Fictional island in Plato's works, now a synonym for supposed prehistoric lost civilizations
For other uses, see Atlantis (disambiguation).
Atlantis (Ancient Greek: Ἀτλαντὶς νῆσος, Atlantis nesos, "island of Atlas") is a fictional island mentioned in an allegory on the hubris of nations in Plato's works Timaeus and Critias, wherein it represents the antagonist naval power that besieges "Ancient Athens", the pseudo-historic embodiment of Plato's ideal state in The Republic. In the story, Athens repels the Atlantean attack unlike any other nation of the known world, supposedly bearing witness to the superiority of Plato's concept of a state. The story concludes with Atlantis falling out of favor with the deities and submerging into the Atlantic Ocean.
Despite its minor importance in Plato's work, the Atlantis story has had a considerable impact on literature. The allegorical aspect of Atlantis was taken up in utopian works of several Renaissance writers, such as Francis Bacon's New Atlantis and Thomas More's Utopia. On the other hand, nineteenth-century amateur scholars misinterpreted Plato's narrative as historical tradition, most famously Ignatius L. Donnelly in his Atlantis: The Antediluvian World. Plato's vague indications of the time of the events (more than 9,000 years before his time) and the alleged location of Atlantis ("beyond the Pillars of Hercules") gave rise to much pseudoscientific speculation. As a consequence, Atlantis has become a byword for any and all supposed advanced prehistoric lost civilizations and continues to inspire contemporary fiction, from comic books to films.
While present-day philologists and classicists agree on the story's fictional character, there is still debate on what served as its inspiration. Plato is known to have freely borrowed some of his allegories and metaphors from older traditions, as he did, for instance, with the story of Gyges. This led a number of scholars to investigate possible inspiration of Atlantis from Egyptian records of the Thera eruption, the Sea Peoples invasion, or the Trojan War. Others have rejected this chain of tradition as implausible and insist that Plato created an entirely fictional account, drawing loose inspiration from contemporary events such as the failed Athenian invasion of Sicily in 415–413 BC or the destruction of Helike in 373 BC.
Main article: Timaeus (dialogue)
The only primary sources for Atlantis are Plato's dialogues Timaeus and Critias; all other mentions of the island are based on them. The dialogues claim to quote Solon, who visited Egypt between 590 and 580 BC; they state that he translated Egyptian records of Atlantis. Written in 360 BC, Plato introduced Atlantis in Timaeus:
For it is related in our records how once upon a time your State stayed the course of a mighty host, which, starting from a distant point in the Atlantic ocean, was insolently advancing to attack the whole of Europe, and Asia to boot. For the ocean there was at that time navigable; for in front of the mouth which you Greeks call, as you say, 'the pillars of Heracles,' there lay an island which was larger than Libya and Asia together; and it was possible for the travelers of that time to cross from it to the other islands, and from the islands to the whole of the continent over against them which encompasses that veritable ocean. For all that we have here, lying within the mouth of which we speak, is evidently a haven having a narrow entrance; but that yonder is a real ocean, and the land surrounding it may most rightly be called, in the fullest and truest sense, a continent. Now in this island of Atlantis there existed a confederation of kings, of great and marvelous power, which held sway over all the island, and over many other islands also and parts of the continent.
The four people appearing in those two dialogues are the politicians Critias and Hermocrates as well as the philosophers Socrates and Timaeus of Locri, although only Critias speaks of Atlantis. In his works Plato makes extensive use of the Socratic method in order to discuss contrary positions within the context of a supposition.
The Timaeus begins with an introduction, followed by an account of the creations and structure of the universe and ancient civilizations. In the introduction, Socrates muses about the perfect society, described in Plato's Republic (c. 380 BC), and wonders if he and his guests might recollect a story which exemplifies such a society. Critias mentions a tale he considered to be historical, that would make the perfect example, and he then follows by describing Atlantis as is recorded in the Critias. In his account, ancient Athens seems to represent the "perfect society" and Atlantis its opponent, representing the very antithesis of the "perfect" traits described in the Republic.
Main article: Critias (dialogue)
According to Critias, the Hellenic deities of old divided the land so that each deity might have their own lot; Poseidon was appropriately, and to his liking, bequeathed the island of Atlantis. The island was larger than Ancient Libya and Asia Minor combined, but it was later sunk by an earthquake and became an impassable mud shoal, inhibiting travel to any part of the ocean. Plato asserted that the Egyptians described Atlantis as an island consisting mostly of mountains in the northern portions and along the shore and encompassing a great plain in an oblong shape in the south "extending in one direction three thousand stadia [about 555 km; 345 mi], but across the center inland it was two thousand stadia [about 370 km; 230 mi]." Fifty stadia [9 km; 6 mi] from the coast was a mountain that was low on all sides ... broke it off all round about ... the central island itself was five stades in diameter [about 0.92 km; 0.57 mi].
In Plato's metaphorical tale, Poseidon fell in love with Cleito, the daughter of Evenor and Leucippe, who bore him five pairs of male twins. The eldest of these, Atlas, was made rightful king of the entire island and the ocean (called the Atlantic Ocean in his honor), and was given the mountain of his birth and the surrounding area as his fiefdom. Atlas's twin Gadeirus, or Eumelus in Greek, was given the extremity of the island toward the pillars of Hercules. The other four pairs of twins—Ampheres and Evaemon, Mneseus and Autochthon, Elasippus and Mestor, and Azaes and Diaprepes—were also given "rule over many men, and a large territory."
Poseidon carved the mountain where his love dwelt into a palace and enclosed it with three circular moats of increasing width, varying from one to three stadia and separated by rings of land proportional in size. The Atlanteans then built bridges northward from the mountain, making a route to the rest of the island. They dug a great canal to the sea, and alongside the bridges carved tunnels into the rings of rock so that ships could pass into the city around the mountain; they carved docks from the rock walls of the moats. Every passage to the city was guarded by gates and towers, and a wall surrounded each ring of the city. The walls were constructed of red, white, and black rock, quarried from the moats, and were covered with brass, tin, and the precious metal orichalcum, respectively.
According to Critias, 9,000 years before his lifetime a war took place between those outside the Pillars of Hercules at the Strait of Gibraltar and those who dwelt within them. The Atlanteans had conquered the parts of Libya within the Pillars of Hercules, as far as Egypt, and the European continent as far as Tyrrhenia, and had subjected its people to slavery. The Athenians led an alliance of resistors against the Atlantean empire, and as the alliance disintegrated, prevailed alone against the empire, liberating the occupied lands.
But afterwards there occurred violent earthquakes and floods; and in a single day and night of misfortune all your warlike men in a body sank into the earth, and the island of Atlantis in like manner disappeared in the depths of the sea. For which reason the sea in those parts is impassable and impenetrable, because there is a shoal of mud in the way; and this was caused by the subsidence of the island.
The logographerHellanicus of Lesbos wrote an earlier work entitled Atlantis, of which only a few fragments survive. Hellanicus' work appears to have been a genealogical one concerning the daughters of Atlas (Ἀτλαντὶς in Greek means "of Atlas"), but some authors have suggested a possible connection with Plato's island. John V. Luce notes that when Plato writes about the genealogy of Atlantis's kings, he writes in the same style as Hellanicus, suggesting a similarity between a fragment of Hellanicus's work and an account in the Critias. Rodney Castleden suggests that Plato may have borrowed his title from Hellanicus, who may have based his work on an earlier work about Atlantis.
Castleden has pointed out that Plato wrote of Atlantis in 359 BC, when he returned to Athens from Sicily. He notes a number of parallels between the physical organisation and fortifications of Syracuse and Plato's description of Atlantis. Gunnar Rudberg was the first who elaborated upon the idea that Plato's attempt to realize his political ideas in the city of Syracuse could have heavily inspired the Atlantis account.
Some ancient writers viewed Atlantis as fictional or metaphorical myth; others believed it to be real.Aristotle believed that Plato, his teacher, had invented the island to teach philosophy. The philosopher Crantor, a student of Plato's student Xenocrates, is cited often as an example of a writer who thought the story to be historical fact. His work, a commentary on Timaeus, is lost, but Proclus, a Neoplatonist of the fifth century AD, reports on it. The passage in question has been represented in the modern literature either as claiming that Crantor visited Egypt, had conversations with priests, and saw hieroglyphs confirming the story, or, as claiming that he learned about them from other visitors to Egypt. Proclus wrote:
As for the whole of this account of the Atlanteans, some say that it is unadorned history, such as Crantor, the first commentator on Plato. Crantor also says that Plato's contemporaries used to criticize him jokingly for not being the inventor of his Republic but copying the institutions of the Egyptians. Plato took these critics seriously enough to assign to the Egyptians this story about the Athenians and Atlanteans, so as to make them say that the Athenians really once lived according to that system.
The next sentence is often translated "Crantor adds, that this is testified by the prophets of the Egyptians, who assert that these particulars [which are narrated by Plato] are written on pillars which are still preserved." But in the original, the sentence starts not with the name Crantor but with the ambiguous He; whether this referred to Crantor or to Plato is the subject of considerable debate. Proponents of both Atlantis as a metaphorical myth and Atlantis as history have argued that the pronoun refers to Crantor.
Alan Cameron argues that the pronoun should be interpreted as referring to Plato, and that, when Proclus writes that "we must bear in mind concerning this whole feat of the Athenians, that it is neither a mere myth nor unadorned history, although some take it as history and others as myth", he is treating "Crantor's view as mere personal opinion, nothing more; in fact he first quotes and then dismisses it as representing one of the two unacceptable extremes".
Cameron also points out that whether he refers to Plato or to Crantor, the statement does not support conclusions such as Otto Muck's "Crantor came to Sais and saw there in the temple of Neith the column, completely covered with hieroglyphs, on which the history of Atlantis was recorded. Scholars translated it for him, and he testified that their account fully agreed with Plato's account of Atlantis" or J. V. Luce's suggestion that Crantor sent "a special enquiry to Egypt" and that he may simply be referring to Plato's own claims.
Another passage from the commentary by Proclus on the "Timaeus" gives a description of the geography of Atlantis:
That an island of such nature and size once existed is evident from what is said by certain authors who investigated the things around the outer sea. For according to them, there were seven islands in that sea in their time, sacred to Persephone, and also three others of enormous size, one of which was sacred to Hades, another to Ammon, and another one between them to Poseidon, the extent of which was a thousand stadia [200 km]; and the inhabitants of it—they add—preserved the remembrance from their ancestors of the immeasurably large island of Atlantis which had really existed there and which for many ages had reigned over all islands in the Atlantic sea and which itself had like-wise been sacred to Poseidon. Now these things Marcellus has written in his Aethiopica.
Marcellus remains unidentified.
Other ancient historians and philosophers who believed in the existence of Atlantis were Strabo and Posidonius. Some have theorized that, before the sixth century BC, the "Pillars of Hercules" may have applied to mountains on either side of the Gulf of Laconia, and also may have been part of the pillar cult of the Aegean. The mountains stood at either side of the southernmost gulf in Greece, the largest in the Peloponnese, and it opens onto the Mediterranean Sea. This would have placed Atlantis in the Mediterranean, lending credence to many details in Plato's discussion.
