1434: The Year a Magnificent Chinese Fleet Sailed to Italy and Ignited the Renaissance

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  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-08-13
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publications

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The brilliance of the Renaissance laid the foundation of the modern world. Textbooks tell us that it came about as a result of a rediscovery of the ideas and ideals of classical Greece and Rome. But now bestselling historian Gavin Menzies makes the startling argument that in the year 1434, China-then the world's most technologically advanced civilization-provided the spark that set the European Renaissance ablaze. From that date onward, Europeans embraced Chinese ideas, discoveries, and inventions, all of which form the basis of Western civilization today.The New York Times bestselling author of 1421 combines a long-overdue historical reexamination with the excitement of an investigative adventure, bringing the reader aboard the remarkable Chinese fleet as it sails from China to Cairo and Florence, and then back across the world. Erudite and brilliantly reasoned, 1434 will change the way we see ourselves, our history, and our world.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. xi
Setting the Scene
A Last Voyagep. 3
The Emperor's Ambassadorp. 7
The Fleets are Prepared for the Voyage to the Barbariansp. 17
Zheng He's Navigators' Calculation of Latitude and Longitudep. 29
Voyage to the Red Seap. 39
Cairo and the Red Sea-Nile Canalp. 49
China Ignites the Renaissance
To the Venice of Niccolo da Contip. 63
Paolo Toscanelli's Florencep. 83
Toscanelli Meets the Chinese Ambassadorp. 94
Columbus's and Magellan's World Mapsp. 101
The World Maps of Johannes Schoner, Martin Waldseemuller, and Admiral Zheng hep. 110
Toscanelli's New Astronomyp. 132
The Florentine Mathematicians Toscanelli, Nicholas of Cusa, and Regiomontanusp. 141
Leon Battista Alberti and Leonardo Da Vincip. 155
Leonardo Da Vinci and Chinese Inventionsp. 166
Leonardo, Di Giorgio, Taccola, and Albertip. 177
Silk and Ricep. 197
Grand Canals China and Lombardyp. 206
Firearms and Steelp. 216
Printingp. 231
China's Contriblition to the Renaissancep. 238
China's Legacy
Tragedy on the High Seas Zheng he's Fleet Destroyed by a Tsunamip. 257
The Conquistadores' Inheritance our Lady of Victoryp. 278
Acknowledgmentsp. 289
Notesp. 311
Bibliographyp. 331
Permissionsp. 347
Photograph Creditsp. 351
Indexp. 353
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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