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The history of Atlantis

Author: Lewis Spence
Publisher: Mineola, N.Y. : Dover Publications, 2003.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
The romantic legend of Atlantis has captured imaginations since Plato first told of a glorious island in the Atlantic that sank beneath the waves. Speculation has abounded ever since, and scientists who formerly dismissed the possibility of that Atlantis ever existed were obliged to reconsider--partly because of the author of this book. Lewis Spence (1874-1955) wrote five books about Atlantis, and this one is  Read more...

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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Lewis Spence
ISBN: 0486427102 9780486427102
OCLC Number: 51053554
Notes: "An unabridged republication of the 1968 Crown Publishers reprint of the work originally published in 1926 by Rider (Wm.) & Son, Ltd., London and New York"--Title page verso.
Description: 238 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Contents: Difference between Atlantean and other Histories --
Inspiration in Historical Science --
The Uses of Analogy --
Foundations of Atlantean History --
Plato's Narrative not Allegorical --
The Value of Tradition --
The Atlantean Complex --
Special Needs of Atlantean Research --
The Sources of Atlantean History --
The Writings of Plato --
Plato's "Timaeus" and its Contents --
His "Critias" --
His Account of Atlantis, its Topography, its Capital City, Population, Canals and Temples --
Its Government, Economy and Religion --
The Sources of Atlantean History --
From the Fourth Century B.C. Onwards --
Diodorus Siculus on Amazons and Atlanteans --
Theopompus's Account --
The Kings of Atlantis --
Strabo's Isle of Meropis --
The Continent of Saturnia --
Marcellus on Atlantis --
Arnobius' Reference --
Summary of Remaining Classical Data --
Platonic and Alexandrian Notions of Atlantis --
Modern Theories from the Sixteenth Century onward. Theories of Olivier, Rudbeck, Bailly, Comte de Corli, Voltaire, Delisle de Sales and Bartoli --
Theory that Atlantis was America --
Atlases of Atlantean Geography --
The Theories of Kircher, Ginguene, Buffon and De La Borde --
Atlantean Historical Sources Examined --
Modern Theories on the Subject of the Sources --
Plato's Statements Regarding the Authenticity of His Account --
Plato in Egypt --
Solon's Egyptian Visit --
Connection of Sais with Athens --
Archaeological Facts square with Plato's Account --
Clue to the Historical Character of Plato's Account --
The Peplum of Pallas --
Justification of Plato's Statements --
Atlantean Associations in the Odyssey --
Testimony of Classical Authors Regarding Impassibility of Atlantic Ocean --
Moorish Evidence --
Details of the "Critias" --
Elephants and Coconuts in Atlantis --
Worship of the Bull --
The "Critias" not an Allegory of the Persian War --
The Account of Diodorus --
Amazons and Azilians --
Classical "Geological" Opinion regarding Atlantis. Philip Smith on Atlantean Theory --
Plato's Chronology --
M. Butavand on the same --
The Geography of Atlantis --
Geological Proof of its Existence --
The Quaternary Epoch --
M. P. Termier's Essay --
Plato's Theory "Highly Probable" --
Prof. Schuchert on the Azores --
Prof. Scharff's Belief in Atlantean Man --
Prof. Hull on Beginnings of Life in Atlantis --
"Comparatively Recent" Land-mass in the Atlantic --
Mr. W. H. Babcock's Objections --
Atlantic Soundings --
Mr. Babcock on Submarine Banks --
"A Considerable Island above Water" --
Evidence from Biology --
Animal Life on the Azores --
European Character of their Reptilia --
Slugs and Moths of the Atlantic Islands --
Author's former Conclusions Tabulated --
The Sargasso Sea --
The Site of Atlantis --
The Races of Atlantis --
Was Atlantis Inhabited? --
The Gsnitch Stadium of Penck and Bruckner --
The Azilian Race --
Discovery of its Remains in France --
Its Culture --
Its "Alphabet" --
Spread of the Azilian Race --
Pygmy Flints --
The Capsian Culture. Whence Came the Azilians? --
Period of their Arrival Agrees with Plato's Date for Atlantean Invasion --
The Cro-Magnon Race --
"Palaeolithic Greeks" --
Their Extraordinary Art --
A High Type of Humanity --
Belief in a Future Life --
Painting and Sculptures Superior to the Egyptian --
