Currently CHINA is dealing with the expansion of Empire and exploring the options involved.
The good ol’ Empire usa that is (click) .
After attempting similar encirclements in Europe in opposition to RUSSIA…(click).
Shiro wonders when will ever cease.?. (click).
THAT IS NOW.
THIS Herein IS and was… SOME TIME AGO… the Early 1400’s Chinese Naval explorations and
WHEN MING FALL,..
THEIR FLEET FLOUNDERS.
A Tale and LEGEND of Political Power Ploys slowly sunk by the Opposition;..
…whilst the Country’s Admirals and Navigators follow a Dream and… so
CHINA FLOATS A FLEET…
OR FOUR… OR SEVEN.?.
The LEGENDS Herein. Unravelled… hopefully.
LEGEND OF THE LOST FLEETs.
The LEGENDS say:
Well before the 1400’s China prospered in ways that required expansion of it’s inherent Knowledge (click).
Early Local Shipping was done in bulk as the population grew.
Whilst Europe + co.,.. (click) left the Dark Ages and tentatively began to recognise the outside World per se… China too had built a FLEET. Several. Maybe more.
The Navigation styles and methods of the Native Chinese at the time had seen the need to update.
Thus… the Fleet(s). Of the MING Dynasty (click).
The MYTH of Western Society so-called,.. and how their Discoveries ALONE shaped the world… ARE MYTHS.
The LEGENDS say otherwise indeed it seems.
Long ago of Yore Ships plied the Indian Ocean Areas. Well before the so called Christed One we link our Years to.
This is REALised when one notes in the LEGENDARY Journals of the Western oriented Navigators and Explorers… several of them… ALREADY HAD MAPS… rough though they were;..(click):
…FROM WHENCE AND WHERE ME-ASKS.?.
Mainly bound by the strength and pattern of the prevailing Monsoon Wind Regions that surround.
Traders and Voyagers from olden Arabia and the African East Coast moved cloth, silk, porcelain, ivory, gems, incense, slaves and spices… too. Whatever goods were avail. (click).
The coastline long,.. the ships simply followed. Where they stopped… goods exchanged, bought or sold. Many Historical discrepancies such as how certain domestic Birds or Plants,.. Peoples too… got to be in certain out of the way places… have their solving in such LEGENDS.
Such goods became available even in the Empires of Rome and that of the Persians. Archaeology and such associated finds for example confirm such trading long long ago (click).
The travels… and travails,.. of such explorers as MARCO POLO tell Tales both TALL AND TRUE.
His recounts of ASIA show a thriving region with much diversity.
Onshore and off it seems indeed.
Beginnings of International Trade flowed on from such as the SILK ROAD trails where they could link with the Coast and Maritime endeavours. Such Cities as China’s HANGZHOU already housed near a million residents with the accompanying Merchants, Artisans, Makers and Producers therein.
Such also as Arab and Hindu leanings… learned of in the educational institutions.
Imported Goods and Produce in the Markets.
Spices, Gums, Fruits and Vegies, Herbs and so on.
Trade in the INDIAN OCEAN Waters and beyond conducted by Shipping Large and small.
Wind powered,.. somewhat Seasonal.
Directional… as well.
THE MING MARITIME MAP-MAKING.
Emperor ZHU DI is recorded for example as having sent out at least Seven Maritime Expeditions (click).
Commanded by such as the eunuch Admiral ZHENG HE.
250 Ships of some 3-400 feet length, multi-decked.
9 Masts and Red/Yellow Silk Sails,.. Bamboo reinforced.
HUGE Ships oft referred to as ” TREASURE SHIPS ” in the LEGENDS.
No ordinary junk indeed,.. in deed and in fact… too.
Though Mapping and Map-making of the local Chinese areas of influence was routinely underway etc., the exact size and extent of the World beyond out there… was not.
From the remains of the MING OFFICIAL RECORDS and Associated Journals:
The Chinese Navigators were great at navigation using their POLE STAR = POLARIS as a focii.
The Chinese Navigators were… not so great… at all… when… POLARIS… NOT… there to view etc.
This was problematical. Hugely so,..for the Map Makers + c0.,.. who could not efficiently place certain Places… on the Map.
