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marketrent OP t1_ixhisnu wrote


>The study was inspired by the Gough Map, the earliest surviving map of Great Britain, perhaps with its origins in the thirteenth century, which is held in the University of Oxford’s Bodleian Library.

>The map depicts two islands in Cardigan Bay in west Wales, which no longer exist. Each of them is depicted about one quarter of the size of the island of Anglesey in north Wales. One is between Aberystwyth and Aberdovey and the other between there and Barmouth to the north.


>The research was undertaken by Simon Haslett, Honorary Professor of Physical Geography at Swansea University and David Willis, Jesus Professor of Celtic at the University of Oxford.

>Their study investigates historical sources and geological evidence from the coastline and the seabed.

>It proposes a model for how the coast has evolved since the last ice age around 10,000 years ago, which provides a possible explanation for the ‘lost’ islands.

>They suggest that the islands could be the remnants of a low-lying landscape underlain by soft glacial deposits laid down during the last ice age. Since then, forces of erosion have worn away the land, reducing it to islands, before these too were worn away and disappearing by the sixteenth century.

^Haslett, ^S. ^K., ^& ^Willis, ^D. ^(2022). ^The ^‘lost’ ^islands ^of ^Cardigan ^Bay, ^Wales, ^UK: ^insights ^into ^the ^post-glacial ^evolution ^of ^some ^Celtic ^coasts ^of ^northwest ^Europe. ^Atlantic ^Geoscience, ^58, ^131–146. ^


Spiderbanana t1_ixm50to wrote

Jesus Professor of Celtic at the University of Oxford.

That's all a title


subtlebulk t1_ixi3wge wrote

Related, in the U.S. there was a place called Sharps Island off the coast of Maryland that had a historic colonial era community. In 1848 it was said to measure 449 acres, by 1942 just 17 acres, and by the 1960’s it was gone. There were a number of islands in the Chesapeake Bay that suffered the same fate ( ). Apparently the culprit was land subsidence after the end of the last glacial maximum. That’s just my understanding though, so take it with a grain of salt.

It’s kind of sad to think that we lost the archeological record on these Welsh islands, but that’s how it goes I guess.


codefyre t1_ixin69r wrote

Land drying tends to be a major cause as well. Many low-lying islands are made up of boggy sedimentary soils slowly deposited over thousands of years. Boggy soils contain a lot of water. When humans drain that soil for farming, the removal of the water allows the remaining soil to compact and settle. If the land is low enough, it can fall below the surrounding water level and the island will vanish.

The Delta in California has this issue today. When Europeans first mapped it in the 1700's, they found around 60 islands with fertile soil. The islands were surrounded by levees and farmed starting in the mid-1800's. Today, all of the islands are at least 10 feet below sea level, with some of them approaching 30 feet below sea level. Only the large modern levees and constant pumping keep them dry. Some have failed over the years, converting those islands into open water. This will likely happen to all of them over the next 100 years, allowing the San Francisco Bay to extend itself all the way into the Central Valley.


matinthebox t1_ixjlag3 wrote

> When humans drain that soil for farming, the removal of the water allows the remaining soil to compact and settle. If the land is low enough, it can fall below the surrounding water level and the island will vanish.

or, alternatively, you dam off half of your country and continue to live below sea level. Damn those Dutch are stubborn.


burnbabyburn11 t1_ixm2it6 wrote

The Netherlands are 41,543 square km, compared with California’s 423,971 square km. To dam off half of California is 10x more land than to dam off half of the Netherlands.


foospork t1_ixiu2rz wrote

I’ve been watching Tangier Island, VA (near Crisfield, MD) fade away over the past 10 years.

IIRC, it’s been inhabited by European settlers since the 1600s. It was used as a base by the British during their attack on Washington during the War of 1812.

