"I think we've found the best candidate for what was the beginnings of civilization," said University of Hartford in Connecticut archaeologist Richard Freund on local NBC television news.1 A recently aired National Geographic television special that focused on Freund's findings suggested that a certain coastal mud flat in southern Spain may hold the ruins of the lost city of Atlantis.2
What is really below the mud in Spain? And if it is Atlantis, how would it fit into human history?
Freund, along with an international team of archaeologists and geologists, used specialized imaging devices to see below the surface of the marsh, as well as below the surface of water off the Spanish coast. They were searching for stones laid out in concentric rings, which Plato described in his works Timaeus and Critias. And they found what they believe to be the makings of a city.
AOL News reported that what appear to be Atlantean memorial sites made of standing stones were important to Freund's research, "because refugees from the lost city would have built smaller-scale versions in tribute."3 Freund claimed to have discovered the "memorial cities" in central Spain, "which gives a layer of credibility, especially for archeology, that makes a lot more sense," he told Reuters.4
Whether or not these ruins were part of a maritime civilization named Atlantis is difficult to determine conclusively, but it is certain that the giant structures came from some ancient civilization that had expertise in working with very large stones.
The central puzzle in this news, however, is the timing of this ancient people's destruction, which, according to Plato, happened in a single day. The city was supposedly struck by a tsunami and has remained submerged ever since.
Sea level is known to have risen by more than 300 feet at the end of the last ice age, when large continental lakes catastrophically drained.5 The problem is that the evolutionary time assigned to the end of this ice age was 10,000 B.C. But the historical and archaeological information about Atlantis, and especially the post-Atlantean structures, indicate a date of only 1000 to 2000 B.C. This out-of-sync timing has apparently restricted more rigorous research into submerged offshore megalithic structures, of which there are hundreds around the world.
One solution to this dilemma would be to eschew the evolution-friendly date given for the ice age, which would bring the events into a biblically consistent timeframe. It is quite conceivable that, as demonstrated by the oldest, largest, and highest quality pyramids at Giza, the first post-Flood civilizations rapidly built large cities using advanced technologies, and Atlantis could have been one of them. Then, after some hundreds of years, a very large earthquake powered a tsunami that flattened Atlantis, much like coastal cities in Japan were devastated in March 2011.
Such an earthquake, and others like them, could also have triggered the breakup of nearby natural ice or earthen dams that held large lakes composed of glacial meltwater. When these lakes drained, Atlantis and hundreds of other cities around the world became permanently submerged.6 The written and archaeological evidence conflicts with the evolution's inflated ice age date assignment, but fits just fine within the historical framework of the Bible.
- Finding Atlantis. NBC Connecticut. Posted on youtube.com March 10, 2011, accessed March 17, 2011.
- Finding Atlantis. National Geographic. Video posted on channel.nationalgeographic.com. Accessed March 17, 2011.
- Holewa, L. Was Lost City of Atlantis Found in Spanish Marsh? Aol News. Posted on aolnews.com March 13, 2011, accessed March 18, 2011.
- Howard, Z. Lost city of Atlantis, swamped by tsunami, may be found. Reuters, March 12, 2011.
- Thomas, B. 'New' Flood Theory Echoes Creation Research. ICR News. Posted on icr.org December 21, 2010, accessed March 18, 2011.
- Eight megaflood sites are listed in Oard, M. 2011. Two more late Ice Age megafloods discovered. Journal of Creation. 25 (1): 4-6.
* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.
Article posted on March 23, 2011.