New Exposures

Will the Real Gavin Menzies please stand up!
Captain P. J. Rivers
 FRGS FNI MRIN ACII ACI Arb, Master Mariner

Menzies 2Recently certain major points were disclosed in Junk History ’ , a TV documentary concerning Gavin Menzies’ 1421: The Year China Discovered the World. Carried out by the investigative reporter Quentin McDermott, it disclosed the publishing background for a so-called revisionist history by a previously unknown writer . A startling revelation was made that Gavin Menzies did not actually write what he calls “my book”. “Among those brought in to help was an experienced ghost-writer” ! Indeed, Menzies had done “an extraordinary thing, he asked his agent to re-write the early chapters”. Everyone concerned agreed that Menzies couldn’t write and the task of producing the book was left to others. More

Already Exposed

The Suez Canal and the
Passage of Zheng He’s fleet on its way to Italy in 1434
Dr. Stephen Davies, Museum Director, Hong Kong Maritime Museum

SuezThere is absolutely no solid evidence that stands up to scrutiny that a large fleet of Chinese vessels visited Italy in the first half of the 15th century. No record mentions it – yet this was a time when any wonder was eagerly commented on and recorded. But let’s assume everyone was having a blind month, or that assiduous traducers of the record of the kind beloved by conspiracy theorists have subsequently – and unbelievably thoroughly – trashed the entire, Europe-wide record. That still leaves Mr Menzies’ theory with a very large problem. How the heck did the ships get to the Eastern Mediterranean via the Isthmus of Suez? More

1433: The Year China Discovered Italy:
Kick-starting the Renaissance

Captain P. J. Rivers
 FRGS FNI MRIN ACII ACI Arb, Master Mariner

1457_Mapamundi de ToscanelliRather modestly, for a change, Gavin declared, “As will be seen - neither I nor the 1421 Team has made any original contribution”. This disclaimer ignores completely the spin that Gavin’s lively imagination has contributed to an inordinate interpretation of an obscure passage in a letter of Toscanelli. More

 1434 - No Way - No Canal
Captain P. J. Rivers, FRGS FNI MRIN ACII ACI Arb, Master Mariner

suez2Menzies tells us the Chinese “reached Cairo through the shallow Red Sea-Nile canal, which Zheng He’s smaller junks would have used as well. From Cairo, the Mediterranean - and southern Europe-were well within reach” (Menzies p.48).

The above quotation at the end of the chapter “Voyage to the Red Sea” underlines a vital element, the kingpin of this whole new fantasy. Without this indispensable canal link the theory of his new book, however plausible and pleasing to some, becomes impossible. Indeed, Menzies has not produced one iota of proof to support his 1434 direct sea route from the Mediterranean to the Red Sea.

Walrus Pitch & Other Novelties: Gavin Menzies & the Far North
Kirsten Seaver

walrus new1Some four years have passed since knowledgeable critics began to take apart Gavin Menzies’s published assertion that the task of Christopher Columbus, Ferdinand Magellan, Vasco da Gama and other early European explorers had been considerably simplified by their access to maps incorporating key information collected by medieval Chinese navigators who supposedly preceded them: thus it is hardly news that 1421: The Year China Discovered America is now seen primarily as a completely unsubstantiated hypothesis dressed up as history. More

The Island of 7 Cities Exposed
Andrew Hannam

8 tn“After examining the physical evidences offered in the book The Island of Seven Cities we can find no evidence at Cape Dauphin to support Mr. Chiasson’s theory. To the contrary, the actual evidences in the aerial photographs and proper understanding of the physical and geological features along with the known and documented history of human activities of the Cape Dauphin site leads us in a totally different direction”. More


Eb2 - tnWhen I see the errors in the book, on things I know about, it makes me doubt the validity of other things in the book of which I have no knowledge. Did Mr Chiasson walk on the ‘Chinese road’ to the ‘courtyards’ shown on page 258? If so, he surely saw the white plastic and/or steel monitoring wells located in each ‘courtyard’”.
More and Photos

Junk History
4 Corners Documentary Team - Australian Broadcasting Corporation

parchmentThis is not just a story about ones man’s wild theory. It is a parable of modern popular culture, a tale about intellectual chutzpah and about a publishing industry that knows how to extract profit from a public which wants to thumb its nose at the dry though documented history taught at school.

Verbatim Script 4 Corners Documentary

1421 and all that Junk
Emeritus Professor Victor Prescott

Zheng He Voyages 50%Many members of the community of scholars who specialize in the history of cartography have criticized this text (1421) severely. This lecture reviews some of the reasons why Menzies interpretation of cartographic history should not be trusted. More

“1418 Map a Fake”
Dr. Geoff Wade

1763 map small“I remain convinced that this ‘1763/1418’ map is a 21st-century fake. It was certainly produced by someone educated in simplified characters (meaning under the PRC in the last 50 years) and the purpose of the map is to support the Menzies thesis (and so it was produced within the last four years).

Gavin Menzies Cartographic Fiction:
The Case Of The Chinese ‘Discovery’ of Australia

Associate Professor W.A.R. (Bill) Richardson

WAR1This article critically examines the evidence and claims made by Gavin Menzies of Ming Dynasty Chinese circumnavigation of the world in 1421: the year China discovered the World. It concludes that the evidence presented remains highly speculative and is not sufficient to justify the conclusions Menzies draws.


1434 = Gavin’s Farrago

\farrago [far-rah-go]
Noun - pl -gos or -goes a hotchpotch or mixture, esp. a ridiculous or unbelievable one: a farrago of patriotic nonsense:

Collins Essential English Dictionary 2nd Edition 2006 © HarperCollins Publishers 2004, 2006

Fathoming the Unfathomable: Even Leviathans have Limits
Dr. Stephen Davies, Museum Director Hong Kong Maritime Museum

Junk1“...the technical absurdity of supposing that the largest ships in the Star or Treasure Fleets of Zhenghe could have been of the size too often supposed. The proposed behemoths fail almost any test naval architecture can come up with for assessing their navigability. They almost certainly could not have been built with available 15th century Chinese technology. Had they been, then for similar reasons it is improbable that they could successfully have been launched”.

Did the Chinese Circumnavigate the World in 1421?
Why Menzies’ 1421 Won’t Sail

Captain P. J. Rivers, FRGS FNI MRIN ACII ACI Arb, Master Mariner

“According to the author, his main thrust is every great European explorer, from Columbus in 1492 to Captain Cook in 1768, sailed with charts showing their destinations. This prior knowledge supposedly came from a single source - a Portuguese World Map of 1428 (p.107), solely mentioned by the historian Galvano who died in 1557.”

...“This entertaining amateur ‘detective’ novel, masquerading as revisionist history, may well prove to be the Piltdown Man of literature and should only be classified as fiction”. Paper

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