An international congress devoted to the myth of the lost continent of Atlantis opened on Monday on the Greek island of Milos, attended by seismologists, geologists, geographers, philosophers, historians and archaeologists from five existing continents.
"We're not trying to establish whether Atlantis existed or not, or to agree on a definite location, which would be presumptuous for a tale that has existed for over 2 500 years," Spyros Pavlidis, a professor of palaeoseismology at the Aristotelio University of Salonika, told AFP.
"Our objective is to hear all hypotheses, take stock of all reliable data, and examine the sources of inspiration," he said.
Pavlidis, one of the congress organisers, said that contributions from some speakers were rejected for being "too fantastical."
The seismology professor personally sees in the Atlantis tale told by the fourth century BC Greek philosopher Plato "an allegory on the decline of a civilisation, with the hint of a true story at its core."
But he admits that most of the participants, who include independent researchers as well as university academics, in the three-day congress "are leaning towards believing the story, and seek to find the city."
Contribution themes range from The Quest For Atlantis: The Utopia Of An Utopia to Atlantis Was Israel.
... hmmm, I wonder what sort of journalist coverage this one will get.