The lost continent buried beneath Greece

Adria is a lost continent that is heavily buried beneath Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, and therefore below Greece.

For the first time, geologists believe they are able to reconstruct the history of the lost continent, nearly 250 million years old, by completing its study of the few remnants that are still above the surface.

 Today only the so-called Greater Adria have seen only a few limestone and other rocks in the Southern European Mountains. Scientists believe that these rocks were originally marine sediments, which were once lifted by the collision of tectonic plates as reported by the Athens-Macedonian News Agency.

The researchers, led by Dutch geologist Dau van Hinzbergen of the University of Utrecht’s Department of Geosciences, who published in the journal Gondwana Research, according to Science, devoted more than ten years of research, mainly to medieval collectors. other evidence for rocks considered to be from Adria.

The Greater Adria seems to have had a violent and complicated history. Some time ago, some 240 million years ago, it was autonomous from southern Superior Gondwana (covering the area of ​​present-day Africa, South America, Australia, Antarctica, India and the Arabian Peninsula) and began moving further north. It was more of an island archipelago, “an area suitable for diving,” according to Hinzberg.


About 140 million years ago it was about the size of Greenland and was largely submerged beneath a shallow tropical sea, where sediments gradually accumulated and eventually became rocks. The Greater Adria belonged to the African Tectonic Plate, but was not part of Africa, as one ocean separated the two continents.


Then, as Adria collided with the land mass that today forms Europe, at a rate of up to four centimeters per year, something that happened 100 to 120 million years ago, broke into pieces and sank. Only part of the broader Adria rock, some 100 kilometers thick, remained on Earth ‘s  surface,  and geologists today are mainly looking for it in southern Europe. These rocks are believed to be dispersed in over 30 countries (including Greece), from Spain and the Alps to Iran.

Until recently, geologists did not have the sophisticated software that would allow them to compose the data available and to map the history of Adria on a computer, much more so, according to Hinzbergen, “the Mediterranean region is simply a geological mess.” The new study is an important step in that direction.

It is estimated that parts of Adria today are up to 1,500 kilometers below the surface of the Mediterranean.

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