Tangier Island looks like another place that will soon succumb to this fate.


nathhad t1_ixly4wa wrote

Unfortunately, islands in the Bay are inherently impermanent. They move, they leave. Barrier islands on the surrounding coast are the same way. Historically this has been the case long before we started doing things that often accelerate the process. Building "permanent" structures on them is really a fool's game, but unfortunately that's something we seem to have forgotten culturally. Some places are suitable for long term occupation, some really just aren't.


TheGrandExquisitor t1_ixiqiwz wrote

This is very common along the US Atlantic coast. The Outer Banks of S. Carolina are a good example of this. Islands come and go out there over relatively short periods. One decent storm can drastically alter the geography of the area.


Penitent_Exile t1_ixi7acs wrote

Heavy agriculture tends to do that with bodies of water. Look up history of Missouri. Poor river.


vorschact t1_ixkexxh wrote

The possibilities of what could have been found in the archeological record of Doggerland always saddens me. Tracking migration to the British isles would be amazing.


stefan41 t1_ixl1s6y wrote

My grandparents were members of the sharps island yacht club before I was born. They lived on Leeds Creek nearby. The “yacht club” consisted of people rafting up their boats on the sandbar that used to be the island and drinking.


sadpanda597 t1_iya9i04 wrote

Your quotes seem to imply that this isn’t an awesome club to be a part of.


stefan41 t1_iye2fop wrote

I mean, it’s awesome in terms of it being fun, but it wasn’t a yacht club in any real sense of the world. The name of the club was intended as a joke.


worotan t1_ixi85sy wrote

> They suggest that the islands could be the remnants of a low-lying landscape underlain by soft glacial deposits laid down during the last ice age. Since then, forces of erosion have worn away the land, reducing it to islands, before these too were worn away and disappearing by the sixteenth century.


im_a_goat_factory t1_ixkqbjc wrote

A place in NJ is underwater, town bank is the name. It’s been underwater for over 150 years


East_Bay_JK t1_ixi5813 wrote

The Australian Aborigines Indigenous Australians maintain very accurate oral traditions of sea level rise following the end of the last ice age:


fuckoffandydie t1_ixjxf0a wrote

Hey, you might not be from Australia so you might not know, but that’s not an appropriate term for Indigenous Australians. Indigenous Australian or Aboriginal people/s are their preferred terms.


East_Bay_JK t1_ixk3dfa wrote

I did not know that. I apologize for any offense.


fuckoffandydie t1_ixl48wv wrote

I don’t know if it’s necessarily offensive, just inaccurate. Indigenous Australians had over 200 distinct languages before colonisation. The term “Aborigines” reduces them to one group.


RealDealHemp t1_ixm11fl wrote

Aborigines is just a term meaning the people who were there first. I don’t think it’s any specific tribe or group.


sallhurd t1_ixk5n0h wrote

Good job to you, and good job to East Bay. Beautiful exchange.


Bonjourap t1_ixla10o wrote

I agree, so much respect is rare on reddit. Love to you all :)


Intruding1 t1_ixi04rj wrote

I find it fascinating that the more we actually take ancient writings, maps, drawings, etc. seriously, the more they tend to be remarkably accurate. I think the future of history/archaeology is going to be giving serious inquiry to discoveries that were traditionally written off.


starfyredragon t1_ixikh2z wrote

We've gotten used to old ancient writings from Abrahamic religions being so off kilter, we forgot that the same pattern didn't apply to the rest.

The Native Americans on the West coast accurately tracked multiple natural disasters that were evidenced later.


Artanthos t1_ixinsy4 wrote

Even the Abrahamic histories are not as far off as a lot of people would wish.

Aside from religion, there is a lot of oral history there, and quite a bit of it has been verified.

To go even further. A lot of Abrahmic mythology is nothing more than Sumerian mythology that has been slightly altered.

For example, Abrahamic stories of the Great Flood come directly from the Sumerian, including their own version of the ark.


starfyredragon t1_ixio995 wrote

Abrahamic history doesn't start to match real history until you get to the kingdom of Isreael period. That said it does start to match some things starting that point, so credence can be given to your point.

