Skip to comments.Columbus debunker sets sights on Leonardo da Vinci
Posted on 07/28/2008 6:04:40 PM PDT by decimon
LONDON (Reuters) - Leonardo da Vinci's drawings of machines are uncannily similar to Chinese originals and were undoubtedly derived from them, a British amateur historian says in a newly-published book.
Gavin Menzies sparked headlines across the globe in 2002 with the claim that Chinese sailors reached America 70 years before Christopher Columbus.
Now he says a Chinese fleet brought encyclopedias of technology undiscovered by the West to Italy in 1434, laying the foundation for the engineering marvels such as flying machines later drawn by Italian polymath Leonardo.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
If the Chinese were so advanced 600 years ago, why did they slow down and let the West beat them??
Where exactly do they hatch these crackpots?
Everyone knows it all came from Atlantis...
People will just not stop at anything to re write history
It sounds like someone has a thing for the Chinese.
I’m sure the Chinese empire was just rushing to give technology to the West.
it actually came from their ancient rival continent of Lemuria...*smirk*
Menzies sounds like someone who begins with a thesis and sets out to prove it. I think a proper historian would gather facts and follow where they lead.
What is the chance that nobody in Italy paid any attention to a visit of a *Chinese* fleet ? It's not like Italians were illiterate, or had no paper, or didn't care about shipbuilding. Any such visit would be documented by hundreds of historians and statesmen.
Considering that nothing could happen in Italy back then without the local prince knowing it and approving it (and lives of these princes are well documented) we'd definitely hear about a Chinese ambassador. The Chinese embassy wouldn't disappear overnight, and Chinese goods would be on Italian market, and so on.
The linked article is actually right on target - the guy writes sensationalist stuff and sells his books to millions of idiots. Given that there are plenty of idiots, he is on the right track to wealth and prosperity. I personally prefer science fiction - at least I know what I'm paying for.
Good question, in one of history’s more bizarre episodes, the Chinese turned inward when a new Dynasty emerged, they had their fleet burned, the same fleet that did travel the whole of the Indian Ocean, they had massive ships at the time.
Funny old world, China decided that they were the whole world and cut off contact with the world in their perceived perfection...
Or according to one online translator, 諷刺 魚雷. FIRE!!
It must have been Falun Gong.
Long before Mao, too.
This was in large part due to the influence that eunuchs had over the emperor at the time. Many scientists and scholars were banished, if not outright killed, for challenging the orthodoxy of the imperial court. Many of their texts were supposedly burned.
It is quite possible that some ideas migrated from East to West through cities like Venice. In 1987, I attended an exhibit entitled China in Venice; some of the toys that mariners brought back did look similar to some of Da Vinci’s later stuff. Like all great inventors, many of his ideas probably came from a number of sources. To claim they were all Chinese is overly simplistic.
The two words in Chinese, jung guo, actually mean Middle Kingdom, which essentially backs up your second statement.
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The linked article is actually right on target - the guy writes sensationalist stuff and sells his books to millions of idiots. Given that there are plenty of idiots, he is on the right track to wealth and prosperity. I personally prefer science fiction - at least I know what I’m paying for.
***That’s something that bothers me because he sells his stuff in the nonfiction aisle.
Judging from recent history, I’d bet Leonardo came up with the ideas and the blue prints and then the Chinese ripped them off and made the damn things out of balsa and burlap and sold it on the cheap.
So...did anybody check the Chinese encyclopedia salesman’s permit?
For instance, there's some growing evidence that Christianity made its way to China a long, long time ago:
Research: Christianity popular among China's Tang Dynasty citizensAnd there's some bizarre new evidence that the Scots [of all people] somehow committed miscegenation with the peoples of northern Siberia:
Archaeologists Work to Save Chinese Site With Christian Traces
Wednesday, February 07, 2001
Christianity in China, Pre-modern History
New statistical method throws up ancestry surprises
It’s idealogical warfare.
If only we had a word for this.
I'm pretty certain Menzies is a crackpot.
“The two words in Chinese, jung guo, actually mean Middle Kingdom”
Personally, I think the phrase is better translated, “The Kingdom at the Center of the Universe.” That captures the spirit and intent much better, I think.
Certainly in the “modern” view, there were countries on the map, and China never traded with Egypt, they were too primitive “back then” to actually talk and trade and exchange ideas...which is bunk of course.
Even the Romans had trade relations with India for example, as did the Caliphates with the Far East...
As I recall, the large trading centers in Western China ended up succumbing to desert encroachment.
Chinese scientists also invented electricity and light bulbs, but the dastardly lamp oil industrial complex stole the patents and buried them to keep their monopoly.
Reminds me of this piece:
Before Columbus, there were—or so we are told— natives in the Americas who amazingly spoke Arabic.
First publish propaganda in pseudo-scholarly forums. Then quote the material in textbooks.
a chinese fleet going to ITaly would certainly have to take thte long way around. there was no direct sea route to china back then - they’d have to go around the horn, at the very least. than find the relatively narrow gap at gibraltar and enter the mediterranean and finally come up against italy - whilst missing every other landfall.
They'd have had to make stops along the way to find provisions. As you indicate, why Italy and why Venice? Spain and/or north Africa should have warranted visits.
funny how nobody else saw them.
"Anti-Chinese-suckup-revisionism Sarcasm Torpedo"? You are quite imaginative.
I’ll bet he has a Chinese Honey he wants to impress.
I've read that 90% of the so-called "genocide" in the Western Hemisphere was actually disease.
The reduction of the natives also included a large amount of interbreeding. Apparently there is little of the original Y chromosome in North America natives, and the Rio Grande south are largely Mestizo populations, with pockets of Europeans and Indians.
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