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Atlantis Finally Found?

A scientist says he's found Atlantis. While this has been claimed many times before, Dr. Rainer Kuehne used satellite photos to spot a part of southern Spain with features that match the descriptions of Greek scholar Plato. This would mean Atlantis wasn't an island at all, but was an area of the Spanish coast that was destroyed by a flood between 800 BC and 500 BC.

Paul Rincon writes in bbcnews.com that the journal Antiquity, which funded the research, reports that satellite photos of a salt marsh region show two rectangular structures in the mud and parts of the rings that once surrounded them. Kuehne says, "Plato wrote of an island?that was surrounded by several circular structures?concentric rings?some consisting of Earth and the others of water. We have in the photos concentric rings just as Plato described." The rings were probably part of the structure created to mine the area for salt, a very valuable commodity in that time.

Werner Wickboldt first discovered the spot after combing through satellite photos of the area. He says, "This is the only place that seems to fit [Plato's] description." The Greeks may have confused the Egyptian word for "coastline" with one meaning "island." Atlantis was described as prosperous and most successful cities in ancient times were located along coasts, which is why so many of them have been lost underwater.

Kuehne thinks the rectangular features could be the remains of a silver temple devoted to the sea god Poseidon and a gold temple devoted to Cleito and Poseidon, both of which are described in Plato's Critias dialogue.

The measurements are larger than Plato described, but Kuehne thinks the Greek measurement, called the "stade," may have been 20% larger than we think it was. If so, one of the rectangles is almost exactly the same as the dimensions given by Plato for the temple of Poseidon.

The wars fought by Atlantis that Plato told about could describe their attacks on Egypt, Cyprus and the Levant during the 12th Century BC. The attackers, who are known as the Sea People, have never been identified.

Scientists have long been searching for Atlantis. While some searches are based on satellites, others are based on prophecy.

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