The fourth-century historian Ammianus Marcellinus, relying on a lost work by Timagenes, a historian writing in the first century BC, writes that the Druids of Gaul said that part of the inhabitants of Gaul had migrated there from distant islands. Some have understood Ammianus's testimony as a claim that at the time of Atlantis's sinking into the sea, its inhabitants fled to western Europe; but Ammianus, in fact, says that "the Drasidae (Druids) recall that a part of the population is indigenous but others also migrated in from islands and lands beyond the Rhine" (Res Gestae 15.9), an indication that the immigrants came to Gaul from the north (Britain, the Netherlands, or Germany), not from a theorized location in the Atlantic Ocean to the south-west. Instead, the Celts who dwelled along the ocean were reported to venerate twin gods, (Dioscori), who appeared to them coming from that ocean.
Jewish and Christian
During the early first century, the Hellenistic Jewish philosopher Philo wrote about the destruction of Atlantis in his On the Eternity of the World, xxvi. 141, in a longer passage allegedly citing Aristotle's successor Theophrastus:
... And the island of Atalantes [translator's spelling; original: "Ἀτλαντίς"] which was greater than Africa and Asia, as Plato says in the Timaeus, in one day and night was overwhelmed beneath the sea in consequence of an extraordinary earthquake and inundation and suddenly disappeared, becoming sea, not indeed navigable, but full of gulfs and eddies.
The theologian Joseph Barber Lightfoot (Apostolic Fathers, 1885, II, p. 84) noted on this passage: "Clement may possibly be referring to some known, but hardly accessible land, lying without the pillars of Hercules. But more probably he contemplated some unknown land in the far west beyond the ocean, like the fabled Atlantis of Plato ..."
Other early Christian writers wrote about Atlantis, although they had mixed views on whether it once existed or was an untrustworthy myth of pagan origin.Tertullian believed Atlantis was once real and wrote that in the Atlantic Ocean once existed "[the isle] that was equal in size to Libya or Asia" referring to Plato's geographical description of Atlantis. The early Christian apologist writer Arnobius also believed Atlantis once existed, but blamed its destruction on pagans.
Cosmas Indicopleustes in the sixth century wrote of Atlantis in his Christian Topography in an attempt to prove his theory that the world was flat and surrounded by water:[page needed]
... In like manner the philosopher Timaeus also describes this Earth as surrounded by the Ocean, and the Ocean as surrounded by the more remote earth. For he supposes that there is to westward an island, Atlantis, lying out in the Ocean, in the direction of Gadeira (Cadiz), of an enormous magnitude, and relates that the ten kings having procured mercenaries from the nations in this island came from the earth far away, and conquered Europe and Asia, but were afterwards conquered by the Athenians, while that island itself was submerged by God under the sea. Both Plato and Aristotle praise this philosopher, and Proclus has written a commentary on him. He himself expresses views similar to our own with some modifications, transferring the scene of the events from the east to the west. Moreover he mentions those ten generations as well as that earth which lies beyond the Ocean. And in a word it is evident that all of them borrow from Moses, and publish his statements as their own.
Aside from Plato's original account, modern interpretations regarding Atlantis are an amalgamation of diverse, speculative movements that began in the sixteenth century, when scholars began to identify Atlantis with the New World. Francisco Lopez de Gomara was the first to state that Plato was referring to America, as did Francis Bacon and Alexander von Humboldt; Janus Joannes Bircherod said in 1663 orbe novo non-novo ("the New World is not new"). Athanasius Kircher accepted Plato's account as literally true, describing Atlantis as a small continent in the Atlantic Ocean.
Contemporary perceptions of Atlantis share roots with Mayanism, which can be traced to the beginning of the Modern Age, when European imaginations were fueled by their initial encounters with the indigenous peoples of the Americas. From this era sprang apocalyptic and utopian visions that would inspire many subsequent generations of theorists.
Most of these interpretations are considered pseudohistory, pseudoscience, or pseudoarchaeology, as they have presented their works as academic or scientific, but lack the standards or criteria.
The Flemish cartographer and geographer Abraham Ortelius is believed to have been the first person to imagine that the continents were joined before drifting to their present positions. In the 1596 edition of his Thesaurus Geographicus he wrote: "Unless it be a fable, the island of Gadir or Gades [Cadiz] will be the remaining part of the island of Atlantis or America, which was not sunk (as Plato reports in the Timaeus) so much as torn away from Europe and Africa by earthquakes and flood... The traces of the ruptures are shown by the projections of Europe and Africa and the indentations of America in the parts of the coasts of these three said lands that face each other to anyone who, using a map of the world, carefully considered them. So that anyone may say with Strabo in Book 2, that what Plato says of the island of Atlantis on the authority of Solon is not a figment."
Early influential literature
The term "utopia" (from "no place") was coined by Sir Thomas More in his sixteenth-century work of fictionUtopia. Inspired by Plato's Atlantis and travelers' accounts of the Americas, More described an imaginary land set in the New World. His idealistic vision established a connection between the Americas and utopian societies, a theme that Bacon discussed in The New Atlantis (c. 1623). A character in the narrative gives a history of Atlantis that is similar to Plato's and places Atlantis in America. People had begun believing that the Mayan and Aztec ruins could possibly be the remnants of Atlantis.
Impact of Mayanism
Much speculation began as to the origins of the Maya, which led to a variety of narratives and publications that tried to rationalize the discoveries within the context of the Bible and that had undertones of racism in their connections between the Old and New World. The Europeans believed the indigenous people to be inferior and incapable of building that which was now in ruins and by sharing a common history, they insinuate that another race must have been responsible.
In the middle and late nineteenth century, several renowned Mesoamerican scholars, starting with Charles Etienne Brasseur de Bourbourg, and including Edward Herbert Thompson and Augustus Le Plongeon, formally proposed that Atlantis was somehow related to Mayan and Aztec culture.
The French scholar Brasseur de Bourbourg traveled extensively through Mesoamerica in the mid-1800s, and was renowned for his translations of Mayan texts, most notably the sacred book Popol Vuh, as well as a comprehensive history of the region. Soon after these publications, however, Brasseur de Bourbourg lost his academic credibility, due to his claim that the Maya peoples had descended from the Toltecs, people he believed were the surviving population of the racially superior civilization of Atlantis. His work combined with the skillful, romantic illustrations of Jean Frederic Waldeck, which visually alluded to Egypt and other aspects of the Old World, created an authoritative fantasy that excited much interest in the connections between worlds.
Inspired by Brasseur de Bourbourg's diffusion theories, the pseudoarchaeologist Augustus Le Plongeon traveled to Mesoamerica and performed some of the first excavations of many famous Mayan ruins. Le Plongeon invented narratives, such as the kingdom of Mu saga, which romantically drew connections to him, his wife Alice, and Egyptian deities Osiris and Isis, as well as to Heinrich Schliemann, who had just discovered the ancient city of Troy from Homer's epic poetry (that had been described as merely mythical).[page range too broad] He also believed that he had found connections between the Greek and Mayan languages, which produced a narrative of the destruction of Atlantis.
The 1882 publication of Atlantis: the Antediluvian World by Ignatius L. Donnelly stimulated much popular interest in Atlantis. He was greatly inspired by early works in Mayanism, and like them, attempted to establish that all known ancient civilizations were descended from Atlantis, which he saw as a technologically sophisticated, more advanced culture. Donnelly drew parallels between creation stories in the Old and New Worlds, attributing the connections to Atlantis, where he believed the Biblical Garden of Eden existed. As implied by the title of his book, he also believed that Atlantis was destroyed by the Great Flood mentioned in the Bible.
Donnelly is credited as the "father of the nineteenth century Atlantis revival" and is the reason the myth endures today. He unintentionally promoted an alternative method of inquiry to history and science, and the idea that myths contain hidden information that opens them to "ingenious" interpretation by people who believe they have new or special insight.
Madame Blavatsky and the Theosophists
The Russian mystic Helena Petrovna Blavatsky and her partner Henry Steel Olcott founded their Theosophical Society in the 1870s with a philosophy that combined western romanticism and eastern religious concepts. Blavatsky and her followers in this group are often cited as the founders of New Age and other spiritual movements.
Blavatsky took up Donnelly's interpretations when she wrote The Secret Doctrine (1888), which she claimed was originally dictated in Atlantis. She maintained that the Atlanteans were cultural heroes (contrary to Plato, who describes them mainly as a military threat). She believed in a form of racial evolution (as opposed to primate evolution). In her process of evolution the Atlanteans were the fourth "Root Race", which were succeeded by the fifth, the "Aryan race", which she identified with the modern human race.
The Theosophists believed that the civilization of Atlantis reached its peak between 1,000,000 and 900,000 years ago, but destroyed itself through internal warfare brought about by the dangerous use of psychic and supernatural powers of the inhabitants. Rudolf Steiner, the founder of anthroposophy and Waldorf Schools, along with other well known Theosophists, such as Annie Besant, also wrote of cultural evolution in much the same vein. Some subsequent occultists have followed Blavatsky, at least to the point of tracing the lineage of occult practices back to Atlantis. Among the most famous is Dion Fortune in her Esoteric Orders and Their Work.
Drawing on the ideas of Rudolf Steiner and Hanns Hörbiger, Egon Friedell started his book Kulturgeschichte des Altertums [de], and thus his historical analysis of antiquity, with the ancient culture of Atlantis. The book was published in 1940.
Nazism and occultism
See also: Nazism and occultism
Blavatsky was also inspired by the work of the 18th-century astronomerJean-Sylvain Bailly, who had "Orientalized" the Atlantis myth in his mythical continent of Hyperborea, a reference to Greek myths featuring a Northern European region of the same name, home to a giant, godlike race. Dan Edelstein claims that her reshaping of this theory in The Secret Doctrine provided the Nazis with a mythological precedent and a pretext for their ideological platform and their subsequent genocide. However, Blavatsky's writings mention that the Atlantean were in fact olive-skinned peoples with Mongoloid traits who were the ancestors of modern Native Americans, Mongolians, and Malayans.
The idea that the Atlanteans were Hyperborean, Nordic supermen who originated in the Northern Atlantic or even in the far North, was popular in the German ariosophic movement around 1900, propagated by Guido von List and others. It gave its name to the Thule Gesellschaft, an antisemite Münich lodge, which preceded the German Nazi Party (see Thule). The scholars Karl Georg Zschaetzsch [de] (1920) and Herman Wirth (1928) were the first to speak of a "Nordic-Atlantean" or "Aryan-Nordic" master race that spread from Atlantis over the Northern Hemisphere and beyond. The Hyperboreans were contrasted with the Jewish people. Party ideologist Alfred Rosenberg (in The Myth of the Twentieth Century, 1930) and SS-leader Heinrich Himmler made it part of the official doctrine. The idea was followed up by the adherents of Esoteric Nazism such as Julius Evola (1934) and, more recently, Miguel Serrano (1978).
The idea of Atlantis as the homeland of the Caucasian race would contradict the beliefs of older Esoteric and Theosophic groups, which taught that the Atlanteans were non-Caucasian brown-skinned peoples. Modern Esoteric groups, including the Theosophic Society, do not consider Atlantean society to have been superior or Utopian—they rather consider it a lower stage of evolution.
The clairvoyant Edgar Cayce spoke frequently of Atlantis. During his "life readings", he claimed that many of his subjects were reincarnations of people who had lived there. By tapping into their collective consciousness, the "Akashic Records" (a term borrowed from Theosophy), Cayce declared that he was able to give detailed descriptions of the lost continent. He also asserted that Atlantis would "rise" again in the 1960s (sparking much popularity of the myth in that decade) and that there is a "Hall of Records" beneath the Egyptian Sphinx which holds the historical texts of Atlantis.
