Underwater 'lost city' found to be geological formation

Underwater 'lost city' found to be geological formation
The ancient underwater remains of a long lost Greek city were in fact created by a naturally occurring phenomenon -- according to joint research from the University of East Anglia and the University of Athens (Greece). Credit: University of Athens

The ancient underwater remains of a long lost Greek city were in fact created by a naturally occurring phenomenon - according to joint research from the University of East Anglia (UK) and the University of Athens (Greece).

When underwater divers discovered what looked like paved floors, courtyards and colonnades, they thought they had found the ruins of a long-forgotten civilization that perished when tidal waves hit the shores of the Greek holiday island Zakynthos.

But new research published today reveals that the site was created by a natural geological phenomenon that took place in the Pliocene era - up to five million years ago.

Lead author Prof Julian Andrews, from UEA's School of Environmental Sciences, said: "The site was discovered by snorkelers and first thought to be an ancient city port, lost to the sea. There were what superficially looked like circular column bases, and paved floors. But mysteriously no other signs of life - such as pottery."

The bizarre discovery, found close to Alikanas Bay, was carefully examined in situ by the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities of Greece.

Archaeologist Magda Athanasoula and diver Petros Tsampourakis studied the site, together with Prof Michael Stamatakis from the Department of Geology and Geoenvironment at the University of Athens (UoA).

Underwater 'lost city' found to be geological formation
The ancient underwater remains of a long lost Greek city were in fact created by a naturally occurring phenomenon -- according to joint research from the University of East Anglia and the University of Athens (Greece). Credit: University of Athens

After the preliminary mineralogical and chemical analyses, a scientific research team was formed, composed of UoA and UEA staff.

The research team went on to investigate in detail the mineral content and texture of the underwater formation in minute detail, using microscopy, X-ray and stable isotope techniques.

Prof Andrews said: "We investigated the site, which is between two and five meters under water, and found that it is actually a natural geologically occurring phenomenon.

"The disk and doughnut morphology, which looked a bit like circular column bases, is typical of mineralization at hydrocarbon seeps - seen both in modern seafloor and palaeo settings.

"We found that the linear distribution of these doughnut shaped concretions is likely the result of a sub-surface fault which has not fully ruptured the surface of the sea bed. The fault allowed gases, particularly methane, to escape from depth.

Underwater 'lost city' found to be geological formation
The ancient underwater remains of a long lost Greek city were in fact created by a naturally occurring phenomenon -- according to joint research from the University of East Anglia and the University of Athens (Greece). Credit: University of Athens

"Microbes in the sediment use the carbon in methane as fuel. Microbe-driven oxidation of the methane then changes the chemistry of the sediment forming a kind of natural cement, known to geologists as concretion.

"In this case the cement was an unusual mineral called dolomite which rarely forms in seawater, but can be quite common in microbe-rich sediments.

"These concretions were then exhumed by erosion to be exposed on the seabed today.

"This kind of phenomenon is quite rare in shallow waters. Most similar discoveries tend to be many hundreds and often thousands of meters deep underwater.

"These features are proof of natural methane seeping out of rock from hydrocarbon reservoirs. The same thing happens in the North Sea, and it is also similar to the effects of fracking, when humans essentially speed up or enhance the phenomena."

'Exhumed hydrocarbon-seep authigenic carbonates from Zakynthos island (Greece): Concretions not archaeological remains' is published in the journal Marine and Petroleum Geology.


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Jun 03, 2016
I.e. geologists confirmed that this is an ancient concrete, which is created long before pottery is invented, like ancient cities in Peru.

Jun 03, 2016
ROFL ! So much 'Atlantean' guff, and it turned out to be natural, after all !!

This may be related to the 'sunken road' Cpt. Cousteau reportedly followed for some distance, albeit further off-shore...

The 'joker', of course, is that the whole area would have been exposed during ice-ages, 'high & dry' during the Messinian Event...
https://en.wikipe...y_crisis

Jun 03, 2016
"...civilization that perished when tidal waves hit the shores of the Greek holiday island..."

ALL waves are "tidal waves." The word the author SHOULD have used is "tsunami."

Jun 04, 2016
Next the same gang of idiots that wrote this POS are gonna say that the machine from Antikythera was bacteria too, or some other patent leather nonsense not even a cretin would believe. Oh! Wait! Two here actually swallow that idiocy. So maybe the top two 'fivers of each other' would like some prime real estate just off Gator Alley in Florida. Or maybe a shiny new lease on the Brooklyn Bridge so you both could live in the fast lane? Go ahead and '1' me! I could give a royal fat pigeon feces.

Nature makes a LOT of things, but straight lines, right angles of MANY repetitions, closed conic section curves in two dimensions normal to each other and co-planar are not. And 5*(10^6)years old??!!....now just what undiscovered bonobo made that??? Will not even begin to speculate the material...relative density in situ... orientation to other 'specimens' if found.....or inebriated state of the 'researchers'.

Jun 04, 2016
Nature makes a LOT of things, but straight lines, right angles of MANY repetitions

http://danielwild...all_.jpg

Jun 04, 2016
vilisivka, you did spot the chipping on the near side of the column base, showing variegated aggregate

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