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

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  • NEWS DECEMBER 2022

    NEWS DECEMBER 2022

    Atlantipedia will be wound down in 2023. After nearly twenty years compiling Atlantipedia on my own, and as I am now approaching my 80th birthday, I have decided to cut back on the time I dedicate to compiling this website. An orderly conclusion rather than an enforced one is always preferable, before the Grim Reaper […]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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Sahara

Gilligan, Gary

Gary Gilligan (1957- ) is a British author who has “studied Egyptology, Astronomy and Geology with an almost obsessive passion. When he first came across the theory of catastrophism, he was intrigued by the possibility that the Solar System had undergone recent upheavals due to cosmic chaos.”

Gilligan is arguably the most radical of the catastrophists and ancient chronology revisionists publishing today. Some of his ideas make those of Velikovsky as well as James and Rohl seem somewhat tame.

Among his many extreme claims are (1) Our Moon was only captured in the first millennium BC(a), (2) The Saharan sands, he claims are extraterrestrial in origin [1365], (3) The ancient year had only 360 days(b) and (4) The ancient Egyptian climate was milder than today as indicated by a red sun, rather than today’s yellow disk!(c)

>In a short 2012 paper now republished in October 2022 on the Thunderbolts website Gilligan proposes that the Amazon rainforest is only a few thousand years old. He argues that the Amazon region is today dependent on the 54,000 tons of fine dust received daily from the Sahara and since the Sahara did not exist 6,000 years ago neither did the Amazon rainforest which he says is claimed to be 55 million years old!(d) However, an article from Scientific American (July 7, 2014) also offers an even more recent date for the development of the rainforest, suggesting that “the people of the Amazon from2,500 to 500 years ago were farmers.”(e)<

(a) http://www.gks.uk.com/moon-origin-egyptian/

(b) http://www.everythingselectric.com/forum/index.php?topic=347.0

(c) https://www.wessexresearchgroup.org/download/pdf_can_we_have_our_red_sun_back_please_by_gary_gilligan.pdf

(d) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amazon_rainforest *

(e) https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/amazon-rainforest-is-much-younger-than-commonly-believed/ *

Bisceglia, Carlos Alberto

Carlos Alberto Bisceglia is the author of Atlantis 2021 – Lost Continent Discovered [1895]. He has several other books currently being translated from their original Italian.

Bisceglia’s central claim is that Atlantis was situated on an ‘island’ in northwest Africa. He claims “that the ‘geographical coordinates’ left by Plato indicate that the empire of Atlantis included the regions enclosed by Mauritania, Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia, the adjacent islands, and possibly southern Spain.” He further claims that this territory was known to the Egyptians as ‘Ma’, being an abbreviation of Meshwash!

The African Humid Period which ended between 6,000 and 5,000 years ago, saw North Africa as home to some very extensive river systems and huge lakes. In what is now Western Sahara, the Tamanrasset River flowed from the Atlas Mountains southward and then west to the Atlantic. This creates a virtual ‘island’ enclosing the Atlantean territory delineated above, leaving a relatively small ‘isthmus’ in the Atlas mountains between the Mediterranean and the source of the river.

A comparable claim was made by Michael Hübner in 2008, when he described the Souss-Massa plain of Morocco as an island, surrounded as it is by mountains and called ‘island’ by the native Amazigh people!

I did not find Bisceglia’s claim convincing. His insistence that the Atlantis war took place 9,000 years before Solon, millennia before Athens even existed and certainly well past the African Humid Period is, for me, untenable. His book lacks focus and could have been fruitfully edited to half its size. Having described his Atlantis, he wanders off all over the world to Göbekli Tepe, Gunung Padang, Nan Madol along with many other places, all interesting, but without any real connection to Atlantis in NW Africa.>He names the Richat Structure along with the 50km distant Semsiyat Dome as the capital(s) of Atlantis! According to Bisceglia, the larger structure (Richat) was reserved for the deity, the smaller one (Semsiyat) for his ‘people’!<

