Atlantis: Beyond the Pillars of Hercules
There are many unsolved mysteries in this world of ours. Many, but not all, were made up to explain the unknown. Over the ages, many people have tried to prove these mysteries right, and in some cases, wrong. Many have claimed stories and eye-witness accounts to be hoaxes used to excite people and the media. Some mysteries might have some basis in fact, though. One of these mysteries, as many have thought for more than two centuries, is Atlantis.

The Origin
Atlantis was said to be a wonderful, wealthy community outside the Pillars of Hercules (Straits of Gibraltar), as written by the Greek philosopher/poet, Plato around 300-400 B.C. Plato wrote about Atlantis in his two dialogues, the Timaeus and the Critias. Plato also wrote that he had heard the story from Solon, who heard it from the Egyptian priests. Solon was another famous philosopher in Greece at the time.

Plato described that Atlantis was a wealthy and fruitful community with many advanced structures and cities. He said that the people of Atlantis and its royal line were very wealthy because they could mine the mineral orichalch, which was as expensive as gold. Atlantis also was said to be filled with beautiful trees and other natural scenery. The Atlantians were also said to be masters of warfare, and once tried to invade Greece. Eventually, the people of Atlantis became greedy, and thus the legend states the continent of Atlantis sunk under the sea.

Edgar_Cayce.jpgWhere it Might Be
There have been many ideas of where Atlantis might be, some being on land. Of course, Plato described that Atlantis was beyond the Pillars of Hercules, but some people have claimed it to be near or on other places; such as New Zealand, Spain, and Europe. The psychic, Edgar Cayce, predicted that it would be found off the coast of the island Bimini. What was found was really a line of rocks off the coast of Bimini, now referred to as the Bimini Road. Some say that Plato really meant that Atlantis was in the Mediterranean. Others, supporting the idea of Atlantis being in the Mediterranean, think that Athens might be part of Atlantis because the Minoan society was very advanced also. Recently, a large expedition went to Cyprus because a man thought he had good proof of it being there. There are many theories, but none of them have been considered conclusive.

How They Might Have Become Advanced
Unlike the theories of where Atlantis might be, not many people have theorized on how they came to be so advanced. W. Scott-Elliot thought that the Atlantians were advanced because they were visited by extra-terrestrials from Venus. Not many agree with this theory, but it is one of the only ones there is.

False ClaimsMap_of_Bimini_Road.jpg
Like other unsolved mysteries, Atlantis has had quite a few false claims where people would report to have found Atlantis just to get their “15 minutes of fame”. Edgar Cayce’s prediction of Atlantis being found near Bimini, for example, was a false claim because all that was found was a line of large rocks turned on their sides. Also, many countries have claimed that Atlantis is near them to increase the number of tourists.

Plato’s Mistake
Plato said that Atlantis was destroyed 9,000 years before his time and 2,500 miles off the Pillars of Hercules. Scientists have recently realized that this would be impossible, so Plato must have added an extra zero after each of these.

The Debris Theory
Recently, some have come to realize that maybe Atlantis is in all of the places it has been claimed to be. This theory is supposing that when Atlantis was destroyed, debris was scattered across the earth. This is the probably one of the most agreed theories, but of course, there is no way we can be sure that this is correct.

The Story to Be Told Forever
The story of Atlantis, unfortunately, has yet to be proven. By my guess, the story of Atlantis will be talked about forever, whether it is proven or unproven. Don’t give up yet, Atlantis fans, for this one unsolved mystery is still non-conclusive. For the latest theory go to:

Ellis, Richard. Imagining Atlantis. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., 1998.
King, David. Finding Atlantis. United States: Harmony Books, 2005.
Innes, Brian. Where Was Atlantis?. Austin: Steck Vaughn, 1999.
"Map of Atlantis". Online image. 2/22/07. <[[>./|>.]]
"The Destruction of Atlantis". Online image. 2/22/07. <[[>./|>.]]
"Edgar Cayce". Online image. 2/22/07. <[[>./|>.]]
"Bimini Road". Online image. 2/22/07. <[[>./|>.]]