As continental drift became widely accepted during the 1960s, and the increased understanding of plate tectonics demonstrated the impossibility of a lost continent in the geologically recent past, most "Lost Continent" theories of Atlantis began to wane in popularity.
Plato scholar Julia Annas, Regents Professor of Philosophy at the University of Arizona, had this to say on the matter:
The continuing industry of discovering Atlantis illustrates the dangers of reading Plato. For he is clearly using what has become a standard device of fiction—stressing the historicity of an event (and the discovery of hitherto unknown authorities) as an indication that what follows is fiction. The idea is that we should use the story to examine our ideas of government and power. We have missed the point if instead of thinking about these issues we go off exploring the sea bed. The continuing misunderstanding of Plato as historian here enables us to see why his distrust of imaginative writing is sometimes justified.
One of the proposed explanations for the historical context of the Atlantis story is a warning of Plato to his contemporary fourth-century fellow-citizens against their striving for naval power.
Kenneth Feder points out that Critias's story in the Timaeus provides a major clue. In the dialogue, Critias says, referring to Socrates' hypothetical society:
And when you were speaking yesterday about your city and citizens, the tale which I have just been repeating to you came into my mind, and I remarked with astonishment how, by some mysterious coincidence, you agreed in almost every particular with the narrative of Solon. ...
Feder quotes A. E. Taylor, who wrote, "We could not be told much more plainly that the whole narrative of Solon's conversation with the priests and his intention of writing the poem about Atlantis are an invention of Plato's fancy."
Main article: Location hypotheses of Atlantis
Since Donnelly's day, there have been dozens of locations proposed for Atlantis, to the point where the name has become a generic concept, divorced from the specifics of Plato's account. This is reflected in the fact that many proposed sites are not within the Atlantic at all. Few today are scholarly or archaeological hypotheses, while others have been made by psychic (e.g., Edgar Cayce) or other pseudoscientific means. (The Atlantis researchers Jacques Collina-Girard and Georgeos Díaz-Montexano, for instance, each claim the other's hypothesis is pseudoscience.) Many of the proposed sites share some of the characteristics of the Atlantis story (water, catastrophic end, relevant time period), but none has been demonstrated to be a true historical Atlantis.
In or near the Mediterranean Sea
Most of the historically proposed locations are in or near the Mediterranean Sea: islands such as Sardinia,Crete, Santorini (Thera), Sicily, Cyprus, and Malta; land-based cities or states such as Troy,[page needed]Tartessos, and Tantalis (in the province of Manisa, Turkey);Israel-Sinai or Canaan; and northwestern Africa.
The Thera eruption, dated to the seventeenth or sixteenth century BC, caused a large tsunami that some experts hypothesize devastated the Minoan civilization on the nearby island of Crete, further leading some to believe that this may have been the catastrophe that inspired the story. In the area of the Black Sea the following locations have been proposed: Bosporus and Ancomah (a legendary place near Trabzon).
Others have noted that, before the sixth century BC, the mountains on either side of the Gulf of Laconia were called the "Pillars of Hercules", and they could be the geographical location being described in ancient reports upon which Plato was basing his story. The mountains stood at either side of the southernmost gulf in Greece, the largest in the Peloponnese, and that gulf opens onto the Mediterranean Sea. If from the beginning of discussions, misinterpretation of Gibraltar as the location rather than being at the Gulf of Laconia, would lend itself to many erroneous concepts regarding the location of Atlantis. Plato may have not been aware of the difference. The Laconian pillars open to the south toward Crete and beyond which is Egypt. The Thera eruption and the Late Bronze Age collapse affected that area and might have been the devastation to which the sources used by Plato referred. Significant events such as these would have been likely material for tales passed from one generation to another for almost a thousand years.
In the Atlantic Ocean
The location of Atlantis in the Atlantic Ocean has a certain appeal given the closely related names. Popular culture often places Atlantis there, perpetuating the original Platonic setting as they understand it. The Canary Islands and Madeira Islands have been identified as a possible location, west of the Straits of Gibraltar, but in relative proximity to the Mediterranean Sea. Detailed studies of their geomorphology and geology have demonstrated, however, that they have been steadily uplifted, without any significant periods of subsidence, over the last four million years, by geologic processes such as erosional unloading, gravitational unloading, lithospheric flexure induced by adjacent islands, and volcanic underplating.
Various islands or island groups in the Atlantic were also identified as possible locations, notably the Azores. Similarly, cores of sediment covering the ocean bottom surrounding the Azores and other evidence demonstrate that it has been an undersea plateau for millions of years. The area is known for its volcanism however, which is associated with rifting along the Azores Triple Junction. The spread of the crust along the existing faults and fractures has produced many volcanic and seismic events. The area is supported by a buoyant upwelling in the deeper mantle, which some associate with an Azores hotspot. Most of the volcanic activity has occurred primarily along the Terceira Rift. From the beginning of the islands' settlement, around the 15th century, there have been about 30 volcanic eruptions (terrestrial and submarine) as well as numerous, powerful earthquakes. The island of São Miguel in the Azores is the site of the Sete Cidades volcano and caldera, which are the byproducts of historical volcanic activity in the Azores.
The submerged island of Spartel near the Strait of Gibraltar has also been suggested.
In 2004, Swedish physiographist Ulf Erlingsson proposed that the legend of Atlantis was based on Stone Age Ireland. He later stated that he does not believe that Atlantis ever existed but maintained that his hypothesis that its description matches Ireland's geography has a 99.8% probability. The director of the National Museum of Ireland commented that there was no archaeology supporting this.
Several hypotheses place the sunken island in northern Europe, including Doggerland in the North Sea, and Sweden (by Olof Rudbeck in Atland, 1672–1702). Doggerland, as well as Viking Bergen Island, is thought to have been flooded by a megatsunami following the Storegga slide of c. 6100 BC. Some have proposed the Celtic Shelf as a possible location, and that there is a link to Ireland.
In 2011, a team, working on a documentary for the National Geographic Channel, led by Professor Richard Freund from the University of Hartford, claimed to have found possible evidence of Atlantis in southwestern Andalusia. The team identified its possible location within the marshlands of the Doñana National Park, in the area that once was the Lacus Ligustinus, between the Huelva, Cádiz, and Seville provinces, and they speculated that Atlantis had been destroyed by a tsunami, extrapolating results from a previous study by Spanish researchers, published four years earlier.
Spanish scientists have dismissed Freund's speculations, claiming that he sensationalised their work. The anthropologist Juan Villarías-Robles, who works with the Spanish National Research Council, said, "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 Doñana area established in the first millennium BC", and described Freund's claims as "fanciful".
A similar theory had previously been put forward by a German researcher, Rainer W. Kühne, that is based only on satellite imagery and places Atlantis in the Marismas de Hinojos, north of the city of Cádiz. Before that, the historian Adolf Schulten had stated in the 1920s that Plato had used Tartessos as the basis for his Atlantis myth.
Several writers, such as Flavio Barbiero as early as 1974, have speculated that Antarctica is the site of Atlantis.[page needed]A number of claims involve the Caribbean, either as an hypothetical emergent island formed by a combination of the Venezuela Basin, the Greater Antilles (namely Puerto Rico and Hispaniola) and the ridges of Beata and Aves or specific locations such as an alleged underwater formation off the Guanahacabibes peninsula in Cuba. The adjacent Bahamas or the folkloric Bermuda Triangle have been proposed as well. Areas in the Pacific and Indian Oceans have also been proposed including Indonesia (i.e. Sundaland).[page needed] The stories of a lost continent off the coast of India, named "Kumari Kandam," have inspired some to draw parallels to Atlantis.[page needed]
In order to give his account of Atlantis verisimilitude, Plato mentions that the story was heard by Solon in Egypt, and transmitted orally over several generations through the family of Dropides, until it reached Critias, a dialogue speaker in Timaeus and Critias. Solon had supposedly tried to adapt the Atlantis oral tradition into a poem (that if published, was to be greater than the works of Hesiod and Homer). While it was never completed, Solon passed on the story to Dropides. Modern classicists deny the existence of Solon's Atlantis poem and the story as an oral tradition. Instead, Plato is thought to be the sole inventor or fabricator. Hellanicus of Lesbos used the word "Atlantis" as the title for a poem published before Plato, a fragment of which may be Oxyrhynchus Papyrus 11, 1359. This work only describes the Atlantides (the daughters of Atlas), however, and has no relation to Plato's Atlantis account.
In the new era, the third century AD Neoplatonist Zoticus wrote an epic poem based on Plato's account of Atlantis. Plato's work may already have inspired parodic imitation, however. Writing only a few decades after the Timaeus and Critias, the historian Theopompus of Chios wrote of a land beyond the ocean known as Meropis. This description was included in Book 8 of his Philippica, which contains a dialogue between Silenus and King Midas. Silenus describes the Meropids, a race of men who grow to twice normal size, and inhabit two cities on the island of Meropis: Eusebes (Εὐσεβής, "Pious-town") and Machimos (Μάχιμος, "Fighting-town"). He also reports that an army of ten million soldiers crossed the ocean to conquer Hyperborea, but abandoned this proposal when they realized that the Hyperboreans were the luckiest people on earth. Heinz-Günther Nesselrath has argued that these and other details of Silenus' story are meant as imitation and exaggeration of the Atlantis story, by parody, for the purpose of exposing Plato's ideas to ridicule.
Utopias and dystopias
The creation of Utopian and dystopian fictions was renewed after the Renaissance, most notably in Francis Bacon's New Atlantis (1627), the description of an ideal society that he located off the western coast of America. Thomas Heyrick (1649-1694) followed him with "The New Atlantis" (1687), a satirical poem in three parts. His new continent of uncertain location, perhaps even a floating island either in the sea or the sky, serves as background for his exposure of what he described in a second edition as "A True Character of Popery and Jesuitism".
The title of The New Atalantis by Delarivier Manley (1709), distinguished from the two others by the single letter, is an equally dystopian work but set this time on a fictional Mediterranean island. In it sexual violence and exploitation is made a metaphor for the hypocritical behaviour of politicians in their dealings with the general public. In Manley's case, the target of satire was the Whig Party, while in David Maclean Parry's The Scarlet Empire (1906) it is Socialism as practised in foundered Atlantis. It was followed in Russia by Velemir Khlebnikov's poem The Fall of Atlantis (Gibel' Atlantidy, 1912), which is set in a future rationalist dystopia that has discovered the secret of immortality and is so dedicated to progress that it has lost touch with the past. When the high priest of this ideology is tempted by a slave girl into an act of irrationality, he murders her and precipitates a second flood, above which her severed head floats vengefully among the stars.
A slightly later work, The Ancient of Atlantis (Boston, 1915) by Albert Armstrong Manship, expounds the Atlantean wisdom that is to redeem the earth. Its three parts consist of a verse narrative of the life and training of an Atlantean wise one, followed by his Utopian moral teachings and then a psychic drama set in modern times in which a reincarnated child embodying the lost wisdom is reborn on earth.
In Hispanic eyes, Atlantis had a more intimate interpretation. The land had been a colonial power which, although it had brought civilization to ancient Europe, had also enslaved its peoples. Its tyrannical fall from grace had contributed to the fate that had overtaken it, but now its disappearance had unbalanced the world. This was the point of view of Jacint Verdaguer's vast mythological epic L'Atlantida (1877). After the sinking of the former continent, Hercules travels east across the Atlantic to found the city of Barcelona and then departs westward again to the Hesperides. The story is told by a hermit to a shipwrecked mariner, who is inspired to follow in his tracks and so "call the New World into existence to redress the balance of the Old". This mariner, of course, was Christopher Columbus.