>Nevertheless, Bisceglia offers a pathetic explanation as to why his chosen Atlantis location is not submerged by suggesting that his Land of Ma was confused with the Land of Mu (Sundaland) in the Pacific and that the two separate accounts ‘were merged into one’. He adds “how the Egyptian priests knew this is a mystery. Evidently, some survivors from Sundaland arrived in some way in Egypt”<

Sarkar, Pabhat Rainjan (L)

SarkarPabhat Rainjan Sarkar (1921-1990) was an Indian philosopher and spiritual leader with followers in over 130 countries. I am reliably informed that he expressed a number of beliefs regarding Atlantis, the core of which was that it was a huge continent that existed in the Atlantic. He also believed that Atlantis joined Africa and Iberia with a landbridge at Gibraltar. The destruction of Atlantis by an extensive earthquake separated Europe from Africa and also led to the creation of the Sahara.

In the book, Travels with the Mystic Master(a) by Dada Dharmavedananda, Sarkar is quoted as saying that ” The old Atlantis is now underwater except for parts of Spain, Portugal, Ireland and Iceland.”[1209.208]

(a) https://www.scribd.com/doc/11386818/Travels-With-the-Mystic-Master

Karam, Christian C.

Christian C. Karam is a Brazilian archaeology student who has written a paper with the controversial, if not provocative, title of Phoenicians in Brazil(a). In it he proposes that an encounter with an extraterrestrial body caused a global catastrophe, which caused a large part of the Andes to be uplifted, the Sahara to be dried out and Atlantis in the Atlantic to be submerged. He dates this event to around 9500 BC and believes that the Atlantean survivors fled to Africa.

Perhaps the first to suggest that the Phoenicians visited Brazil was Georgius Hornius in the 17th century. The matter was dealt with in greater detail(d) by the Austrian professor of history, Ludwig Schwennhagen, who flourished at the beginning of the 20th century. A Hungarian website(c) offers more on the development of this claim.

Karam names the Phoenicians as the thalassocratic successors to the Atlanteans. The main portion of his paper concerns the possibility or as he sees it, the probability, of Phoenician visits to and even colonisation of Brazil.

Ross T. Christensen (1918–1990) an American archaeologist supported the idea of Phoenicians in America. However, in my view, his early work as a Mormon missionary must bring into question his objectivity. Further evidence in support of Phoenicians in Brazil is presented elsewhere(b).

(a) https://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/ciencia/ciencia_phoenicians01.htm

>(b) https://web.archive.org/web/20190108071141/https://www.cristobalcolondeibiza.com/2eng/2eng16.htm<

(c) https://tist-fla.blogspot.com/2013/12/foniciaiak-kozep-es-del-amerikaban.html (Hungarian)

(d) https://www.academia.edu/7848641/Fen%C3%ADcios_no_Brasil_parte_1_Ludwig_Schwennhagen (Portuguese) (offline Feb. 2016)

(e) https://www.ancientamerica.org/library/media/HTML/1ofnf5kk/15.%20THE%20PHOENICIANS%20AND%20THE%20ANCIENT%20CIVILIZATIONS%20OF%20AMERICA.htm?n=0

Sarantitis, George *

George Sarantitis (1954- ) was born in Athens and is by profession an electronics Sarantitisengineer. He is also a serious student of Ancient Greek history and literature whose research(a) enabled him to present three papers to the 2008 Atlantis Conference. These included a revised translation of many of the keywords and phrases in Plato’s Atlantis texts. He quotes Strabo’s Geographica (3.5.5.20) to demonstrate the multiplicity of locations on offer for the Pillars of Heracles. He places Atlantis in North Africa at the Richat Structure, with the Pillars of Heracles situated in the Gulf of Gabes which formerly led to an inland sea where the chotts of Tunisia and Algeria are today,  as well as a number of other lakes and rivers in what is now the Sahara.