That said, the Sumerian version of the ark story also didn't happen. It's a story that got passed, but doesn't fit the archeology.


Odie4Prez t1_ixir95l wrote

This is mostly true, but there is at least once early reference to a place that did exist that no longer does, specifying the location of the garden of Eden. It's described as lying near the convergence of two rivers into the Tigris and Euphrates from the NE and SW that no longer exist, as the whole area has since been swallowed by the Persian Gulf. This area of Mesopotamia was likely some of the most fertile, productive land of the area with who knows how many great ancient Sumerian cities now mostly inaccessible to archaeology (for now, at least). So even in the fairly obviously non-historical parts of Abrahamic myth, there's pieces of genuine history to be found.


TheMadTemplar t1_ixk62oq wrote

If you're referring to the convergence of the Tigris and Eurphrates themselves, they convergence at Al-Qurnah in Iraq, which is north of Kuwait. Of course, that's the modern convergence. Rivers change course and path over long periods of time.


GoldenRamoth t1_ixj5j2v wrote

Do you have any links to info on that theory? That's cool and I've never heard it before.


mouse_8b t1_ixjh59k wrote

I don't know of any sources for this specifically, but it certainly seems plausible, especially with the recent discoveries about other ancient stories being true.

Netflix just released Ancient Apocalypse, which talks about things like this as a result of exiting the last ice age. It's interesting, but definitely take it all with a grain of salt. It's got a little bit of Ancient Aliens flavor in it.


nybbleth t1_ixqg712 wrote

> It's got a little bit of Ancient Aliens flavor in it.

Rather more than a "little".

Ancient Apocalypse is complete bunk and under absolutely no circumstance should anyone take it even the slightest bit seriously. Like, first of all, if the opening of it starts you off with clips from Joe Rogan and Jordan Peterson, you instantly know what kind of crowd this is designed to appeal to.

The guy behind it, Graham Hancock, is a total laughing stock promoting pseudoscientific conspiracy theories. There's absolutely nothing in his work that is at all plausible.


mouse_8b t1_ixrvoye wrote

So nothing important happened to humanity at the end of the ice age and the pyramids he shows are all fake. Got it.


nybbleth t1_ixrypmg wrote

Dude. Do some basic reading on the dude. He's a fucking charlatan, plain and simple. None of the archeological sites he points to are anywere close to as old as he claims they are and there's absolutely nothing linking them. He continuously makes bold claims that simply aren't true, and disproven by real archeology. Anyone who disagrees with him is quickly dismissed or made out to be part of some kind of conspiracy.

He's peddling pseudoscientific bullshit, plain and simple, and you're falling for it.


peteroh9 t1_ixje8wm wrote

It's not a theory; it's just sea level rise.


starfyredragon t1_ixjvqi3 wrote

That's mythology, not history.


Odie4Prez t1_ixk5nuu wrote

Mythology is generally defined as stories central to a culture or religion that don't always fit neatly into the historical record. Mythology very often holds clues to actual history (and sometimes it's just straightforwardly the most accurate oral history that could plausibly be retained through the generations), which is my point here: the mythology holds a clue to the existence of a place other disciplines of science have recently rediscovered.


Skynetiskumming t1_ixji6sx wrote

Cultures from all around the globe have catastrophic flood stories. Cultures which we presume never had any contact all say long ago there was a gigantic flood. We have scientific evidence to support that story. It shouldn't surprise anyone once it's based on hard evidence.


davidbklyn t1_ixkp0ri wrote

This got me thinking. There are American folktales about great floods from not very long ago. I wonder how much we can think the catastrophic flood narratives belie a situation in which any major flood was catastrophic just because it happened and was devastating. Maybe we’re now experiencing the same type/level of floods but they aren’t as catastrophic because we have developed the ability to be more predictive and more protective.

I don’t wish to diminish the efficacy of ancient cultures or be chauvinistic about “today’s technology”, but I’m reminded of one explanation of the rise in autism rates being linked better and more diagnostic insights.


