019, George K. Weller, building on the theories of the Schoppes, also proposed the Black Sea as Atlantis’ home, again nominating Snake Island as the home of Mr. and Mrs. Poseidon, which, before the Black Sea was flooded, would have been the central peak of their island home, as referred to by Plato(n).

One of the most comprehensive internet papers on all aspects of the history of the Black Sea can be found on the Encyclopaedia Iranica website(m).

(a) https://www.radiocom.net/Deluge/Deluge1-6.htm

(b) See: https://atlantipedia.ie/samples/archive-3914/

(d) http://io-bas.bg/noahproject/BOOK_PETKO.pdf 

(e)  See: https://web.archive.org/web/20150922224701/https://www.whoi.edu/main/news-releases/2009?tid=3622&cid=54863

(f) https://atlantis-today.com/Great_Atlantis_Flood.htm

(g) https://www.academia.edu/1293293/INITIATION_OF_THE_MIGRATION_OF_VEDIC_ARYANS_TO_INDIA_BY_A_CATASTROPHIC_FLOODING_OF_THE_FRESH_WATER_BLACK_SEA_BY_MEDITERRANEAN_SEA_DURING_THE_HOLOCENE._Yavor_Y._Shopov1_odor_Yalamov_Petko_Dimitrov_Dimitar_Dimitrov_and_Bono_Shkodrov

(h) https://web.archive.org/web/20130108091223if_/https://www.vrilology.org/Atlantis_page.htm

(i) https://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?year=2017&id=505

(j) https://homerandatlantis.com/?lang=en

(k) https://ktelegram.com/scientists-crimea-may-be-a-fragment-of-the-lost-city-of-atlantis/43728/ (link broken Jan. 2019)

(l) https://www.news.com.au/technology/science/archaeology/worlds-oldest-intact-shipwreck-discovered-at-the-bottom-of-the-black-sea/news-story/a2c3f39449fd7164712b2b708636d33e

(m) https://www.iranicaonline.org/

(n) Comparison of Plato’s Critias with George K. Weller’s concept of ancient Atlantis and its actual location. – The Weller Farm (archive.org)

(o) https://www.bbc.com/travel/story/20191021-the-sea-of-60-ghostly-wrecked-ships

(p) https://www.academia.edu/22814109/Catastrophic_Black_Sea_Floods_and_the_Story_of_Noah_Chronology_and_Catastrophism_Review_2009_pp_45_54

(q) e5604c_67fd983e0b934a56ac5b31ee9dd1f41e.pdf (third-millennium.co.uk) *