Native Village
Youth and Education news
Volume 1    May 2011

Was Lost City of Atlantis Found in Spanish Marsh?
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Connecticut:  Richard Freund and his research team may have found the legendary island-city of Atlantis under a vast Spanish marsh.  Atlantis was described by Plato in 360 B.C. as having "in a single day and night ... disappeared into the depths of the sea."

They believe the city may be found in a vast Spanish marsh that dries out one month a year.

 Ancient standing stone marking

Drawing of Plato's Description of Atlantis

Freund's team used modern technology and old-fashioned reasoning to search for Atlantis. They started in 2008 with a satellite photo that appeared to be a submerged city in Spain's Dona Ana Park.

For the next two years, Spanish archaeologists and geologists worked with the team to explore beneath the mud flats by using radar images.  One radar image appeared very similar to Plato's 2,300 year old description of Atlantis.

"We found something that no one else has ever seen before, which gives it a layer of credibility, especially for archaeology, that makes a lot more sense," Fruend said.

Other evidence comes from ancient wood dating back to 440 B.C. A core sample shows a layer of methane which indicates that many living things all died at once.

"Finding this one layer of methane is a very telltale sign of a society that is destroyed in one fell swoop," he says. "This was in the middle of nowhere, and there was no methane layer found in the area except where we were working."

Adding to the Spain/Atlantis evidence: over 100 ancient Spanish cities built in Atlantis's image. Freund suggests these memorial cities were built by refugees as a tribute to their lost home.

The Spain/Atlantis theory was clinched by a nearby museum display of ancient standing stones taken from the area.  

In archaeology, "you follow the stones,"  Freund said.  "Certain types of stones give you clues about where certain types of things came from."

Carved on each museum stone is a symbol similar to Plato's drawing of Atlantis.

Previous searches for Atlantis focused on the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans and the Mediterranean Sea.

Plato described Atlantis as alternating rings of sea and land, with a palace in the center 'bull's eye'.

Many have claimed to "find" the lost city:  Russian scientists pinpointed a ruined town in the Black Sea; an American found man-made walls a mile deep in the Mediterranean; and Swedish researchers found it in the North Sea.

Even Google Earth users found Atlantis through lines resembling a city street grid off Africa's coast. Google explained, however, that the lines were actually left by a boat collecting data.

More excavations will take place at the Spanish site. Freund agrees his current findings won't end to the Atlantis debate.

"It's never like finding the Titanic. It's never like finding Tutankhamun's tomb. That's the way, in the best of all circumstances, that you find something intact," Freund

Fruend and his team's efforts were featured last month on a National Geographic TV special called  "Finding Atlantis."

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