1nfernals t1_ixkx6a7 wrote

I've noticed that a lot of cultures have myths around the sun and moon. Specific examples including Inuit and Egyptian folklore refers to one chasing the other. I've wondered if references to celestial bodies might actually have been describing supernova.

Personally while I doubt I would have understood what the sun or moon actually were, given I was alive during an earlier period, I can't imagine the sun or the moon would inspire much intrigue or mysticism. They've been around for an incredibly long time and early humans would have been quite used to being unable to accurately or definitively explain their environment, but imagine if one day a star brighter than the moon appeared in the sky, clearly visible during the day and slowly faded over several months.

I could imagine that experience being passed down through oral tradition, with successive generations not experiencing similar events for hundreds or thousands of years due to the rarity of said events. Successive generations may have interpreted these stories as describing the sun and moon as a result, possibly even modifying them intentionally to better narrate their environment.

Related to your point about the devastation a relatively mild flood of today's standards could have had on our ancestors and how different cultures could generate similar flood mythos as a result, I think the same could have occurred in religions or folklore from attempts to describe a variety of different events.

It would make sense that if two distinct groups experienced a volcanic eruption, earthquake or tsunami even if they were separated by a large amount of time or space, could describe these events in similar ways. Also reminiscent of folklore similarities between supernatural entities, I believe many cultures describe a demon/creature/entity that would sneak into your home as you slept to drain your strength/power/life often alongside a feeling of being crushed or held down. Personally I've always thought this could be a way of describing sleep paralysis.


yacjuman t1_ixn40jz wrote

The sun and moon would easily have been 2 of the most interesting and mystical things for hundreds of thousands of years to past human cultures.


nybbleth t1_ixlx9bb wrote

Various cultures (by no means 'all') having flood myths is hardly evidence of a singular worldwide flood as though. We most certainly don't have scientific evidence for such an event, and plenty to show that it couldn't have happened.

As for the 'evidence' for a more local exceptionally catastrophic flood that ultimately formed the basis for the story in the bible? You're talking about the Black Sea Deluge Hypothesis, which is controversial at best, and there's a number of points of evidence that strongly argue against it.

Ultimately, to explain the various flood myths around the world, there's no real reason to assume an actual great flood of anywhere near the proportions described in such stories. Even regular floods can be relatively destructive, and they happen quite regularly. It really doesn't take much imagination for a culture to come up with a story about a particularly bad one at some undefined point in the past. Any culture that lives near flood-prone areas is almost certainly going to develop such stories over times, and most cultures tend to settle in such areas because of the obvious benefits they bring (floods aside). There is nothing remarkable about this.

Edit: god, basic logic and actual science triggers some people I guess.


4x4is16Legs t1_ixm4sjh wrote

There are people living now that if their local area flooded or was hit by a tsunami would think it was worldwide because they never travel far from their birthplace. The only thing that makes a difference now is TV and the internet. And I’m not just saying poor rural people- my in-laws have dozens of family members who have never been outside their hometown.


Artanthos t1_ixozyoa wrote

>Various cultures (by no means 'all') having flood myths is hardly evidence of a singular worldwide flood as though

We know there was massive global flooding at the end of the Ice Age.

We also know various oral histories regarding flooding have all pointed to geographic and archaeological evidence that verified those stories were all related to end of Ice Age flooding.

Inuit oral history recorded villages (among a people that did not have permanent villages). Those villages have been found underwater.

Australian aboriginals passing down the names, locations of descriptions of islands that don't exist. But we found them underwater by following those stories, and they would have been above water at the end of the Ice Age.

Why would we doubt that the Sumerians, who were 6,000 years closer in time to the Ice Age, would not have remembered the post Ice Age flooding in their oral histories?


nybbleth t1_ixqffu1 wrote

> We know there was massive global flooding at the end of the Ice Age.

