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Sylvain Tristan
First European Empire

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Atlantis, First European Empire

An interview of Sylvain Tristan

Copyright Sylvain Tristan,
Presented with permission


A lover of ancient civilisations, Sylvain Tristan has been helped in his quest of the past by two men – Jean Deruelle, who has been one of the first to suggest a Megalithic origin for Atlantis and Alan Butler, the rediscoverer of 366-degree geometry. Tristan’s own research and personal investigation made him unveil the secret relationship between most capital cities of antiquity the world over. From that Tristan infers that one single people, who had incredibly accurate knowledge of the Earth circumference, was able to voyage round the globe 4,000 years before Columbus and most probably helped the first great civilisations to rise. His discoveries are dealt with in his first book, ‘Les Lignes d’or’ (‘The Golden Lines’), published in 2005.

After an amazing demonstration in his second book, ‘Atlantide, premier empire européen,’ (‘Atlantis, First European Empire’), published in 2007, Tristan leaves little doubt that the Megalithic civilisation was no less than Plato’s Atlantis. More amazing still, this vast empire possessed perfect knowledge of our planet – some knowledge that has been secretly passed down from initiate to initiate for millennia.


 SPM: In your book, you uphold the theory that Atlantis did exist and identify it as the Megalithic civilisation of Western Europe. Do you mean to say that the builders of Stonehenge were Atlanteans? What makes you assert that?

Sylvain Tristan: I based myself on archaeological records, mythological references and a mathematical demonstration altogether. My approach is scientific and my goal has been to gather rational evidence of a presumed civilisation. I have been trying to equate the known descriptions of Atlantis and what we know about the Megalithic expansion. Plato’s first description of the Atlantean empire and its colonies very closely parallels the Megalithic settlement in Western Europe. The Megalithic people were one of the only people of the time that could skilfully sail across vast distances of the Atlantic coast, extending from southern Scandinavia to southern Spain and later expanding into the Mediterranean. Most people who write about Atlantis mention Plato, but other Greek authors mentioned this mythical continent, like Diodorus Siculus, a well-known historian from the 1st century BC. If he didn’t write much about Atlanteans, he described them as people living in the northwestern part of the known world a few millennia before the Greeks. He also refers to Hecataeus of Abdera who mentioned the so-called Hyperboreans, who were said to live in a northern island where they revered Apollo in a magnificent precinct and had a remarkable circular temple – in my opinion Avebury and Stonehenge. So, geographically and chronologically, Atlanteans can only have been the Megalithic people. This is the date given by Plato (9,000 years before Solon) that poses the most serious problem and that has discredited the myth among mainstream scholars. I am personally convinced that this date is wrong. Radiocarbon dating of the Megalithic sites roughly spans three and a half millennia, from 4800 BC to 1200 BC. As their name gives it away, Atlanteans must have been living on the Atlantic coast. That’s why I have no doubt that Atlanteans were the Megalithic people, who lived in northwestern Europe and who later settled the Mediterranean where their constructions are to be found in the Balearic islands, Corsica, Malta and even northern Africa. There are also obvious links between the Greek myths and those of northern Europe. More evidence is the description by Egyptians of the Sea People attacking the Mediterranean countries c.1200 BC, which coincides with the end of the Megalithic era. Those descriptions mention skilful sailors coming ‘from the midst of the sea.’ Egyptians images in Medinet Habu specifically depict a type of sword that was manufactured in Brittany, rather than in the Eastern Mediterranean, which is further evidence that the Mediterranean was invaded by navigators originating on the remote shores of the Atlantic Ocean. 



SPM: According to you, their greatest trait was to elaborate a 366-degree geometry. This geometry was, so to say, their signature, is that right? 

