According to recent news reports, Atlantis (which means “island of Atlas”) may have been found! On Sunday National Geographic aired Finding Atlantis. The special showed evidence that the fairytale city of Atlantis may actually exist, and that they may have found it. Explorers believe that it might actually be located beneath some marsh lands in southern Spain.
The legendary island has been the center of many books and films, but what exactly is Atlantis?
Atlantis was first mentioned by Plato. In his account:
Atlantis was a naval power lying “in front of the Pillars of Hercules”. The power conquered many parts of Western Europe and Africa around 9600 BC. After a failed attempt to invade Athens, Atlantis sank into the ocean “in a single day and night of misfortune”.
Scholars still dispute whether or not Plato’s account is fact or fiction, and how much of it was inspired by old traditions…like the Trojan War or the failed Athenian invasion of Sicily in 415–413 BC.
Authors have always been interested in the validity of Plato’s story, and have written about it throughout history. Most authors dispute and reject the idea that Atlantis was a real place. Author Alan Cameron states: “It is only in modern times that people have taken the Atlantis story seriously; no one did so in antiquity”.
Atlantis continues to inspire today’s entertainment from literature to films. The name Atlantis has become synonymous for any and all supposed advanced prehistoric lost civilizations.
Do you believe Atlantis was a real place? That it has now been found?