The Mysterious Minoans
It is believed that the Minoan civilization was the inspiration for Plato’s Atlantis, according to the dialogue in The Minoan Civilization-Atlantis Found? stating “Upon examination of Plato’s words on Atlantis as written in the dialogues Timaeus and Critias, we find many similarities between what archaeologists and historians know to be true for the Minoans, and characteristics Plato attributes to Atlantis and its occupants.” Through its similarities of culture, the use of the Mediterranean, advanced civilization, the location, Plato’s story of Poseidon, the use of ivory, and the reason of its decline, evidence suggest that the Minoans might be in fact the inspiration of Plato’s Atlantis. Atlantis is a legendary island in the Atlantic, west of Gibraltar, that sunk beneath the sea during a violent eruption of earthquakes and floods some 9,000 years before Plato wrote about it in his Timaeus and Critias. In a discussion of utopian societies, Plato claims that Egyptian priests told Solon about Atlantis. Plato was not describing a real place any more than his allegory of the cave describes a real cave. The purpose of Atlantis is to express a moral message in a discussion of ideal societies, a favorite theme of his. The fact that nobody in Greece for 9,000 years had mentioned a battle between Athens and Atlantis should serve as a clue that Plato was not talking about a real place or battle. Nevertheless, Plato is often cited as the primary source for the reality of a place on earth called Atlantis. Researchers have found many similarities with Atlantis with that of the Minoans. Culture is one of the similarities Plato’s Atlantis and the Minoan civilization have in common. It is known that the Minoans practiced bull jumping which was a religious ritual where an unarmed man wrestled and jumped over a bull. Plato’s description of Atlantis mentioned bulls being hunted. “Plato spoke of bulls hunted with ropes within a temple in Atlantis....
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