Archive: Solid Facts Support Old Fables and Fantasies; Tales of Lost Civilisations Have Long Fascinated Us. Ross Reyburn Learns How They Could Be More Than Just Fairytales

Article excerpt

Byline: Ross Reyburn

The stories of Noah and his Ark and the fabled lost city of Atlantis can no longer be dismissed as fantasy. In the Bay of Cambay off the coast of north-west India last year, geologists tracking pollution levels discovered by chance the remains of a lost civilisation on the seabed.

This and other earlier undersea discoveries have enabled historical investigator Graham Hancock, the man who has been hailed as 'The Indiana Jones of alternative technology', to accumulate the evidence to show that the legends of great floods are not myths and also to change the known timescale of civilisation.

'Noah's story is the most familiar and there is the story of Atlantis,' said Hancock, whose researches are detailed in his latest bestselling book, Underworld - Flooded Kingdoms of the Ice Age. 'In fact there are 600 flood myths and legends around the world telling the same story of earlier civilisations destroyed and they are not nonsense.

'The problem is that no serious research has been done into this possibility. Almost all marine archeologists are looking for shipwrecks.

'The underwater cities discovered off India were found purely by chance.'

On January 14, India's Science and Technology Minister, Murli Manohar Joshi, announced a discovery of a lost civilisation in the Gulf of Cambay off the coast of Gujarat.

In Britain, Hancock has been spreading the news of this remarkable discovery this year through his book and his recent Channel 4 television series which attracted average audiences of three million viewers. 'I am the only person in Britain following this story - nobody else is interested,' recalled Hancock on his recent visit to Birmingham publicising his book.

'In the Gulf of Cambay, we have two complete cities, together roughly the size of Manhattan, 120ft underwater. India's National Institute of Ocean Technology were doing a pollution survey. They were using a side-scan sonar and they started getting returning echoes of very massive geometrical structures. They stopped their work and thoroughly investigated this underwater anomaly.

'What it has turned out to be is two fairly intact cities with streets, drainage, houses and large monumental structures. It is a totally new discovery.

'They have pulled up 2,000 artefacts - mainly pottery, jewellery and stone implements as well as some human remains - from the seabed and carbon-dating gives the age of the cities as 9,500 years ago. …