Many years of researches and expeditions have enabled lots of archaeologists to discover ancient cities and sometimes lost cities built by our ancient ancestors. Some of the discoveries have been given protection by the government of the places where they were found while some are still in need of more research in order to prove that they are of great importance to be protected by authorities. Here 4 Underwater Cities Lost and Found in different places around the world.
In 1984, while searching for shipwrecks near the bay of Atlit in Israel, marine scientists found a 7,700-year old remains of an ancient underwater civilization. Rectangular houses, a circular stone well and other indications that Atlit-Yam could be one of the earliest known villages that used marine and agricultural resources sometime between 6900 and 6300 B.C. Other important discoveries made at the site were the “first known discovery of a civilization that used situ burials”, “first evidence of the creation of olive” and skeletons showing the “earliest known cases of tuberculosis”. It is believed that the city was abandoned after a 130 feet tsunami engulfed some coastal cities in the Mediterranean when a volcanic collapse occurred on the eastern flank of Mount Etna.
Beneath the Mediterranean Sea lies Pavlopetri, one of the oldest sunken cities in the world. It is estimated to be about 5,000 years old and some believe that it might be the inspiration for Plato’s Lost City of Atlantis. Pavlopetri was discovered by Nicholas Flemming in 1967 and was mapped the following year by a team of archaeologists from the University of Cambridge. At first, the ruins dated back to the Mycenaean period, between 1600 and 1100 BC but further studies of the site showed older occupation starting no later than 2800 BC, including early Bronze Age middle Minoan transitional materials.
The Yonaguni Monument or Yonaguni (island) Submarine Ruins is a submerged rock formation located off the coast of Yonaguni, Ryukyu Islands in Japan. Archaeologists who have studied the site couldn’t agree whether the structure was natural or man-made. If it is true that the stone steps were man-made, they could’ve been the creation a complex society of human inhabitants who existed between 5,000 to 10,000 years ago. The site was discovered by divers in 1986, but there still debates about it being man-made or natural are still on-going. Many divers who visit the submerged formations are amazed by angular structures, almost convinced that it was an ancient artificial construction rather than mountain system that developed naturally.
Thonis – Heracleion
Thonis Heracleion (the Egyptian and Greek names of the ancient city) was an Ancient Egyptian city located near the Canopic Mouth of the Nile, some 32 kilometers northeast of Alexandria. The ruins are located in Abu Qir Bay, 2.5 kilometers of the coast, submerged under 30 feet of water. It dates back to as early as 12 century BC, and was mentioned by Greek historians. During the Late Period of Ancient Egypt (c.664 BC – 332 BC), Heracleion served as the main port for the collection of taxes and international trade. The city houses the Temple of Amun, King of the Gods and god of the wind. It was believed that the city was engulfed by the sea in the 8th century AD because of natural disasters. Some of the discoveries made at the site includes some statues, ceramic pottery pieces, and a massive temple.