Where was Atlantis, Anyway?
It’s one of the first questions most people ask me. Let me tell you, it’s got a doozy of an answer. Are you sure you’re ready for this? There are many scholars who have advanced great theories. It’s hard to choose just one. My favorite answer is always D. All of the above.
Here’s why. There have been theories placing Atlantis in the Caribbean, the Azores, off the coast of Morocco, the Canary Islands, in Spain, the Mediterranean, and others. I mention these places chiefly because it stands to reason that the Atlantic Ocean is perhaps named for Atlantis. (Chicken… egg..?)
If you check out one of my previous blog post I introduce the two most famous resources for Atlantologists, Plato and Edgar Cayce. Both of them placed Atlantis in the Atlantic, though the Mediterranean theory has been long argued. But I digress.
Now to the nitty gritty of my “all of the above” theory. To first answer this question, the time period needs to be established. Edgar said the final downfall of Atlantis was around 11,900 BC. Just assuming this to be correct, it would mean Atlantis was in its decline at the end of the Ice Age. During this time, the oceans were about 300 feet shallower (or more shallow?) than they are today. There is also said to have been a rapid melting of the glaciers (sound familiar?) Which caused the oceans to rise suddenly… the great deluge.
If you check out the handy map I included in this post, borrowed from www.mappery.com, you can get a good look at the bottom of the ocean. Imagining the tops of the Mid Atlantic Ridge to be above water, it would be easy to imagine a chain of islands. Let’s just assume this same deluge also deepened the Mediterranean, then all the sites argued to be Atlantis there could have also been flooded at the same time as those in the Atlantic.
True, Atlantis has been seen as a single city. And scholars have been arguing for many long moons over which site was home to the fabled city. But can’t we all just get along? Let’s all hold hands and sing “We are the World” in chorus together, and imagine that perhaps there were many cities that made up one advanced culture. If we wrap our heads around the concept that these islands traded with one another as far away as the other side of the world. Then all of a sudden coffee from South America found in the tombs of Egyptian Pharaohs has a plausible link. And perhaps they traded knowledge of, oh, say pyramid construction for instance.
This is the world I have defined in my book series Shadows of Atlantis. I have used fantasy to showcase my research. Come and join me. The water is great ;)
Mara Powers is author of the Shadows of Atlantis saga.