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1421

1421

1421年――中国人发现美洲

作    者
Menzies, Gavin;  
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所属分类
History > Asia > China > General
History > Military > Naval
History > World > General
出版社
Harpercollins
ISBN-13
9780061564895
ISBN-10
0061564893
出版日期
2008-06
页数
650
单位
尺寸
22.86 * 3.17 * 15.24
装帧
Paperback
版本

Product Description

On March 8, 1421, the largest fleet the world had ever seen set sail from China to "proceed all the way to the ends of the earth to collect tribute from the barbarians beyond the seas." When the fleet returned home in October 1423, the emperor had fallen, leaving China in political and economic chaos. The great ships were left to rot at their moorings and the records of their journeys were destroyed. Lost in the long, self-imposed isolation that followed was the knowledge that Chinese ships had reached America seventy years before Columbus and had circumnavigated the globe a century before Magellan. And they colonized America before the Europeans, transplanting the principal economic crops that have since fed and clothed the world.

About the Author

The author of 1421: The Year China Discovered America, Gavin Menzies was born in England and lived in China for two years before the Second World War. He joined the Royal Navy in 1953 and served in submarines from 1959 to 1970. Since leaving the Royal Navy, he has returned to China and Asia many times, and in the course of his research, he has visited 120 countries, more than 900 museums and libraries, and every major seaport of the late Middle Ages. Menzies is married with two daughters and lives in North London.

Review

“Menzies’ enthusiasm is infectious and his energy boundless. He has raised important questions and marshaled some fascinating information.” (Toronto Globe and Mail )

“[Menzies] makes history sound like pure fun...a seductive read.” (New York Times Magazine )

“<1421> is likely to be the most fascinating read of 2003.” (UPI )

“What you’ve done, brilliantly, is to raise many questions that people are debating.” (Diane Rehm, The Diane Rehm Show )

“Captivating . . . a historical detective story . . . that adds to our knowledge of the world, past and present.” (Daily News )

“No matter what you think of Menzies’s theories, his enthusiasm is infectious.” (Christian Science Monitor )

From Publishers Weekly

A former submarine commander in Britain's Royal Navy, Menzies must enjoy doing battle. The amateur historian's lightly footnoted, heavily speculative re-creation of little-known voyages made by Chinese ships in the early 1400s goes far beyond what most experts in and outside of China are willing to assert and will surely set tongues wagging. According to Menzies's brazen but dull account of the Middle Kingdom's exploits at sea, Magellan, Dias, da Gama, Cabral and Cook only "discovered" lands the Chinese had already visited, and they sailed with maps drawn from Chinese charts. Menzies alleges that the Chinese not only discovered America, but also established colonies here long before Columbus set out to sea. Because China burned the records of its historic expeditions led by Zheng He, the famed eunuch admiral and the focus of this account, Menzies is forced to defend his argument by compiling a tedious package of circumstantial evidence that ranges from reasonable to ridiculous. While the book does contain some compelling claims-for example, that the Chinese were able to calculate longitude long before Western explorers-drawn from Menzies's experiences at sea, his overall credibility is undermined by dubious research methods. In just one instance, when confounded by the derivation of cryptic words on a Venetian map, Menzies first consults an expert at crossword puzzles rather than an etymologist. Such an approach to scholarship, along with a promise of more proof to come in the paperback edition, casts a shadow of doubt over Menzies's discoveries. 32 pages of color illus., 27 maps and diagrams. Book-of-the-Month Club alternate.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Menzies makes the fascinating argument that the Chinese discovered the Americas a full 70 years before Columbus. Not only did the Chinese discover America first, but they also, according to the author, established a number of subsequently lost colonies in the Caribbean. Furthermore, he asserts that the Chinese circumnavigated the globe, desalinated water, and perfected the art of cartography. In fact, he believes that most of the renowned European explorers actually sailed with maps charted by the Chinese. Though most historical records were destroyed during centuries of turmoil in the Far East, he manages to cobble together some feasible evidence supporting his controversial conclusions. Sure to cause a stir among historians, this questionable tale of adventure on the high seas will be hotly debated in academic circles. Margaret Flanagan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.