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University of British Columbia
ENGL 211
Paul Hewitt

Good morning / good afternoon to our English teacher Mr Neoh Boon Hong and my fellow friends. Today I would like to share with you a topic which is about The lost civilization of Atlantis. The story of Atlantis begins quite literally with two of Plato's dialogues, Timaeus and Critias. These accounts are the only known written records which refer specifcally to a lost civilization called Atlantis. Many people believe the tale to be complete fiction, the creation of a philosopher's imagination used to illustrate an argument. Others believe that the story was inspired by catastrophic events which may have destroyed the Minoan civilization on Crete and Thera. Still others maintain that the story is an accurate representation of a long lost and almost completely forgotten land. Atlantis (in Greek, ἈτλαντἈς νἈσος, "island of Atlas") is the name of a legendary island first mentioned in Plato's dialogues Timaeus and Critias. In Plato's account, Atlantis, lying "beyond the pillars of Heracles", was a naval power that conquered many parts of Western Europe and Africa 9,000 years before the time of Solon, or approximately 9500 BC. After a failed attempt to invade Athens, Atlantis sank into the ocean "in a single day and night of misfortune". As a story embedded in Plato's dialogues, Atlantis is generally seen as a myth created by Plato to illustrate his political theories. Although the function of the story of Atlantis seems clear to most scholars, they dispute whether and how much Plato's account was inspired by older traditions. Some scholars argue Plato drew upon memories of past events such as the Thera eruption or the Trojan War, while others insist that he took inspiration from contemporary events like the destruction of Helike in 373 BC or the failed Athenian invasion of Sicily in 415–413 BC.The possible existence of a genuine Atlantis was actively discussed throughout classical antiquity, but it was usually rejected and occasionally parodied by later authors. While little known during the Middle Ages, the story of Atlantis was rediscovered by Humanists in modern times. Plato's description inspired the utopian works of several Renaissance writers, like Francis Bacon's "New Atlantis". Atlantis inspires today's literature, from science fiction to comic books and films, its name having become a byword for any and all supposed prehistoric but advanced (and lost) civilizations. What do YOU think? Over 11,000 years ago there existed an island nation located in the middle of the Atlantic
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