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Authors: David Gibbons

The Gods of Atlantis

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By David Gibbins
 

Atlantis

Crusader Gold

The Last Gospel

The Tiger Warrior

The Mask of Troy

The Gods of Atlantis

The Gods of Atlantis

 

DAVID GIBBINS

 

Copyright © 2011 David Gibbins

The right of David Gibbins to be identified as the Author of the Work has been asserted by him in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.

Apart from any use permitted under UK copyright law, this publication may only be reproduced, stored, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means, with prior permission in writing of the publishers or, in the case of reprographic production, in accordance with the terms of licences issued by the Copyright Licensing Agency.

First published as an Ebook by Headline Publishing Group in 2011

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, institutions, places and incidents are creations of the author’s imagination and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual or other fictional events, locales, organisations or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental. The factual backdrop is discussed in the author’s note at the end.

Cataloguing in Publication Data is available from the British Library

eISBN: 9780755374328

HEADLINE PUBLISHING GROUP

An Hachette UK Company

338 Euston Road

London NW1 3BH

www.headline.co.uk

www.hachette.co.uk

Contents
 

By the Author

 

Title Page

 

Copyright

 

About the Author

 

Acknowledgements

 

Map of the Mediterranean region

 

Forward

 

Epigraph

 

Prologue

 

PART 1

 

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

PART 2

 

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

PART 3

 

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Epilogue

Background to the novel

 
About the Author
 

David Gibbins has worked in underwater archaeology all his professional life. After taking a PhD from Cambridge University he taught archaeology in Britain and abroad, and is a world authority on ancient shipwrecks and sunken cities. He has led numerous expeditions to investigate underwater sites in the Mediterranean and around the world. He currently divides his time between fieldwork, England and Canada.

Acknowledgements
 

I am very grateful to my agent, Luigi Bonomi of LBA, and to my editors, Martin Fletcher in London and Caitlin Alexander in New York; to Emily Griffin for helping to get this book into production, and to Jane Selley for her skilled copy-editing of this and my previous books; to the rest of the excellent team at Headline, including Aslan Byrne, Darragh Deering and Jane Morpeth; to the Hachette representatives internationally who have done so much to promote my books; to Alison Bonomi, Amanda Preston and Ajda Vucicevic at LBA; to Nicky Kennedy, Sam Edenborough, Mary Esdaile, Jenny Robson and Katherine West at the Intercontinental Literary Agency; to Gaia Banks at Sheil Land; to my film agent John Rush; and to Harriet Evans, my former editor at Headline, whose huge enthusiasm for my first novel
Atlantis
led me to think of writing the sequel that has become
The Gods of Atlantis
.

I am grateful to my mother Ann Verrinder Gibbins for casting a critical eye over many draft chapters and manuscripts; to my brother Alan for diving with me in lava tubes off volcanoes, for his photography and video work for my website
www.davidgibbins.com
and for his expertise as a pilot, greatly benefiting the flying chapters in this book; and to Angie Hobbs for her unrivalled knowledge of Plato.

Among many others who have provided helpful comments on my books I am especially grateful to Professor Paul Cartledge of Cambridge University. The research behind the first part of this book owes much to former professors and colleagues at Bristol, Cambridge and Liverpool Universities, where I was fortunate to study and to teach in institutions that have been at the forefront of research into the Neolithic in Anatolia; I would especially like to thank James Macqueen, who introduced me in riveting fashion to ancient Near Eastern civilization when I was an undergraduate at Bristol, and to the British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara for first enabling me to visit the site of Çatalhöyük in Turkey in 1984.

Finally, to Angie and our daughter Molly, to whom all of my books are dedicated with much love.

Map of the Mediterranean region

 

In 1934, Heinrich Himmler – the second most powerful man in Nazi Germany – bought Wewelsburg Castle, a medieval stronghold perched high above the valley of the River Oder in Westphalia. Himmler associated the region with the mythic origins of the German nation, and saw the castle’s triangular shape as a ‘spear of destiny’, pointing north. The castle had a sinister history: legend held that thousands of accused witches were tortured and executed there, and an inquisition room still survived in the basement. But nothing in its past could equal the plans that Himmler had for it.