Verdaguer's poem was written in Catalan, but was widely translated in both Europe and Hispano-America. One response was the similarly entitled Argentinian Atlantida of Olegario Victor Andrade (1881), which sees in "Enchanted Atlantis that Plato foresaw, a golden promise to the fruitful race" of Latins. The bad example of the colonising world remains, however. Jose Juan Tablada characterises its threat in his "De Atlántida" (1894) through the beguiling picture of the lost world populated by the underwater creatures of Classical myth, among whom is the Siren of its final stanza with
- her eye on the keel of the wandering vessel
- that in passing deflowers the sea's smooth mirror,
- launching into the night her amorous warbling
- and the dulcet lullaby of her treacherous voice!
There is a similar ambivalence in Janus Djurhuus' six-stanza "Atlantis" (1917), where a celebration of the Faroese linguistic revival grants it an ancient pedigree by linking Greek to Norse legend. In the poem a female figure rising from the sea against a background of Classical palaces is recognised as a priestess of Atlantis. The poet recalls "that the Faroes lie there in the north Atlantic Ocean/ where before lay the poet-dreamt lands," but also that in Norse belief, such a figure only appears to those about to drown.
A land lost in the distance
The fact that Atlantis is a lost land has made of it a metaphor for something no longer attainable. For the American poet Edith Willis Linn Forbes (1865-1945), "The Lost Atlantis" stands for idealisation of the past; the present moment can only be treasured once that is realised.Ella Wheeler Wilcox finds the location of "The Lost Land" (1910) in one's carefree youthful past. Similarly, for the Irish poet Eavan Boland in "Atlantis, a lost sonnet" (2007), the idea was defined when "the old fable-makers searched hard for a word/ to convey that what is gone is gone forever".
For some male poets too, the idea of Atlantis is constructed from what cannot be obtained. Charles Bewley in his Newdigate Prize poem (1910) thinks it grows from dissatisfaction with one's condition,
- And, because life is partly sweet
- And ever girt about with pain,
- We take the sweetness, and are fain
- To set it free from grief's alloy
in a dream of Atlantis. Similarly for the Australian Gary Catalano in a 1982 prose poem, it is "a vision that sank under the weight of its own perfection".W. H. Auden, however, suggests a way out of such frustration through the metaphor of journeying toward Atlantis in his poem of 1941. While travelling, he advises the one setting out, you will meet with many definitions of the goal in view, only realising at the end that the way has all the time led inward.
A few late-19th century verse narratives complement the genre fiction that was beginning to be written at the same period. Two of them report the disaster that overtook the continent as related by long-lived survivors. In Frederick Tennyson's Atlantis (1888), an ancient Greek mariner sails west and discovers an inhabited island which is all that remains of the former kingdom. He learns of its end and views the shattered remnant of its former glory, from which a few had escaped to set up the Mediterranean civilisations. In the second, Mona, Queen of Lost Atlantis: An Idyllic Re-embodiment of Long Forgotten History (Los Angeles CA 1925) by James Logue Dryden (1840–1925), the story is told in a series of visions. A Seer is taken to Mona's burial chamber in the ruins of Atlantis, where she revives and describes the catastrophe. There follows a survey of the lost civilisations of Hyperborea and Lemuria as well as Atlantis, accompanied by much spiritualist lore.
William Walton Hoskins (1856–1919) admits to the readers of his Atlantis and other poems (Cleveland OH, 1881), that he is only 24. Its melodramatic plot concerns the poisoning of the descendant of god-born kings. The usurping poisoner is poisoned in his turn, following which the continent is swallowed in the waves. Asian gods people the landscape of The Lost Island (Ottawa 1889) by Edward Taylor Fletcher (1816–97). An angel foresees impending catastrophe and that the people will be allowed to escape if their semi-divine rulers will sacrifice themselves. A final example, Edward N. Beecher's The Lost Atlantis or The Great Deluge of All (Cleveland OH, 1898) is just a doggerel vehicle for its author's opinions: that the continent was the location of the Garden of Eden; that Darwin's theory of evolution is correct, as are Donnelly's views.
Atlantis was to become a theme in Russia following the 1890s, taken up in unfinished poems by Valery Bryusov and Konstantin Balmont, as well as in a drama by the schoolgirl Larisa Reisner. One other long narrative poem was published in New York by George V. Golokhvastoff. His 250-page The Fall of Atlantis (1938) records how a high priest, distressed by the prevailing degeneracy of the ruling classes, seeks to create an androgynous being from royal twins as a means to overcome this polarity. When he is unable to control the forces unleashed by his occult ceremony, the continent is destroyed.
For popular music, see Atlantis in popular culture.
The Spanish composer Manuel de Falla worked on a dramatic cantata based on Verdaguer's L'Atlántida, during the last 20 years of his life. The name has been affixed to symphonies by Janis Ivanovs (1941), Richard Nanes, and Vaclav Buzek (2009). There was also the symphonic celebration of Alan Hovhaness: "Fanfare for the New Atlantis" (Op. 281, 1975).
The Bohemian-American composer and arranger Vincent Frank Safranek wrote Atlantis (The Lost Continent) Suite in Four Parts; I. Nocturne and Morning Hymn of Praise, II. A Court Function, III. "I Love Thee" (The Prince and Aana), IV. The Destruction of Atlantis, for military (concert) band in 1913.
Painting and sculpture
Paintings of the submersion of Atlantis are comparatively rare. In the seventeenth century there was François de Nomé's The Fall of Atlantis, which shows a tidal wave surging toward a Baroque city frontage. The style of architecture apart, it is not very different from Nicholas Roerich's The Last of Atlantis of 1928.
The most dramatic depiction of the catastrophe was Léon Bakst's Ancient Terror (Terror Antiquus, 1908), although it does not name Atlantis directly. It is a mountain-top view of a rocky bay breached by the sea, which is washing inland about the tall structures of an ancient city. A streak of lightning crosses the upper half of the painting, while below it rises the impassive figure of an enigmatic goddess who holds a blue dove between her breasts. Vyacheslav Ivanov identified the subject as Atlantis in a public lecture on the painting given in 1909, the year it was first exhibited, and he has been followed by other commentators in the years since.
Sculptures referencing Atlantis have often been stylized single figures. One of the earliest was Einar Jónsson's The King of Atlantis (1919–1922), now in the garden of his museum in Reykjavík. It represents a single figure, clad in a belted skirt and wearing a large triangular helmet, who sits on an ornate throne supported between two young bulls. The walking female entitled Atlantis (1946) by Ivan Meštrović was from a series inspired by ancient Greek figures with the symbolical meaning of unjustified suffering.
In the case of the Brussels fountain feature known as The Man of Atlantis (2003) by the Belgian sculptor Luk van Soom [nl], the 4-metre tall figure wearing a diving suit steps from a plinth into the spray. It looks light-hearted but the artist's comment on it makes a serious point: "Because habitable land will be scarce, it is no longer improbable that we will return to the water in the long term. As a result, a portion of the population will mutate into fish-like creatures. Global warming and rising water levels are practical problems for the world in general and here in the Netherlands in particular".
Robert Smithson's Hypothetical Continent (Map of broken clear glass, Atlantis) was first created as a photographical project on Loveladies Island NJ in 1969, and then recreated as a gallery installation of broken glass. On this he commented that he liked "landscapes that suggest prehistory", and this is borne out by the original conceptual drawing of the work that includes an inset map of the continent sited off the coast of Africa and at the straits into the Mediterranean.
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- ^"As Smith discusses in the opening article in this theme issue, the lost island-continent was – in all likelihood – entirely Plato's invention for the purposes of illustrating arguments around Grecian polity. Archaeologists broadly agree with the view that Atlantis is quite simply 'utopia' (Doumas, 2007), a stance also taken by classical philologists, who interpret Atlantis as a metaphorical rather than an actual place (Broadie, 2013; Gill, 1979; Nesselrath, 2002). One might consider the question as being already reasonably solved but despite the general expert consensus on the matter, countless attempts have been made at finding Atlantis." (Dawson & Hayward, 2016)
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Where ancient civilizations and kingdoms get lost and found!
The Lost Civilizations of the World
It's hard to imagine all the civilizations, peoples, cultures that have existed throughout human history. But, scientists are re-discovering new artifacts, civilizations and cultures everyday. This means that some cultures or civilizations that exist today may not exist in the distant tomorrow. Unlike our forefathers however, we have the technology and tools to preserve cultures that flourish today, so in the distant tomorrow, no culture will truly be lost, even if it's no longer practiced.
Over the course of thousands of years, many cultures, customs, languages and civilizations have vanished from history, and few have left visible remnants of their grandeur, muchless existence. We may know that Ancient Egypt existed because its pyramids and temples have stood the test of time, and we may speculate about Atlantis, because its legacy survived in legends, as does Troy's. But how many people know of Port Royal, Ur, or Great Zimbabwe, for example?
If the United States of America suddenly vanished from the known world, it's nearly impossible to imagine that one thousand years from now no one might remember that it had existed. This is understandable because in the age of technology, America's influence has been established as living history; meaning that even after it's no longer a great empire, history will remember it like it remembers Rome.
Cultures are living things. They get born, they flourish and many vanish. America might not suffer this fate, but many before it have suffered this fate.
The purpose of this wiki is to pay homage to some of the lost civilizations. By lost, I merely refer to those cultures and civilizations that may only exist in legend or whose existence was only recently confirmed by archeologists.
Human settlement that has become extensively or completely uninhabited
For other uses of the term Lost city, see Lost city (disambiguation).
A lost city is a settlement that fell into terminal decline and became extensively or completely uninhabited, with the consequence that the site's former significance was no longer known to the wider world. The locations of many lost cities have been forgotten, but some have been rediscovered and studied extensively by scientists. Recently abandoned cities or cities whose location was never in question might be referred to as ruins or ghost towns. The search for such lost cities by European explorers and adventurers in Africa, the Americas, and Southeast Asia from the 15th century onwards eventually led to the development of archaeology.
Lost cities generally fall into two broad categories: those where all knowledge of the city's existence was forgotten before it was rediscovered, and those whose memory was preserved in myth, legend, or historical records but whose location was lost or at least no longer widely recognized.
How cities are lost
Cities may become lost for a variety of reasons including natural disasters, economic or social upheaval, or war.
The Incan capital city of Vilcabamba was destroyed and depopulated during the Spanishconquest of Peru in 1572. The Spanish did not rebuild the city, and the location went unrecorded and was forgotten until it was rediscovered through a detailed examination of period letters and documents.
Troy was a city located in northwest Anatolia in what is now Turkey. It is best known for being the focus of the Trojan War described in the Greek Epic Cycle and especially in the Iliad, one of the two epic poems attributed to Homer. Repeatedly destroyed and rebuilt, the city slowly declined and was abandoned in the Byzantine era. Buried by time, the city was consigned to the realm of legend until the location was first excavated in the 1860s.
Other settlements are lost with few or no clues to their decline. For example, Malden Island, in the central Pacific, was deserted when first visited by Europeans in 1825, but the unsuspected presence of ruined temples and the remains of other structures found on the island indicate that a population of Polynesians had lived there for perhaps several generations some centuries earlier. Prolonged drought seems the most likely explanation for their demise and the remote nature of the island meant few visitors.