Basically any Southern Latitudes were immediately suspect and Longitudes everywhere (… a lil’ to a lot of error… this varied…) due to their time measurements not being that precise.
The Chinese Mathematicians and Navigators, Admirals and Science peeps and so forth had a plan… a rather nautical plan it seems.
Send out the Fleets to various points… at least 3 or 4 MAIN POINTS… MORE THE BETTER… SO AS TO ” …TRIANGULATE… ” MEASUREMENTS MORE PRECISELY… FIND AN EQUIVALENT POLARIS FOR THE SOUTH LATS and so on;.. thus at an arranged time period… take the necessary sightings and measurements applicable… then get the Fleet home… co-ordinate and calculate… the results.
Till the MING… fell.
Leaving the FLEETS… ALL out to sea indeed,.. in deed and in fact.
Job done… though not at all data collected collated… yet.
WHEN MING FALL,.. THEIR FLEET FLOUNDERS.
The LEGENDS AFTER this Maritime Challenge and Acceptance of the Chinese… above here, though,.. are not so straightforward.
During the Fleet Journey(ies)…
…The Chinese Govt… had a Reformation and Regime change(s)… (click)
…and other associated… changes (click)… as time went by.
Though giving various belated Honors and such to a small number.?. of the Admirals…
The now HONGXI Emperor… basically ignored…
…the vast majority of Officers and Sailors and their accomplishments and records… cos they were funded etc by the previous govt. etc etc… and of no real political value…
…apart from claiming and whinging about overspending…
Summary thus far:
The LEGENDS say there was a series of 7 or more… Fleet trips working the waves and journeying over this time, taking MARITIME measurements and so on,.. then returning.
FOUR of these STANDOUT… mainly cos of the ADMIRALS AND TARGET AREAS concerned and the implication that these sets of measurements could/would act as POINTS/TRIANGULATORS per se… for the whole… Map Coordinates Calculating stuff later.
Shiro says…o.k.,.. An admirable and LEGENDARY Quartet…
…of… ADMIRALS…lead the FLEETs WAYS…
…and WAVES… too.
Their Commander also.
COMMANDER ZHENG HE: (click)
ADMIRAL HONG BAO: (click)
ADMIRAL ZHOU MAN: (click)
ADMIRAL ZHOU WEN: (click)
ADMIRAL YANG QING: (click)
(An overview of the 7 Voyages of ZHENG HE can be found herein (click),.. whilst…
… an in-depth analysis of the above + Voyages of the 4 Admirals… the book therein (click).
…MAPPING THE WORLD-MAP…
Whilst the MING FLEET(s) documentation is somewhat sparse after the MING Coup,..
… the earliest WORLD-MAPS seem to have included Data… from around the World.
So… Did Navigators East and West meet and compare MAPS and associated notes.?.
The LEGENDS say so indeed.
For there’s this: There remains,..
…the remains of a STATUARY DEDICATION to the Fleets and Admirals to consider at the FUJIAN PALACE.
The Chinese of Yore are long practiced at such Arts.
The immensity of the TERRACOTTA ARMY for example,.. each Soldier uniquely individual and so on (click).
In 2002,.. excavations at the FUJIAN PALACE led to the discovery of Dedicate Statuary to the Admirals and Fleets.
And another figure… too.
Dressed as perhaps a Trader or Merchant with Western Medieval clothing… carrying documents/maps.?.
The MARITIME LEGENDS in Print indicate this personage can only be/is… NICCOLÒ da CONTI.
Arrived in CALICUT… 1421 (click).
As recorded by the MING… so did one of their Fleets.
Niccolò later told his Travel Tales to PAPAL SECRETARY POGGIO BRACCIOLINI.
These were then first published… in 1434/1444 (click)… and on into Maritime LEGEND.
The Travels of Niccolò da Conti indicate,..
…from this time on…
…MAPS OF THE WORLD began to show more of THE WORLD.
Though the MING FLEETS floundered at Home politically,..
… the remaining Treasure Ships and fleet(s) and Sailors returned,..
…their initial findings… would also find their way onto the many later World Maps.
Used East, West, North and South.
All over the World.
Fallen… or not.