“Athanasius Kircher’s diagrams of the interconnectedness of fire (above) and water (below) in Earth. The diagrams are just a piece of his large, multi-volume work Mundus Subterraneus, published in 1665.”
“On a visit to southern Italy in 1638, the ever-curious Kircher was lowered into the crater of Vesuvius, then on the brink of eruption, to examine its interior. He was also intrigued by the subterranean rumbling which he heard at the Strait of Messina. His geological and geographical investigations culminated in his Mundus Subterraneus of 1664, in which he suggested that the tides were caused by water moving to and from a subterranean ocean.
“Kircher was also puzzled by fossils. He understood that fossils were the remains of animals. He ascribed large bones to giant races of humans. Not all the objects which he was attempting to explain were in fact fossils, hence the diversity of explanations. He interpreted mountain ranges as the Earth’s skeletal structures exposed by weathering.
“Kircher’s map of Atlantis, oriented with south at the top, from Mundus Subterraneus.
Mundus Subterraneus includes several pages about the legendary island of Atlantis including a map with the Latin caption “Situs Insulae Atlantidis, a Mari olim absorpte ex mente Egyptiorum et Platonis descriptio.” translating as “Site of the island of Atlantis, in the sea, from Egyptian sources and Plato’s description.”