Atlantis was a myth, but real-life lost lands do exist.
A manned research submersible takes a rock sample from the seafloor near Brazil.
A lost continent off the coast of Brazil may have been found, scientists announced this week.
boulders dredged from the seafloor off the coast of South America two
years ago could be remnants of a long-vanished continent, according to
Roberto Ventura Santos, the geology director of Brazil's Geology
"This could be the Brazilian Atlantis," Santos told reporters,
adding that he was speaking metaphorically and not claiming to have
found the legendary sunken world. "Obviously, we don't expect to find a
lost city in the middle of the Atlantic," he said.
and his team speculated that the granite—a relatively low-density rock
found in continental crust—belonged to a continent that was submerged
when Africa and South America drifted apart and formed the Atlantic
Ocean about 100 million years ago.
But Michael Wysession,
an Earth and planetary scientist at Washington University in St. Louis,
noted that granite can find its way onto the seafloor through other
means. "There are pieces of granite in the middle of the seafloor that
date to about 800 million years ago when we had a snowball Earth
scenario and there were large pieces of rock embedded in ice
rafts"—mobile glaciers, essentially—"all over the ocean," explained
Wysession, who was not part of the discovery. "As those ice rafts were
melting, large blocks of rock dropped down all over the seafloor."