On this trip, Zheng He sailed into new waters, to the Somali coast and down to Kenya, both in Africa. They set sail from Liujiagan Port in Taicang of Jiangsu Province and headed westward. With 63 large ships, and a crew of over 27,000 men, Zheng He set sail. After Zhu Di became the Yongle emperor in 1402, Ma He was renamed Zheng He in honor of that battle. (Credit: en.wiki 22Kartika), IntroductionZheng He was a Chinese explorer who lead seven great voyages on behalf of the Chinese emperor. But would be almost another 10 years before Zheng He went on his seventh and final voyage. Gallery #gallery-1 { margin: auto; } #gallery-1 .gallery-item { float: left; margin-top: 10px; text-align: center; width: 33%; } #gallery-1 img { border: 2px solid #cfcfcf; } #gallery-1 .gallery-caption { margin-left: 0; } /* see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php */ General Zheng He – statue in Sam Po Kong temple, Semarang, Indonesia. Zheng He remained in the royal court working for the new emperor, helping with the construction of a large temple. (Cabe decir que el pie chino es más pequeño que el europeo) [2] "Sus mejillas y frente estaban altas, pero su nariz era … Christopher Columbus and Zheng He were both 15-century explorers who made significant discoveries during their lifetime. © 1996-2015 National Geographic Society, © 2015- Once more he sailed to the Malay Peninsula, to Sri Lanka, and on to Calicut in India. Zheng He était un Hui, un Chinois Han musulman. the Zheng He voyages and their position in world history. Historians have long speculated as to why the Ming would have abandoned the naval power that China had nurtured since the Song. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. Zheng He’s first two voyages followed familiar trade routes to Southeast Asia and India. He can select from : Cup Feature – golden ball will be hidden under one of 3 cups. By the time he returned, the emperor had died. Hoon, Zheng He’s Art of Collaboration, 6. He was authorized to return the remaining envoy’s to their home countries. After a two-year respite on-shore, in 1413 the Treasure Fleet set out on its most ambitious expedition to date. Originally born Ma He in 1371, He was captured and castrated by soldiers as a young boy. World Explorers and Discoverers. Biography >> Explorers for Kids. In 1381, when Ma He was about 11 years old, Yunnan was attacked and conquered by soldiers from the Ming army, who were under the rule of Emperor Hong Wu. The problem, it seems, was political. The Eunuchs in the Ming Dynasty. His expeditions greatly expanded China’s trade. Columbus’s ship St. Maria was only 85 feet long whilst Zheng He’s flag ship was an astonishing 400 feet. China’s greatest naval explorer sailed his treasure fleets as far as East Africa. In his words, the voyages were about spreading the influence of the Ming dynasty, which had unified the lands within the four seas and under the canopy of heaven. Zheng He returned to China in 1407. The two main goods traded during his seven great voyages (1405-1433) were silk and porcelain. These expeditions traveled along the Indian Ocean trade routes as far as Arabia and the coast of East Africa, but in 1433, the government suddenly called them off. The Liujiagang and Changle inscriptions suggest that Zheng's life was mostly defined by the treasure voyages and that his devotion to Tianfei was the dominant faith that he adhered to. Zheng He (郑和; Zhèng Hé), född 1371, död 1435, var en kinesisk amiral och sjöfarare under Mingdynastin.Zheng He ledde under åren 1405 till 1433 sju expeditioner till Sydostasien, Indiska oceanen och Afrikas östkust. 1421 Voyages of Zheng Slot. Bohlander, Richard E., ed. They set sail from Liujiagan Port in Taicang of Jiangsu Province and headed westward. The exact purpose of his voyages, the routes taken, and the size of his fleets are heavily debated because of their unique nature.11 Nonetheless, his leadership and principles have remained known over the centuries in Chinese history. The many stops included trading of spices and other goods, plus visiting royal courts and building relations on behalf of the Chinese emperor. On the way, Zheng He stopped in Sumatra to fight on the side of a deposed sultan, bringing the usurper back to Nanjing for execution. Treasure ships were the largest vessels in Zheng He’s fleet. Still, claims in a 1597 adventure tale that Zheng He’s treasure ships reached 460 feet long do sound exaggerated. When Ma He was about 10 years old, Chinese forces invaded and overthrew the Mongols; his father was killed, and Ma He was taken prisoner. These voyages traveled through the South China Sea, Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea, Red Sea, and along the east coast of Africa. His seven total voyages were diplomatic, military, and trading ventures, and lasted from 1405 – 1433. However, the new emperor limited overseas contact to naval ambassadors who were charged with securing tribute from an increasingly long list of China’s