Successive Invasions of Europe from the Atlantic --
Professor Macalister on Extra-European Origin of the Cro-Magnon Race --
Relationship with the Guanches of the Canary Islands, the Vestiges of Atlantis --
Ripley's Theory of the Cro-Magnon Language --
Origin of Cro-Magnon Man --
Of Azilian Man --
The Stone Age in Atlantis --
Can Best be Reconstructed from the Life of its Colonists in Europe --
Area and Population of Atlantis --
Early Human Society in Atlantis --
Temples the Centres of Life --
Costumes and Ornaments of Early Atlanteans --
Tools and Weapons --
The Solutrean Culture --
Stone Houses Built --
Return of Glacial Conditions --
Magical Implements --
Atlantis the Home of Mighty Artistic Impulses. Knowledge of Metals not Essential to Civilisation --
Atlantean Civilisation Degenerated in Europe --
Did a Great Prehistoric Civilisation Exist? --
Partly Corroborated by Archaeology --
Cultural Changes in Atlantis --
Atlantis Itself Invaded by an African Race --
Result, a Grosser Religious Outlook --
When did Atlantis Sink? --
Centuries of Culture behind Aurignacian Art --
The Kings of Atlantis --
The Sons of Poseidon --
Atlas --
Uranus and His Children --
Diodorus applies War of Gods and Titans to Myth of Atlantis --
Cultural and Political Changes in Atlantis --
No Ice Age in Atlantis --
Azilians the Race of Poseidon --
Poseidon the Culture-bringer --
His Original Home --
Sketch of Historical Events in Atlantis --
The Several Cataclysms --
Poseidon, and Tales Similar to His Myths --
Diodorus on the Kings of Atlantis --
Basilea "The Great Mother" --
Atlas the Astrologer --
City of Atlantis Probably Founded in His Reign --
Question of Atlantean Architecture --
Azilian Structures in Spain. Anglo-Spanish School of Archaeology --
Atlantean Architecture in Andalusia --
Saturn and Jupiter Dispute the Throne of Atlantis --
The Elements of Unrest Begin to Manifest Themselves in Jupiter's Reign --
Poseidon, Atlas, Saturn and Jupiter Possibly the Founders of Dynasties --
Not Gods, But Men Deified after Death --
Zeus Displeased with the Atlanteans --
End of Plato's Account --
Dissensions at Home Diverted by Conquest Abroad --
Invasion of Europe --
Atlantis in Britain --
Corroboration of Atlantean Conditions from Welsh and Irish Literature --
Analogies of Cataclysm from these Sources --
The "Whirling Castle" --
The Atlantean Circular Plan --
Atlantis and Avallon --
Plato's Account and the Welsh San Greal --
Submerged Localities of British Celts --
Atlas, Albion and Iberius --
The Myth of Geryon --
British Parallels with Atlantis --
Plutarch on the Lesser Islands of Britain --
Atlantean Memories in Irish Tradition --
The Traditions of Atlantis --
Atlantean Tradition in Europe. The Isle of Seven Cities --
The Legend of Ys --
Dardanus --
Deucalion, the Greek Noah --
Atlantean Parallels in American Myth --
The Cataclysms of Aztec Tradition --
Peruvian and Brazilian Flood-Myths --
Brinton on American Tradition of Deluge --
A Mixtec Legend --
Mexican Myths --
Tlaloc Compared with Poseidon --
Divine Visitations on the Toltecs --
Quetzalcoatl the Culture-Bringer --
His Connection with Atlantis --
Compared with Atlas --
Life in Atlantis --
Reconstruction of Conditions on Atlantis --
Canals --
Desert Regions --
Architecture --
The Plan of the City of Atlantis --
The Pyramid an Atlantean Form --
Food-Supply --
Costume and Dress --
Literature and Writing --
The Azilian Alphabet --
Obviously Picture-Writing --
No Reason to Deny Atlanteans the Art of Picture-Writing --
Manners and Morality of Atlanteans --
Reminiscences of Their Profligacy in Early Myth --
The Atlantean State and Polity --
The Atlantean Laws Unchangeable. Atlantean Government Closely Associated with Religion, but also on a Feudal Basis --
Atlantis in a State of Armed Vigilance --
Atlantean Government unlike any of the "Classical" Governments of Antiquity --
It Resembles, however, Celtic Rule in Gaul and Britain --
The Religion of Atlantis --
Six-Yearly Rites Attending Deliberations of the Kings --
Immolation of the Sacred Bulls --
A Mexican Analogy --
The Bull-Cult of the Aurignacians --
Bull-Worship in Egypt and the Osirian Cult --
Spread of the Worship of Osiris-Apis throughout Europe to Britain --
An Atlantean Genesis for the Bull-Cult --
Plato's Account perhaps Sophisticated by Hellenic Practice --
The Bull the Beast of Poseidon --
