649 pages, 2003
In 1421, the largest fleet the world had ever seen set sail from China. Its mission was to proceed all the way to the ends of the earth to collect tribute from the barbarians beyond the seas and unite the whole world in Confucian harmony, a mission that did not succeed.
In 1423, when it returned, China was in political and economic chaos. The great ships were left to rot at their moorings. Most records of their journeys were destroyed. The knowledge that Chinese ships had reached America 70 years before Columbus and had circumnavigated the globe a century before Magellan was lost in China's long, self-imposed isolation that followed.
Lost as well as how the Chinese colonized America before the Europeans and transplanted there and other countries the principal economic crops that have fed and clothed the world. Unveiling incontrovertible evidence of these astonishing voyages rewrites our understanding of history.