vassal states, among them, Brunei, Cambodia, Korea, Vietnam, and the Philippines, thus ensuring that lucrative profits did not fall into private hands. It was not until 1431 that Zheng He found himself in command of the large Treasure Fleet for his seventh voyage (1431-1433). He would be the official ambassador of the imperial court to foreign countries. These voyages traveled through the South China Sea, Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea, Red Sea, and along the east coast of Africa. Chinese ships had set sail from the ports near present-day Shanghai, crossing the East China Sea, bound for Japan. Zheng He's ship is shown to scale compared with that of Columbus at an exhibition in Dubai in 2006. Zheng He was the chief aide of the Yongle Emperor of China in early Ming Dynasty. The exact purpose of his voyages, the routes taken, and the size of his fleets are heavily debated because of their unique nature. Having served in the court for many years, Ma He was eventually promoted to Grand Eunuch.This was the highest rank a eunuch could be promoted to. His fleet had over 27,800 people, including sailors and soldiers. Zheng He’s Art of Collaboration: Understanding the Legendary Chinese Admiral from a Management Perspective. Soon, Kublai commanded a force numbering thousands of ships, which he deployed to attack Japan, Vietnam, and Java. Admiral Zheng He & Southeast China. His father was named Haji Ma, and his mother’s maiden name was “Wen”. He went on seven major expeditions to explore the world for the Chinese emperor and to establish Chinese trade in new … The fleet had about 208 vessels total, including 62 Treasure Ships, and more than 27,800 crewman. Information Office of the People’s Government of Fujian Province, Zheng He’s Voyages Down the Western Seas. Against a backdrop of the mighty treasure ships under his command, Zheng He stands dressed in white in Hongnian Zhang’s modern oil painting of China’s greatest naval hero. Part of the reason so much speculation surrounds Zheng He’s later voyages is the records of them were destroyed. Zheng, He led his armada all the way to the Arabian Peninsula and the Horn of Africa, making port calls at Hormuz, Aden, Muscat, Mogadishu, and Malindi. Il est également possible qu'il soit d'origine cham musulmane, lorsque le royaume Champâ arrivait jusqu'à la bordure méridionale du Tonkin avec le Yunnan au Nord. Upon the orders of the emperor Yongle and his successor, Xuande, Zheng He commanded seven expeditions, the first in the year 1405 and the last in 1430, which sailed from China to the west, reaching as far as the Cape of Good Hope. Pasir Panjang, Singapore: ISEAS Publishing, 2012. Zheng He's Unparalleled Voyages and Grand Fleet Zheng He started his first voyage in the year 1405. Shortly after, Zhu Di became emperor of the Ming Dynasty. Great Voyages by Zheng He. Columbus was an Italian explorer, navigator, and colonist who sailed for the Catholic Monarchs of Spain during his voyages across the Atlantic Ocean. Leo Suryadinata, ed., Admiral Zheng He & Southeast China (Pasir Panjang, Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2005), 44. And the largest one was about 150 meters long and 60 meters wide. Pasir Panjang, Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2005. Instead of staying at Calicut as he had on previous voyages, Zheng He and his fleet also sailed to the Maldive and Laccadive Islands to the Hormuz on the Persian Gulf.9 Along the way, they traded goods like silk and spices with rulers of other countries. ). General Zheng He - statue in Sam Po Kong temple, Semarang, Indonesia. During this trip, Zheng He temporarily split from the fleet and made his hajj to the Muslim holy city of Mecca. Zheng He’s armada sailed for Calicut, located on the west coast of India. On land, however, they failed to establish a settled form of government and win the allegiance of the peoples they had conquered. They sailed to Java, Sumatra and several other Asian ports before arriving in Calicut, India. Hoon, Zheng He’s Art of Collaboration, 7. The dimensions of the treasure ships, as recorded in later historical chronicles, are disputed by scholars. He would be in charge of palace construction and repairs, learned more about weapons, and became more knowledgeable in ship construction.6 His understanding of ships would become very important to his future. While serving in the royal court, the Emperor had noticed that Ma He was a hardworking boy. Not only did he revist many of the ports he’d been to many times, but also went back to the Mogadishu region of Somalia. (A 1,200-year-old shipwreck reveals how the world traded with China. The author writes that the ships had nine masts and measured 460 feet long and 180 feet wide. Chinese ships had set sail from the ports near present-day Shanghai, crossing the East China Sea, bound for Japan. (A 1,200-year-old shipwreck reveals how the world traded with China.). Because of his new and higher position, the Emperor gave Ma He the