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Chinese meadival navy

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Karalem View Drop Down
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  Quote Karalem Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Chinese meadival navy
    Posted: 30-Oct-2011 at 05:58
In the middle ages Chinese navy boasted large oceangoing ships with bulkheads and crossbeams, and sails that could be adjusted from the deck. They were superior in almost every aspect to the European ships including size. They were also very well  suited  for long seagoing exploration voyages.




The Beheim globe from 1492 shows in detail the Atlantic, Indian and parts of the Pacific. The map is remarkably accurate for ts time. It includes the Dutch  Antilles but there is no Americas on it.





 Are there any Chinese maps from that period?  Could the detailed charts shown in the Beheim globe have been influenced by Chinese cartographers. What are the odds the Chinese crossed to America before Columbus did.
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  Quote Nick1986 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01-Nov-2011 at 20:07
It's possible. A eunuch admiral apparently set foot in America 70 years before Columbus but was recalled by the new emperor unwilling to pour cash into such an expensive venture
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  Quote Karalem Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Nov-2011 at 07:55
yes, of course. There indeed is a Chinese map from the early 15th century featuring the contours of Americas, well ahead of Columbus. The detailed map of the Indian ocean and Africa could not be the result of Silk Road exploration either. It seems like the route to the east was better detailed than the contours of  northern Europe, just round the corner. If the Europeans only were tracing these maps, they should have had no problems making a better job of the seacoast laying just next by.

The Chinese fleet, trading or military was very impressive, certainly more capable of oceangoing explorations than the European. But there is a simple default catch here. It exist merely on paper. Did it ever exist in the real world? You can see medieval or late medieval European ships if you take your trip to say Genoa, anchored and displayed in the port. They are undoubtedly real even if not as old as the galleons Columbus had at his disposal, there is little doubt of when they were build and about assured continity of ship building in Europe in the Mediterranean in the late middle ages and later. The Chinese fleet vanished without a trace however. its nothing more than a bunch of depictions and ridiculous claims. Such great ships should have survived, at least some,  just like in Europe thy did. Columbus did eventually discover America. The Chinese apparently came to realization that such explorations weren't profitable and discontinued it while the great Chinese fleet evaporated. no poof today of anything Chinese in America and anywhere else for that matter.
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  Quote Nick1986 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Nov-2011 at 19:54
Columbus knew there was something out there. When he first discovered America he believed he had reached Asia
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  Quote erkut Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11-Nov-2011 at 06:51
Originally posted by Karalem




Nice pic. but it looks like really big to sail. I mean it has no sail, and probably could'nt go anywhere whith those shovels. Do you have any other Chinese vessel pic.s which is more probable to sail? Because i also heard they made really big ships to sail, but i have no idea how do they look like...
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  Quote Nick1986 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13-Nov-2011 at 19:06
You'd be surprised how far a team of oarsmen can go. The Vikings rowed all the way to Vinland in their longships
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  Quote Snafu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Nov-2011 at 07:07
The boat in that pic is a "tower ship", a specialized warship used for river combat, not an ocean-going merchant ship (Those long poles on the sides were used to bash or hook other ships). The giant ships that Zheng He sailed were also abnormally large and lavish. Here are some images of average medieval Chinese ships.


This was a ship of the Sung royal navy.



This is a Yuan dynasty merchant/war ship. Very typical of Chinese merchant ships in the middle ages.





This is a Sung dynasty warship. It was paddle-powered and armed with long striking arms.




Some merchant ships from later dynasties.



 



















Edited by Snafu - 15-Nov-2011 at 07:11
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  Quote Karalem Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Nov-2011 at 16:18
hi sorry, i put a misleading pic of a warship instead of some examples that would better go with the text. Thankfully Snafu came with the right pics.

Surely those sea going ships with a keel and some even with outriggers, and there is a continuity of ship building across Chinese dynasties through the middle ages. But  how real are those ships and how they fit chronology.

The maps of Africa and the south Asian seacoast is so well mapped, and that's before Columbus!
One would expect the Chinese to have a fleet capable of traveling that far and having been the source with which the maps were constructed. But where is the "real" evidence of such travels. i don't buy the weak explanation that the Chinese kind of discontinued sea travel because it became unprofitable. It is not how things work. Where is the evidence of such travels? No accounts of the chinese in Europe or Africa. There is a theory the Chinese got to America and even mapped it, but it is all a story without hard proof.

Hugging  the coast was much safer. That partially explains such plentity of maps to India from Europe, but again, Australia is not that far away form the Indonesian islands. Mapping those islands, with such exactness as they apear on precolumbian maps required good nav skills, good ships, and plenty of travel; Yet Australia was not bumped into. The coast of Europe was also badly mapped in comparison. On some maps Scandinavia apears like an unrecognizable chunk of land while Africa is almost prefect.

The Chinese having such ancient civilization and all. yet, the Philippinese were a bunch of naked people back when Magellan was circling the globe for the first time, not that they are anything else today, but, perhaps better would be to search for traces of such maritime power just next of the coast of China before trying to sail any further, and even there such traces are hard to find.
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  Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-Nov-2011 at 18:37
Yes, and the races of the sea-going peoples of the Philippines are genetically related to peoples that spanned the Pacific and Indian oceans from Madagascar to (possibly) Cheju-do in Korea, Japan, Taiwan, the Malay archipelago, down as far as Polynesia and Easter Island. Theirs was a recognized genius. Not to take anything from the Chinese, but they have always been a land power whose 'navies' were an adjunct of their land armies. Had the Chinese discovered the Americas, they would have recorded that fact. After all, they are one of the oldest literate peoples in the world, though for most of their history, literacy was confined to the elites. (which still put them ahead of we European descended peoples for many centuries)
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  Quote medenaywe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Nov-2011 at 01:23
Do you have oldest pictures of China's ships,Snafu?Pictures from ancient times known as B.C.?Please post them here also.Would be seen differences in ship building during long time periods.Could be seen influences and similarities with other ship builders from those days.Ship trade merchants have been elder than 1000
of years period!
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  Quote Logicv Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-Dec-2011 at 20:14
There are a few things to keep in mind with regards to Chinese sailing to the Americas. To begin with, the overall goal of the expeditions was not to explore and charter new land. It was to show the known world the might and grander of China, making them pay tribute to the emperor and recognizing China as the center of the earth. 

-There were many maps created before explorers set out, many of them coming from speculation and stories that sailors told, many of which depicted giant sea monsters, mermaids and other exaggerations. 

-Viking swords and artifacts have been found in showing hard, definite proof of Viking exploration to the Americas. Nothing like that has been found from the Chinese. 
If it is not logical don't waste time thinking about it.
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