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The New World Explorers?

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Back in January the recently discovered Chinese map of the world was making the news. The idea of the Chinese beating Columbus to the New World is certainly an interesting and unusual one and one that is drawing battlelines in the field of history. Maps play a key role in determining the validity of a claim and are frequently at the centre of such a debate. The Map Room points to a website that seeks to debunk Gavin Menzies’ hypothesis of the Chinese making the rounds in the Westenr Hemisphere - and other such unusual ideas. On the other side of the issue is the website New World Voyages that has a number of presentations defending Menzies’ claim but also suggests that Marco Polo made it to North America.

I am not a map historian nor am I even well-versed in the controversey that surrounds the 1418 map. The idea is unusual enough to be appealing and interesting to ponder from a “what if?” persepctive. Whether or not it is true, I will leave to the experts to decide.

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