There was no singular "global" flood at the end of the ice age. There were floods, yes. But these were regional and weren't singlularly cataclysmic events but rather a series of floods that happened over centuries and thousands of years. This doesn't correspond to abrahamic mythology at all. They're much more comparable to the increase in flooding and extreme weather events we're seeing today as a result of climate change. We are experiencing more hurricanes for example which over time adds up to a lot of damage. Now one could imagine hypothetically that such a statistical increase might lead to a culture falling apart as they can not cope with the increase. Which would likely lead to stories being told about it yes. But if ten thousand years from now, that story would be that a single great storm wiped out that civilization (or to make it more akin to the abrahamic tales, wiped out 99.9999% of humanity) in an instant, that would be wildly incorrect.

> Inuit oral history recorded villages (among a people that did not have permanent villages). Those villages have been found underwater.

Color me skeptical at best.

> Australian aboriginals passing down the names, locations of descriptions of islands that don't exist. But we found them underwater by following those stories, and they would have been above water at the end of the Ice Age.

Yes. Again. Color me skeptical at best. I am aware of these claims by some scholars; but this is by no means accepted consensus science. The notion that a society that has no writing or mapmaking could maintain an accurate oral tradition that somehow records exact locations and details of geographical features that were lost 15-10000 years ago is frankly so absurd that I'm inclined to dismiss such claims out of hand. At the very least it's going to require a hell of a lot more evidence than one or two papers when the far more likely explanation is that these kinds of claims are a case of researcher bias where they're essentially pigeonholing the facts into unclear stories, or these islands were in fact dry land much more recently.

> Why would we doubt that the Sumerians, who were 6,000 years closer in time to the Ice Age, would not have remembered the post Ice Age flooding in their oral histories?

Because the ability of humans to accurately re-tell a story is notoriously unreliable even where it concerns very recent events. The idea that we could accurately pass information down this way over a period of many thousands of years is simply not very plausible.

And as I pointed out earlier, it really doesn't take much for a culture to come up with flood stories without having to have some sort of cultural memory of a particularly bad one ten thousand years ago. Floods are common. Islands and other stretches of land disasappearing due to flood erosion are common.

Arguing that they're memories of late ice-age floods is almost like a reverse prophecy fallacy: If I predict that at some undefined point in the future, there will be war, does that mean I'm a prophet, or did I simply make the obvious observation that an event that has happened countless times before is probably going to happen again? Similarly, in reverse, if a culture has some sort of grand destructive flood story in its tradition, do you really think it's more likely that they've accurately kept the memory alive of a flood 10000 years ago as opposed to just mixed and matched observations of more recent floods together, finding seashells on mountains (which isn't caused by floods) and tried to fill in some blanks here and there? People make shit up all the time.

Also because the Sumerian creation myth incorporating the flood is generally believed to have been inspired by a local river flood at Shuruppak (which is where the story begins) around 2900BCE, causing the settlement to be abandoned for a time. The Sumerian flood myth is only written down after that, despite us having older sumerican creation myths that do not mention the flood story.

Plus, Mesopotamia is literally located on a vast riverplain. Floods would've happened there regularly. It isn't hard to imagine they might seem to have inundated most of the world to their limited geographical knowledge.

Again, it's a matter of plausibility.


Artanthos t1_ixry9gn wrote

You can be as skeptical as you want, it doesn’t change well documented facts.


nybbleth t1_ixs8uyd wrote

Right, so now we're elevating unverified claims and conjecture made on the basis of interpreting vague stories by a handful of people to not just facts, but "well documented" facts.

Meanwhile, you simply ignore those empirical facts that show that even if you could somehow prove that the stories you're calling upon draw upon some sort of cultural memory dating back to the ice age, the actual flooding that happened at that period was gradual and took place over centuries or even thousands of years, thereby invalidating the conclusions you're drawing since flood mythology talks about a single cataclysmic flood, and not a slow process of much smaller floods.