With the development of archaeology and the application of modern techniques, many previously lost cities have been rediscovered.
Machu Picchu is a pre-Columbian Inca site situated on a mountain ridge above the Urubamba Valley in Peru. Often referred to as the "Lost City of the Incas", it is perhaps the most familiar icon of the Inca World. Machu Picchu was built around 1450, at the height of the Inca Empire. It was abandoned just over 100 years later, in 1572, as a belated result of the Spanish Conquest. It is possible that most of its inhabitants died from smallpox introduced by travelers before the Spanish conquistadors arrived in the area. In 1911, Melchor Arteaga led the explorer Hiram Bingham to Machu Picchu, which had been largely forgotten by everybody except the small number of people living in the immediate valley.
Helike was an ancient Greek city that sank at night in the winter of 373 BCE. The city was located in Achaea, Northern Peloponnesos, two kilometres (12 stadia) from the Corinthian Gulf. The city was thought to be legend until 2001, when it was rediscovered in the Helike Delta. In 1988, the Greek archaeologist Dora Katsonopoulou launched the Helike Project to locate the site of the lost city. In 1994, in collaboration with the University of Patras, a magnetometer survey was carried out in the midplain of the delta, which revealed the outlines of a buried building. In 1995, this target was excavated (now known as the Klonis site), and a large Roman building with standing walls was brought to light. The city was rediscovered in 2001, buried in an ancient lagoon.
Lost cities of legend
Lost cities which are considered legendary or fictional.
- Ai – important city in the Hebrew Bible
- Aztlán- the ancestral homeland in Aztec mythology
- Ciudad de los Cesares (City of the Caesars, also variously known as City of the Patagonia, Elelín, Lin Lin, Trapalanda, Trapananda, or Wandering City) – a legendary city in Patagonia, never found
- Dvārakā – An ancient city of Krishna, submerged in the sea.
- El Dorado
- Iram of the Pillars – this may refer to a lost Arabian city in the Empty Quarter, but sources also identify it as a tribe or an area mentioned in the Quran
- Kitezh, Russia – legendary underwater city which supposedly may be seen in good weather
- Libertatia, Madagascar - (Also known as Libertalia) is pirate colony founded in the 17th Century by Pirate Captain James Misson (occasionally spelled "Mission") that is still disputed by historians today.
- Lost City of Z – a city allegedly located in the jungles of the Mato Grosso region of Brazil, said to have been seen by the British explorer Col. Percy Harrison Fawcett some time before World War I
- Otuken – legendary capital city of Gokturks in Turkic mythology
- Paititi – a legendary city and refuge in the rainforests where Bolivia, Brazil, and Peru meet
- The Seven Cities of Gold
- Shambhala – Mythical kingdom said to be located in Tibet
- Sodom and Gomorrah
- Vineta – legendary city somewhere at the Baltic coast of Germany or Poland
- Ys – legendary city on the western coast of France
That some cities are considered legendary does not mean they did not in fact exist. Some having once been considered legendary, are now known to have existed, such as Troy and Bjarmaland.
Lost cities by continent
The Maghrib, including Libya
- Carthage – Initially a Phoenician city, destroyed and then rebuilt by Rome. Later served as the capital of the Vandal Kingdom of North Africa, before being destroyed by the Arabs after its capture in 697 CE. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Dougga, Tunisia – Roman city located in present-day Tunisia. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Leptis Magna – Roman city located in present-day Libya. It was the birthplace of Emperor Septimius Severus, who lavished an extensive public works programme on the city, including diverting the course of a nearby river. The river later returned to its original course, burying much of the city in silt and sand. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Timgad, Algeria – Roman city founded by the emperor Trajan around 100 CE, covered by the sand at 7th century. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Uncertain or disputed
Uncertain or Disputed
- Dholavira – Located in Gujarat, India. City of the Indus Valley Civilization.
- Dvārakā – Ancient city of Krishna, hero of the Mahabharata. Now largely excavated. Off the coast of the Indian state of Gujarat.
- Kalibangan – Located in Rajasthan, India – early city of the Indus Valley Civilization.
- Lothal – Located in Gujarat, India – early city of the Indus Valley Civilization.
- Pattadakal – Located in Karnataka, South India. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Poompuhar – Located in Tamil Nadu, South India.
- Rakhigarhi – Located in Haryana, largest Indus Valley Civilization site, dating back to 4600 BCE.
- Surkotada – Located in Gujarat, India – early city of the Indus Valley Civilization.
- Vasai – Located in India, former capital (1533–1740) of the Northern Provinces of Portuguese India
- Vijayanagar – Located in Karnataka, India. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Uncertain or Disputed
- Naga Puram – Located in Pakistan's Sindh province Indus Valley Civilization city. The city was on the bank of river Ghagra. Reference Sir Jaun Marshall & Will Duran, the historian's book THE STORY OF CIVILIZATION BOOK 1 PAGE 394
Uncertain or Disputed
- Kota Gelanggi – Malaysia (Malay Archipelago)
- Ma-i – Philippines – was a sovereign polity that pre-dated the Hispanic establishment of the Philippines and notable for having established trade relations with the Kingdom of Brunei, and with Song and Ming Dynasty China. Its existence was recorded both in the Chinese Imperial annals Zhu Fan Zhi (諸番志) and History of Song
Western Asia/Middle East
Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Perperikon in Bulgaria – The megalith complex had been laid in ruins and re-erected many times in history – from the Bronze Age until Middle Ages.
- Seuthopolis, Bulgaria – an ancient Thracian city, discovered and excavated in 1948. It was founded by king Seuthes III around 325 BC. Its ruins are now located at the bottom of the Koprinka Reservoir near the city of Kazanlak.
- Heraclea somewhere in the Adriatic on the Croatian coast. Exact location unknown.
- Quentovic – In 842, the ancient port of Quentovicus was destroyed by a Viking fleet.
- Thérouanne – In 1553, the city was razed, the roads broken up and the fields ploughed and salted by command of Charles V.
- Kaupang – In Viksfjord near Larvik, Norway. Largest trading city around the Oslo Fjord during the Viking age. As sea levels retreated (the shoreline is 7m lower today than in 1000) the city was no longer accessible from the ocean and was abandoned.
- Conímbriga, Portugal – early trading post dating to the 9th century BC. Abandoned in the 8th century AD.
- Stari Ras, Serbia – one of the first capitals of the medieval Serbian state of Raška, abandoned in the 13th century.
- Myšia Hôrka (near Spišský Štvrtok), Slovakia – 3500 years old town (rediscovered in the 20th century) and archaeological site; complex is called also Slovak Mycenae.
- Amaya – either the capital or one of the most important cities of the Cantabri. Probably located in what nowadays is called "Amaya Peak" in Burgos, northern Spain.
- Cypsela, drowned Ibero-Greek settlement in the Catalan shore, Spain. Mentioned by Greek, Roman and Medieval chroniclers.
- Reccopolis, Spain – One of the capital cities founded in Hispania by the Visigoths. The site was incrementally abandoned in the 10th century.
- Tartessos, Spain – A harbor city or an economical complex of small harbors and trade routes set on the mouth of the Guadalquivir river, in modern Andalusia, Spain. Tartessos is believed to be either the seat of an independent kingdom or a community of palacial cities devoted to exporting the mineral resources of the Hispanic mainland to the sea, to meet the Phoenician and Greek traders. Its destruction is still a matter of debate among historians, and one modern tendency tends to believe that Tartessos was never a city, but a culture complex.
- Calleva Atrebatum, Silchester, England – Large Romano-British walled city 10 miles (16 km) south of present-day Reading, Berkshire. Just the walls remain and a street pattern can be discerned from the air.
- Dunwich, England – Lost to coastal erosion. Once a large town, now reduced to a small village
- Evonium, Scotland – purported coronation site and capital of 40 kings
- Fairbourne, Wales - managed retreat policy adopted by council in 2019 due to flooding prospects following climate change
- Hallsands, Devon - Built on a beach, last resident left in 1960, closed to public. Several derelict buildings still stand.
- Hampton-on-Sea, England – A village in what is now the Hampton area of Herne Bay, Kent, drowned and abandoned between 1916 and 1921.
- Kenfig, – a village in Bridgend, Wales, encroached by sand and abandoned around the 13th century.
- Nant Gwrtheyrn former village on the North Welsh coast, abandoned after its quarry closed during World War II. Now regenerated as a language centre.
- Old Sarum, England – population moved to nearby Salisbury in the 13th and 14th centuries, although the owners of the archaeological site retained the right to elect a Member of Parliament to represent Old Sarum until the 19th century (see William Pitt).
- Ravenser Odd, England - important port near the mouth of the Humber, lost to coastal erosion in the 14th century.
- Ravenspurn, England - near to Ravenser Odd, lost to coastal erosion at some time after 1471.
- Roxburgh, Scotland – abandoned in the 15th century
- Selsey, England – mostly abandoned to coastal erosion after 1043.
- Skara Brae, Orkney, Scotland – Neolithic settlement buried under sediment. Uncovered by a winter storm in 1850.
- Trellech, Wales - declined between the 13th and 15th centuries.
- Winchelsea, East Sussex – Old Winchelsea, Important Channel port, pop 4000+, abandoned after 1287 inundation and coastal erosion. Modern Winchelsea, 2 miles (3.2 km) inland, was built to replace it as a planned town by Edward I of England
- L'Anse aux Meadows – Viking settlement founded around 1000. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Lost Villages – The Lost Villages are ten communities (Aultsville, Dickinson's Landing, Farran's Point, Maple Grove, Mille Roches, Moulinette, Santa Cruz, Sheek's Island, Wales, Woodlands) in the Canadian province of Ontario, in the former townships of Cornwall and Osnabruck (now South Stormont) near Cornwall, which were permanently submerged by the creation of the St. Lawrence Seaway in 1958.
Mexico and Central America
Incomplete list – for further information, see Maya civilization
- Calakmul – One of two superpowers in the classic Maya period. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Chichen Itza – This ancient place of pilgrimage is still the most visited Maya ruin. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Copán – In modern Honduras. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Naachtun – Rediscovered in 1922, it remains one of the most remote and least visited Maya sites. Located 44 km (27 mi) south-south-east of Calakmul, and 65 km (40 mi) north of Tikal, it is believed to have had strategic importance to, and been vulnerable to military attacks by, both neighbours. Its ancient name was identified in the mid-1990s as Masuul.
- Palenque — in the Mexican state of Chiapas, known for its beautiful art and architecture. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Tikal — One of two superpowers in the classic Maya period. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Tulum – Mayan coastal city.
- La Ciudad Blanca – In Eastern Honduras. long thought mythical, existence confirmed in 2015.
- Hueyatlaco – Oldest city in Mexico.
- Izapa – Chief city of the Izapa civilization, whose territory extended from the Gulf Coast across to the Pacific Coast of Chiapas, in present-day Mexico, and Guatemala.
- Guayabo – In Costa Rica It is believed that the site was inhabited from 1500 BCE to 1400 CE, and had at its peak a population of around 10,000.
- The cities of the Ancestral Pueblo (or Anasazi) culture, located in the Four Corners region of the Southwest United States – The best known are located at Chaco Canyon and Mesa Verde.
- Bethel Indian Town, New Jersey – Lenape settlement which disappeared as the Lenape were pushed west.