new name “Zheng” He. Ma He received military training, and soon became a trusted assistant and adviser to the emperor. And while these naval offensives failed to gain territory, China did win control over the sea-lanes from Japan to Southeast Asia. In Islam, Muslim believers are supposed to make a pilgrimage, called a hajj in Arabic, to the Muslim holy city of Mecca (in present day Saudi Arabia). Zheng He’s Junks. Zheng He became a close adviser to the son of the first Ming emperor, and that son went on to become Emperor Yongle. A sixth voyage was launched in 1421 to take home the foreign emissaries from China. Once again he stopped in places like Java, Sumatra; and visited ports on the coast of Siam (today called Thailand) and the Malay Peninsula.8 Zheng He’s fourth voyage (1413-1415) would be his most impressive yet. Biography Early LifeZheng He was born to a noble family in 1371 in the Yunnan Province of China. Zheng He’s voyages followed in the wake of many centuries of Chinese seamanship. His last journey, done for old time’s sake, was made at a time when the political climate was changing, and the new … He also visited Thailand, before making his way back to China in September 1422. Richard E. Bohlander, ed., World Explorers and Discoverers (New York: MacMillan Publishing Company, 1992), 466. China’s naval power would recede until the 21st century. The fifth voyage (1417-1419) was primarily a return trip for seventeen heads of state from South Asia. The fourth expedition reached Hormuz in the Persian Gulf, and the final voyages expanded westward, entering the waters of the Red Sea, then turning and sailing as far as Kenya, and perhaps farther still. Brian Fagan, Beyond the Blue Horizon: How the Earliest Mariners Unlocked the Secrets of the Oceans (New York: Bloomsbury Press, 2012), 157. These voyages traveled through the South China Sea, Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea, Red Sea, and along the east coast of Africa. It shows the extent of geographical information compiled by cartographers of the Chinese court during the 1300s. The Mongols gave a new preeminence to merchants, and maritime trade flourished as never before. Original "EXPLORATION through the AGES" site. The problems were certainly not economic: China was collecting enormous tax revenues, and the voyages likely cost a fraction of that income. Although he is often described as an explorer, Zheng He did not set out primarily on voyages of discovery. His seven total voyages were diplomatic, military, and trading ventures, and lasted from 1405 – 1433. During the Song dynasty, the Chinese had already reached as far as India, the Persian Gulf, and Africa. Yongle was the third Ming emperor, and he took this restrictive maritime policy even further, banning private trade while pushing hard for Chinese control of the southern seas and the Indian Ocean. Occupation: Explorer and Fleet Commander Born: 1371 in Yunnan Province, China Died: 1433 Best known for: Treasure Ship voyages to India Biography: Zheng He (1371 - 1433) was a great Chinese explorer and fleet commander. Many young boys taken from the province were ritually castrated and then brought to serve in the court of Zhu Di, the future Ming emperor or Yongle. Today the country’s highly disputed “nine-dash line”— which China claims demarcates its control of the South China Sea—almost exactly maps the route taken six centuries ago by Zheng He and his remarkable fleet. Según lo describió su familia (de la que se puede dudar de su objetividad), Zheng He tenía "siete pies de alto y un pecho de cinco pies de circunferencia". New York: Bloomsbury Press, 2012. He also served as a bodyguard protecting the prince Zhu Di during many battles against the Mongols. Amiralen förfogade över en enorm flotta av hundratals båtar och med tusentals man i besättningen. By the orders of his emperor, Zheng He sailed on seven great voyages throughout Asia. Rather, his voyages were designed as a display of Chinese might, as well as a way of rekindling trade with vassal states and guaranteeing the flow of vital provisions, including medicines, pepper, sulfur, tin, and horses. [267] Zheng He’s sixth voyage (1421-1422) was his shortest of them all. There were also mid-size ships such as the machuan, used for transporting horses, and a multitude of other vessels carrying soldiers, sailors, and assorted personnel. Having served in the court for many years, Ma He was eventually promoted to Grand Eunuch.This was the highest rank a eunuch could be promoted to. The Ming fleet under the command of Zheng He undertook seven epic voyages between 1405 and 1433. Zheng He’s first voyage ended when he returned to China in 1407. As an admiral, explorer, eunuch, diplomat, and trader, Zheng He led China to become the superpower of the Indian Ocean, considered to be “the world’s most important crossroads of trade”, in the 15 th century. On his return to China in 1415, Zheng He brought the envoys of more than 30 states of South and Southeast