Not to mention all the other arguments I've brought forth. You brought up the Sumerian Flood Creation Myth. Are you going to address the fact that said myth can only be traced back to 1600BC and that it doesn't seem to appear in other of their creation myths that we can date to much earlier? How does that documented fact not factor into your reasoning?


Artanthos t1_ixsxrdn wrote

The whole point, there has been verification.

The no longer existing islands have been found. The Inuit villages have been found.

And there was absolutely no way either people could have guessed. They remembered mostly accurate information through thousands of years of oral history.


nybbleth t1_ixv0nsh wrote

> The whole point, there has been verification.

So you say. I have yet to see you post a scientific paper on this matter, much less independent verification of the claims in it.

> And there was absolutely no way either people could have guessed

Says you. Again, I am not seeing any 'verification' that this claim is at all true.


Artanthos t1_ixv175l wrote

Go look it up yourself, you certainly won't believe anything I link.


nybbleth t1_ixvcbry wrote

I've tried. I've found exactly zero sources claiming inuit oral traditions have accurately pointed out villages lost by floods 10000 years ago.

Which face it, would be quite impressive since they weren't even around back then. The Inuit only formed a thousand years ago, which is when they came to occupy the area they now live in. Their ancestors lived in Alaska and Russia before that, so there's literally no way for them to have an oral tradition about villages lost 10,000 years ago in the area they now inhabit. Neither could they have adapted stories from the people that lived there before (the Dorset culture), since there appears to have been no contact between these groups. Nor would that matter if they had, because none of the paleo-eskimo seemed to have existed that far back. Humans only started living in the areas the Inuit now live 5000 years ago at the earliest. So obviously they can't have oral traditions about the area that date back twice as far.

This is clearly something you either made up entirely, something someone else made up, or a case of you misremembering something you read.


DreddPirateBob808 t1_iyc78cf wrote

I live at the bottom of a mountain that would have been a glacier at the end of the ice age. There was a lot of water up there and when it melted it would have filled the valley. There's a bronze age circle (possible older) there and evidence of long term occupation. If the people had moved north just in time for the melt to really get going they'd have see major flooding and destruction


SpaceJackRabbit t1_ixk5usb wrote

All ancient lore pretty much has the story of a great flood, which probably go back to the end of the last ice ago about 11,000 years ago.


Rusty_Shakalford t1_ixkefof wrote

I mean, there’s a bit of confirmation bias at play here. You only read about cases like this one where it turns out to be accurate, nobody writes articles about all the inaccurate maps or nonexistent geography.


NIRPL t1_ixjcyf1 wrote

Which completely blows my mind because I, a normal person, would have thought to do that first.


Fantastic_Painter_15 t1_ixiluc8 wrote

No kidding. Sea levels rose like 400 feet at the end of the ice age. That covered up tons of human history


talex365 t1_ixjyfzh wrote

There’s even known sunken islands around Britain already, Dogger Bank would have been Dogger Island 10,000 years ago, we’ve found evidence for human habitation in samples taken from the sea floor in the area.


[deleted] t1_ixipmql wrote



Wind_14 t1_ixka8s4 wrote

Most human lives near flood plain/valley/ water banks. I would say it's more of coincidence more than anything. They are the best place to farm, but also the place that got wrecked by flood (although the flood, or rather the sediment left by it is the reason they're a fertile farming ground to begin with).


gayfrogscientologist t1_ixkk809 wrote

Each of them coming up with similar stories around the same time isn't so much a coincidence as it speaks to what was happening to the climate at the end of the last ice age.

When I was young I dismissed the Noah's Arc story as just that, some religious myth not worth much thought. But taking a step back and looking at all the other cultures that have similar stories - Ancient Greeks, Byzantines, Mesopotamians, Myans, Chinese, Babylonians, Native Americans, Hindus, etc - there are far too many parallels for it to be pure coincidence.


hawktron t1_ixjsycb wrote

There’s actually no evidence of rapid sea level rise during that period. The sea level rise happened rather gradualist over 100-300 year periods. People forget how big the sea is and even if these lakes burst it still take a lot of time to spread.


gayfrogscientologist t1_ixjyien wrote

I guess that depends on what you consider to be rapid. 20m/year is quite quick.