Sylvain Tristan: The unit of measurement of the Megalithic people strongly suggests that they possessed a 366-degree geometry. There again, several pieces of evidence point in the same direction. Scottish Professor Alexander Thom spent several decades of his life trying to prove that the Megalithic stone circles had been based on a 82.96-centimetre unit which he dubbed the Megalithic yard. In the late 1990’s, Alan Butler showed that this length was a perfect subdivision of the Earth’s polar circumference in the 366-degree geometry. The most astonishing of all is that there are exactly 366 Megalithic yards to the Megalithic second of arc. Furthermore, the greatest Megalithic sites of Britain – Avebury and Stonehenge in the south of England, but also the Ring of Brodgar and the Stones of Stenness in Orkney – and most capital cities of the world’s first great civilisations before Rome – Thebes in Egypt, Babylon in Mesopotamia, Mycenae and Athens on Greece, and so on – are located on places that imply a direct knowledge of 366 geometry from those who erected them there in the first place. I tried to show in my first book, Les Lignes d’or, that chance alone cannot account for the geographical positions of these places and cities. On the contrary, it was decided to create them where they are because of mathematical considerations – all these cities are located on the parallels and, much more often, the meridians derived from 366-degre geometry as it is applied on the Earth, that is, equidistant lines crisscrossing the globe. 


Babylon, Mesopotamia

The Valley of the Kings, Thebes, Egypt

Teotihuacan, Mexico

SPM: Could you precise the nature of this geometry – that you refer to as an ‘inspired creation’ – and tell us what makes you think the Megalithic people might have devised it? 

Sylvain Tristan: The most beautiful and famous Megalithic sites of Britain, like Stonehenge, and the world’s first great capitals that flowered right after them, are located on what Alan Butler and I call Salt Lines (what I termed Golden Lines in my first book), that is, parallels and meridians derived from 366-degree geometry. Were you to divide the Earth like a tangerine made of 366 segments, you would find that these great cities of remote antiquity are located on the lines that separate each different piece of the fruit. The Atlanteans’ genius – or the Megalithic people’s genius, if you like ‑ was to reconcile the units of time and distance. Within their system the calendar and the geometry were in perfect harmony with the Earth. First, you have to remember that in a year the Earth spins a bit more than 366 times, not 365, because the Earth also revolves once around the Sun during that period. So they (or at least some people) devised a 366-day calendar. Then they decided to create a 366-degree geometry. This geometry allows for a neat unification of concepts that today are separate – it was perfectly possible, for example, that in this mathematical system of yore, when the Earth was making a minute-of-arc turn on its axis, this was also a minute of time. That must have made the system beautifully harmonious – time and distance being unified in a single overarching system. 

Applying this system planet-scale meant creating sacred spots and cities, say, at the intersections of big rivers and lines derived from the geometry. Applying the system on a local scale meant to devise a unit of measurement that was a neat subdivision of the Earth circumference in this geometry – the Megalithic yard mentioned earlier, that is one 366th of a Megalithic second of arc. There are at least two possible candidates for the creation of the geometry. It is of course possible that the Atlanteans were taught this geometry by some unidentified civilisation. That they have devised it themselves actually seems quite unlikely because the Megalithic people couldn’t even – or didn’t wish to ‑ write. An interesting possibility is that the geometry rose as the result of two people meeting and sharing their respective knowledge with each other. For instance, the Megalithic people were probably great sky-gazers. Again, these great astronomical capacities are stressed both by Diodorus Siculus’ Atlanteans and Hecataeus’ Hyperboreans. The Megalithic people might have noticed the round umbra of the Earth on the Moon during a Moon eclipse. Then, through careful observation of the Sun course in different latitudes of the globe, they might have estimated the Earth circumference with a great degree of accuracy. In the Middle East they might have met the world’s first mathematicians (like Presumerians), and the sharing of their mutual knowledge might have resulted in the creation of 366-degree geometry. 

SPM: You claim that Atlanteans helped great civilisations of antiquity until the Greeks to rise. On what basis are you able to assert that? 

