Attracting hundreds of thousands of readers and stimulating vast debate, it influenced generations of people including countless scientists who went on to do serious work in their fields, and numerous science-fiction writers. It is a measure The great classic of Atlantis, this book more than any other established the existence of this lost continent for the modern world. Displaying an immense knowledge of Platonic and Biblical material, comparative archeological discoveries, folk traditions of deluges, and geological data supporting catastrophic volcanic activity, Donnelly staggered his readers with "facts" and overwhelmed them with his many brilliant arguments. Despite the many more recent discoveries that have proved many of his "facts" to be false, his arguments still dazzle and his central myth continues to fascinate.
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Learn how and when to remove this template message Donnelly entered politics and was lieutenant governor of Minnesota from to He was a Radical Republican  Congressman from Minnesota in the 38th , 39th , and 40th congresses , — , a state senator from — and and a state representative from and After leaving the Minnesota State Senate in , he returned to his law practice and writing.
In , Donnelly spoke at a meeting of 10, people where he read his preamble to the conference platform. In , he published Atlantis: The Antediluvian World , his best-known work. It details theories concerning the mythical lost continent of Atlantis. The book sold well and is widely credited with initiating the theme of Atlantis as an antediluvian civilization that became such a feature of popular literature during the 20th century and contributed to the emergence of Mayanism.
Donnelly suggested that Atlantis, whose story was told by Plato in the dialogues of Timaeus and Critias , had been destroyed during the same event remembered in the Bible as the Great Flood. He also thought that it had been the original home of an Aryan race whose red-haired, blue-eyed descendants could be found in Ireland. A year after Atlantis, he published Ragnarok: The Age of Fire and Gravel , in which he expounded his belief that the Flood as well as the destruction of Atlantis and the extinction of the mammoth had been brought about by the near-collision of the earth with a massive comet.
Donnelly c. He then travelled to England to arrange the English publication of his book by Sampson Low , speaking at the Oxford and Cambridge Union in which his thesis "Resolved, that the works of William Shakespeare were composed by Francis Bacon" was put to an unsuccessful vote. The book was a complete failure, and Donnelly was discredited. Donnelly also made several other campaigns for public office during the s. He made a losing campaign for Congress this time as a Democrat in In , he successfully campaigned for a seat in the Minnesota State Legislature as an independent.
That year, Donnelly also campaigned for governor of Minnesota but was defeated. The house was still standing in , but the effort failed and the house has since been demolished. Atlantis: The Antediluvian World , in which he attempted to establish that all known ancient civilizations were descended from its high-Neolithic culture.
Ragnarok: The Age of Fire and Gravel , in which he proposed that a comet hit the earth in prehistoric times and destroyed a high civilization.
Atlantis: The Antediluvian World
Content[ edit ] Many of its theories are the source of many modern-day concepts about Atlantis, including these: the civilization and technology beyond its time, the origins of all present races and civilizations, and a civil war between good and evil. It was avidly supported by publications of Helena Blavatsky and the Theosophical Society as well as by Rudolf Steiner. He includes many illustrations as well as charts with lingual similarities. With his book he states that he is trying to prove thirteen distinct hypotheses:  There once existed in the Atlantic Ocean , opposite the Mediterranean Sea , a large island, which was the remnant of an Atlantic continent, and known to the ancients as Atlantis.
Ignatius L. Donnelly
Atlantis: the antediluvian world
Atlantis the Antediluvian World