- Cahokia – Located near present-day St. Louis, Missouri. At its height Cahokia is believed to have had a population of between 40,000 and 80,000 people, making it amongst the largest Pre-Columbian cities of the Americas. It is known chiefly for its huge pyramidal mounds of compacted earth. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Pueblo Grande de Nevada a complex of villages, located near Overton, Nevada
- Roanoke Colony
- Sarabay – a Mocama settlement in northeast Florida, mentioned in both French and Spanish documents dating to the 1560s.
- ^"History of Archaeology". infoplease.
- ^Adams, Mark (2012). Turn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a Time. Plume. p. 306. ISBN – via Google Books.
- ^"Troy". Encyclopedia of Anthropology. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc. 2006.
- ^Burger, Richard L.; Burger, C. J. MacCurdy Professor and Current Chairman of the Council on Archaeological Studies Richard L.; Salazar, Lucy C. (2004). Machu Picchu: Unveiling the Mystery of the Incas. Yale University Press. ISBN .
- ^Alvarez-Zarikian, Carlos A.; Soter, Steven; Katsonopoulou, Dora (2008). "Recurrent Submergence and Uplift in the Area of Ancient Helike, Gulf of Corinth, Greece: Microfaunal and Archaeological Evidence". Journal of Coastal Research. 24 (1A): 110–125. doi:10.2112/05-0454.1. JSTOR 30133726. S2CID 140202998.
- ^Glassé, Cyril; Huston Smith (2003). The New Encyclopedia of Islam (Revised ed.). AltaMira Press. p. 26. ISBN .
- ^"Lost cities of the Amazon revealed". NBC News.
- ^"Ancient 'Lost City' Discovered in Peru, Official Claims". National Geographic. January 2008.
- ^Lost Cities of the Silk Road
- ^Bane, Theresa (March 8, 2014). "Encyclopedia of Imaginary and Mythical Places". McFarland – via Google Books.
- ^Ramaswamy, Sumathi (September 27, 2004). "The Lost Land of Lemuria: Fabulous Geographies, Catastrophic Histories". University of California Press – via Google Books.
- ^Sastri, Kallidaikurichi Aiyah Nilakanta (June 9, 1941). "Historical Method in Relation to Problems of South Indian History". University of Madras – via Google Books.
- ^"Metropolis: Angkor, the world's first mega-city". Archived from the original on September 23, 2008.
- ^Charlemagne and the Avars
- ^Teotihuacan, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- ^"Archaeologists uncover lost Indigenous NE Florida settlement of Sarabay". Heritage Daily. 8 June 2021.
- ^Amazon jungle gives up lost city of the 'Cloud People', News.com.au
- ^Lost City Teyuna, Lostcitytour.com
List of lost lands
Islands or continents supposedly existing during prehistory, having since disappeared
This article is about formerly existing lands. For lands found not to have existed, see Phantom island.
Lost lands are islands or continents believed by some to have existed during pre-history, but to have since disappeared as a result of catastrophic geological phenomena. Such continents are generally thought to have subsided into the sea, leaving behind only a few traces or legends by which they may be known.
With the development of plate tectonic simulation software, new lost land has been discovered and confirmed in the scientific community like Greater Adria in 2019.
Legends of lost lands often originated as scholarly or scientific theories, only to be picked up by writers and individuals outside the academy. Occult and New Age writers have made use of Lost Lands, as have subaltern peoples such as the Tamils in India. Phantom islands, as opposed to lost lands, are land masses formerly believed by cartographers to exist in the current historical age, but to have been discredited as a result of expanding geographic knowledge. The classification of lost lands as continents, islands, or other regions is in some cases subjective; for example, Atlantis is variously described as either a "lost island" or a "lost continent". Lost land theories may originate in mythology or philosophy, or in scholarly or scientific theories, such as catastrophic theories of geology.
Main articles: Submerged continent and Continental fragment
Although the existence of lost continents in the above sense is mythical (aside from Zealandia and Greater Adria), there were many places on Earth that were once dry land, but submerged after the ice age around 10,000 BCE due to rising sea levels, and possibly were the basis for Neolithic and Bronze Ageflood myths. Some were lost due to coastal erosion or volcanic eruptions. An (incomplete) list follows:
- Atlit Yam, an ancient submerged Neolithic village off the coast of Atlit, Israel.
- Dhanushkodi, a town on the Pamban Island off the South Indian coast, eroded away by storm surges in the 1964 Rameswaram cyclone.
- Heracleion, an ancient Egyptian city located near the Canopic Mouth of the Nile, about 32 km (20 miles) northeast of Alexandria.
- Sundaland, the now submerged Sunda Shelf.
- Kerguelen Plateau, a submerged micro-continent which is now 1–2 km below sea level.
- Beringia, connecting Asia and North America.
- Doggerland, the bed of the North Sea, which once connected Great Britain to Continental Europe before being inundated by rising sea levels during the Holocene.
- A large island in the Mediterranean Sea, of which Malta is the only part not now submerged.
- Maui Nui, once a large island of the Hawaii archipelago; several major islands represent residual high ground of Maui Nui.
- New Moore Island, an island in the Bay of Bengal which emerged after a cyclone in 1970 and submerged in 2010.
- Pavlopetri, sunken city off the coast of southern Laconia in Peloponnese, Greece,
- Verdronken Land van Reimerswaal, most of this region in The Netherlands vanished in a storm in 1532; the town of Reimerswaal survived as an island into the 17th century; the last bits of land vanished in the early 19th century.
- Strand, an island off the German coast with the town Rungholt, eroded away by storm surges before being washed away by a final flood in 1634.
- Jomsborg and Vineta, legendary cities on the south coast of the Baltic Sea supposed to have been submerged in the Middle Ages.
- Jordsand, once an island off the Danish coast, eroded away by storm surges before being washed away by a final flood between 1998 and 1999.
- Ferdinandea, submerged volcanic island which has appeared at least four times in the past.
- Sarah Ann Island, now submerged guano island, located just north of the equator. Vanished between 1917 and 1932.
- Ravenser Odd, a large 13th-century town on an old sandbank promontory in East Yorkshire, which became an island and then vanished in January 1392.
- Dunwich, the traditional capital of the Kingdom of the East Angles that was lost to the sea by gradual coast erosion and partly by a storm surge in 1286.
- Dadu Island, which was legally the southernmost point of the United States of America, located at Palmyra Atoll and still shown on the map (an incorporated U.S. territory), was a bare sand islet washed away by a storm in 2014. (It was named after a dog, "Dadu", that had lived at the atoll.)
- Semyonovsky Island, an island that was discovered in 1770, it had rapidly decreased in size, 4.6km² to 1823, 0.5 km² in 1936, by the 1950s it was just baydzharakh and when visited in the early 1960s it had been submerged due to erosion.
- Zealandia, a scientifically accepted continent that is now 94% submerged under the Pacific Ocean, surrounding the areas of New Zealand and New Caledonia.
- Greater Adria, a continent connecting between Italy and Northern Africa
Hypothetical lost continents
In the 1954 book Lost Continents by L. Sprague de Camp, he describes many modern writers who have speculated about ancient civilizations that existed on continents now deluged under the sea. According to de Camp, there is no real scientific evidence for any lost continents whatsoever.
- The most famous lost continent is Atlantis. Atlantis, like Hyperborea and Thule, is ultimately derived from ancient Greek geographic speculation and possibly memories of the Minoan eruption of the Thera volcano.
- The name of hypothetical vanished continent Mu originated from the first attempted translation of the Madrid Codex, one of only four remaining Maya codices.
- Lemuria was a hypothesised continent that was believed to have once connected India, Australia and Southern Africa.
Main articles: List of mythological places and Mythical continents
- Agartha, in the Hollow Earth.
- Atlantis, Plato's utopian paradise.
- Avalon, the mythical lost land or island in Arthurian, Cornish and Welsh legend.
- Buyan, an island with the ability to appear and disappear in Slavic mythology.
- Cantre'r Gwaelod, in Welsh legend, the ancient sunken realm said to have occupied a tract of fertile land lying between Ramsey Island and Bardsey Island in what is now Cardigan Bay to the west of Wales.
- Iram of the Pillars, a reference to a lost city, country or area mentioned in the Qur'an.
- Kitezh, a legendary underwater city located in Russia, populated by spiritual people.
- Kumari Kandam, a mythical lost continent with an ancient Tamil civilization in the Indian Ocean
- Lemuria, a mythical lost continent in the Indian or the Pacific Ocean.
- Llys Helig Welsh legends regarding the local rock formations conceal the palace of Prince Helig ap Glanawg, said to be part of a larger drowned kingdom near Penmaenmawr, Wales.
- Lyonesse in Arthurian literature: it was the home of Tristan and is usually associated with the Isles of Scilly, Cornwall (an area inundated by the sea c.2500BC). The tale parallels the Welsh and particularly Breton legendary lost lands.
- Mu, a legendary lost continent in the Pacific Ocean
- Shangri-La, a fictitious valley in Tibet the idea of which may have been inspired by the myth of Shambhala
- Quivira and Cibola, also known as the Seven Cities of Gold. These were suspected somewhere in America by the Conquistadors.
- El Dorado, mythic city of gold.
- Ys, a mythical drowned city in Brittany, similar to other Celtic lost lands in Welsh and Cornish tradition. Most versions of the legend place the city in the Baie de Douarnenez.
Main article: Phantom island
Phantom islands, as opposed to lost lands, are land masses formerly believed by cartographers to exist in the historical age, but to have been discredited as a result of expanding geographic knowledge. Terra Australis is a phantom continent. While a few phantom islands originated from literary works (an example is Ogygia from Homer's Odyssey), most phantom islands are the result of navigational errors.
In literature and philosophy
The following individuals are known for having written on the subject of lost lands (either as fiction, hypothesis, or supposed fact):
- L. Sprague de Camp and Willy Ley, Lands Beyond, Rinehart & Co., New York, 1952.
- L. Sprague de Camp, Lost Continents: The Atlantis Theme in History, Science, and Literature, Dover Publications, 1970.
Wiki lost civilizations
Mu (mythical lost continent)
Legendary lost continent
Mu is a legendary lost continent. The term was introduced by Augustus Le Plongeon, who used the "Land of Mu" as an alternative name for Atlantis. It was subsequently popularized as an alternative term for the hypothetical land of Lemuria by James Churchward, who asserted that Mu was located in the Pacific Ocean before its destruction. The place of Mu in literature has been discussed in detail in Lost Continents (1954) by L. Sprague de Camp.
Geologists dismiss the existence of Mu and the lost continent of Atlantis as physically impossible, arguing that a continent can neither sink nor be destroyed in the short period of time asserted in legends and folklore and literature about these places. Mu's existence is considered to have no factual basis.
History of the concept
Augustus Le Plongeon
The mythical idea of the "Land of Mu" first appeared in the works of the British-American antiquarian Augustus Le Plongeon (1825–1908), after his investigations of the Maya ruins in Yucatán. He claimed that he had translated the first copies of the Popol Vuh, the sacred book of the K'iche' from the ancient Mayan using Spanish. He claimed the civilization of Yucatán was older than those of Greece and Egypt, and told the story of an even older continent.
