Was there a real Atlantis?

by via HowStuffWorks

Sometimes Plato can be irritating, especially if you’re one of those people dedicated to uncovering the lost civilization of Atlantis. He wrote of its destruction some 9,000 years ago, but unfortunately for modern historians, he didn’t tell us much. Was it a continent? Was it a city? Plato can be maddeningly vague. He also has a tendency to muddy the waters by weaving literary license with fact. Characters he wrote of were real people — for example, Socrates, his teacher — but Plato inserted his own words. After all, he was a philosopher, not a documentarian.

Such is the case with his description of Atlantis. In his book “Timaeus,” the classical Greek philosopher tantalizingly places the location of the lost civilization in a real place, the Pillars of Hercules. This is what we now call the Strait of Gibraltar, off the coast of Spain. On the other hand, he loses some credibility when he mentions that the city was also populated by blood descendants of the sea and earthquake god Poseidon.

But perhaps it was never Plato’s intent to deceive or to challenge others to search for the lost city (continent?). Perhaps it wasn’t Atlantis that was lost to the ages, but Plato’s intent to present the story as allegory. At any rate, people have taken the ball and run with it.

via MORE . . .

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 801 other followers

%d bloggers like this: