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ATLANTIS & the Atlantic Ocean

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Author Topic: ATLANTIS & the Atlantic Ocean  (Read 37224 times)
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« Reply #285 on: December 27, 2008, 11:13:59 pm »

Names, Schools, and Illiteracy

Surnames are seemingly unimportant to the Azorean. They will take
any surname that seems appropriate. Family members will often
have different surnames within one household. The wife sometimes
will take her husband's last name and quite often she will not. The
oldest son will take his father's last name while the next son will
take the mother's maiden name. Nicknames are common and many
are stuck with them for life.150

Education has no priority in a peasant society. The primary concern
of the peasant family is survival and that means everyone works to
assure it. No advantage is seen by going to school, and in fact, the
peasant feels that it is a detriment in that it takes the child away
from his responsibility at home. Schools have been available though
for those who are interested. The Portuguese government through
the centuries has never fully supported public education;
consequently, there is a very high illiteracy rate in the Azores.151 
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« Reply #286 on: December 27, 2008, 11:14:17 pm »

Family, Village, and Island

In the Azores there is a hierarchy of loyalty. One's first loyalty is to
the family. It is the most important socio-economic unit in which
every member is expected to do his or her share to strengthen the
family's stability and well-being. The father is the head of the family
and makes the important decisions. Land and farm animals are
passed along to the each generation. This provides continued security
for the family members.152 

The Azoreans second loyalty is to the village which consists of a
network of families many which are interrelated by marriages. When
tragedy strikes one the village families, the rest of the village
contributes aid in the form of food, work, and care.153 

After the family and the village, the Azoreans next loyalty is to the
island on which he or she lives. Each island has a certain uniqueness
about it. The nationality of the settler is different; the industry,
topography, and religious celebrations are different. Dialects differ
too. The people of Sao Miguel have a harsher accent because of their
stronger Iberian heritage as compared to the Flemish-settled islands
where the spoken tone is softer and the language more sophisticated.
The Portuguese language throughout the Azores is different from the
mainland in tone, words, and style. The Portuguese spoken in the
Azores is an older and more conservative form because of the
archipelago's isolation.154
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« Reply #287 on: December 27, 2008, 11:14:40 pm »


Azoreans are fond of music and dance. The viola is the dominant
instrument which is a guitar-like mandolin. In Terceira, the viola is a
little larger in size, and Spanish-like, because of the influence of the
Spanish occupation of the island, 1583-1643. The other islands have
the "viola dos dois coracoes" which is a guitar that has two heart-
shaped holes instead of one the large round whole in the middle of
the body of the instrument. It has 12 strings which is very similar to
the modern 12-string folk guitar. It is not uncommon for the man of
the house to play and sing after the family's evening meal for
relaxation and entertainment.155

Azorean folksongs are descriptive and colorful in keeping with the
tradition of the medeival troubador. They are about the joy and the
rigors of life. Verses for these songs are mostly improvised at the
moment of playing. This improvisation can become a contest between
singers which the Azoreans call "odesafio."156

The chamarrita is the folk dance of the Portuguese and is similar to
the traditional European folk dances. Usually the men and women
begin the dance in two separate lines, they circle, and then pair up.
The caller instructs the dancers on each move. The chamarrita is a
family dance enjoyed by all.157

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« Reply #288 on: December 27, 2008, 11:15:01 pm »

Religion, Superstition, and Witchcraft

Almost all Azoreans are Catholic, but there are Protestants and a
few Jews among the population. The islands were found under the
religious-militant organization, the Order of Christ, under Henry's
command. Cabral, the discoverer of the islands and first captain-
donatary, was a priestly knight within the order. The islands had
monks, friars, and priests among the first settlers, and they built
churches, chapels, monasteries, and convents.

The Azorean people were far removed from the events of the
Protestant Reformation and consequently were little-affected by it.
The Spanish occupation of the Azores came also at the time of the
Inquisition. The Azoreans opposed the Spanish presence, and
consequently the Inquisition. The Spanish were fearful of a revolt
and never enforced the Inquisition.158

Because of the Azorean's subjection to natural calamities, starvation,
and isolation, and their lack of education, it is understandble that the
Azoreans would have strong religious convictions and would turn to
superstition and maybe pagan witchcraft in times of trouble.159 They
have a belief in evil spirits, evil eyes, witches, magical potions, and
omens. For example, a piece of deerhorn hung around the neck of a
newborn is to ward off evil spirits until the infant gets christened.
They believe that a baby could get colic for three months by hanging
diapers in the moonlight.160

The following can cause bad luck: hurt someone's foot; knives that
are crossed at the table; walking over straw in the shape of a cross;
leaving liquid in a cup; and laughing on Friday. The following can
bring good luck: meeting a goat or frog on the road; salt melting is an
ill-person's hand; spider spinning a web; and spitting on a comb or
playing cards.161

In times of struggle promises are made to God or to patron saints.
Many Azoreans will promise to do some type of penance which
usually is praying at a certain chapel. Some promise to walk around a
church singing hymns.162 Curiously enough, Christopher Columbus
was involved in one such promise during his return voyage from the
new world.
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« Reply #289 on: December 27, 2008, 11:15:18 pm »

One could say that Columbus was nearly Portuguese. He lived and
studied navigation in Portugal, spoke mostly Portuguese, and
married a Portuguese woman. On his return trip to Europe in 1493,
having just discovered the new world, his ship met a terrible storm,
and his crew, having a few Portuguese, made a promise to God that
they would perform an act of obedience if He would deliver them
from the calamity.163   

Here they are returning with the greatest news of the age, and their
first European stop is the Azores. They land at the island of Santa
Maria, and they walk to a chapel for prayer dressed only in their
shirts. That was their promise to God. The islanders saw this and
listened to their tale of a new world, and thought they were crazy.
The crew was promptly arrested. Columbus had to threaten to raid
the town to free them.164 

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« Reply #290 on: December 27, 2008, 11:15:36 pm »

Azorean Festivals

The Azores are quite famous for their annual festivals or  "festas."
The festa honors some patron saint, such as St. Peter or St. Anthony.
Some festas focus on the Virgin Mary and Jesus. These celebrations
originated from promises made by Azoreans in times of need or
because of miracles. For example, the Festival of the Lord of Holy
Christ of Miracles is celebrated at Ponta Delgada each spring. A statue
of a suffering Christ is paraded and honored because it is believed
that this particular image caused a miracle in the 17th century. 

The Festival of Our Lady of Miracles is celebrated at Terceira
because of a promise from the people asking the Holy Mother to
deliver them from an invasion by the Spanish in the 17th century.
The Festival of the Holy Spirit is the most common festa. It
commemorates the feeding of the poor by St. Elizabeth of Hungary.
There is a coronation, a procession, and a feast for everyone.165
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« Reply #291 on: December 27, 2008, 11:16:01 pm »

Azorean Bullfighting

Bullfighting began in Greece and was adopted by the Romans who
transferred it to the Iberian Peninsula. The Muslims used men on
horseback to fight the bulls which evolved into the practice of using
cape and sword, the Spanish way. Bullfighting first appeared on the
island of Terceira in 1588. It is a "bloodless" affair with both the
bullfighter and bull surviving the best they can.166 There is another
type bullfighting which is also done on Terceira and is called
"tourada da corda" or roped-bull baiting.

In modern history, spring and early summer is the time for branding
cattle and with this is the battle of man and beast competing to see
who is the strongest. Also, with branding time comes man's rite of
spring in which he demonstrates his maleness to the opposite sex.
Thus, we have the background for tourada da corda.

In tourado da corda a 250 foot cord is tied to the neck of bull with
several men holding the other end. The perplexed bull is released in
town and is chased and tormented with umbrellas and other such
raiment. Azorean men test their courage against the bull's fickle
disposition. Some get hurt, but it is a joyous celebration which
everyone in town attends. The cord incidentally is the one way the
bull is brought under control when need be.167 
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« Reply #292 on: December 27, 2008, 11:16:34 pm »

Important Historical Events

Dr. James H. Guill of Tulare, California is an American expert on the
history of the Azores. His 1972 publication of A History of the Azores
Islands and his 1993 work, A History of the Azores Islands:
Handbook, are two of the only English language histories available.
Any student of the islands should certainly have the latter work for
reference. Incidentally, there are no modern histories of the Azores
in Portuguese which is surprizing.

The Azores, because of its natural setting in the Atlantic, has
always been a resupply depot and a trading station for Atlantic
shipping. Horta, Angra, and Ponta Delgada harbors were in constant
use by ships of all nations even during wartime. Many types of
people have put ashore at these ports and have left something of
themselves there.168

The French, English, and pirates of all types raided the Azores and
attacked Spanish shipping along the coast.169 Angra, Terceira was the
center of government for the Azores, and when the Spanish took
control of Portugal in 1580, they wanted to claim the Azores as well.
On July 25, 1581, the Terceirans along with other Azoreans fought
the Spanish in a bloody land battle where cattle were released by the
Azoreans to disperse and stop the invaders.170

Undaunted, fifty Spanish ships bombarded the island with cannon.
The French sent troops to help the Azoreans, but the Spanish forces
prevailed. Soon though the Azoreans rejected the authoritarian rule
of the Spanish governor and were supported by 7,000 French and
English troops and 70 ships. Spain sent a fleet of ships and won the
battle. Another skirmish on land followed, but this time the Spanish
won. They held the Azores in what is called The Babylonian Captivity
of 1580-1642.171

The Azores were involved in the Portuguese Civil War which lasted
from 1820 to 1833. The Azoreans supported a constitutional
monarchy and repelled invaders from opposite side in 1829. This
resulted in a government for the Azoreans under the Portuguese
crown. The king gave them the latitude to make most local
governmental policy themselves.172

To end this discussion on the history of the Azores Islands, the
Dabney family of Boston needs to be mentioned. Various members of
the family served as U.S. Consul to the Azores through the 1800's.
Their consulate was in Horta, Faial, and they were closely involved in
commerce between the U.S. and the islands. The family had their
own ships, and they made major contributions to the islands. They
supported the whaling enterprise and were involved in connecting
the islands by submarine cable. Also they helped to erect a
breakwater at Horta which was extremely important to protecting
the habor.173

While Charles W. Dabney was U.S. Consul in the late 1850's, there
was a famine in the Azores. He had 43,000 bushels of corn shipped
to help alleviate the problem. In1858, he distributed at his own
expense wheat and Indian corn to 800 needy people on the island of
Pico with each receiving 1/2 lbs. of food daily for four months. In
1859, he solicited friends and countrymen in Boston to pay for
10,000 bushels of corn. He was praised by the Azoreans as seen in
this excerpt from an  official government statement: "This corn was
transported in the barque 'Azor' which he owned, free of cost; and he
also refused to accept any compensation for the use of his granaries,
and landed the corn at his own expense."174
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« Reply #293 on: December 27, 2008, 11:18:53 pm »

The City of Brass, by Egerton Sykes (a summary)

The late Mrs. Whishaw held a opinion in her book; "Atlantis in Andalucia", London, 1930, that in the days of far off Atlantis, the copper ore from the mines of Ro Tinto was shipped to the Motherland from the Port of Niebla on that river. She also considered that the use of the ores from that area initiated the pre-bronze age.

"Recent investigations suggest to me that orichalcum, that now unknown metal was used to cover the exterior surface of the great temple of Atlantis, as mentioned by Plato, may have been shinning sheets of brass."

The term orichalcum meant mountain brass, and may well have been applied to a whole series of metals of varying color, ranging from bright red to palest yellow.

"In essence the tale of the City of Brass is of an expedition to the Cyrenian desert in search of a fabled city of the dead, packed with treasure."

The stories about City of Brass include: The Arabian Nights, who traded and fought with the Cathay, Indies, the Middle east, and Lybia which is like the voyages of Hakluyt, London, 1589-1600. "After hearing the recital of a desert dweller whose grandfather actually saw the city, the party leave on their travels. About half-way, they find an equestrian statue in the sands, which when cleared of obstruction swings round on a pivot and points in the direction of the city. This statue recalls on the one hand the swing figures on the chariot of Wang Ti, the legendary Emperor of China which always pointed south, and also the equestrian statue found on the Island of Corvo in the Azores, by the Portuguese discoverers in the 15th Century, which was broken up for shipment to Lisbon and never seen again. The city when sighted, proved to have two towers covered with sheets of shinning Andalusian brass or copper, which was said to be equal to gold in value. After climbing the walls which were of black marble, the leader of the expedition found yet another brass equestrian statue, which actuated the mechanism opening the gates. Inside there was a staircase of different colored marbles, recalling that at Tiahuanaco." (Bellamy, H. S. 'Built before the Flood, London, 1946)

"The city was found to be tenanted solely by the shriveled bodies of the dead, and by the mummy bodies of the Queen and her court. This story links with the expeditions of Count de Prorok ('Mysteries Sahara'-1, and 'In quest of Lost Worlds'-2), who sought the palace of Queen Tin Hanan of Atlantis, and also with the Queen Antinea of the romance by Benoit."

"Burton ('The Thousand and One Nights, 1885-1888, vol V. pages 1 to 36) considered this story to be related to that of Many Columned Iram, but I do not share this opinion as Iram is linked with the Tower of Babel and with the foundations of Semitic Myth and its relationship to Atlantis is very distant." About 1,300 years ago a tribe migrated from the Sahara across Africa to the Ife Country of Nigeria. "Frobenius (Kniturgeschichte Afrikas, Zurich, 1933)

reports that with them they brought memories of a temple of brass in their ancestral city, and built to their divine ruler a huge temple of Brass with stables to hold ten thousand horses. This temple was in existence until recent times, while the tribe also worshipped a Posidonean god."

"Here we have a trail leading from Rio Tinto Copper mines, through Atlantis to North Africa, and from there to Nigeria a journey lasting some twelve thousand years but always carrying with it proof of the Atlantean civilization and culture."

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« Reply #294 on: December 27, 2008, 11:20:54 pm »

Portions of the Atlantean world still visible today.
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« Reply #295 on: December 27, 2008, 11:22:05 pm »

Chinese Phantom on Corvo Island, Azores!
By Reverend Ferreira Moreno
Oakland California

Gavin Menzies, a retired Royal Navy officer, in his recently published book entitled "1421, The year China Discovered America", states that the Chinese also discovered the Azores several years before the Portuguese reached the islands.

Menzies, who apparently never went ashore on any of the Azores islands, rests his absurd claim on a piece of information he found while reading the 1638 Madrid edition of "Epitome de las Hist¢rias Portuguesas." Its author, whose correct name is Manuel de Faria e Sousa (1590-1649), wrote about a statue of a rider, carved on the summit of a mountain on Corvo island, but the inscriptions at the bottom "we could not understand."

That's all Menzies needed to brazenly declare that "the Corvo horseman was indeed a Chinese statue, perhaps even of the Emperor Horseback Shu Di."  Surprisingly, as Menzies adds, "corroborative evidence that the Chinese may have inhabited the Azores comes from Christopher Columbus, who reported a local story of non-European bodies washed onto the beach at Flores, some twenty miles south of Corvo."

With all due respect to Gavin Menzies, I'm unequivocally convinced he went overboard in his far-fetched conclusions. Neither Columbus nor Sousa ever sailed the channel between Flores and Corvo. The reference to the legendary equestrian statue is an impudent plagiarism from a fictitious story written by Damiao de G¢is (1502-74), who never saw the Azores , even from a distance. Corvo is the smallest of the nine Azorean islands, with an area of less than seven square miles, and an estimated population of 400 people concentrated into one little village.

Caspar Frutuoso (1522-91) and Ant¢nio Cordeiro (1641-1722), both Azorean natives and the islands' earliest historians, classified the story of the statue as merely "antigualha mui not vel", (a very notable legend).

Diogo das Chagas (1575-1667), another native historian, whose brother did parish work in Corvo, made no reference whatsoever to the statue or to Chinese bodies washed ashore "onto the beach at Flores ."

A pair of distinguished English brothers, Joseph and Henry Bullar, wrote a meticulous book about their stay in the Azores (December 1838 to May 1839). In their description of Corvo, there is no mention of the existence of the legendary statue. Raul Brandao (1867-1930), the masterful writer of "As Ilhas Desconhecidas", devotes a whole chapter of his stay on Corvo, (June 17 to 30, 1924), without even a whisper about the statue.

The remotest possibility of a statue having been left on Corvo by ancient Phoenicians or Carthaginians (Centuries before the Chinese), was considered a fable by reputable Azorean historian Manuel Monteiro Velho Arruda.

Consequently, I encourage Gavin Menzies to read the "Collection of Documents Pertaining to the Discovery & Settlement of the Azores ", in which Velho Arruda wrote that as far back as 1317 (a century before the Chinese), "even though at the time there were no official plan to discoveries, the Portuguese may or may not have ventured to sail across the Atlantic ."

The truth remains: Until the Portuguese reached the Azores , the islands were entirely deserted, with no signs of previous human presence.
On this historic account, the late Dr. Jacinto Monteiro (1923-2003) also provided valuable documentation. As other sources of information, I recommend the 15 volumes of "Arquivo dos A‡ores" (Archives), particularly the second (1880) and the Third (1881) volumes, where the phantom statue is debated.

Additional information to dispel Menzies' claim can be found in the 1967 and 1987 editions of "A Ilha do Corvo" by Carlos Alberto Medeiros, as well as in the third volume of "Hist¢ria das Quarto Ilhas" by Silveira Macedo and also in "Not¡cia do Arquip‚lago dos A‡ores" by Garcia Ramos, wherein it is stated that the statue on Corvo "is nothing more than an optical illusion and a caprice of volcanic rocks."

In his "Relat¢rio" about Corvo, Fr. Jos‚ Ant¢nio Camoes (1777-1827), a native of Flores , emphatically denies both the existence of the equestrian statue and the ability of anyone ever climbing to such an inaccessible spot. The renowned scientist Jos‚ Agostinho (1888-1978), after his 1945 archaeological research on Corvo Island, clearly pointed out that the alleged statue is simply a piece of rock which, from a distance, accidentally resembles a rider.

