Santorini, once called Kallisti (translated as the most beautiful one) has since 1969 been an archaeological site developed to excavate a 4000 year old Cycladic/Minoan town that had been buried beneath the volcanic ash. The Akrotiri people had time to leave the area before the volcanic eruption exploded, but left behind beautifully well-preserved wall paintings, ceramics and other ornate objects.
Santorini is an active volcano whose last eruption occurred in 1950. Previous to that a large explosive eruption occurred around 1640 BC.
In Fire by the Sea by Walter L. Friedrich, Friedrich describes the eruption of the Greek island of Santorini, or Thera, sometime in the 17th or 16th century BC. He links the legend of the lost city of Atlantis to Santorini and his book has many color photos that highlight the beauty, the geology, the history and archaeology of Santorini.
The End of Atlantis: New Light on an Old Legend written by J.V. Luce has linked Santorini to the Legend of Atlantis. Speculation as to how the Minoan Civilization disappeared is linked to the massive Santorini explosion around 1500 B.C. Could Atlantis have been located on the island of Crete? Before 1500 B.C. Crete (see History of Crete) was the seat of the Minoan Empire. Archaeological excavations have shown that Minoan Crete was probably one of the most sophisticated cultures of its time. It had wonderful architecture and art. Minoan laws gave women equal legal status to that of men. Communication, trade and agriculture was enhanced by ships that traveled to outlying areas.
Luce unravels the mystery more by saying when Santorini exploded, a large tsunami that hit Crete must have traveled inland for over half a mile, destroying any costal town or cities. Plato's description of Atlantis' fate closely resembles the destruction of Crete. Luce describes the time difference of Plato's writings. Luce describes how some of the figures from Egyptian to Greek were mistranslated and an extra zero added. This would mean 900 years ago became 9000, and the distance from Egypt to Atlantis went from 250 miles to 2,500. Only time will unearth the proof of whether Santorini was the seat of Atlantis.
Academy Award producers MacGillivray Freeman Films has Re-Created the Colossal Parthenon and includes scenes of the volcanic eruption that buried Santorini in 1646 BC. As Film Celebrates the Thrilling Science of Archeology GREECE: SECRETS OF THE PAST, which premiered in select IMAX Theatres and other giant screen cinemas and is now out on DVD. A sweeping archeological journey back in time, the film sets out on a quest to uncover the buried secrets of one of the world's most enlightened societies in ancient Greece during the Golden Age that for 100 years, from 500 BC to 400 BC, became the center of human thought and creativity and laid many of the foundations for the way we live today.
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