He posits a number of large inland seas in Africa including a much larger Lake Chad. The 2014 May/June edition of Saudi Aramco World has an article(c) on the remnants of the ‘Green Sahara’, during what is known technically as the African Humid Period (9000-3000 BC). Sarantitis also claims that at one stage in the distant past Libya had been a peninsula. In a June 2015 report the University of Royal Holloway in London revealed that the size of Lake Chad was dramatically reduced in just a few hundred years(d). A similar map showing enormous inland North African lakes 13,000 years ago are included in Taylor Hansen’s The Ancient Atlantic[0527.36].

Sarantitis offers details of his theories on his extensively illustrated Plato Project website(a), which I wholeheartedly recommend readers to visit. He includes a rather technical forensic analysis of Plato’s use of myth. Sarantitis also suggests that the ‘unfinished’ Critias is in fact continued at the beginning of Homer’s Odyssey (1.32-34).

Some of Sarantitis’ sections on the Methodology of Mythology will be difficult for non-academic readers, such as myself, to fully comprehend. For me, his proposal that there were two Atlantean Wars, which took place in 9600 BC and 8600 BC(e) is extremely difficult to accept, since those wars were with Athens and Egypt that did not even exist at those dates! I find it difficult to accept this apparent abandonment of commonsense and the science of archaeology.

In 2010, Sarantitis published his theories in The Apocalypse of a Myth in Greek. Now (2017) that work has been translated into English and is currently being prepared for publication with a new title of Plato’s Atlantis: Decoding the Most Famous Myth.

There is now an extensive video clip Q & A session available on Sarantitis’ website(b).

(a) Plato Project – Timeus & Critias: The ultimate explanation (archive.org) *

(b) FAQ’s – Plato Project (archive.org)  *

(c) https://archive.aramcoworld.com/issue/201403/last.lakes.of.the.green.sahara.htm

(d) https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/06/150629162542.htm

(e) Proceedings of the 2008 Atlantis Conference[750.389](editor S.Papamarinopoulos)

Hamy, Ernest Theodore (L)

Dr. Ernest Theodore Hamy (1842-1908) was a French doctor of medicine, Hamyalthough he was better known as an anthropologist. Alexander Braghine[156.42] quotes Hamy as locating Atlantis in the Atlantic between Spain, Ireland and North America.

Hamy also gave his name to the famous King-Hamy Map (c.1502), which he purchased in 1885. One of the remarkable features of the map is that it shows the Sahara as a fertile region with rivers, lakes and cities!

Lake Tritonis

Lake Tritonis is frequently referred to by the classical writersIan Wilson refers to  Scylax of Caryanda as having “specifically described Lake Tritonis extending in his time over an area of 2,300 km2. He also cites Herodotus as confirming it as still partly extant in his time, a century later, describing it as a ‘great lagoon’, with a ‘large river’ (the Triton) flowing into it.[185.185]

Lake Tritonis was considered the birthplace of Athene, the Greek Goddess of Wisdom, after whom Athens is named. The exact location of the lake is disputed but there is some consensus that the salty marshes or chotts of central Tunisia and North-East Algeria are the most likely candidates. It appears that these marshes originally formed a large inland sea connected to the Mediterranean but due to seismic activity in the area were cut off from the sea. Diodorus Siculus records this event in his third book.

I should also mention that Lake Tritonis along with the Greek island of Lemnos and the river Thermodon in northern Turkey, now known as Terme Çay, have all been associated with the Amazons(d).

Edward Herbert Bunbury, a former British MP, included a chapter(a) on Lake Tritonis in his 1879 book on the history of ancient geography [1531.v1.316]+.

In 1883, Edward Dumergue published[659]+ a brief study of the Tunisian chotts, which he concluded were the remnants of an ancient inland sea that had been connected to the Mediterranean Sea at the Gulf of Gabes.

Lucile Taylor Hansen in The Ancient Atlantic[572], has included a speculative map taken from Reader’s Digest showing Lake Tritonis, around 11.000 BC, as a megalake covering much of today’s Sahara, with the Ahaggar Mountains turned into an island. Atlantis is shown to the west in the Atlantic.

