Feeds

Satellite photos pinpoint 'Atlantis'

Southern Spain this time

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

In news that has stunned the world, a scientist announced this weekend that he had found the lost city of Atlantis. Dr. Rainer Kuehne says that satellite images of southern Spain show the remains of a city clearly matching Plato's description of Atlantis.

Break out the champagne and party on the streets. Lobby Parliament to name today 'Atlantis Day' and declare it a public holiday. The roots of our civilisation have been found. Or maybe not.

Actually, Atlantis has been found quite often. In 2003 a research thought he'd found it off the coast of France, sunk to the bottom of the sea during the geological upheaval at the end of the Ice Age. Other theories hold that Antarctica is in fact Atlantis. In 2001, the Straits of Gibraltar were named as a likely site. And so it goes on.

The satellite images, pictures of a salt marsh near Cadiz, show two features that if you squint at them a bit, look sort of rectangular, and something that could be part of a ring running around the structures, if you were not being fussy about it being especially circular.

But the picture is a really good match for the description. Honest. Plato describes an island, or nesos, five stades (an ancient unit of measurement, thought to be around a tenth of a mile) in diameter that was surrounded by concentric rings, and an circular outer wall 100 stades in diameter.

"We have in the photos concentric rings just as Plato described," Dr Kuehne told BBC News Online.

Atlantis also had a huge temple, built for "Poseidon himself, a stade in length, three hundred feet wide, and proportionate in height, though somewhat outlandish in appearance," according to Plato's text. Kuehne suggests that the rectangular structures are the remains of the temple of Poseidon and another built to Cleito and Poseidon.

But isn't Atlantis supposed to be an island? The myth of the island grew up from a mistranslation of the Greek word nesos, Kuehne says. Atlantis was actually a coastal region in Spain that was destroyed by a flood between 800 BC and 500 BC.

Hold on, the concentric rings in the pictures are bigger than Plato suggested. This, Kuehne says, is either because Plato was underplaying the size of the city, or because the stade is bigger than scientists think, in which case it fits perfectly.

We'd like to offer a third suggestion. This is not Atlantis.

Our theory has some solid backing from a chap called Tony Wilkinson, an expert in the use of remote sensing in archaeology at the University of Edinburgh. He told the BBC "A lot of the problems come with interpretations. I can see something there and I could imagine that one could interpret it in various ways. But you've got several leaps of faith here."

Kuehne says that he'd like to excavate the site, and is hoping to attract enough scientific interest to mount an expedition. We wish him the best of luck. ®

Related stories

Black helicopters hover over Martian surface
Area 51 hackers dig up trouble
First smileys date back to time of Plato, apparently

Related link

The BBC story, with pictures

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
MEN WANTED to satisfy town full of yearning BRAZILIAN HOTNESS
'Prettier, better organised, more harmonious than if men were in charge'
Cops baffled by riddle of CHICKEN who crossed ROAD
'Officers were unable to determine Chicken's intent'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
Drunkards warned: If you can't walk in a straight line, don't shop online, you fool!
Put it away boys. Cover them up ladies. Your credit cards, we mean
Why your mum was WRONG about whiffy tattooed people
They're a future source of RENEWABLE ENERGY
Murder accused DIDN'T ask Siri 'how to hide my roommate'
US court hears of cached browser image - not actual request
Chomp that sausage: Brits just LOVE scoffing a Full Monty
Sales of traditional brekkie foods soar as hungry folk get their mitts greasy
prev story

Whitepapers

A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.