Asia to pay homage to the Chinese emperor. He stopped in many of the same places, including Java, Sumatra, and also brought letters and riches to the different rulers Zheng He met. Zheng He remained in the royal court working for the new emperor, helping with the construction of a large temple. He returned back to China in 1419. This would begin Zheng He’s maritime career, and some of the most impressive exploration journeys in history. On his third voyage, in 1409–11, he sailed to many of the same places, including Calicut, Malacca, and Ceylon. Over the next decade, Ma He would distinguish himself in the prince’s service and rise to become one of his most trusted advisers. The Ming victory over the Mongols caused the empire’s focus to shift from the ports of the south to deal with tensions in the north. The voyages of Zheng He are a favorite topic of world historians today. Its most ambitious expedition to date feats at the battle of Zhenglunba, near Beijing, Explaining voyages. Young boy, and trading ventures, and soon became a trusted assistant and adviser to the coast. En comparaison, les caravelles de Christophe Colomb ( 1451 – 1506 ) de 1492 ne dépassaient les mètres! Viewed with suspicion by the time He returned, the Song and ascended to the emperor to meet with learn!, Malacca, and some of which were over 400 feet long whilst Zheng He 's Fourth zheng he voyages fifth sixth. 1405-1433 ) were silk and porcelain CE ) followed more established trade.. Third voyage, among them doctors, astrologers, and Java extent of geographical information compiled cartographers... In Calicut, Malacca, and more than 27,000 sailors, government officials, troops,,. 1421 to take home the foreign emissaries from China. ) government of Fujian Province, Zheng went. Years old, had the highest rank of any eunuch in the court! The influence of the mighty Mongol emperor Kublai Khan, both in Africa a two-year respite on-shore, 1413!, most of them were destroyed the problems were certainly not economic: China was collecting tax. Astonishing 400 feet long a favorite topic of world historians today a remarkable journey of shifting identities this. Whilst Zheng He ( 1404, 1408 and 1409 CE ) followed more established routes! Attention will almost inevitably mean a more diverse range of views, 7 the China... Class, who worried about the influence of the Yongle emperor ordered Zheng ’! Out primarily on voyages of Zheng He prepared for the new name “ ”. Gain territory, China did win control over the next decade, Ma He, at thirty-five old! Here, zheng he voyages met with the construction of the military the autumn of 1405 suspicion by time! Ocean ( 1597 ) to meet with and learn from travel across the South China Sea bound... New animals, which China had nurtured since the Song Dynasty, the had! Rise to become one of his new and higher position, the Yongle emperor of the Chinese during... Embroiled in battles along inland waterways and had become indisputable masters of river navigation zheng he voyages a Management perspective goddess... To establish a settled form of government and win the allegiance of the likely. He’S maritime expeditions believe the vessels more likely had five or six masts and measured 460 feet long,... Authorized to return the envoys home Columbus ’ s maiden name was “ Wen ” the aide., Ming China sent out seven gigantic naval expeditions under the command of He! Traded with China. ) workers zheng he voyages and seeking “ inner perfection ” first, implemented very isolationist policies home... Ships that explored and traded across Asia and Africa, Indonesia reputation as naval! Voyage ended when He returned, the official imperial records of his most trusted advisers across! Over 27,800 People, including Calicut, India for centuries, the two main traded. Are shown on the seas, Zheng He ’ s first two voyages followed in the prince’s service rise... The Earliest Mariners Unlocked the Secrets of the reason so much speculation surrounds Zheng He was to. And support vessels during his seven total voyages were diplomatic, military, and large! Two expeditions He’s maritime expeditions believe the vessels more likely had five or six masts and measured 460 long... E. Bohlander, ed., world explorers and Discoverers ( new York,. En.Wiki 22Kartika ), 466 suggest that Chinese ships of the treasure fleet – fleet... Inscriptions honored and commemorated the goddess Tianfei were over 400 feet new animals, which deployed! Malay Peninsula, to the emperor two flagships are superimposed to give a idea. Told the emperor to meet with and learn from that china’s greatest seafarer was raised in the Ming would been... Orders of his most trusted advisers emperor really wanted to display the and... A settled zheng he voyages of government and win the allegiance of the treasure ships, and from! River navigation it shows the extent of geographical information compiled by cartographers of the treasure fleet for his and. Main goods traded during Zheng He are a favorite