posted on Jun, 11 2003 @ 07:43 PM
Actually, we have very good evidence that Atlantis was actually the island of Santorini off the coast of Italy. This was a major trading base for the
Minoan Empire. Santorini turned out to actually be a volcano that erupted violently in 1640, destroying a large section of the island, which certainly
left a lasting impression on the surviving Minoans.
The Minoan eruption happened around 1645 BC in the Late Bronze Age. It was one of the largest plinian eruptions in younger time. It erupted ca. 30-40
km3 rhyodacitic magma and is ranked VEI=6 (Volcanic Explosivity Index after Simkin and others, 1981). The eruption was followed by collapse of the
magma chamber that enlarged an existing caldera.
The height of the plinian eruption column is estimated 36-39 km (Pyle, 1990). It dispersed tephra throughout the Eastern Mediterranean and might have
led to global climatic impacts. Its deposits on Santorini consist of up to 50 m thick layers of white pumice and ash.
The eruption destroyed an inhabited and culturally high-developed island which perhaps might be the origin of the Atlantis legend as many scientists
believe. Since 1969 excavations near Akrotiri have brought to light an important marine Cycladic town famous for its well-preserved and magnificent
Many believe that Santorini once was Atlantis. But why ?
Atlantis is one of the oldest legends of the western civilisation. It talks about a prosperous land (or even a continent), or an island, that sunk and
disappeared into the sea. Atlantis has been assigned to almost every possible place on earth (even Antarctica...) and proofs that there are virtually
no limits for the human fantasy. Everyone favours 'his' Atlantis. Very few people, however, seem to know the actual sources of the legend and
discern physically and geologically possible facts from pure fiction. Obviously, fiction sometimes can be more stimulating and fascinating than
perhaps reality. First of all, Atlantis seems to stand for one of mankind's oldest dreams and myths, the one of the lost Golden Age.