- Monique PETERSEN, Independent, USA
"The Search for Atlantis: Ice Cores and Mammoths."
The purpose of this paper is to carefully examine certain passages within Plato’s account of Atlantis and determine if they can be proved scientifically. Topics include dating the catastrophic event that sunk Atlantis by examination of ice cores and other proven dating methods; an analysis if the phrase (in Greek) “Kai de kai elephanton en en autei genos pleiston”, to determine if a more precise meaning may be reached leading to the possibility Plato was describing mammoths; a study of the size of Atlantis, and what this means specifically in terms of modern landmasses of the earth; and finally, further, an examination of evidence of the catastrophic event by studying megafaunal extinctions and the implications of the layers in the soil in relation to these extinctions. Through an examination of these topics, a solution for the location of the island of Atlantis is given at the conclusion of this paper.
- Filippos TSIKALAS, University of Oslo, Norway
Stavros PAPAMARINOPOULOS, University of Patras, Greece
"The origin of the multi-ringed concentric morphology of Atlantis capitol and its relations to the Platonic scripts."
Based on Plato’s scripts in the Critias unfinished dialogue (Plato, 4th cent. B.C.) about the concentric multi-ring geomorphologic features of the capitol of Atlantis, the similarity of these features with well preserved central-peak and peak-ring impact craters (e.g. Tsikalas et al., 1999), and the performed numerical simulations, we postulate that there is a close connection of Atlantis multi-ring morphology to meteorite impact-related processes.
Meteorite impacts are recognized to lead to geological processes involving vast amounts of energy and leading in near instantaneous increase in temperature and pressure, structural deformation, and in redistribution of target materials (e.g. Melosh, 1989). Based on the script descriptions, we envisage that at the time of impact the regional geomorphology fits to an alluvial/estuarine coastal depositional environment with the possibility of even top-deltaic shallow water environment. The numerical simulations of a meteorite impact in such environment reproduce in a very satisfactory manner the characteristic morphological features. In particular, the elevated ~1-km-diameter Acropolis represents the structurally elevated central-high/peak surrounded by an intense deformation within a 6-8 km diameter including morphological undulations of peak-rings of land and trough-depressions eventually filled with water.
Surrounding the region of intense central deformation, simulations can reproduce a low-plain/less-deformed region reaching a 22-24 km diameter. At the same outer diameter, a circular wall was “build” by the Atlantes probably at the location of a subdued elevated final rim. Simulations have shown a possible impact-induced temperature increase in the order of 200-300 degrees (C) in the central region and thus possible development of a hydrothermal system. The occurrence of warm springs at the elevated Acropolis, as the surface outcome of this system, strongly supports the impact hypothesis. The hydrothermal system may last for as much as 10,000 yrs if one considers cooling solely due to thermal conductivity of the target material; thermal exhaustion may actually be much faster due to water circulation at the hydrothermal system itself. This estimate can be used as an indirect constraint for the approximate time of physical impact before inhabitation.
Therefore, based on the simulations and average target material properties and depending on the time of Atlantis destruction, the impact time may be placed around the end of the last glaciation or most probably at post-glacial times. As a direct consequence of the meteorite impact and the developed vast shock compression pressure, compact melt bodies and dispersed melts were produced. We envisage that the white/red/black stones described in the scripts to have been used as building material by the Atlantes, may be typical impact-related polymictic breccias and suevite, i.e. brecciated matrix material mixed with coloured macroscopic in size or dispersed impact-generated melts. Indeed at the location of some impact craters, black, red and white colour stones are found, believed to result from the pre-existing local target lithology and the impact itself. Impactitic stones have been used during Roman times in France as building material and in medieval times in Germany. Such colours of building material, without being impactites, have been used in the 24th century B.C. Egypt. This means that at least one group of prehistoric people not described by Herodotus used this exact colours for building purposes as Plato described.
Furthermore, a typical feature of several shallow-marine target impacts (e.g. 40-km-diameter Mjølnir crater, Tsikalas and Faleide, 2004; 14-km-diameter Lockne crater, von Dalwigk and Ormö, 2001; 20-km-diameter Kamensk crater, Movshovich and Milyavsky, 1990; and 4-km-diameter Kärdla crater, Puura and Suuroja, 1992) is the occurrence of near concentric erosional/depositional resurge gullies acting as inlets of water and material flow back to the crater site during the final modification cratering stages. The gullies result due to a shallow-water cover on top of the target and/or facilitated by pre-existing fracture systems. We postulate that the concentric communication channels/ploughs at Atlantis were not necessarily ideally symmetric, as described by Plato, and we relate them to impact generated resurge gullies.
- Jonas BERGMAN, Independent, Sweden
"Atlantis in Morocco."
Atlantis was, according to Plato, located in front of the Pillars of Heracles ( the straits of Gibraltar ) ( Tim. 24e ). The first born child of the Atlantean god Poseidon was named Atlas and received the island of Atlantis as his lot. The second born child was named Gadeirus, and received as his lot the country facing Gadeira ( Crit. 114b ), an ancient Phoenician town and region in southern Spain. The capital city of Atlantis was located in a river delta surrounded by large plains and mountains ( Crit. 118a ). The only possible locations is the plains of Andalusia in southern Spain and the plains of Morocco. I have investigated the geography, the myths and the nature of Morocco in comparison with Plato's Atlantis.
- Vasilios KAPSIMALIS, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research, Greece
"The Cyclades Plateau (Aegean Sea): a lost Atlantis."
As recounted by Plato, Atlantis was an extended island, sunk after violent earthquakes and surges, some 11.5 kyr BP. This natural catastrophe was associated with the disappearance of a high-level civilization. In this context, the Cyclades archipelagos located in the central Aegean Sea can be assumed as “Atlantis” too. Our contribution, based on existing bathymetric, geophysical and sedimentary data, studies the geomorphological evolution of the Cyclades complex, since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) (ca. 18-20 kyr BP). A GIS is used to reveal the morphometric characteristics and paleo-geographic changes of the area. In addition, certain prehistoric evidence of human activities is considered, for apprehending the influence of the early Cycladic culture upon the eastern Mediterranean.
The Cyclades is a shallow structural elevation (plateau), comprising many mountainous islands. The area is regarded as an almost aseismic region, surrounded however by zones of high seismic and volcanic activity. During the LGM, the Cyclades was exposed as an extended island continuum, covering an area of about 7000 km2. During the last transgression, seawater flooded progressively the plateau; hence a significant bridge of human movement disappeared.
However, Melian obsidian found in the Greek Mainland and other Mediterranean regions reveals that navigation and trade were common human activities, as early as the Mesolithic period. When the sea level reached its present position (ca. 6 kyr BP), the Cyclades had already lost some 75% of its initial land. At that time, the oldest known Neolithic settlement in the Cyclades was established in a small rocky islet (Saliagos), located between the Paros and Antiparos Islands. This settlement was probably inhabited by uphill moved human groups that forced by the sea level rise. Nowadays, coarse-grained sediments of high carbonate content cover the seabed, forming a variety of subaqueous bedforms, such as sand dunes, ribbons and ripples.
- Axel HAUSMANN, Technical University of Aachen, Germany
"Atlantis - extincted on the Plateau of Malta. An ancient civilisation at the transition from Neolithics to the Bronze Age."
In the 4th millennium B.C. a powerful civilization developed in a Plane of the Plateau of Malta in the south east of Sicily. Here for the first time people differentiated their society into castes of priests, warriors, craftsmen and farmers and created writing and calculating with numbers. They invented agriculture with artificial watering, developed metallurgy and the rectangular brick for building as well as shipbuilding. Due to military superiority they succeeded in dominating also the neighbouring islands of Corsica and Sardinia and also the surrounding costal areas in Northern Africa and Western Europe.
At about 3500 B.C. the Neolithic empire perished as a consequence of earthquakes and tsunamis within one day followed by a significant rising of the sea level in the Mediterranean. However, not all inhabitants got drowned, as some of them were able to escape with their boats eastwards. They landed in the plane of Messara in southern Crete, in Egypt and Syria, from were they moved forward towards Mesopotamia. Being superior to the autochthon population by means of technology and military power the refugees founded new settlements, which later became the nuclei for the civilizations of pre-dynastic Egypt, pre-minoan Crete and Sumer.
It will be shown, that all aspects concerning Atlantis in the dialogues of Plato conform to archaeological findings of the late Neolithic civilization described. The timetable and dimensions of Plato's "Atlantis" agree with reality if they are converted in early Egyptian measures. The same holds for the exact localization of the island of Atlantis in a subtropical climate, which at that time prevailed in the Mediterranean.
A geophysical hypothesis will be given explaining the cause of the destruction of "Atlantis".
- Emilio SPEDICATO, University of Bergamo, Italy
"Atlantis in Quisqueya"
In this comminication we argue that the time set by Plato for the destruction of the civilization of Atlantis, circa 9500 BC, can be accepted, being compatible with the rather abrupt end of the last great glaciation. The cause of the event was probably of extraterrestrial nature and we briefly discuss two possibilities: an oceanic impact of a large object or, more probably and within the context of the Velikovsky-Ackerman theory of great changes within the solar system in the few millennia before circa 700 BC, the close passage of a planet-size object.
After giving reasons why a civilization could develop during the last Ice Age we consider the geographical data given by Plato about the location of the capital city of the Atlantis dominion. We show that the island called by the natives QUISQUEYA, i.d. MOTHER OF LANDS, and by Columbus Hispaniola, fits very well the Platonic data, apart form a couple of changes that are easily explained by inexact transmission of information by Critias junior.
The information on Atlantis must have survived mainly in the area of the high mountains of Africa, especially if the cause of the event was the second of the two suggested possibilities.
- Jaime MANUSCHEVICH, University of Chile, Chile
"Plato's geographical errors."
Atlantis has always been looked for based on antecedents provided by Solon and Plato, who ignored the real history of its civilization. Because of this, they committed serious geographical errors which rendered impossible to identify the real location of the mythical island until now.
The greatest mistake was to ignore the existence of the Red Sea, as it is established by Anaximander of Miletus, (610-545 B.C.), which drove Solon to place the island as being West of the Mediterranean, since the land was described as "beyond the Straits", and the only straits that he knew, were Messina (Sicily) and Heracles (present Gibraltar). By he not knowing about the Red Sea, he did not know of Bab el-Mandeb, Eilat and Suez. The second big mistake, based on the previous one, was to change names of places and persons in the Egyptian history. Most importantly, the one that defined the position of Atlantis, made by exchanging the name of "Punt" - Somalia - for "Tyrrhenia" - Italy and North Africa -. This error was based on the presence of the Tyrrheans or Phoenicians or Puonis in Tyrrhenia, which are the same people that had formerly inhabited the Punt. This led to the translation of the name of the territory facing to Punt, Arabia, for Europe, and that in turn, led them to change the name of the Strait of Bab el-Mandeb for Messina, and the Straits of Eilat and Suez for the Pillars of Hercules, or vice versa, indicating that this civilization had dominated Europe, when the Egyptian history was talking about Arabia.
The third great platonic mistake was to locate the island in the Atlantic Ocean. The ancient name of this sea was Okeano, until Herodotus of Halicarnassus, (484-425 B.C.) gave it its new name. It is therefore, impossible to assume that the name had been established by the Egyptians or even by Solon. It is quite evident that it was Plato who gave it the name, thereby erroneously placing the Atlantis there.
- Fotis TSAKOPOULOS, University of Athens, Greece
"An archaeological concept of the mythical conflict between Atlantis and Prehistoric Athenians."
The Greek archaeologist Nikolaos Platon, in his book "Zakros. The New Minoan Palace", reports the unexpected pause in the narration of the Critias dialogue. This takes place before the beginning of the war between the naval power of Atlantis and the political and military might of the Athenians The reason for the conflict was the arrogance of Atlantis, which gave the ivris (ýâñéò). The same ivris was seen in the myth of Minotavros. The ivris will constrain the Athenian king Thisseus to march against Minoan Crete. According to the ancient Greeks ivris always brings nemessis (íÝìåóéò), which finally brings catharsis (êÜèáñóéò). In this case, one myth completes the other. Many scientists agree that the kernel (the key) to the myth of Atlantis is Minoan naval power. The question is did Athens have the power to oppose Atlantis and then to conquer her? What evidence is there in the excavation data about this?
- Jaime MANUSCHEVICH, University of Chile, Chile
"The sea sank."
A great difficulty to decipher the Atlantis myth is the understanding of platonic texts. One of them indicates that "after wards sunk by an earthquake, became an impassable barrier of mud to voyagers sailing from hence to any part of the ocean. (109)". One occurs generally by fact that the sunk thing is the land, nevertheless, in story lays for another direction: the desiccating of the sea. Under my theory, that Israel or Canaan was the Atlantis, this is easier to understand, because I indicate that he was exactly that what it happened, that is to say, that the sea sank, lowering his level. The desertification of the region, many other geologic data of the zone, the separation of the Dead Sea of the Mediterranean and the Red Sea and the distance of the coasts of several old cities (Ur, Ugarit, and Jericho) therefore indicate it.
Today science can prove it. A work made in Colombia, call "Quaternary Variations of the Level of the Sea and Their Implications in Coast Risk of the Colombian Caribbean ", of 1997, concludes that the sea had a height superior in 2 to 3 meters at the present level makes about 2400 years A.P. Another investigation "Messages of the Past Written in the Sand", of April of the 2002, made by the University of Haifa and the Argentine Antarctic Institute, indicates that "the global height of the sea reached its present value 5.000-6.000 years ago" and "that during a lapse near 2,000 years (between 8,400 and 6,400 years before the present) it happened an important reduction of the level of the sea, that is considered in about 25 ms." For other part, Kurt Lambeck and J. Chappell, (SCIENCE) indicate that in Angerman, in the last 9000 years, the level of the water lowered 200 meters.
In conclusion, the sea lowered, flooding the region.