Sylvain Tristan: The Megalithic people were expert sailors who thrived along the European shores, both in the Atlantic and in the Mediterranean. They probably reached the Middle East by the end of the 4th millennium BC ‑ about 3500-3100 BC. Thousands of Megalithic sites dating from this time are to be found in the Jordan valley, which to me is clear evidence that the Megalithic people at least met the people living there at the time. When they discovered the river Jordan – an almost exact natural north-south line – they might have decided to devise a geometry that would use that river as a Prime Meridian, just like Greenwich today symbolises the Prime Meridian of 360-degree geometry. Chronologically, everything fits. For it is precisely at this time – around 3100 BC – that the first great capitals started to thrive: Babylon in Mesopotamia, Thebes in Egypt, Assur in Assyria, but also, quite interestingly, Stonehenge in Britain. All these cities or places are located on Salt Lines (meridians and parallels of 366 geometry), at an integral number of degrees from the Jordan! Harappa, one of the most prestigious cities of the Indus civilisation that rose around 2800 BC, is a Salt Line location as well. Even the city of Caral in modern Peru, the ‘Mother City of the Americas’ with the oldest-known New World pyramids, is a Salt Line location as well. Much later, the same thing can be said of Mycenae and Athens in Greece, or Hattusa in Anatolia. The capital city of the Olmecs in Central America suddenly rose on a Salt Line location in the same century as the Megalithic civilisation fell and the Sea People raided the eastern Med. 

Chance alone couldn’t explain one fifth of the clear pattern we’ve got here – the locations of capital cities must have been carefully selected by people dealing with the same knowledge applied in places as remote to one another as Mesopotamia and South America. I’ve had my findings checked by three independent mathematicians, each of whom confirmed that my results couldn’t be explained away by chance – the odds are just too high! That virtually all the capital cities of the world’s new civilisations have been erected along these lines show that the civilisation referred to by Plato as Atlantis participated in the birth, or at least the great leap forward, of these civilisations, and subsequently let them evolve on their own. These civilisations were thus less colonies than places where the Megalithic people left their fingerprints at the dawn of their lives – fingerprints that assume the form of great mathematical and astronomical knowledge.



SPM: How do you explain that the myth of Atlantis refers to an island? 

Sylvain Tristan: Mythical accounts in Greece tell us that Apollo originally came from Hyperborea, which we saw was most probably northern Europe. Moreover, the legends of Avalon, Atland and Aztlán, which respectively belong to the mythologies of the Celts, the Frisians and the Aztecs, all suggest an island that would have existed long ago in northern Europe. So, the issue is, did the island of Atlantis described by Plato once exist somewhere in northern Europe, even if we know that the Greek philosopher probably deliberately exaggerated facts about it in his account? Strangely enough, there is a submerged island in the North Sea. As there are Megalithic sites all around the North Sea (in Scandinavia, Germany, Holland and Britain), it just stands to reason that, should this island have been emerged in Megalithic times, there must have been Megalithic settlements on it as well. This submarine island is called the Dogger Bank. Scientists generally think the Dogger Bank has been submerged before 5000 BC, which would chronologically place it before the Megalithic era. 

The Dogger Bank, North Sea

There are, however, reasons to doubt the validity of this date. For some geological reasons due to the last Ice Age, the ground in this part of the world has been slowly going down – it still is, which explains why today in Holland, Germany and England, people regularly have to fight against the sea which is encroaching the lands that are sinking on the shores of the North Sea. There is little doubt in my opinion that the Dogger Bank has been rising out of water much later than scientists tend to think, hence at Megalithic times these lands were probably settled by them. That’s probably the submersion of this island that later gave birth to different myths of a lost island like those of Mesopotamia, Egypt, and so on – and of course Plato’s “tale” of Atlantis. I personally think there are strong presumptions to carry out underwater excavations, or at least investigations, in the Dogger Bank area. Undersea Megalithic sites and, who knows, scanty remains of a lost capital might be found there in the shallow waters of central North Sea. After the flooding of the island, perhaps around 3500-3100 BC, the Megalithic people might have sought new lands in the Middle East, and finally created a new ‘capital’ on another northern island – in Britain, in the Stonehenge/Avebury area, for example.



SPM: You suggest that the Atlanteans’knowledge might have been passed down to us via The Celtic druids. What type of evidence do you base yourself on and what kind of knowledge are you talking about? 

Sylvain Tristan: Part of the Megalithic knowledge might have come down to us ‑ here’s how. To erect such huge pieces of stone, the Megalithic people needed sages that we could call druids too, the word meaning ‘wise people.’ These druids were probably the kind of people who could understand and use 366-degree geometry. I think the knowledge of these druids might have survived at least till Roman times. When Caesar conquered Gaul, he explicitly refers to Celtic druids that were still being initiated in Britain at the time. He insists that druids were being trained for twenty years – this initiation being exclusively oral, thus based on memorisation, any from of writing being strictly prohibited. It is my contention that some of, possibly even all of the Megalithic knowledge could have been passed down for more than a millennium via the Celtic druids. When druids were massacred not long after Caesar, it is not totally absurd to suggest that at least part of their knowledge was passed down till modern times through secret societies that perpetuated the druidic tradition by concealing the fact that they were ‘druids’. Of course this is just a suggestion, but it is not completely out of the realm of plausibility . . .  