A glacial damn breaking would take a while to clear fron the region. We can see this today when hurricanes cause inland flooding that takes days to subside.


hawktron t1_ixl3cag wrote

What flooding are you referring too? It’s probably different to what we are discussing.


gregorydgraham t1_ixk9np9 wrote

There is evidence for rapid filling of the Mediterranean, Black Sea, and Persian Gulf

Of course “rapid” can mean “walking pace”


hawktron t1_ixl3a9c wrote

Those are isolated flooding which is not what the OP was referring too.


Monochrome_Fox_ t1_ixij736 wrote

It's kinda interesting how indigenous folklore the world around so often holds memory of distant historical events and yet whenever those events are confirmed it's still surprising somehow. We didn't invent remembering history we just started to write it down better


Pornalt190425 t1_ixj8fef wrote

The "problem" with objectively believing folklore or oral traditions without any other evidence is that they are folklore and oral traditions. A story that gets retold thousands or tens of thousands of times is going to change slightly with each retelling. The broad strokes will obviously stay the same but the finer details may blur and bleed into each other. Even ancient written records will have this problem to a degree from all the copying, translating, recopying and retranslating (not to say anything about the biases of the storytellers either).

Ancient traditions and stories are certainly good jumping off points for investigation since there is likely some event or place they are building off of. Finding other evidence can start to untangle what makes a good story and what we can say with good certainty happend or existed.

Take the Illiad as an example. The Trojan war makes for a great story but most of it is likely fictionalized. There probably wasn't a Helen and the Greeks probably didn't launch a thousand ships to rescue her. But there's likely a good chance it preserves a memory of Greeks coming into conflict with Anatolian peoples in that region. Finding evidence of a city that is likely Troy in the modern era gives more credence to parts of the story having kernels of fact dispersed into the mythology.


Painting_Agency t1_ixja9gh wrote

> The "problem" with objectively believing folklore or oral traditions without any other evidence is that they are folklore and oral traditions.

They're not believed without any other evidence. Traditional stories can be used for "hypothesis generating"; suggesting what we can then examine using other methods.

> A story that gets retold thousands or tens of thousands of times is going to change slightly with each retelling

The link suggests that Aboriginal storytellers often have some kind of familial oath or expectation to maintain accuracy in the oral tradition. If they're keeping references to islands that no longer exist, rather than adjusting stories to fit their absence, then there must be a belief that that information is important to maintain. Even if it has no practical purpose.


Pornalt190425 t1_ixjbxca wrote

To your first point, I alluded to that in the 2nd paragraph. To your second point, which link are you referring to? I did not see anything in the article about aboriginal storytellers unless I missed it


Painting_Agency t1_ixjmeoc wrote

Sorry, for some reason I thought this was linked to in the comment we were threading.

> How could such tales survive hundreds of generations without being written down?

> “There are aspects of storytelling in Australia that involved kin-based responsibilities to tell the stories accurately,” Reid said. That rigor provided “cross-generational scaffolding” that “can keep a story true.”


Pornalt190425 t1_ixkaoi4 wrote

Thanks for sharing that it was an interesting read! I guess with the right cultural carrots and sticks you could trust the story is being more accurately carried down the generations


Painting_Agency t1_ixkhyv4 wrote

The Norse skalds recited their sagas as verse so it was easier to remember them verbatim... But they weren't maintaining that oral tradition checksum for 400 generations 😮


eternalmunchies t1_ixk3sjr wrote

>The "problem" with objectively believing folklore or oral traditions without any other evidence is that they are folklore and oral traditions.

>Ancient written records will have this problem to a degree from all the copying, translating, recopying and retranslating (not to say anything about the biases of the storytellers either).