>In 1967 Egerton Sykes published a paper entitled The Sahara Inland Sea in which he describes a vast inland sea of ‘remarkable proportions’ and “is attested not only by classical references but also by the fact that beneath most of it lies a layer of brackish water ranging from 200 to 500 feet below the ground. The various oases are believed to be located on patches where the depth is only about 50 feet, conducive to plant survival. The climatic change seems to have happened quite recently, around 5000 BC. B.C., since the classics contain numerous references to its [the inland sea] existence.”

I should mention here that the Atlantis theory of George Sarantitis is entirely dependent on extensive inland waterways including the chotts of Tunisia and Algeria as well as a number of other large lakes and rivers in what is now the Sahara.<

In modern times, Alberto Arecchi has taken the idea further[079] and suggested that the inland sea, where the chotts are now, was the original ‘Atlantic Sea’ and that the city of Atlantis was situated on an extended landmass to the east of Tunisia and connected to Sicily due to a lower sea level. Arecchi’s identification of the chotts with Lake Tritonis has now been adopted by Lu Paradise in a May 2015 blog(c). The Qattara Depression of Northern Egypt also contains a series of salt lakes and marshes and is believed by others to have been Lake Tritonis.

Cindy Clendenon is the author of a book[801] on hydromythology in which she concludes that “the now-extinct Lake Tritonis once was a Cyrenaican lagoon-sabkha complex near today’s Sabkha Ghuzayyil and Marsa Brega, Libya.”(b).

[659]https://archive.org/details/chottstunisorgr01dumegoog  

[1531.v1.316]+ https://archive.org/stream/historyofancient01bunb#page/n6/mode/1up/search/Tritonis Vol.1

(a) https://www.argonauts-book.com/lake-tritonis.html

(b) https://finelinesciencepress.com/hydromythology.html#author6

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

(d) https://www.myrine.at/Amazons/mobilIndex.html

Stecchini, Livio Catullo

Livio Catullo Stecchini (1913-1979) was an Italian science historian with a special interest in ancient metrology and cartography. In an unpublished work called Sahara, he advocated São Tomé, in the Gulf of Guinea, as the location of Atlantis. He further claims that the myth of the Argonauts concerns their travels along the vast river systems that once existed across the Sahara, now represented by dried-up watercourses such as Wadi Igharghar and Wadi Tafanasset.

Stecchini was of the opinion that the metric system introduced in the 18th century by the French was almost identical to that used in Mesopotamia in the 3rd millennium BC.

Stecchini also wrote an extensive appendix for Peter Tompkins’ Secrets of the Great Pyramid[783] on the relationship of ancient measures to the Great Pyramid.

His radical views eventually led this respected academic to be shunned by his peers. 

A site dedicated to his work is available on the Internet(a).

>Stecchini was an important contributor to a special edition of American Behavioral Scientist dedicated to the work of Immanuel Velikovsky in September 1963. This was later expanded into The Velikovsky Affair  [1172] by Alfred De Grazia.(b)<

(a) https://web.archive.org/web/20191231054446/http://www.metrum.org/index.htm

(b) https://archive.org/details/thvsk *

Sahara Desert

The Sahara Desert and in particular its northern regions have attracted its share of attention from Atlantis investigators. However unlikely it may appear as a possible location for Atlantis it must be kept in mind that the Sahara of prehistory was very different from what we see today. Not only was it wetter at various periods in the past, but also there is clear evidence for the existence of a large inland sea extending across the borders of modern Algeria and Tunisia. This evidence is in the form of the chotts or salt flats in both countries. This proposed sea is considered by some to have been the Lake Tritonis referred to by classical writers. It is suggested that some form of tectonic/seismic activity, common in the region, was responsible for isolating this body of seawater from the Mediterranean and eventually turning it into the salt flats we see today.

An even more extensive inland sea, further south, was proposed by Ali Bey el Abbassi and based on his theory a map was published in 1802 which can be viewed online(c).

More recently, Riaan Booysen has published an illustrated paper on the ancient inland Saharan seas as indicated on the 16th century maps of Mercator and Ortelius(i). King’s College London runs The Sahara Megalakes Project which studies the Megalakes and the Saharan Palaeoclimate record(m).

