The Lost City of Atlantis

A historic site, or Plato's imagination?

Andrea Kowalski

How can we know if Atlantis exists?

History Behind the Mystery:

The mystery of Atlantis started solely by a classical Greek philosopher, mathematician and author named Plato. In 360 B.C., he wrote two dialogues named the Timaeus and Critias (Radford, 2014). In the dialogues, Plato states that Atlantis was led by half human and half god creatures (Drye, 2016), who led an evil empire striving for world domination by force (Radford, 2014). Atlantis was also believed to be a series of moats and islands, with high technology and power (Stewart, 2011). Plato's dialogue states, "...larger than Libya and Asia together...", showing that Atlantis used to be a large continent in the mid-Atlantic (Radford, 2014). Over time, the mystery of Atlantis has had many important points in history. In 1882, Ignatius Donnelly published a book about his belief in Atlantis' size and appearance (Abrams, 2012). Madame Blavatsky writes a book adding high technology and the Lermurian people to Donnelly's theory in 1888 (Abrams, 2012). Later in the 1920's and 1930's Edgar Cayce thought he had found people with past lives in Atlantis (Radford, 2014). Lastly, in the 1970's, Charles Berlitz theorized that Atlantis was connected to the Bermuda Triangle (Radford, 2014).

Modern Day Research:

For the past two millennia the audience of Atlantis have believed the city was fiction (Radford, 2014). Recent evidence has even disputed the possibility of Atlantis.


Bahamas: An ancient stone formation was found that had straight edges and corners and included regularly spaced blocks for 90 feet ("Lost City of Atlantis", 2016).


Coast of Cuba: In 2000, an oceanographer named Paulina Zelitsky found symmetrical structures a 1/2 mile down ("Where was Atlantis?", 2016).


Although possible evidence may have been found, there have been multiple locations where items have been found, and there is no other evidence before or after Plato's dialogues that definitely proves or mentions Atlantis (Abrams, 2012).

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Possible Theories:


~ Atlantis was a historical place destroyed by naturally occurring events (Stewart, 2011).


~ Atlantis doesn't exist and is only a story made up by Plato to convey a moral message (Drye, 2016).


~ Atlantis doesn't exist and is truly in the imagination of it's readers (Radford, 2014).

My Opinion:

After spending time finding evidence and the truth in Atlantis, I believe that Atlantis never really existed and was only in Plato's imagination. There is no other evidence other than Plato's dialogues (Drye, 2016) and sightings of the ancient city that have not been proved. Although many may use the Timaeus and Critias as evidence, there are many parts that when examined closely are not reliable. For example, the dialogues state that Atlantis is "...larger than Libya and Asia together..." (Radford, 2014). Although the bottom of the ocean remains much of a mystery, the sea floor has been spreading rather than contracting to support this theory about Atlantis (Radford, 2014). Also, no trace has been found even though oceanography and ocean floor maps have improved (Radford, 2014). To add on, Plato wrote many other dialogues and had a theme of writing with many literary devices (Abrams, 2012), and the story was written in a golden age of observation and discourse about the world (Stewart, 2011). Overall, I think that Plato's good use of literary devices have made people today believe his story was history. I believe Atlantis wasn't real and has been in Plato's imagination the whole time.

Works Cited:

Abrams, Dennis. The Lost World of Atlantis. New York: Chelsea House, 2012. Print.

Carroll, Robert T. "Atlantis." The Skepdics Dictionary. N.p., 2015. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://skepdic.com/atlantis.html>.

Drye, Willie. "Atlantis Legend -- National Geographic." National Geographic. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://science.nationalgeographic.com/science/archaeology/atlantis/#close>.

Lost City of Atlantis. History.com. N.p., 2016. Web. <www.history.com/topics/atlantis/videos>.

Myths of Atlantis. History.com. N.p., 2016. Web. <www.history.com/topics/atlantis/videos>.

Radford, Benjamin. "'Lost' City of Atlantis: Fact & Fable." LiveScience. TechMedia Network, 31 Oct. 2014. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://www.livescience.com/23217-lost-city-of-atlantis.html>.

Stewart, Iain. "Echoes of Plato's Atlantis." BBC History. N.p., 2011. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ancient/greeks/atlantis_01.shtml>.

Where Was Atlantis. History.com. N.p., 2016. Web. <www.history.com/topics/atlantis/videos>.