12) Horses and War
Plato relates in detail how Atlantis had
an immense army for the time, totaling about 1.2 million armed men. This vast army
had a sum of 10,000 chariots, something portentous for the epoch. Now,
war chariots require horses, which is to say that the horse was first domesticated
in Atlantis some 12 thousand years ago or even more. This fact apparently
rules out the Americas from our list, as they did not posses the animal
except under non-conformal sizes and dates.
The same conclusion also applies to Europe and
the Near East. There, the horse was only introduced far later by way of
Egypt and the Hyksos, at about 1,670 AC or so. All in all, it seems that
if Plato's disclosures on the intensive use of domesticated horses in Atlantis
is indeed true, only an Oriental location for the Lost Continent is indeed
consonant with actual fact.
The origin and the domestication of the
horse is wrapped in mystery, as is usually the case with all things Atlantean.
The magnificent animal apparently arose in Asia at about 38 million years
ago. From there it later spread to the Americas, and became extinct there
afterwards, but not before returning to Eurasia. Experts believe that the
horse was domesticated in Central Asia at about the third millennium BC.
From there, via Egypt and the Hyksos,
the horse's use spread to Europe and the Near East and, perhaps, from this, back to the Far Orient, where its use had been utterly lost and forgotten.
Experts also generally agree that the domestic
horse does not derive from American stocks but, instead from Asian ones.
Hence, the very archaeology of the horse points to Asia as the land of
origin of the domesticated horse. This suggests a connection between Atlantis
and the Orient if Plato is right in his assertion that the domestic horse
originated in Atlantis far earlier than the experts would have it.
Plato also tells how the royal capital
city of Atlantis had extensive hippodromes for horse racing. Plato is probably
alluding to chariot racing, though it is not impossible that there were
also mounted contests. The large width of the racing course (200 meters)
suggests chariot contests, a sport highly cherished in antiquity.
The Horse Sacrifice of the Hindus (Ashvamedha)
is indeed a ritual enactment of the death of Paradise (Atlantis). The horse is there commemorated as the animal that represents the Cosmos (Paradise). So, this strange
Vedic ritual again establishes a link with Atlantis as the homeland of
the domesticated horse, one of the finest of all conquests of man. The
legend of the Trojan Horse also brings to mind a connection between Atlantis
and horses, for the true Troy is no other than Atlantis.
As the horse and combat chariots inexisted
in the Near East before their introduction by the Hyksos, we can be sure that Schliemann's Troy
is not the real one, as archaeologists presently believe. The war chariots
described in detail by Plato are of the Hindu type rather than of the one
used throughout the ancient Near East.
The war chariots of Atlantis, like the
ones of India, had two charioteers and a pair of draft horses. One of the
riders drove, while the other charioteer shot arrows at the enemies with
the help of his bow. The celebrated passage of the
on Krishna and Arjuna as the charioteers of victory describes in detail
the classical battles fought during the Bronze Age and, in all probability,
in Atlantis as well.