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In the Timaeus 22a-b, Plato's Critias tells us that, 'on one occasion, when [Solon] wanted to lead [the Egyptian priests at Sais] into a dialogue about ancient history, he set out to give an account of the earliest events known here, telling them about Phoroneus, said to be the first man, and Niobe, and he went on to tell the mythical tale of Deucalion [22b] and Pyrrha after the Great Flood, and how they survived it, and to provide a genealogy of their descendants, and by recording the years since the events of which he was speaking, he tried to work out their dates. And Solon said that a really old one of the priests said, ‘Oh Solon, Solon, you Greeks are always children: Greek old men don’t exist.’ Like the Old Testament, the Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh, the Mesopotamian Epic of Atrahasis, and the mythology of cultures as far afield as North America, Greek mythology has a myth of a Great Flood. This story is outlined in the document here, and it is interesting to compare it with the Biblical, Babylonian and Mesoptamian versions, as well as the flood tales of Egyptian mythology. In some ways the tales seem to correspond, while in others they are very different indeed. The Atlantis tale is, of course, a flood myth of sorts.


Date created: 
Friday, March 10, 2017
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