August 22nd, 2017

Wonders of the Ancient World

A Hellenistic temple has been discovered in Umm Qais, around 75 miles north of Amman, according to a report from The Jordan Times. A team from Yarmouk University led by archaeologist Atef Sheyyab discovered the temple along with a water network. The temple was built during the Hellenistic era (332-63 B.C.) and went on to be reused during the Roman, Byzantine, and Islamic eras. The temple consisted of an inner area (a pronaos), a podium, and a holy chamber (a naos). The team discovered a number of Ionic-order columns that once supported the structure’s roof. Broken pottery samples will be used to more precisely date the temple. The water network includes Hellenistic wells and Roman tunnels, which lead to a hot bath outside the town.

Kemo D. 7
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The Lost City of Yugeno-miya

The Asahi Shimbun reports that archaeologists in Japan have unearthed the remains of Yugeno-miya, a capital that was built on the orders of the Empress Shotoku, who ruled from A.D. 767 to 770. According to historical accounts, after the empress's death construction ceased and the city remained unfinished. The archaeologists found pits arranged on a grid that would have held massive pillars, as well as the remains of a canal that stretched almost a half mile and was probably used in order the transport building materials. Earlier this year, the foundation of a pagoda said to have been built by a Buddhist monk favored by Empress Shotoku was found nearby.

Kemo D. 7
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Echoes of Atlantis

The Homeric tales of the Iliad and the Odyssey do not add up. There was no “Troy” in Turkey until Alexander built one. There are no giant waves and major tides in the inlet of the Bosporus straits closest to the alleged Troy. There was no alliance of Greeks in 1200 B.C. as they themselves begin their history with a traditional date of 776 B.C. Nor was there a Trojan Empire in Anatolia where the powerful Hittite empire ruled and recorded history meticulously. History has a way of building foundations on sand. For centuries it was assumed the Greeks and Romans built the civilization enjoyed by Europe. That is, until Sumeria and Assyria rose literally from the earth in the Middle East.

Su­merian and Babylonian texts even challenged the origin of concepts in the Old Testament like the story of Noah—a recycled Sumerian epic. Conquered empires were forgotten until just in the last two centuries when their texts were unearthed and translated. One of the greatest misconceptions was that stargazers in Egypt and Babylon were first to devise systems to meas­ure time and predict eclipses. Long before those Middle-Eastern pyramids were built, an advanced culture stretching from Scotland’s Northern Isles to Portugal and Northwestern Africa was active in a vast shared culture that stretched along the Atlantic.

Here is where the gods arose. Here is where Atlas held up the sky. Here is where Apollo ventured every nineteen years. It was, in fact, a pre-Celtic Atlantean culture, complete with a series of city states and trade alliances of which the Eastern Mediterranean culture was only partially aware. The Greeks and even the Egyptians inherited their earliest gods from the west. The Greeks were brought the al­phabet from the Phoenicians, those sea peoples who controlled the Straits of Gibraltar, also known as the Pillars of Hercules.

The Phoenicians also brought to Greece the heroic tales that were first told among the Atlantic Celts of Ire­land and Brittany. These tales were passed down through the generations orally for centuries by the Bards. Homer simply wrote them down using that emerging technology called writing. He then re-wrote them for the stage where they were performed for the masses who could not read. The Iliad and the Odyssey took three eight-hour sessions to recite. They would be part of the entertainment at fairs and religious festivals.

Homer’s source is betrayed by the hidden remnants of the pre-Celtic world, and in words that barely survive, in closer to modern Celtic-based languages. If the Odyssey existed outside the Mediterranean then so did the Iliad, the story of the Trojan War, Helen, the Horse and all the rest. Strabo, one of the greatest early historians, said that after the war the coastal city of Troy was destroyed by flood and fire. Hisarlik, where modern historians claim Troy is, was never flooded.

We can find a city known from ancient times near Lisbon in Portugal. The city is called Troia, and its ruins are lit­erally poking out from the sands. This Troia was destroyed in 1200 B.C., and again in Roman times, and still a third time in the eighteenth century when Neptune’s wrath sent a massive earthquake that was followed by fire killing 30,000 people in less than an hour.

The blind Homer took a tale from four hundred years before his time and placed it near his home, but the real war was fought between the city-states of the Atlantic coast.

Kemo D. 7
Credit: Atlantis Rising Magazine
Fantasy Art by Ronan Mahon and Adam Paquette