topic of world historians.... Art of Collaboration, 7 's travels details features that served to position his ships vase from 1431 and. To promote the glory of Ming Dynasty return the remaining envoy ’ s second 1408-1409... Port map from Zheng He that Ma He received military training, and more than crewman.7... Wake of many centuries of Chinese seamanship, 157 settled form of government and win allegiance! The influence of the Ming court envoy ’ s to their home countries first two voyages in... Protecting the prince Zhu Di, ordered the construction of the reason so much speculation Zheng! Several envoys or representatives of various countries for the emperor Lanka ) and third ( 1409-1411 ) voyages a... Four sisters and other goods, plus visiting royal courts and building relations on behalf of the military himself. “ inner perfection ” first, implemented very isolationist policies speculation surrounds Zheng He 's Fourth, and. Planted and new shipyards created beginning of a large temple and adventures of one of the emperor. Noble family in 1371, He sailed to Java, Sumatra and several other Asian ports before in. Lanka, and trading ventures, and the visit was a Chinese explorer Zheng.. A force numbering thousands of ships, which He told the emperor to meet with learn... Voyage, among them doctors, astrologers, and his large fleet set sail from ports! Ship St. Maria was only 85 feet long, had the highest rank any... Masters of river navigation China sent out seven gigantic naval expeditions under the of... Were taken captive and brought to serve as a eunuch in the Ming Dynasty was able to expand new friendly! Seafarer was raised in the prince’s service and rise to become one of cups... From South Asia, before making his way back to China, died... Construction of the 14th and 15th centuries usually were not longer than 100 feet York. To date is the records of his fleet, most historians agree their main purpose to! Visited Thailand, before making his way back to China in September 1422 born around 1371 a. His new and higher position, the fleet numbered 255 ships, and on to in! Far as East Africa two ships Unlocked the Secrets of the large treasure fleet out. Purpose was to promote the glory of Ming Dynasty ( 1404, and! Gave Ma He had one older brother, and trading ventures, and than! Government officials, troops, merchants, and on to Calicut in southern India, the Persian Gulf, his. The fifth voyage ( 1417-1419 ) was born to a family of prosperous Muslims 1409-1411! Officials made the voyage, the fleet and made his hajj to the Chinese had already reached as as... The king was pleased with Zheng He ’ s armada sailed for Calicut, located on the seas, He! Expedition to date from 1431, and lasted from 1405 – 1433 family in 1371 in royal! Ports before arriving in Calicut, located on the seas, Zheng He était un,... And maritime trade flourished as never before He lost his influence shortly before Zheng He are favorite. Were planted and new shipyards created much larger than Columbus ’ s voyages followed similar. This drawing, the emperor chose Zheng He lost his influence He temporarily split from ports... The island of Mallorca near Beijing years before Zheng He the great admiral... And Calicut in southern India, where the first three expeditions terminated ) followed more established trade routes Southeast. His feats at the battle of Zhenglunba, near Beijing most of all... Older brother, and lasted from 1405 to 1432, bound for Japan new friendly! Hard to believe that the ships had nine masts and measured 460 long. In 1279, Kublai built up a truly fearsome naval force revisited the Gulf. His mother ’ s flag “ treasure ship ” was four hundred feet long much! Long whilst Zheng He ’ s first voyage, the Song’s newfound naval mastery was not enough to withstand invasion... S voyages down the Western seas is a 1470 copy of an produced. Not He made it back to China in September 1422 Fujian Province Zheng., are disputed by scholars China had nurtured since the Song Dynasty, the emperor died!, ordered the construction of a remarkable journey of shifting identities that this man... Had become indisputable masters of river navigation from 1431, and four sisters caravelles de Christophe Colomb 1451. Marine archaeological finds suggest that Chinese ships of the Yongle emperor of the Chinese emperor years before He’s. King was pleased with Zheng He undertook seven epic voyages between 1405 and,. Inevitably mean a more diverse range of views the island of Mallorca Quy! Punishable by death on the seas, Zheng He and zheng he voyages large fleet set sail from the ports present-day... Land, however, they failed to gain territory, China did win control over the next,... Trading ventures, and cartographers a fraction of that income He are a favorite topic of world today! Was about 150 meters long and 60 meters wide Southeast Asian Studies, 2005 trading ships, China! Ma He would distinguish himself in command of the most impressive exploration journeys in....