Furthermore and contrary to what Menzies attempts to convey in the appendix of his book, there are neither records nor traditions of underground ruins from old Chinese structures. Fr. Louren‡o Jorge (1882-1918), a native of Corvo who left a manuscript recently published in book form, makes no mention of Chinese ruins. In closing, Fr. Francisco Xavier, who was the pastor of Corvo island from September 2002 to September 2003 and is presently stationed at Five Wounds Church in San Jos‚, CA., assured me that he never heard of, much less sighted, the phantom statue.
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« Reply #296 on: December 27, 2008, 11:23:02 pm »

The Azores were supposedly unpopulated when they were oiginally discovered, so it would be irrelevant if there were ever any local tales about the statue. As for Damiao de G¢is (1502-74), who wrote the account, never even seeing the Azores, well, that is debatable.
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« Reply #297 on: December 27, 2008, 11:23:43 pm »

More about the statue. Manoel de Faria Sousa was the original chronicler of the statue, not Damio de Goes. And it would seem that, in the same area on Corvo where the Carthaginian coins were discovered, several stone buildings (since destroyed by earthquakes) once stood. That would seem to suggest that the idea that the Azores bore no signs of civilization prior to their discovery is a lie. At the very least, they were settled by the Phoenicians or the Carthaginians. Best case would be that they were settled by an even older civilization.
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« Reply #298 on: December 27, 2008, 11:25:26 pm »

Subject: Carthaginian Station on Azores 320 BC (Re: Navigation --
to the New
Date: 1997/06/21
Message-ID: <>
Newsgroups: soc.history.ancient,sci.skeptic,

Out of a book in German: Hennig, Richard: Terrae Incognitae, Leiden 1953,
Vol. III, Chapter 19 (p. 138 c.).



(Time c. 320 BC, ancient sources not available)

[now Hennig cites a swedish source in german translation, what is like all
other here further translated to english, the german version appended

From Goteborgske Wetenskap og Witterhets Samlingar 1778, I, 106:

"Some annotations to the voyages of the ancient, derived from several
Carthaginian and Cyrenian coins which were found in 1749 on one of the
Azores' islands.

By Johann Podolyn,

In November of 1749, after several days of storm from the west,
which caused part of the foundation of a destroyed stone building on the
beach of the island of Corvo to be exposed by the sea, a broken, black
clay container was discovered in which a lot of coins were found which
were brought to a monastery, where they were spread amongst the curious
natives. Part of the coins were sent off to Lisbon and from there later to
Father Florenz in Madrid.

The number of the coins found in the container is unknown, as is the
number of those sent to Lisbon. 9 coins arrived in Madrid, namely:

2 Carthaginian gold coins, No. 1 and 2
5 Carthaginian copper coins, No. 3 to 7
2 Cyrenian coins of the same metal, No. 8 and 9

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« Reply #299 on: December 27, 2008, 11:25:57 pm »

Father Florenz gave those coins to me as a present during my visitation of
Madrid in 1761 and reported that the whole discovery had not consisted of
more different kinds than those 9 and that these coins were selected as
the best preserved ones.

It is certain that the coins come partly from Carthage, partly from the
Cyrenaica. They are not very rare, except

[Drawing of the coins, obverse and reverse: The Carthaginian and Cyrenian
coins found in 1749 on the Azores. The two golden ones. Annotation by
Hennig: "These are two so-called serrati, according to Dannenberg's
Numismatics, Leipzig 1891, p. 155, striking is the location where they
were found."]

It is well-known that the Portuguese, first in the time of Alfons V., have
discovered the Azores. There is no clue for the assumption that someone
could have buried the coins there after that time. They must therefore
have arrived there together with some Punic vehicles, whereas I do not
dare to claim that the vehicle sailed there by intention, it could as well
have ended up there by coincidence.

Carthage and several Mauretanian cities sent off some ships over the
Strait of Gibraltar. Hanno's expedition to the African West Coast is
known, and one of these different vehicles might have been driven to Corvo
by constant wind from the east. Faria [annot. Hennig: Manoel de Faria e
Sousa: Epitome de las historias portuguezas, Madrid 1628] says in his
Portuguese History that the Portuguese, which then arrived first in that
country, found a horseman's statue by some foothills whose right hand
pointed to the west. This statue stood, according to Faria, on a stone
pedestal into which unknown letters were carved everywhere. The monument
was destroyed, which was a big loss. Blind eagerness was the cause for
this, as the statue was regarded as a pagan idol.

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