June 9, 2007 at 7:36 am #22563
1421 – THE YEAR CHINA DISCOVERED THE WORLD
What caused the author to write ‘1421 – The Year China Discovered The
The author had spent years researching and writing his original book ‘1421’,
based on the events taking place all over the world in this defining year.
However, his discoveries about China came by accident. When completing
‘1421’ he came across the Zuane Pizzigano chart for the first time. The
chart, drawn up by a Venetian cartographer in 1424, showed, to his
disbelief, several of the Caribbean islands, as well as parts of the Florida
coastline, some 70 years before Christopher Columbus arrived there.
Why has such an engrossing concept only come into the limelight so recently?
Despite the subject matter of the book appearing so innovative, there has
been talk of pre-European world exploration for many years. It is only now
however, that anyone has made an attempt to filter this wealth of
information down into such a cogent and accessible package. The author has
spent years travelling the world in search of evidence that had often been
kept away from the general public. Therefore with the publication of this
book, he has unearthed and made readily available a huge quantity of
evidence that was previously confined to the dusty vaults and archives of
Why was 1421 such an important year all over the world?
1421 was a decisive year in world history. In Europe, as the 100 years war
raged on, King Henry V took the bold step of marrying the French heiress
Catherine of Valois, in an attempt to reconcile the countries’ differences.
Simultaneously, Venice, the oldest and most powerful naval power in Europe
was in a state of disarray. The old Doge was ill, his powers waning, and his
successor waiting in the wings, determined that Venice should abandon its
maritime tradition and concentrate on becoming a land power. Egypt had been
plunged into a state of civil war and social unrest — there were no fewer
than five sultans in 1421 alone. The Islamic world was also disintegrating,
what with the Portuguese invasion of the North African heartlands. In
December 1421 the overland route to China and the Spice Islands — the great
Silk Road running from China right across Central Asia to the Middle East —
had been blocked when the Ottomans surrounded Byzantium. In that same
climactic month, the Mamluk Sultan Barsbey seized power in Egypt and
nationalised the spice route. The effect of the two events was to ruin the
merchants who had controlled the spice trade, seal Egypt’s borders to
international trade and sever the sea route through the Bosphorus to the
western end of the Silk Road.
How has China reacted to the book?
The key speech made by the author to 36 different countries, with a
population of some two billion people, via television at the Royal
Geographical Society in March 2002, provoked a great deal of interest from
all over the world. The main protagonist in our story, China, was obviously
overwhelmed that their claim to have circumnavigated and charted the world
before the Europeans, had been substantiated by a neutral participant.
Despite many of the records of the voyages being destroyed at the hands of
the mandarins in the sixteenth century, there still remain several Chinese
accounts of their achievements, although sceptics have often doubted their
veracity. China has already hosted several conferences on Zheng He Studies,
which Gavin Menzies attended to give keynote speeches, and was honoured by
being awarded a visiting Professorship at the University of Yunnan, to which
he returns several times a year to lecture. Other projects include
television documentaries, various museums, exhibitions and amusement parks,
an epic movie and a historical replica of one of the huge treasure ships.
Why should we believe anything the book says?
In total, some 34 different lines of evidence have been found to support the
theory that the Chinese circumnavigated and charted the globe, a century
before the Europeans staked claim to having done so. The evidence is
overwhelming, and encompasses both physical entities (such as shipwrecks of
Chinese junks in America, Australasia and Indonesia) and examples such as
the carved stones of Africa, the remains of Chinese peoples in South
America, and artefacts scattered all over the world, inscribed with Chinese
characters, in Chinese styles, and some successfully dated back to before
the arrival of the Europeans. There also exists more circumstantial evidence
such as the linguistic, ceremonial and spiritual similarities between the
Chinese culture and those of other parts of the world in the fifteenth
century. The linguistic similarities found between place names in Peru and
Chile are heavily supportive of the notion that the Chinese exerted a huge
influence there, in pre-Columbian times.