The battle of Alesia

SPM: Do you have more evidence that would support your contention that Atlantean knowledge might have survived till modern times? 

Sylvain Tristan: Well, again, you have to keep in mind that in my view what we term ‘Atlantean’ was actually Megalithic, who used 366-degree geometry. The avoirdupois pound, that is still used today in English-speaking countries, appears to be one of the many implications of this geometry of yore – another piece of evidence that Atlantean knowledge might have secretly travelled through millennia. It is a fact that the avoirdupois pound owes its name from the Old French phrase avoir de pois, which means ‘goods of weight.’ My colleague Alan Butler showed that there was exactly 1020 avoirdupois pounds to a Megalithic-second-of-arc-thick ‘segment’ of Earth. A round number in base 10 – as though the people ‘devising’ it in the Middle Ages had chosen a precise subdivision of the Earth mass, not in any system but in 366-degree geometry. Of course, another question arises – how the heck could they have known with such accuracy the mass of the Earth? Let’s say it’s just a coincidence then – the only problem is that, according to mathematicians who had a second look at the accuracy of the result, it is unlikely to be a mere coincidence. It is also known that the Troy pound is named after the French market city of Troyes. Now all this is incredibly interesting because the French city of Troyes stands right on a Salt Line – a meridian of 366-degree geometry! What is more, this Salt Line is the very line where I believe that Alesia, the city that was described by Diodorus Siculus as ‘the hearth and mother-city of all Celtica,’ stands – in my opinion the most sacred city of Celtic druids, that in turn might have inherited from the knowledge of Megalithic druids. Is it not at least possible to imagine that the Megalithic knowledge could have been secretly preserved, first by druids in Alesia, then by some secret society in Troyes? You have to remember at this point that the Knights Templar precisely emerged in the Middle Ages… in Troyes! As the avoirdupois pound was originally French, there is now good evidence that it might have come from Troyes too. More clues suggest this knowledge might have survived till this day. I have good reason to think that some modern secret societies have inherited from this knowledge and for some reason make it a point to disseminate clues about 366 geometry here and there on the planet. A good example of that is some of the best crop circles that of course are illustrations of circle geometry and that mainly appear in Wiltshire, along the Salt Line passing through Stonehenge and Avebury. For of course these crop circles are human-made. . .



SPM: Isn't there, apart from the magnificent positioning of ancient capital cities on Salt Lines and the key numbers of 366-degree geometry, another plane of understanding that we don't envisage because, quite simply, it stands beyond the reach of our intellectual limits? 

Sylvain Tristan: Combinations of the three key numbers of 366 geometry – 366, 40 and 10 ‑ are also fundamental characteristics of the Earth, Moon, Sun, water and even the human body. Sometimes, when confronted with such clockwork precision, I wonder whether it is possible that people living 5,000 years ago could ever invent it. In many ways this geometry seems superior to anything we have even now, for it sums up in a simple way – with just three integers, in fact – some physical and biological characteristics of our 'region' in the universe. This sounds incredible but it is true. Freemasonry traditionally refers to a 'Great Architect' that would have created the universe. Sometimes it occurs to me these numbers could be the signature of this Great Architect. Either the Atlanteans were exceptionally bright people and they hit upon something fundamental in our universe – but I somehow doubt it – or this knowledge was one way or another 'given' to them – but in this case how and by whom? All this is the greatest mystery of all, of course, and I would be presumptuous were I to tell you I had the answer to this question. One fact remains – Salt Lines have been marked out on the ground in the past much more than chance can possibly allow for, and to this day no mathematician has proven me wrong.

The Earth


SPM: Is Atlantis as you portray it a civilisation we might learn from? 

Sylvain Tristan: Atlantis was a supercivilisation within the context of the epoch. It is obvious that in his account Plato embellished reality when he wrote about Atlantis, both because he needed this type of exaggeration for his own literary and political purposes and also because at the time the Megalithic people had disappeared for already a millennium, their civilisation being already veiled in a deep shroud of mystery and myth. His hyperbolic tendency is obvious and his description of Atlantis is greatly distorted – the real Megalithic civilisation was obviously not the refined, sophisticated nation he depicted . . . But in a way Plato was right – Atlanteans were an astounding people in many ways. They could erect gigantic stones, they were great sailors and they were accomplished mathematicians and astronomers – indeed, it is astounding just how familiar and intimate they came to be with the physics of our planet. Moreover, the Megalithic people appeared to be a sort of united nation or, at least, they managed to make contact with other people without making war with them for most of the astonishing 4,500-year period during which Megalithic stones have been erected across Europe. In this regard we should be humble. Unlike the Megalithic people, we are destroying the ship we’re sailing on – the Earth, which is a limited and very fragile world. Such a civilisation cannot last long . . . The Megalithic way of life managed to go unharmed through more than four millennia. To end with an optimistic note, I think there is hope in the sense that the Megalithic/Atlantean knowledge seems never to have been completely lost. Maybe it is time for us to look back at the past in order to pave the way for a better future. 

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A shortened version of this interview can be found in
the Aug./Sept. 2007 issue of French magazine Sacrée Planète, see  

Find more on Sylvain Tristan’s official website (available in French and English),

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In his new book and for the first time in English, Sylvain Tristan expounds his discoveries and reveals his latest breakthroughs in a novel entitled 366 ‑ The Divine Number. Behind the story, he suggests that 366-degree geometry is more than what it might look at first glance – the omnipresence of this number in the biology of the human body and the physics of the Earth might be evidence of intelligent design – be it from God or super-advanced aliens.

Books by Sylvain Tristan


Les lignes d'or : Pourquoi TOUTES les capitales des premières grandes civilisations furent érigées sur ces axes (Broché) 
de Sylvain Tristan (Auteur), Alan Butler (Préface)

Language: FRENCH

Order  here

The Golden Thread through the Tapestry of Time. This poetic phrase is that of my British colleague and friend Alan Butler. This golden thread he has traced goes back deep into the past and has run through millennia of history, sowing the seeds of the world we live in today. Butler's research, that I continued in the past few years, unambiguously shows that history didn't unfold at random, since every single great civilization before Rome bears the fingerprint of a unique astronomical and geometrical knowledge invented more than 5,000 years ago and that may have survived through generation-to-generation transmission for millennia.

The discovery of an ancient system of measurement that reconciles space and time, and perhaps even the Earth's mass, based on a 366-degree circle geometry; clues going back to the dawn of time showing the existence of bold, skilful sailors; a system of geographic coordinates devised millennia before our time; sacred locations scattered across the globe and linked to each other with solid mathematics; sites and cities built on the lines directly derived from 366-degree geometry; knowledge that was passed down without ever getting completely lost ... In other words, a highly advanced science - so advanced that our own modern mass and measurement system is far from equalling the sheer beauty of that of our bright ancestors: these are the some of the amazing themes that are dealt with in this book.

 L'Atlantide, premier empire européen (Broché)
de Sylvain Tristan (Auteur)

Language: FRENCH

Order here

In his last book Sylvain Tristan upholds a new theory: Atlantis would have been the very first European empire, nearly seven millennia before the modern European Union. Don’t get him wrong – of course the term empire should not be understood in its modern sense. The Megalithic empire was probably not conquered with wars waged by a megalomaniac ruler.

It rather looks like a people managing to spread its ideas and knowledge throughout the coastline of Europe, on its islands – big ones and small ones alike and in some cases inland.

Based on a detailed study of the myth told by Plato and also other Greek authors such as Diodorus Siculus, combined with an analysis of Nordic mythology, Tristan traced a badly-known civilisation and yet perfectly historical, that of the Megalithic people – talented people able to sail round the globe and raise huge stones who were also fine astronomers and accomplished geometricians. Incredibly enough, there is little doubt they influenced other civilisations far beyond Europe.

