Who Really Discovered America?
Should the holiday, ‘Columbus Day’, really be called ‘Zheng He Day’? Although it is tempting to believe that Zheng He’s map is real and that Zheng He really discovered America, there is really not enough evidence that exists to support his map.
According to Menzies book, the Zheng He map suggests that the Chinese discovered America because his map is detailed, and was created in 1418 and Columbus didn’t sail until 1492. However, the Zheng He map was actually made in 1763 and is supposed to be a copy of the 1418 original which does not exist.
If you compare Zheng He’s map of 1418 to the Jean Rotz map of 1542 you will see that they are very similar in representing the existence of land masses on their world maps.
Yet, there is a big difference in the two maps because the Jean Rotz map shows Europe drawn very accurately and other areas that were explored by the Europeans are also drawn accurately. So, it makes sense that they really traveled there and mapped those lands. The Americas are also drawn on the Jean Rotz map, but they are not drawn accurately or in detail as if they had not explored it enough to draw an accurate shape or land details.
Zheng He’s map is drawn with pretty accurate continents and details on all land masses leading you to believe that they really sailed to those land masses and spent time exploring and recording details. It also shows that he knew that the world was round. However, there is no record of Zheng He sailing worldwide; there is only record of him sailing throughout the Indian Ocean. And there is no record of his spreading disease beyond the Indian Ocean lands. And if the Zheng He map was created in 1763 as a copy then you can’t be sure if a lot of detail was added to it that did not exist on the original that was supposedly destroyed.
The Chinese may have had the ships, experienced sailors, and the courage to explore the world. They may have...