Le Plongeon got the name "Mu" from Charles Étienne Brasseur de Bourbourg, who, in 1864, mistranslated what was then called the Troano Codex (now called "Madrid Codex") using the de Landa alphabet. Brasseur believed that a word which he read as Mu referred to a land that had been submerged by a catastrophe. Le Plongeon identified this lost land with Atlantis and, following Ignatius Donnelly in Atlantis: The Antediluvian World (1882), identified it as a continent that had once existed in the Atlantic Ocean:
In our journey westward across the Atlantic we shall pass in sight of that spot where once existed the pride and life of the ocean, the Land of Mu, which, at the epoch that we have been considering, had not yet been visited by the wrath of Human, that lord of volcanic fires to whose fury it afterward fell a victim. The description of that land given to Solon by Sonchis, priest at Sais; its destruction by earthquakes, and submergence, recorded by Plato in his Timaeus, have been told and retold so many times that it is useless to encumber these pages with a repetition of it.: ch. VI, p. 66
Le Plongeon claimed that the civilization of ancient Egypt was founded by Queen Moo, a refugee from the land's demise. Other refugees supposedly fled to Central America and became the Maya.
Mu, as an alternative name for a lost Pacific Ocean continent previously identified as the hypothetical Lemuria (the supposed place of origin for lemurs), was later popularised by James Churchward (1851–1936) in a series of books, beginning with Lost Continent of Mu, the Motherland of Man (1926), re-edited later as The Lost Continent Mu (1931). Other popular books in the series are The Children of Mu (1931) and The Sacred Symbols of Mu (1933).
Churchward claimed that "more than fifty years ago", while he was a soldier in India, he befriended a high-ranking temple priest who showed him a set of ancient "sunburnt" clay tablets, supposedly in a long-lost "Naga-Maya language" which only two other people in India could read. Churchward convinced the priest to teach him the dead language and decipher the tablets by promising to restore and store the tablets, for Churchward was an expert in preserving ancient artifacts. The tablets were written in either Burma or in the lost continent of Mu itself, according to the high priest. Having mastered the language himself, Churchward found out that they originated from "the place where [man] first appeared—Mu". The 1931 edition states that "all matter of science in this work are based on translations of two sets of ancient tablets": the clay tablets he read in India, and a collection of 2,500 stone tablets that had been uncovered by William Niven in Mexico.: 7
The tablets begin with the creation of Earth, Mu, and the superior human civilization Naacal by the seven commands of the seven superlative intellects of the seven-headed serpent Narayana. This creation story dismisses the theory of evolution. Churchward gave a vivid description of Mu as the home of an advanced civilization, the Naacal, which flourished between 50,000 and 12,000 years ago, was dominated by a “white race",: 48 and was "superior in many respects to our own".: 17 At the time of its demise, about 12,000 years ago, Mu had 64 million inhabitants and seven major cities, and colonies on the other continents. The 64 million inhabitants were separated as ten tribes that followed one government and one religion.
Churchward claimed that the landmass of Mu was located in the Pacific Ocean, and stretched east–west from the Marianas to Easter Island, and north–south from Hawaii to Mangaia. According to Churchward the continent was supposedly 5,000 miles from east to west and over 3,000 miles from north to south, which is larger than South America. The continent was believed to be flat with massive plains, vast rivers, rolling hills, large bays, and estuaries. He claimed that according to the creation myth he read in the Indian tablets, Mu had been lifted above sea level by the expansion of underground volcanic gases. Eventually Mu "was completely obliterated in almost a single night":: 44 after a series of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, "the broken land fell into that great abyss of fire" and was covered by "fifty millions of square miles of water.": 50 Churchward claimed the reasoning for the continent's destruction in one night was because the main mineral on the island was granite and was honeycombed to create huge shallow chambers and cavities filled with highly explosive gases. Once the chambers were empty after the explosion, they collapsed on themselves, causing the island to crumble and sink.
Churchward claimed that Mu was the common origin of the great civilizations of Egypt, Greece, Central America, India, Burma and others, including Easter Island, and was in particular the source of ancient megalithic architecture. As evidence for his claims, he pointed to symbols from throughout the world, in which he saw common themes of birds, the relation of the Earth and the sky, and especially the Sun. Churchward claimed that the king of Mu was named Ra and he related this to the Egyptian god of the sun, Ra, and the Rapa Nui word for Sun, ra’a.: 48 He claimed to have found symbols of the Sun in "Egypt, Babylonia, Peru and all ancient lands and countries – it was a universal symbol.": 138
As additional evidence for his claims, Churchward looked to the Holy Bible and found through his own translations that Moses was trained by the Naacal brotherhood in Egypt. Assyria mistranslated when writing and misplaced the Garden of Eden, which according to Churchward would have been located in the Pacific Ocean.
Churchward makes references to the Ramayana epic, a religious text of Hindu attributed to sage and historian Valmiki. Valmiki mentions the Naacals as “coming to Burma from the land of their birth in the East,” that is, in the direction of the Pacific Ocean.
Churchward attributed all megalithic art in Polynesia to the people of Mu. He claimed that symbols of the sun are found "depicted on stones of Polynesian ruins", such as the stone hats (pukao) on top of the giant moai statues of Easter Island. Citing W. J. Johnson, Churchward describes the cylindrical hats as "spheres" that "seem to show red in the distance", and asserts that they “represent the Sun as Ra.”: 138 He also incorrectly claimed that some of them are made of "red sandstone",: 89 which does not exist on the island. The platforms on which the statues rest (ahu) are described by Churchward as being "platform-like accumulations of cut and dressed stone", which were supposedly left in their current positions "awaiting shipment to some other part of the continent for the building of temples and palaces".: 89 He also cites the pillars "erected by the Māori of New Zealand" as an example of this lost civilization's handiwork.: 158 In Churchward's view, the present-day Polynesians are not descendants of the dominant members of the lost civilization of Mu, responsible for these great works, but are instead descendants of survivors of the cataclysm that adopted "the first cannibalism and savagery" in the world.: 54
In the 1882 novel Oahspe: A New Bible, John Newbrough included a map of the Earth in antediluvian times (i.e. prior to the great flood of biblical record) where an unknown continent is located in the Northern Pacific. Newbrough called this continent Pan. People often link both Pan and Mu as the same mythological continent since both are claimed to be located in the Pacific. Newbrough continues to claim that the unknown continent disappeared 24,000 years ago, but will soon rise from the Pacific and will be inhabited by the Kosmon race.
Max Heindel, a Danish-American occultist, wrote about Mu in The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception (1909), which offers a different image and chronology. According to Heindel, Mu existed when the Earth's crust was still hardening, in a period of high heat and dense atmosphere. Heindel claims humans existed at this time, but that they had the power to shape-shift. He says they had no eyes but rather two sensitive spots that were affected by the light of the Sun. In the dense atmosphere, humans were guided more by internal perception than by external vision. The language of these humans consisted of the sounds of nature.
Louis Jacolliot was a French attorney, judge, and occultist who specialized in the translation of Sanskrit. He wrote about the land of the Rutas, a lost land that ancient sources claimed was in the Indian Ocean but which he placed in the Pacific Ocean and associated with Atlantis stories in Histoire des Vierges. Les Peuples et les continents disparus (1874). He amplified upon this in Occult Science in India (1875, English translation 1884). He has been identified as a contributor to Rosicrucianism.
James Bramwell and William Scott-Elliot claimed that the cataclysmic events on Mu began 800,000 years ago: 194 and went on until the last catastrophe, which occurred in precisely 9564 BC.: 195
In the 1930s, Atatürk, founder of the Turkish Republic, was interested in Churchward's work and considered Mu as a possible location of the original homeland of the Turks.
Masaaki Kimura has suggested that certain underwater features located off the coast of Yonaguni Island, Japan (popularly known as the Yonaguni Monument), are ruins of Mu.
Modern geological knowledge rules out "lost continents" of any significant size. According to the theory of plate tectonics, which has been extensively confirmed since the 1970s, the Earth's crust consists of lighter "sial" rocks (continental crust rich in aluminiumsilicates) that float on heavier "sima" rocks (oceanic crust richer in magnesium silicates). The sial is generally absent in the ocean floor where the crust is a few kilometers thick, while the continents are huge solid blocks tens of kilometers thick. Since continents float on the sima much like icebergs float on water, a continent cannot simply "sink" under the ocean.
It is true that continental drift and seafloor spreading can change the shape and position of continents and occasionally break a continent into two or more pieces (as happened to Pangaea). However, these are very slow processes that occur in geological time scales (hundreds of millions of years). Over the scale of history (tens of thousands of years), the sima under the continental crust can be considered solid, and the continents are basically anchored on it. It is almost certain that the continents and ocean floors have retained their present position and shape for the whole span of human existence.
There is also no conceivable event that could have "destroyed" a continent, since its huge mass of sial rocks would have to end up somewhere—and there is no trace of it at the bottom of the oceans. The Pacific Ocean islands are not part of a submerged landmass but rather the tips of isolated volcanoes.
This is the case, in particular, of Easter Island, which is a recent volcanic peak surrounded by deep ocean (3,000 m deep at 30 km off the island). After visiting the island in the 1930s, Alfred Métraux observed that the moai platforms are concentrated along the current coast of the island, which implies that the island's shape has changed little since they were built. Moreover, the "Triumphal Road" that Pierre Loti had reported ran from the island to the submerged lands below, is actually a natural lava flow. Furthermore, while Churchward was correct in his claim that the island has no sandstone or sedimentary rocks, the point is irrelevant because the pukao are all made of native volcanic scoria.
After the Pleistocene, cultures of the Americas and the Old World developed social complexity independent of each other,: 62 and, in fact, agriculture and sedentism emerged in multiple locations around the world after the inception of the Holocene at 11,700 BP. The emergence of Pre-Pottery Neolithic A sites such as Göbekli Tepe and Neolithicvillages such as Jericho and Çatalhöyük in the Levant and Anatolia, respectively, result from local processes of cultural evolution, not colonization by individuals from elsewhere.
Easter Island was first settled around AD 300 and the pukao on the moai are regarded as having ceremonial or traditional headdresses.
In popular culture
- In the 1935 film The Phantom Empire, the inhabitants of Murania are the lost tribe of Mu.
- In the 1963 film Atragon, Mu is an undersea kingdom protected by their sea dragon god Manda.
- In the 1970 kaiju film Gamera vs. Jiger, Jiger originates from the lost continent of Mu.
- Tezuka’s classic anime film, Undersea Super Train: Marine Express, storytelling revolves around Mu Civilization under Empress Sapphire.
- In the 1982–1983 French-Japaneseanimated seriesThe Mysterious Cities of Gold, Tao is the last living descendant of the sunken empire of Mu (Hiva in the English dub).
- In the 1983 Doraemon film Doraemon: Nobita and the Castle of the Undersea Devil, Doraemon and friends meet a young boy from Mu who is an undersea person and a soldier of Federal Army of Mu. They set out into the Bermuda Triangle to stop the army inside the lost city of Atlantis.
- In the 1983–1984 anime Super Dimension Century Orguss, the main antagonists are robots that were built by the ancient civilization of the Mu that turned on their creators and tried to annihilate all remaining life on Earth. Throughout the series, the robots are referred to as the Mu.
- In the 2001–2002 anime RahXephon the inhabitants of Mu, which are referred to as Mulians, serve as the show's primary antagonists.
- "Stones" by Ty Sanga
- H. P. Lovecraft (1890–1937) featured the lost continent in his revision of Hazel Heald's short story "Out of the Aeons" (1935). Mu appears in numerous Cthulhu mythos stories, including many written by Lin Carter.
- In Marvel Comics, the continents of Mu and Atlantis were destroyed by the Celestials. Their evacuation was aided by the Eternals.
- In Fredric Brown's short story "Letter to a Phoenix" (1949), the 180,000 year old narrator lists the six human civilizations he saw fall during his lifetime. Mu is the fifth of them (the last one being Atlantis).