Myths of sages coming from the sea heard nearly worldwide, remains or engravings of high-prowed boats found from Lake Titicaca in the Andes to Egypt through Scandinavia, great civilisations that, be it in Mesopotamia, Greece or Central America, have risen on the course of meridians and parallels of a clever 366-degree geometry everything shows the Megalithic civilisation not only thrived on the European continent for several millennia, but also that it influenced other civilisations considerably and sowed the seeds of the modern world.

Did this very first confederation truly exist in the remote past well before Homer ? Can the island of Atlantis be rationally explained through a real archaeological event somewhere in Europe attested by scientists? And who, probably in the Middle East, was clever enough to devise this incredible 366-degree geometry that could reconcile the concepts of time and space by unifying them?

For the first time, a book gives satisfying answers to these questions. Far from the absurd, fantastic and far-fetched theories, the myth of Atlantis finds both a logical and rational explanation, while revealing secrets even more incredible than Plato, in his thirst for exaggerations of all kinds, was far from imagining.

“Sylvain Tristan tries to tie up diversified archaeological data about Atlantis so as to demonstrate its existence and the consequences this continent might have had on civilisations worldwide that emerged thereafter” Acropolis

Civilization One : The World Is Not as You Thought It Was
by Christopher Knight and Alan Butler

Civilization One investigates the sources of the megalithic yard, its consequences to units of weights and measure, and sets out to prove the premise of Alexander Thom. 

Book Description

Civilization One tells of the startling conclusions that came from two scientists' quest to try to crack the mystery of the ancient "megalithic yard" — a unit of 82.966656 centimeters used to construct thousands of megalithic structures in Britain and France. The discovery was an extraordinary ancient culture predating the earliest known civilizations. The scientists of this time derived the megalithic yard from observing the Earth's rate of spin. The authors show how this measurement is part of an integrated system, far more advanced than anything used today, that forms the basis of both the imperial and metric systems. The culture that created it understood the dimensions, motions, and relationships of the Earth, moon, and sun, and were able to actually measure the solar system. The implications of these revelations go far beyond the fascination of the discovery of a super-science of prehistory; they indicate a grand plan which will have far-reaching theological ramifications.  

Reading Sample from this book:  Chapter 1 (PDF, 180 KB)


Related Resources

*  (extracts from a review of Civilization One by Colin Wilson in the London Daily Mail)

  1. Butler, Alan. The Bronze Age Computer Disc. 1999. London: Quantum Books ISBN 0-572-02217-4

  2. Thom, Alexander. Megalithic Sites in Britain. Oxford : OUP, 1967, introduction

  3. Ibid., 27

  4. article from The Times, 11 September 2004:

  5. Thom, Alexander, and A.S. Thom. Megalithic Remains in Britain and Britanny. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1978

  6. Butler, Alan and Christopher Knight. Civilization One: Uncovering the Super-science of Prehistory: The World Is Not as You Thought It Was. London : Watkins, 2004. ISBN-10: 1842930958 and ISBN-13: 978-1842930953

  7. Lomas, Robert and Christopher Knight. Uriel's Machine: Uncovering the Secrets of Stonehenge, Noah's Flood and the Dawn of Civilization. London: Fair Winds Press, 2001. ISBN-10: 193141274X

  8. Tristan, Sylvain. Atlantide, premier empire européen. Paris : Alphée, 2007. ISBN-10: 2753802106 and ISBN-13: 978-2753802100

  9. (website of the Russian pharmacy chain "36.6" that takes its name from what is considered in Russia to be the average human body temperature)

  10. Guichard, Xavier. Eleusis Alesia. Enquête sur les origines de la civilisation européenne. 1936.

  11. Tristan, Sylvain. Les Lignes d'or. Pourquoi TOUTES les capitales des premières grandes civilisations furent erigées sur ces axes. 2005. Paris: Alphée. ISBN 2-753-80050-2

  12. Cavalli-Sforza, Luca and Francesco. The Great Human Diasporas: The History of Diversity and Evolution. Addison Wesley Publishing Company, 1996. ISBN-10: 0201442310 and ISBN-13: 978-0201442311.

  13. Article from the Nouvel Observateur, 20 January, 1984, “On se bat toujours pour Alésia” by Fabien Gruhier



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