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Why we should celebrate Zheng He

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Kelly Millikan

on 7 April 2016

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Transcript of Why we should celebrate Zheng He

Some Background Info
His intellectual design
Zheng He had a very unique design for his ships, 440 feet long, 180 feet wide and 20 feet tall [bigger than a football field] it was nothing like the world had ever seen before
(Doc C shows a drawing of what ZHe's might have looked like by Edward L. Dreyer)
Zheng He's diligence on his voyage led to the uniting of "the lands within the four seas" under the Imperial Ming Dynasty's reign
(Doc E is an excerpt from The Changle Inscription)
, successfully commanded a crew of 27,370 men
(Doc D shows a chart of ZHe's fleet by various sources)
and victoriously traveled on 105,300 miles of ocean throughout his seven voyages
(Doc A shows a chart of miles ZHe traveled on each voyage by National Geographic from

"China's Great Armada")
Some Info On C.C.
Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492, 60 years after 1433, with command over 3 ships
(Doc B, chart showing comparisons between ZHe and C.C, various sources)
that were 75% smaller than Zheng He's
(Kallie Szczepanski, article comparing ZHe's ships to C.C, Zheng He's treasure ships)
. C.C also was arrested for mistreatment of the natives on Hispaniola and was stripped of his governorship on the island
(Christopher Klein, 10 things you may have not known about Christopher Columbus)
. C.C also started a brutal slave trade of the American Indians and started a four century genocide of the people making them technically extinct
(Dominic Selwood, article on what really happened to the American Indians, Columbus, greed, slavery, and genocide)
so why don't we celebrate Zheng He?
Zheng He's voyages of 1405-1433 from China should be celebrated because as a captain to these ships he was intellectual, ambitious and diligent.
Why we should celebrate Zheng He.
But what happened?
This guy, Zheng He was pretty amazing. He went on seven voyages over the course of 28 years [1405-1433] with command over 200 ships, 60 years before Christopher Columbus
(BGE by various sources)
. All of his voyages were to earn China respect in other countries, he often brought back gifts as tribute to the emperor
(Doc D, chart showing tributes China received by various sources).
C.C's ship, by the way, pretty pathetic, right?
Ambition for China
Zheng He's ambition to expand China's relations led him to 17 different places
(Doc A is a map of ZHe's voyages from "China's Great Armada" National Geographic)
and brought back tributes from 10 different nations, some of the tributes received were giraffes, lions, rhinos and elephants- just to name a few. These gifts surely entertained the Emperor
(Doc D is a chart by various sources on the tributes China received)
Zheng He
We should celebrate Zheng He's intellect, ambition and dilegence that he had on his seven voyages between 1405 and 1433 from China. But how come most of us have never heard of him before?
Everything was Fine
Everything was great
...until the fire nation attacked...
no just kidding. Everything was going well and then a few years after the emperor died it was decided that ZHe's ships were to be dismantled and ZHe was easily forgotten even though he did many great things.
By: Asher Millikan
Full transcript