So it's clearly not about oral vs written. No history-keeping is positively objective. It just happen that our historiographic tradition emphasizes writing and has an elitist take on oral traditions (normally identified with the "other cultures", or the iliterate poor classes).


Pornalt190425 t1_ixkcjx8 wrote

I dont wont discount cultural elitism taking play to some degree in the general perception between the two

But that being said written records do allow the records to survive and be examined a bit easier. For exame you could start checking the historicity of something by seeing if someone else wrote about it. If say the Babylonian, Egyptian and Asyrian records all agree that an event went a certain way (especially when those areas were independent from each other. Seperate kingdoms dont have as much of a vested interest in telling the same story) all record an event the same way from roughly the same time period there's more credence to the telling. 3 seperate oral records are less likely (in general) to have come down through the ages than cuneiform tablets.

You could also potentially trace translations and versions of the story through time to see how it morphed and evolved in the retellings or when being translated. That would be something like comparing the dead sea scolls to a modern old testament/Torah. How much it varies overtime and what varies over time can give hints and clues.


Maleficent_Moose_802 t1_ixksjjn wrote

There is written record of Yamatai. We know it was somewhere near Japan, but We still don’t know where it exactly located.


Shadows802 t1_ixjklch wrote

I mean a prince stealing the wife of the King which leads to a seige lasting several years, isn't that improbable. Definitely more plausible than Merlin and the Dragon Eggs.


TheCHERRY_Business t1_ixizolo wrote

I will say there's a surprisingly different reaction from news such as this, vs the general acceptance of the theories presented in the show Ancient Apocalypse on Netflix


You_called_moi t1_ixj2xav wrote

The difference is evidence. When you can present something like an old map that shows the location of islands that once existed, it's impact is rather different to saying 'archaeologists HATE ME for saying this, but ancient people came from overseas to teach the indigenous people how to build pyramids- source: trust me, I'm not an expert, I'm a journalist'. If he had solid evidence to prove his claims, then that would be taken a lot more seriously, I'm sure.


Skynetiskumming t1_ixjjd07 wrote

I certainly didn't enjoy the way Ancient Apocalypse dramatized the content and turned it into "the world hates me" paradigm. To the presenter's credit though, the Antarctic coastline and the Bimini Road does make one wonder how they ended up on an ancient map. Much like the discovery published here.


hawktron t1_ixjt7km wrote

It’s not the Antarctic coast line though. It clearly fits the South American coast line / islands just oriented wrong.


rKasdorf t1_ixjkrkf wrote

Humans have lived by bodies of water for all of our existence. Sea level has risen by hundreds of feet in some places since the ice age. It should be the common mainstream opinion of archeology that most of historical coastal human habitation is far beneath the waves by now.


Josquius t1_ixkdrgi wrote

I find it is a huge problem with a lot of modern Brits view of history is that we see the land and sea as a binary situation, somewhere is either one or the other.

Given years of reclamation, dredging, and swamp draining, the historic landscape of the country has radically altered. People just don't get how much used to be alluvium and other in between places.


mello-t t1_ixieiwt wrote

One thing is for sure, the more we learn, the less we know.


Avia53 t1_ixksd8m wrote

Never understood why folklore gets dismissed so easily.


random_encounters42 t1_ixltj23 wrote

The younger dryad impact theory and Atlantas. I want to believe.


bmac251 t1_ixmggf3 wrote

I’m curious if they could do a similar study for Hy-Brasil off the west coast of Ireland.

The amount of folklore regarding that place in Irish fishing culture is intriguing.


vjsoam t1_ixle6t5 wrote

I say we name this place Avalon after the place King Arthur was supposedly taken after being mortally wounded by Mordred


EmmaInFrance t1_ixlp60u wrote

It already has a name, one known throughout Wales. Cantre'r Gwaelod.


vipros42 t1_ixlf4e1 wrote

The people of Glastonbury would probably take exception to that