Push off… for my purpose holds,
To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
Of all the western stars, until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down,
It may be that we will touch the Happy Isles,
And see the great Achilles, whom we know.
Many critics of Atlantis insist that, besides Plato’s dialogues, Timaeus and Critias, there is no other independent evidence provided by ancient authorities on the matter. Nothing could be farther away from the truth. Indeed, the ancient myths and traditions of most nations center on the legend of the Flood and on the destruction of Paradise, the original focus of Civilization that is no other than Atlantis.
Now, the Terrestrial Paradise – and not the Celestial one, by the way -is the Garden of Eden where Man originated and first rose above the beasts of the field. However, we agree that the Terrestrial Paradise, despite its unequivocal reality, has been spiritualized by many, and hence can hardly be invoked as “hard” proof of the former existence of Atlantis.
For that purpose, we gathered in the present chapter some passages of ancient historians who wrote on Atlantis and related matters, hausting from sources and traditions independent of the ones utilized by Plato. We do it in a schematic, listed way, in order to facilitate the comparison. Of course, the concise style adopted here impossibilitates any explanations, and the themes touched are more study guides than anything else. The reader interested in further details is encouraged to quest the original sources or, if incapable of that, to read the more detailed accounts in other works of ours.
- Proclus, a commentator of Plato’s works, affirms that Crantor too visited Sais, in Egypt, as Solon had done 300 years before. There, the Egyptian priests showed him a golden pillar inscripted with hieroglyphs that recorded in detail the history of Atlantis exactly as they had told it to his famous predecessor.
- Manetho, the Egyptian chronicler, confirms the existence of such pillars and claims that, shortly before the Flood, Thoth-Hermes inscribed in stelae (pillars) the epitome of the ancient wisdom, so that the ancient knowledge should not be lost in the cataclysm.
- Josephus, the Jewish historian contemporaneous with Christ, reports that Seth (Thoth?) “in order that wisdom and astronomical knowledge should not perish in the cataclysm.. made two pillars, one of stone the other of brick in which he inscribed this knowledge for posterity, said pillars existing in the land of Siriad to this day”.
- Herodotus (Hist. II:58) personally saw, in Tyre (Phoenicia), in a temple of Hercules, “two pillars, one of pure gold, the other of emerald, which shone with great brilliancy at night.” Such Pillars of Hercules were erected by the Phoenicians just about everywhere they settled. But they did it particularly at crucial straits linking two seas, as was the case of Gibraltar, the Bosphorus, etc. The twin pillars commemorated, according to experts, the two founders of Atlantis, Hercules and Atlas.
- Alexander, the Great, personally saw and inspected, according to his historians, many such giant pillars of gold bearing strange scripts in the extremities of India. He went beyond the pillars of Hercules and Dionysus as the limits of their exploits towards the Orient (the Indies), and even left his own pillars as a testimony of his feat. Now, Dionysus is the divine alias of Atlas, the elder twin of Hercules. So, just as we had the Pillars of Hercules and Atlas in Gibraltar, marking the western extreme of their ancient exploits, we also have their eastern counterparts in the extremities of the Indies, marking the true site of Atlantis.
- Plato affirms, in his Critias, that the Atlantean kings inscribed in golden pillars their laws, edicts and judicial decisions, in a strange ritual involving the sacrifice of a bull dedicated to Poseidon. This type of ritual is characteristic of the Indies, where it is called Gomedha This sacrifice commemorates the death of Paradise (Gomeda-dvipa), which seems to be no other than Atlantis itself. A well-known instance of such inscribed pillars in India is the Pillar of Delhi, erected by King Ashoka, to commemorate his victory over his enemies. Though made of steel, the Pillar of Delhi is a peerless technological feat of antiquity, one that many experts associate with Atlantis. The pillar is forged from a single piece of steel, and is stainless, having defied the centuries without any oxidation at all. No one in antiquity could have matched this feat of the Hindus, which certainly obtained this sophisticated technology in Atlantis.
- Another puzzling technology that proves the superior metallurgical skill of the Atlanteans is the “orichalch” that Plato mentions as covering the walls of Atlantis. Rather than the foolish idea of “mountain copper” – for copper ores, as indeed most metals, normally come from the mountains – the true etym of the name is as in the Latin spelling aurichalcum, that is, “golden copper”, or “golden bronze”. In reality the word pertains to brass, an alloy of copper and zinc that resembles gold, just as Plato states. Brass was only developed again in modern times, due to insuperable technological difficulties. And the secret of its technology was passed on by the Hindus, who got it directly from Atlantis, where else? The fact that Plato knew of it, and attributed its technology to Atlantis can, hence, hardly be doubted.
- Plato tells how the walls of Atlantis were clad with gold, silver, bronze, tin and orichalch. This fact attests Atlantis’ enormous mineral wealth, at an epoch when no one else had yet developed these sophisticate technologies. Bronze, an alloy of copper and tin, was used in enormous quantities during the Bronze Age. The sources of these metals and, particularly, tin, have never been adequately identified. The Koltepe mines in Anatolia (Turkey) were a puny affair, those of Tartessos (Spain) were purely legendary, and those of Cornwall (England) were discovered only after the Bronze Age had declined. All that tin traditionally came from the legendary “Islands of Tin”, the Cassiterides. These mysterious islands were also called Tarshish, Tartessos, “Islands of Metals”, etc..