- The 1967 Andre Norton novel Operation Time Search features a modern-day protagonist cast back in time, where he participates in a war between Atlantis and Mu.
- The 1970 Mu Revealed is a humorous spoof by Raymond Buckland purporting to describe the long lost civilization of Muror, located on the legendary lost continent of Mu. The book was written under the pseudonym "Tony Earll", an anagram of "not really". The book claimed to present a translation of a diary compiled by a boy called Kland found and translated by an archaeologist named "Reedson Hurdlop", an anagram of "Rudolph Rednose".
- "The Justified Ancients of Mu Mu", a fictional secret society in Eye in the Pyramid, the first book in the 1975 trilogy The Illuminatus! Trilogy by Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea
- Tom Robbins' novel Still Life with Woodpecker (1980) makes extensive reference to Mu.
- Alison Bailey Kennedy, an Editor-in-Chief of the cyberculture magazine Mondo 2000, published under the pseudonym of Queen Mu.
- In the manga version of Shaman King (1998–2004) the final rounds of the Shaman Tournament, as well as the Great Spirit ceremony, are held on the island (which is submerged and hidden by Patch Tribe rituals).
- The continent figures into the 2009 novel Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon.
- Mu features prominently in two Corto Maltese adventures - Under the Sign of Capricorn and Mu, The Last Continent
- In the manga called Nihonkoku Shouka (aka Japan Summons in English), the country of Mu was a large continental island that mysteriously transported off Earth over 12,000 years ago into a new world.
- Robert Plant, of Led Zeppelin, used the feather symbol of Mu on the sleeve of Led Zeppelin IV.
- The rock band MU (1971–1974), created by American rock guitar musicians Jeff Cotton and Merrell Wayne Fankhauser, took its name from the book The Lost Continent Mu (1931).
- The Justified Ancients of Mu Mu, an early name of the British pop music group KLF active between 1987 and 1992.
- Mu Empire is the name of the second track on Long Island post-hardcore band Glassjaw's second studio album, Worship and Tribute.
- The band The Grateful Dead named their second album, Anthem of the Sun from the Churchward book. In his book there is an instrument described to be made out of a skull that was used to perform the "Anthem of the Sun". See the book No Simple Highway by Peter Richardson, page 115.
- The SquareSoft (later Square Enix) video game released in Japanese markets as SaGa 3 (1991) and in the United States as Final Fantasy Legend III (1993) features a town known as Muu and situated on land flooded between the game's Past and (second) Present time phases.
- In Dragon Quest 3, produced by Enix (later Square Enix), the main character comes from a large continent in the pacific ocean called "Aliahan". Given that the land masses of this world share similar appearance and names to those on earth, this starting continent could very well be the lost continent of Mu.
- One of the levels in the 1993 DuckTales 2 videogame is set on the island of Mu.
- In Illusion of Gaia from 1993, Mu is one of the ancient ruin sites visited by player character Will, modeled in part on Easter Island. Like the real-world island, the Muian civilization fell due to a collapse of all natural resources, though some escaped via an underwater tunnel to found the Village of Angels while those left behind were mutated into the monsters on Mu by the Chaos Comet. When Will arrives there, Mu is a cursed land controlled by vampires.
- In Terranigma, the third game in the unofficial Quintet trilogy, alongside Soul Blazer and Illusion of Gaia, both Mu and Polynese are secret continents that may be resurrected towards the end of the first chapter of the game, once the main continents have been resurrected.
- The 1996 RPG Star Ocean features an alien race known as the Muah who originated from the lost continent on Earth.
- MU Online is a 2003 3D fantasy MMORPG developed in Korea and popular there, "based on the legendary Continent of MU".
- In the 2004 video game City of Heroes, Mu was a patron land of one of the ancient pantheons who opposed the Orenbegans, a civilization of magic users under the protection of a rival goddess. These civilisations destroyed each other in war, but descendants of the Mu were found and forced into service to the modern criminal organisation, Arachnos.
- Mega Man Star Force 2 from 2007 features a whole story of Mu, the lost FM technology that past civilizations built was found here. One of the antagonists (and later anti-hero) introduced in this game, Solo, also happened to be the last living descendant of the people of Mu.
- The Evil Within 2's character Father Theodore Wallace is leader of the Mu Center in the fictional town of Krimson. He can be found in a simulated idyllic town called Union which he tries to overtake as cult leader by worship of the flame.
- In the 2016 game Sid Meier's Civilization VI, Mu is used as one of the names of the continents generated by the game.
- ^ abChurchward, James (1926). Lost Continent of Mu, the Motherland of Man. United States: Kessinger Publishing. ISBN .
- ^Haugton, Brian (2007). Hidden History. New Page Books. ISBN . Page 60.
- ^ abDe Camp, Lyon Sprague (1971) . Lost Continents: Atlantis Theme in History, Science and Literature. Dover Publications. p. 153. ISBN .
- ^Brennan, Louis A. (1959). No Stone Unturned: An Almanac of North American Pre-history. Random House. Page 228.
- ^Witzel, Michael (2006). Garrett G. Fagan Routledge (ed.). Archaeological Fantasies. London: Routledge. ISBN . Page 220.
- ^ abLe Plongeon, Augustus (1896). Queen Móo & The Egyptian Sphinx. The Author. pp. 277 pages.
- ^Card J. Jeb (2018). Spooky Archaeology, Myth and the Science of the Past. University of New Mexico Press: Albuquerque pg. 130
- ^John Sladek, The New Apocrypha (New York: Stein and day, 1974) 65–66.
- ^ abcdefghijklmChurchward, James (1931). The Lost Continent of Mu. New York: Ives Washburn. Re-published by Adventures Unlimited Press (2007)
- ^ abChurchward, James (1926). Lost Continent of Mu, the Motherland of Man. United States: Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 0-7661-4680-4.
- ^Churchward, James (1926). Lost Continent of Mu, the Motherland of Man. United States: Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 0-7661-4680-4
- ^Churchward, James (1926). Lost Continent of Mu, the Motherland of Man. United States: Kessinger Publishing.ISBN 0-7661-4680-4
- ^"The Lost Continent Of Mu | Unariun Wisdom".
- ^Camp De Sprague L. (1970). Lost Continents, The Atlantis Theme in History, Science, and Literature p. 70–71. Dover Publications, Inc: New York
- ^Wauchope Robert (1962). Lost Tribes and Sunken Continents: Myth and Method In The Study Of American Indians, pp. 42–43. University of Chicago Press: Chicago and London.
- ^Camp De Sprague L. (1970). Lost Continents, The Atlantis Theme in History, Science, and Literature, p. 70. Dover Publications, Inc: New York
- ^ abBramwell, James (1939). Lost Atlantis.
- ^Kayıp Kıta Mu, presentation, Ege-Meta Yayınları, İzmir, 2000, ISBN 975-7089-20-6
- ^Kimura, Masaaki (1991). Mu tairiku wa Ryukyu ni atta (The Continent of Mu was in Ryukyu) (in Japanese). Tokyo: Tokuma Shoten.
- ^Schoch, Robert M. "Ancient underwater pyramid structure off the coast of Yonaguni-jima".
- ^Metraux, Alfred. Mysteries of Easter Island(PDF). Archived from the original(PDF) on 2008-04-06.
- ^Abramyan, Evgeny (2009). Civilization in the 21st Century(PDF). Russia: How to Save the Future?. Archived from the original(PDF) on 2012-01-18.
- ^ abDanver, Steven L. (22 December 2010). Popular controversies in world history : investigating history's intriguing questions. Santa Barbara, Calif.: ABC-CLIO. ISBN .;: 222
- ^"The Ryukyuanist"(PDF). The Ryukyuanist (57). Autumn 2002. Retrieved 1 January 2012.
- ^Lovecraft, Howard P. and Hazel Heald. "Out of the Aeons" (1935) in The Horror in the Museum and Other Revisions, S. T. Joshi (ed.), 1989. Sauk City, WI: Arkham House Publishers, Inc. ISBN 0-87054-040-8.
- ^Harms, Daniel. "Mu" in The Encyclopedia Cthulhiana (2nd ed.), pp. 200–202. Chaosium, Inc., 1998. ISBN 1-56882-119-0.
- ^Melton, J. Gordon (1999). Religious leaders of America: a biographical guide to founders and leaders of religious bodies, churches, and spiritual groups in North America. Gale Research. p. 91. ISBN . Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- ^Nield, Ted (2007). Supercontinent: Ten Billion Years in the Life of Our Planet. Harvard University Press. p. 56-57. ISBN . Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- ^"Duck Tales 2". Retroplay. 1993. Retrieved 1 September 2014.
- ^"MU Online | Medieval Fantasy MMORPG". MU Online English Official Site.
This audio file was created from a revision of this article dated 4 January 2014 (2014-01-04), and does not reflect subsequent edits.
- MAP01: "Stranger on a Hill" by Björn Lynne
- MAP02: "A Jetty on the Lake" by Björn Lynne
- MAP03: "Sunny Morning" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP04: "A Presence in the Air" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP05: "Return to Witchwood" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP06: "Exploration" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP07: "The Faery Woods" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP08: "Medieval Banquet" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP09: "A Lifetime of Moments" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP10: "Engage" by James Paddock (Jimmy), from the Harmony MIDI Pack
- MAP11: "Hall of Faces" by Jimmy, from the Harmony MIDI Pack
- MAP12: "Fallen Sun" by Jimmy, from Reverie
- MAP13: "Farewell Old Friend" by Jimmy
- MAP14: "Understatement" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP15: "Full Thrust" by Jimmy, from SmartCTF
- MAP16: "Gates of Infinity" by Jimmy, from Trauma
- MAP17: "Granite" by Pendulum, sequenced by Jimmy
- MAP18: "Something In The Cave?" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP19: "Great Hall" by Jimmy, from Speed of Doom
- MAP20: "Guardhouse" by Jimmy
- MAP21: "Victorious Days" by Bjorn Lynne
- MAP31: no replacement
- Sonos bluetooth adapter
- Sky factory 3
- Cooler door closer
- Low cost interlock
- Mind wipe ark
- Period memes clean
- Football helmets graphics
- Flexible survival monsters
It may not function as expected. Check the discussion for info about its current state. See articles under construction for other incomplete articles.
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February 10, 2021
Lost Civilization is one of the playable adventures in the game For The King.
Travel to a lost world and uncover its ancient secrets in an epic quest to save the Kingdom.
"The Great Convergence"
Once in an age, three or more planets will become aligned with the sun at the same time, causing the mythical "Great Convergence". This hasn't happened in millennia, but if legends are to be believed, the Great Convergence has cataclysmic or world altering effects on Fahrul.The planets are aligning once again and a Great Convergence is looming upon the realms. The kingdom's astrologers are in a desperate panic...it is much too son...by at least a century. To make matters worse there are rumblings of strangers from places unknown roaming the land and peculiar happenings close to home becoming more frequent... Is this the end of Fahrul?
- Queen Rosomon
- "The is the first planetary alignment of our age. A time of bizarre proceedings, and dark omens. We must work together to keep Fahrul stable, and peacful. My aide Hildebrant has been charged with this task. Please assist him however you can."
- "Thank you for your help, adventurers. I'm working on a lead, but first I need you to check out some commotion at the local Farmer's Market that could be related."
- Quest Objectives
- Solve the County Fair in the Guardian Forest.
The Lost Civilization DLC introduced two new playable characters: