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無雙直傳 | 10th Nov 2005, 19:55 PM | 英文文章 | (896 Reads)

In 2002, the book <1421 The Year China Discovered The World> was published. The author, who was British royal navy submarine official, relied on his abundant knowledge and experience of navigation and studied ten years in Zheng He’s voyages, to profess China discovered the world at 1421 before western voyagers. It was shocked and caused dispute in China’s academic community. Some scholars regarded it is possible but some scholars negated China discovered the World. Nevertheless, the approaching of 600th year’s anniversary of Zheung He’s western voyages, more anniversary activities about him were organized. Moreover, China Central Television etc. produced a series of five documentary programs-<1405 Zheng He’s voyages to the western seas> to expose the epic voyages.

Borne in a Muslim family and was captured by Ming soldiers. Being castrated as a eunuch, Zheng He was trusted by the Emperor- Zhu Di because he assisted him to scramble the throne of Ming Dynasty. Legendary, the Emperor dispatched Zheng He’s armada to western for searching the pre-Emperor who was Zhu Di’s nephew, who might escape from the burning palace to south China sea . But Gavin, who advocates that China discovered the world and the TV program were unanimity, Zhu Di dispatched the armada because of diplomacy, which serves to stablize ambient countries to the Mongolian threat. It is much reasonable to explain the motive of the voyages but I doubt that opposing Mongol would not lead to a voyage to the western sea. On the contrary, I regard the diplomatic itinerary was more reasonable to the North, Northwest and Northeast region to besiege Mongol. It is an opinion in academic community that Zheng He had vovaged to Japan before western seas.  

By the way, Zheung He’s armada proceed from Nanjing for the western coast of India on July 11th 1405 AD.

The armada was consisted with more than 200 vessels of different sizes with different functions, e.g., some loaded with water, some loaded with horses, some were battle ships and the most important were the Treasure ships (Bao Chuan). The enormous treasure ship was around 125 metres in length and 50 metres in width with a carrying capacity of over eight thousand tonnes. The ships were designed with watertight compartments to remain afloat and survive in typhoons. The sectional construction reduced the risk of sinking while having a collision with reefs or icebergs. The armada had more than 25000 crews and was equipped with the most advanced weapons contemporary.

 Zheung He’s armada had voyaged seven times and the most detail was recorded in the 7th voyage. The navigations covered Indian, Arab and Africa., the Galle stele which erected on Sri Lanka’s Galle, inscribed in four languages(Chinese, Tamil, Persian), which testifies Zheng He’s attempts in diplomacy with the diverse inhabitants over there. There are other similar stones near Cochin and Calicut in India. They also had well-established routes along the Malabar Coast, where Chinese fishing nets are still being used, and across the ocean to East African trading forts such as Kilwa, where Ming porcelain is found inside the mosque, just as in these pillar-tombs up the coast at Kunduchi.

 But Gavin did not regard Zheung He’s navigations had seven voyages, he believed the voyages only had six and the most important was the 6th voyage in the year 1421. He brought up Zheung He’s armada separate four subsections- Hong Bao, Zhou Man, Zhou Wen and Yang Qing. The Four admirals of Zheung He detoured Cape of Good Hop following ocean current to North America, South America, Antarctica, Australia and New Zealand. He offered abundant indirect evidence, like a Chinese book published in 1430 records a mylodon which is a creature only lived in South America, Asiatic chickens live in South America, Venezuelan Indians with Chinese DNA, Peruvian village with Chinese-speaking people, Peruvian bronzes with Chinese inscriptions and many Chinese artifacts and wrecks in Australia and New Zealand, however there is not enough to be confirmed in hundred per cent.     

 Whether or not Zheung He’s Armada discovered the world, the spirit of the voyages is the peace and modest of a super power. Zheung He’s Armada only used two military warships to oppose pirates at seven voyages in twenty-eight years. No war between Ming Dynasty and the western seas countries. Moreover, different cultures were in harmony like the Galle stele is inscribed in Chinese, Tamil and Persian, it extols the virtues of Hinduism( the local religion), Buddhism ( Emperor Zhu Di’s faith) and Islam( the religion of most Indian rulers in the early fifteenth century). On the contrary, about eighty years later, western navigators explored the world which brought colonialism and imperialism to the world. It is the most worth memory and virtues of Zheung He’s western voyages spirit.


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本文原有眾多文法錯誤,感謝伏妖對本文作出修改。


[引用] | 作者 無雙直傳 | 10th Nov 2005 20:09 PM | [舉報垃圾留言]

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[引用] | 作者 松尾 駿 | 11th Nov 2005 12:09 PM | [舉報垃圾留言]