He set about transforming Wewelsburg into the ‘order-castle’ of the SS, the ideological centre of the Nazi cult. Slave labourers were brought to a new concentration camp near the castle, and over a thousand of them were worked to death quarrying and transporting stone. A circular chamber was created, the ‘SS Generals’ Hall’. In the centre of the floor was a twelve-spoked sunwheel, leading out to twelve pillars and twelve window ninches. Directly below lay another chamber, a domed vault based on the tombs of the Bronze Age Mycenaeans, and a semi-mythical ruler Himmler admired – Agamemnon, the Mycenaean conqueror of Troy. At the zenith of the dome was an ancient symbol that had been found on pottery at Troy and on golden decorations at Mycenae, a symbol the Nazis expropriated for their own baleful ends – the ‘crooked cross’, the swastika.

What went on in those rooms may never be known. Wewelsburg became a focus for Nazi archaeological research, to fulfil Adolf Hitler’s desire to ‘return to the source of the blood, to root us again in the soil, to seek again for strength from sources which have been buried for 2,000 years’. Yet Hitler himself never visited the castle. It was to remain Himmler’s preserve, central to his obsession with prehistory and the occult. From there, the Ahnenerbe – the ‘Department of
Cultural Heritage’ – sent expeditions to Tibet, to Peru, to Iceland, to places still unknown today, searching for Aryan origins and for the greatest prize of all, the lost civilization of Atlantis. Underlying everything lay Himmler’s racial theories, and Wewelsburg became a springboard for some of the greatest crimes against humanity ever conceived. It was there that he began to formulate the ‘Final Solution’, the mass murder of the Jews. And it was there in 1941 that he assembled his top SS generals for ideological strengthening before the invasion of Russia, the most destructive military campaign in history – one foretold to Himmler in a legend of a final battle between West and East, and fuelled by his doctrine of Aryan racial superiority over the Slavic peoples of Russia.

Yet even while these terrible events were unfolding, Himmler continued to be obsessed with the symbols and artefacts of the past. He envisaged Wewelsburg Castle within a huge semicircular complex, the ‘Centre of the New World’, its plan reminiscent of the circular prehistoric monuments that he associated with mythical Aryan forebears. He planned a huge archaeological collection at Wewelsburg, to make it part of SS indoctrination. The placing of the sunwheel and the swastika in the Generals’ Hall and the vault below show how he drew power from ancient symbols, and incorporated them into the very core of Nazi ideology. And just as he saw those prehistoric monuments as evidence of a new order, of a new race arisen, so he saw his new world as one where the only gods were the gods of the Nazis, the gods they themselves had become.

Nobody knows how close Himmler may have come to realizing his dream, and what artefacts may have been brought there. Deep within the castle lay another chamber, Himmler’s private vault, but when American soldiers captured Wewelsburg in 1945 they found it empty, its contents unknown and seemingly lost forever to history.

One artefact might have been at Wewelsburg, an artefact of extraordinary power that could have unlocked the greatest obsession of all: the dream of the lost civilization of Atlantis, and of Atlantis reborn . . .

 

Then, as dawn first glimmered, from the horizon rose a dark cloud, and Adad the storm god was raging within it. Then Nergal, god of plague and war, wrenched out the boats’ mooring poles; Nunurta, god of the earth, made the dams overflow; and the Anunnaki, dread gods of the underworld, their torches brandished, shrivelled the land with their flames. Desolation from Adad spread over the sky, and all that had been bright was turned into darkness. Like a bull he charged the land; he shattered the land like a vessel of clay; for a day the raging winds flattened the land, and then came the flood. Like a tide of war it swept over the people. A brother could not distinguish his brother; from heaven the people were not to be seen . . . For six days and seven nights it raged, the wind, the storm, the flood; it flattened the land. On the seventh day the wind abated, the storm that had ravaged the land like a war; the sea was lulled, the gale was spent; the flood ended. I looked on the day, and all sound was stilled; all the people had turned to clay. All around me the waters were flat like the roof of a house. Then I opened a hatchway in the boat, and on my cheek streamed the sunlight. I bowed down and wept, my cheeks overflowing with tears. I gazed into the distance, to the furthest bounds of the ocean, and saw land arising. On the mountain of Nisir the boat ran aground; the mountain of Nisir held the boat fast, and would not release it . . . I brought an offering and made a sacrifice, and I pured a libation on the peak of the mountain . . . so it was that the gods took me and caused me to dwell in this place, at the ends of the earth . . .

BOOK: The Gods of Atlantis
2.62Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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