A Provisional Atlantean Pantheon --
Poseidon's Origin --
The Definite Association of Atlas with his Brother Titans, the Tutelary Deities of Britain and Ireland --
Invasion of Olympus by Titanic Gods from the West, an Allegory of the Invasion of the Mediterranean Area by the Gods of an Alien Religion. Persistence of the Name of Atlas and His Island --
Notices of the Titanic Pantheon the Memorials of an Ancient and Powerful Religion --
Sanctity of the Western Oceanic Area to the Mediterranean Peoples --
Locality of the Fortunate Islands and the Gardens of the Hesperides --
The Idea of the Continued Existence of Souls after Death in the West arising out of the Memory of Atlantis --
The Location in the West of the Island of the Dead by the Peoples of Western and Mediterranean Europe a Proof that they Regarded it as the Ancient Home of their Religion and Culture --
Man's Paradise Always Regarded as that Spot Whence He Originally Came --
A Well-Founded Memory of the Former Existence of a Great Religion in the Atlantic Region --
The Atlantean Pantheon Associated with the Constellations --
The Idea of a Cosmic Symphony in the Writings of Plato --
The Association of the Atlantean Religion with Astrology --
Astrology of the Aztecs --
Probable Emanation from Atlantis --
The Aztec Tonalmatl. Equation of the Aztec Calendar-Gods with Members of the Atlantean Pantheon --
Quetzalcoatl the Inventor of the Mexican Astrological System --
His Western Origin --
The Older Eponymous Gods of Europe --
European Giant-Lore --
Connection of the Titans with Earthquake --
The Azilian Giant-Worshippers --
Battle of the Gods and Titans --
Appetite of the Titanic Gods Gives Rise to the Popular Conception of the Ogre --
Immolation of Human Beings Associated with the Atlantean Tradition --
Druidism Possibly the Last Phase of an Imported Atlantean Religion --
Atlantean Traces in Druidic Religion --
Theosophists and British Lore --
Animal Life in Atlantis --
Analogies from the Atlantic Islands --
The Climate of Atlantis --
Island-Names in the Azores Group --
Migrations of the Rabbit --
Atlantis as the Cradle of all Animal Life --
Migrations of the Eel, the Lemming and of Certain Butterflies to and from the Atlantean Area --
The Mesatlantic Area and its Biology --
The Elephant in Atlantis. M. Termier on Atlantean Biology --
The Colonies of Atlantis --
Atlantis in Africa --
Iberians as Atlanteans --
Possibility that Atlantis Survived after 9600 B.C. --
The Cabiri --
Did the Cabirian Cult Emanate from an Atlantis still Existing at about 3000 B.C.? --
Crete as a Colony of Atlantis --
Minoan Civilization Probably Modelled on that of Atlantis --
Bulls and Cave-Temples --
Aurignacian and Minoan Cave-Temples --
Egypt as a Colony of Atlantis --
Iberians in Egypt --
The Cult of Osiris and its Origin --
The Book of the Dead Probably of Late Aurignacian or Atlantean Origin --
Egyptian Embalming Derived from Aurignacian Practice --
The Atlantean Culture-Complex --
Every Civilization Distinguished by a Group of Cultural Manifestations and Practices --
Atlantean Culture-Complex Distributed from the Shores of Western Europe to those of Eastern America and throughout the Intervening Islands. Its Chief Elements Mummification, Witchcraft, the Pyramid, Head-Flattening, the Couvade, the Use of Triangular Stones, the Existence of Traditions of Cataclysm, etc. --
Mummification --
Witchcraft --
The Pyramid --
Head-Flattening --
The Couvade --
Tattooing --
The Thunder-Stone --
The Sacred Pick or Hammer --
The "Great Hand".
Responsibility: Lewis Spence.
More information:


The romantic legend of Atlantis has captured imaginations since Plato first told of a glorious island in the Atlantic that sank beneath the waves. Speculation has abounded ever since, and scientists who formerly dismissed the possibility of that Atlantis ever existed were obliged to reconsider--partly because of the author of this book. Lewis Spence (1874-1955) wrote five books about Atlantis, and this one is considered his best. Spence sifted through a tremendous body of research in fields from mythology and comparative religion to geography, geology, and archeology. The result is the most authoritative study ever published on the history, geography, animal life, government, and religion of this fabled island.


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