How a Mysterious Metal Could Uncover the Origins of Atlantis

It may not lead to an actual sunken city, but an ancient shipwreck could expose the cultural roots of a perplexing legend.

Plato. Photo by Jastrow via Flickr

In early January, archaeologists exploring a nearly 2,600-year-old shipwreck off the coast of Sicily found something unbelievably rare and exciting amongst the cargo. It wasn’t some long lost or revolutionary work of art or some mystifying piece of machinery—the kind of things that usually captivate the world when unearthed. It was a cache of 39 ingots of a mysterious substance known as “orichalcum.”

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