What is being done to further the research in the book?
There are several projects that are currently under way, the results of
which will further support claims made in ‘1421: The Year China Discovered
The World’. Archaeological teams all over the world are excavating sites
believed to contain relics of Chinese shipwrecks. Furthermore, the projects
launched for the television series will play a very significant role in
unveiling the truth about the Chinese voyages of 1421 – ’23. Since the
launch of the website, countless researchers have come forward offering
invaluable help and assistance, for which we are most grateful.
Why did China fail to keep her grasp on the world after wielding such
incredible power at the beginning of the fifteenth century?
The difficulty in writing the book was further increased by the fact that
the majority of Chinese records, documents and maps recounting the dramatic
events of the 1421 – 1423 voyages were deliberately destroyed or hidden by
the officials of the Chinese court, following an abrupt change in the
country’s foreign policy. The thunder and lightning storm that was to reduce
the Emperor’s palaces to a heap of smouldering rubble, as well as killing
off many of his loyal subjects, was seen as a very bad omen, and it was to
cause an ever-descending spiral of misfortune. With the succession of Zhu
Di’s son to the throne came the rejection of the outside world, with China
turning in on herself. Anything commemorating previous expansionist policies
was expunged from the record.
How can I find out more on the subject?
The book has been published in 24 languages, and has been the subject of 5
documentaries. For more information please visit the “Media” section of our
To read the evidence we have accumulated over the years please click here:
MORE ON ADMIRAL ZHENG HE, CHINA’S COLUMBUS (10/22/2002):
DID CHINESE BEAT COLUMBUS TO AMERICA? (3/20/2002):
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/nhnenews/message/2890June 9, 2007 at 7:22 pm #22564
Thats interesting because in the latest installment of pirates of the caribbean they had to go to china for a important map that had parts of mexico and the carribbean mapped out.. There might be a relationship. I wonder what linguistic similarities they are taking about.June 11, 2007 at 11:04 pm #22566
Hmmm, very interesting. There is also a book written by Ivan Van Sertima called “The Came Before Columbus” that details a lot of evidence for african voyages to the americas earlier on. The most obvious being the olmec granite heads, but there is also a lot of other small carvings that include africans and caucasians in the same image long before recognized landing of columbus. Interesting to hear that china was a major seagoing culture as well, and probably not surprising considering the different technologies they were capable of early on.
It seems that written history is about to change drastically. we are all still waiting for you to publish your book on Early History of the west and east.June 16, 2007 at 12:36 pm #22568
Yeah, but what about Templar “pirate” 1200’s and Egyptian 3500 bc trade networks for:
secrets, ancient history (pre- Ice Age), and et
?June 23, 2007 at 1:24 pm #22570
another source for evidence of african and european pre-discovery is Graham Hancocks “fingerprints of the gods”. He also talks a lot about (atlantean) figures quetzalcoatl, viracocha, and the founding of civilization in egypt and sumer.June 24, 2007 at 4:36 pm #22572
Heres a few interesting parallels between some ancient cultures:
Both ancient egypt, sumer and the olmecs sprung almost fully formed into being with no gradual development of language or architecture.
Egyptians, aztecs and mayas had an all powerful system of nine deities.
Egyptians in the “book of the dead” and Mayans in the “popol vuh” recount how the dead kings were reborn as stars. before reaching this stage however they both had to pass through nine levels of the underworld.
the word for the ancient civilizer “oannes” that lived under the sea in Sumer is very similar to “Uan” in Mayan that means “he who resides under the sea”. Quetzalcoatl and Marduk both battled a serpent being whose body was used to create the earths landscape.
Interesting stories, I think an important fact to remember is that even the ancient civilizers like viracocha (who were described as pale skinned and bearded – atlantean) were humans of some kind and practiced some sort of cultivation to achieve their heightened spiritual/physical existence. Life back then may have had less pressures that we are faced with in the urban world today.
meanwhile the lemurians practiced alchemy in the mountains…
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