The legend of Atlantis, an island-continent lying in the Atlantic Ocean over against the Pillars of Hercules, which, after being long the seat of a powerful empire, was engulfed in the sea, has been made the basis of many extravagant speculations; and anew awakens keenest interest with the revolving centuries. The 12th of October 1892 has been proclaimed a World’s holiday, to celebrate its accomplished cycle of four centuries since Columbus set foot on the shores of the West. The voyage has been characterised as the most memorable in the annals of our race; and the century thus completed is richer than all before it in the transformations that the birth of time has disclosed since the wedding of the New World to the Old. The story of the Lost Atlantis is recorded in the Timæusand, with many fanciful amplifications, in the Critias of Plato. According to the dialogues, as reproduced there, Critias repeats to Socrates a story told him by his grandfather, then an old man of ninety, when he himself was not more than ten years of age. According to this narrative, Solon visited the city of Sais, at the head of the Egyptian delta, and there learned from the priests of the ancient empire of Atlantis, and of its overthrow by a convulsion of nature. “No one,” says Professor Jowett, in his critical edition ofThe Dialogues of Plato, “knew better than Plato how to invent ‘a noble lie’ ”; and he, unhesitatingly, pronounces the whole narrative a fabrication. “The world, like a child, has readily, and for the most part, unhesitatingly accepted the tale of the Island of Atlantis.” To the critical editor, this reception furnishes only an illustration of popular credulity, showing how the chance word of a poet or philosopher may give rise to endless historical or religious speculation. In the Critias, the legendary tale is unquestionably expanded into details of no possible historical significance or genuine antiquity. But it is not without reason, that men like Humboldt have recognised in the original legend the possible vestige of a widely-spread tradition of earliest times. In this respect, at any rate, I purpose here to review it.