A myth on Sardinia launched on the internet
It is sad to say but yet another article is travelling the internet that is damaging popular knowledge and beliefs on the prehistory of Sardinia. After the french article in Le Monde now the english article of The Guardian has been published with a doubtful content. Both articles refer to the theory of Sergio Frau that a big tsunami would have ended the Sardinian Bronze Age civilisation covering numerous bronze age towers, nuraghi, under layers of mud. This tsunami would have been provoked by a comet plunging into the sea. Years ago the theories on a tsunami have been invalidated by archaeologists by simple reasoning, beneath the socalled layer of mud from the tsunami there have been found punic and roman remains of later periods.
Furthermore there are numerous claims that Sardinia was home to the civilisation of Atlantis, mentioned by Plato in one of his books. Apart from the fact that Plato wrote about Atlantis there is no evidence at all that such a civilisation existed, and the only then known civilisation that was seriously disrupted by a natural event was that on the island of Santorini in Greece. As Plato placed Atlantis beyond the Pillars of Hercules some have argued that these must be found in the Strait of Messina or the Sea south of Sicily and point therefore to Sardinia as the home of the mythical civilisation of Atlantis. Unfortunately there is no evidence that Atlantis even existed outside the mind of Plato or where the Pillars of Hercules should be placed. Archaeologists assume that the most obvious location is the entrance of the Mediterranean.
That tsunami's or their effect for the Mediterranean area were not known before 1980 as stated in the article, is not correct. In 1956 an earthquake on Santorini showed the effect of 25 metres high waves on the surrounding shores.
The article of Le Monde, and consequently that of the Guardian, are full of factual errors, vague statements and unproven interpretations. But the appeal of mythical civilisations is very big and therefore a large english speaking public will consume this article and it will leave behind an impression, however imperfect, of Sardinia and it's history.