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

walrus new1“Some 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

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. Paper

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

Dr 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.

Other Expert Comment

Mystic Fires of Tamaatea: Attempts to creatively rewrite New Zealand’s cultural and tectonic past
James Goff , Keri Hulme, Bruce McFadgen
Royal Society of New Zealand

Is Gavin Menzies Right or Wrong?
Dr. Timothy Furnish, Assistant Professor, World History, Georgia Perimeter College. (History News Network and Atlanta Journal Constitution

How Not to (Re)Write World History: Gavin Menzies and the Chinese Discovery of America - Robert Finlay’s review 1421: The Year China Discovered America (Journal of World History)

Refutation to Gavin Menzies’ book
Commander José Manuel Malhão Pereira

The Hearsay Heresy of “1421”
Captain P.J. Rivers reviews Anatole Andro’s The 1421 Heresy: An Investigation into The Ming Chinese Maritime Survey of the World

Gavin’s Fantasy Land
Bill Hartz

No Scientific Method
A leading New Zealand archaeologist is rubbishing Menzies’ claims.
Waatea News, 10 May 2006

Expert response to presentation in a Library of Congress room

 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

Junk History

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.

Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Verbatim Script
4 Corners Documentary

Most outrageous claims by Mr. Menzies in "1421"
Dr. Geoff Wade

Menzies 10 most outrageous claims. More

The Chinese Colonisation of New Zealand
Dr. Michael King
One of New Zealand’s foremost historians puts Menzies’ claims to a factual test. More

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”.

Useful Links
The book '1421, The Year China Discovered America' is a fairytale & a fiction
Starry Night Charts Support Theory That Chinese Beat Columbus to America
Historian Gavin Menzies on Pre-Columbus Voyage by Chinese


Writer Trashes Origin of Maori
Menzies says Maori don’t exist as race.
Michael Field, Dominion Post, 6 May 2006

Theory cooks up history
The theory the Chinese were first everywhere is about to make a beachhead at the University of Melbourne
Bernard Lane, The Australian, April 26, 2006

Beware fleets of fantasy
There is no evidence Chinese sailors first discovered Australia. Geoff Wade, The Australian April 26, 2006

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