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ATLANTIS & the Atlantic Ocean

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Author Topic: ATLANTIS & the Atlantic Ocean  (Read 21463 times)
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« Reply #240 on: December 27, 2008, 10:39:44 pm »

Diodor of Sicily on Atlantis

It may seem that in justifying the legitimacy of questioning that what Plato persistently calls "an island" was actually one, we digressed too much into the realm of hypothetical assumptions, so let us turn now to the mention of Atlantis contained in the "Historical Library" by Diodor of Sicily. The opponents of the view that Plato's Atlantis really existed in the past, claim this mention cannot be seen as a reliable cross reference source because it was made three centuries after Plato, whose works Diodor, in all probability, was familiar with, but they prefer not to quote it, since its distinction from Plato's narration is all too obvious in its very structure (in particular, it does not contain any information about a war with the pre-historic Athens), in its geographical reference points and in the details of the myths quoted. By the same token, the enthusiasts of searching for Atlantis do like to quote verbatim passages from Diodor of Sicily because the recognition of some geographical details contained in Diodor's writings makes the substantiation of search for the remains of Atlantis not only on Crete or Santorin, but also on most of the islands they have their eye on, highly questionable.

Diodor of Sicily mentions Atlantis in passing as it were, but even the small passages containing at least some meagre indication of where it was situated, cast a serious doubt on the view that Plato's dialogues may have served as a source of inspiration and geographical information for Diodor. They also give us grounds to believe that he could not have been speaking of an island situated in the Mediterranean or "opposite" Gibraltar, but rather - of the outlying areas of the European continent along the whole Atlantic coast:

"...the Atlanteans, dwelling as they do in the regions on the edge of the ocean and inhabiting a fertile territory..." (5) <

"Their first king was Uranus, and he gathered the human beings, who dwelt in scattered habitations, within the shelter of a walled city... and he also subdued the larger part of the inhabited earth, in particular the regions to the west and the north." (Ibid.)

"...the kingdom was divided among the sons of Uranus, the most renowned of whom were Atlas and Cronus. Of these sons Atlas received as his part the regions on the coast of the ocean... " (Ibid.)

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