A 2013 report in New Scientist magazine(d) revealed that 100,000 years ago the Sahara had been home to three large rivers that flowed northward, which probably provided migration routes for our ancestors.

Other studies(h) have shown the previous existence of a huge river system in the Western Sahara, which flowed into the Atlantic on the Mauritanian coast.

An article in the Sept. 2008 edition of National Geographic pointed out that the Saharan climate has been similar for the past 70,000 years except for a period beginning 12,000 years ago when a number of factors combined to alter this fact. A northerly shift by seasonal monsoons brought additional rain to an area the size of the contiguous USA. This period of a greener Sahara lasted until around 4,500 years ago.

More recent studies claim that there’s geologic evidence from ocean sediments that these orbitally-paced Green Sahara events occur as far back as the Miocene epoch (23 million to 5 million years ago), including during periods when atmospheric carbon dioxide was similar to, and possibly higher, than today’s levels. So, a future Green Sahara event is still highly likely in the distant future.”

More recent studies claim that there’s geologic evidence from ocean sediments that these orbitally-paced Green Sahara events occur as far back as the Miocene epoch (23 million to 5 million years ago), including during periods when atmospheric carbon dioxide was similar to, and possibly higher, than today’s levels. So, a future Green Sahara event is still highly likely in the distant future.” (p)

Henri Lhote contributed an article to Reader’s Digest‘s, The World’s Last Mysteries [1083], regarding the ‘green’ Sahara that existed prior to 2500 BC.>Two German climatologists Rudolph Kuper and Stefan Kröpelin have estimated that this last greening of the Sahara began around 8500 BC and ended sometime between 3500 BC and 1500 BC(r).

Some have suggested a connection between the latest aridification of the Sahara and the migration of settlers to the Nile Valley, where, coincidentally, the ancient Egypt we know about was founded around 3100 BC.

Others have endeavoured to link the last aridification of the Sahara with the destruction of Atlantis!

More recently, human activity has been blamed as a major contributory factor for the desertification of the Sahara region less than 10,000 years ago.(n)

Related to the above is a recent study of sediments off the west coast of Africa, which resulted in the discovery of what was “primarily a new “beat,” in which the Sahara vacillated between wet and dry climates every 20,000 years, in sync with the region’s monsoon activity and the periodic tilting of the Earth.” (o) 

In Mauritania, a huge natural feature known as the Richat Structure has been claimed as the remnant of Atlantis by George Sarantitis [1470as well as by Alexander & Rosen and others.

In 1868, it was proposed by D.A. Godron, the French botanist, that the Sahara was the location of Atlantis. In 2003, the non-existent archaeologist Dr.Carla Sage announced that she was hoping to lead an international expedition to the Sahara in search of Atlantis. Her contention was that “Atlantis was the capital of a vast North African empire with ports on the Gulf of Sidra”. This report is now confirmed to have been a hoax! I am indebted to Stel Pavlou for uncovering the origin of this story(e).

The idea of an African Atlantis was highlighted in 2021 with the publication of Atletenu [1821], in which the author, Diego Ratti, identified the Hyksos as Atlanteans with their capital at Avaris in the eastern Nile Delta. At the other end of North Africa, the chotts of Tunisia and Algeria were nominated by Holden Zhang as the location of Atlantis in a YouTube clip(q).

Gary Gilligan, the well-known catastrophist, wrote a thought-provoking article(k) on the origin of the Saharan sands, which he claims are extraterrestrial in origin and expands on the idea in his 2016 book Extraterrestrial Sands [1365].

David Mattingly, an archaeologist at Leicester University has found that an ancient people known as the Garamantes had an extensive civilisation in the Sahara(l). He has evidence of at least three cities and twenty other settlements. The Garamantes reached their peak around 100 BC and then gradually diminished in influence as fossil water supplies reduced until in the 7th century AD they were subjected to Islamic domination. Some researchers such as Frank Joseph have identified the Garamantes as being linked with the Sea Peoples. Bob Idjennaden has published short but informative Kindle books about both the Garamantes [1194] and the Sea Peoples [1195], without a suggestion of any connection between the two.

The discovery of megalithic structures discovered at Nabta Playa (Nabta Lake) in the Egyptian Sahara has provided evidence for the existence of a sophisticated society in that area around 5000 BC. In the same region, near the Dakhleh Oasis, archaeologists have produced data that supports the idea that pre-Pharaonic Egypt had Desert Origins rather than being an importation from Mesopotamia or elsewhere(a).

Nabta Playa is not unique, in fact, the largest megalithic ellipse in the world is to be found at Mzorah, 27 km from Lixus in Morocco(b). It appears that the construction methods employed at both Mezorah and Nabta Playa are both similar to that used in the British Isles. An even more impressive site is Adam’s Calendar in South Africa which has been claimed as 75,000-250,000 years old.

West of Cairo near the border with Libya is the Siwa Oasis, where it has now been demonstrated that “it is in fact home to one of Ancient Egypt’s astounding solar-calendar technologies– the solar equinox alignment between the Timasirayn Temple and the Temple of Amun Oracle in Aghurmi.”(j).

I think we can expect further exciting discoveries in the Sahara leading to a clearer picture of the prehistoric cultures of the region and what connections there are, if any, with Plato’s Atlantis. In the meanwhile in the Eastern Egyptian Desert, Douglas Brewer, a professor of archaeology at the University of Illinois, has discovered over 1,000 examples of rock art, including numerous depictions of boats although the sites, so far undisclosed, are remote from water.

Even more remarkable is the report(e) of March 2015 that a survey of the Messak Settafet escarpment in the central Sahara revealed that there were enough discarded stone tools in the region to build more than one Great Pyramid for every square kilometre of land on the continent”! Coincidentally, around the same time, it was reported that over a thousand stone tools had been found in the Northern Utah Desert(g). What the Utah discovery lacked in quantity was made up for in quality with the finding of the largest known Haskett point spearhead, measuring around nine inches in length.

(a) Saudi Aramco World (2006, Vol. 57, No.5 p.2-11)

(b) https://www.ancientpages.com/2015/09/05/was-megalithic-stone-circle-of-mzoura-the-tomb-of-giant-antaeus/

(c) https://web.archive.org/web/20201019061756/http://catalog.afriterra.org/zoomMap.cmd?number=1036

(d) NewScientist.com, 16 September 2013, https://tinyurl.com/mg9vcoz

(e) https://books.google.com/books?id=GvMDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA46&dq=dr.+carla+sage+archaeologist&hl=en&sa=X&ei=GSENVKiaO9W0yASJgoIY&ved=0CCYQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=dr.%20carla%20sage%20archaeologist&f=false

(f) https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/saharan-carpet-of-tools-is-the-earliest-known-man-made-landscape

(g) https://westerndigs.org/over-1000-ancient-stone-tools-left-by-great-basin-hunters-found-in-utah-desert/

(h) https://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/nov/10/ancient-river-network-discoverd-buried-under-saharan-sand

(i) 7. The lakes in the middle of the Sahara desert – Page 8 (archive.org)

(j) https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/astronomically-aligned-temple-siwa-oasis-ancient-calendar-device-006852?nopaging=1

(k) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20170614023816/https://www.godkingscenario.com/articles/origin-sahara-desert

(l) See: Archive 3268

(m) https://www.google.co.uk/search?sourceid=navclient&aq=&oq=&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1T4GGHP_enIE665IE665&q=the+sahara+megalakes+project&gs_l=hp..0.41l52.0.0.0.2769………..0.&gws_rd=ssl

(n) https://popular-archaeology.com/issue/winter-2017/article/did-humans-create-the-sahara-desert

(o) https://phys.org/news/2019-01-sahara-swung-lush-conditions-years.html#jCp

(p) https://www.livescience.com/will-sahara-desert-turn-green.html

(q) Revive Eden 3 Convincing Atlantis – YouTube *

(r) https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/uncovering-secrets-of-the-sphinx-5053442/ *