Based on similarity in geographic extent, Dr Erlingsson formulated the hypothesis that Plato based the description of the Atlantean Empire on the Megalithic Culture of Europe. He further reasoned that Atlantis then must have been Ireland. This inference he evaluated scientifically using statistical significance testing on the null hypothesis. The probability that “Plato based the geographic description of Atlantis on Ireland” was found to be 99.98%, leaving only a 0.02% possibility that the similarity is coincidental.
The rest of the book deals with archaeology and mythology. Both those fields reveal intriguing similarities between Ireland and Atlantis. For instance, archaeological textbooks confirm that Ireland features the choicest monuments of Megalithic Europe. The finest monument, Newgrange, is called Brugh na Boinne in Ireland, which means the ‘Palace of Boann’ – the river goddess of the Boyne. Plato called Atlantis’ finest temple the ‘Palace of Poseidon’, Poseidon being the Greek river god. Moreover, both temples are 85 m across, and decorated with stones of different colors.
The study is described in the book “Atlantis from a Geographer’s Perspective”, recently released ($16.95 hardcover, Lindorm Publishing, http://lindorm.com/books.html).
Prominent scholars who have read the book have been quite appreciative, describing it as “very interesting” and “definitely worth reading”. The foreword was written by the editor of the international scientific journal Geografiska Annaler, professor Wibjörn Karlén. He endorsed the study as based on “classical scientific methodology.”
A hypothesis only survives until proven wrong. If it can not be proven wrong in rigorous tests, it is elevated to theory. A theory in science is something rather certain, whereas a hypothesis is what the general public calls a theory. Dr Erlingsson modestly called his proposal a hypothesis, but it may well be called a theory. The results make it appear virtually certain that the description of Atlantis was modeled on Ireland, and that the time was the Megalithic Culture of the Neolithic Period.
The discovery may enable us to decipher parts of a lost past. It seems that Irish mythology indeed preserves memories of historic events in the Stone Age. The mythical Thuata de Danaan, who became the fairy people, are associated with the Megalithic tombs in Irish mythology. According to Dr Erlingsson’s thesis the Megalithic tombs are Atlantean temples. This explains the book’s sub-title, “Mapping the Fairy Land”.
Even if deciphering five thousand years old historic data from the Stone Age is not deemed the most significant feat in the history of history, it is still remarkable. The monuments that are getting an explanation are the world’s oldest. They are not only the oldest monumental constructions, but the boulders themselves are of a size rarely used in later history. This suggests that they were built by a well-organized and technically advanced Stone Age society.
The thesis got widespread attention last August. However, the debate became uninformed since the book was not yet released, and too much was made of insignificant comments such as this, a statement from the National Museum of Ireland: “This theory seems to be based on geological information which we, as archaeologists, are not in a position to assess.” As a consequence, the author decided to temporarily cancel all interviews.
Now that the book has been released, Dr Erlingsson is issuing an open invitation to a debate around the thesis. The sign-up form can be found at http://lindorm.com/atlantis/debate.html
Somewhat strange, though ... the debate which one is being invited to sign up for took place in January ...