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Chinese: 2,640 BC - Hsi and Ho

The ancient Chinese geographical text "Shan Hai Jing" which means "The Classic of the Mountains and Rivers". hold compelling evidence that two Chinese Imperial astronomer-surveyors, named Ta-Chang and Shu-Hai, were the first known explorers to return with stories of America which filled 32 volumes.

458 AD - Hui Shun

During the Liang dynasty the Buddhist priest Hui Shun, on a missionary journey preached Buddhism to the Mayans and is thus in part responsible for Guatemala in honor of Guatema Buddha.

Hui Shun returned to China some 44 years later where where his story was recorded by Lord Yu Kie and Emperor Wu in the year 502 AD

Zheng He

Was China's Zheng He the first to navigate the globe between March 1421 to October 1423?

The Portuguese, in 1428 had a chart of the world showing Africa, Australia, South America and various islands in remarkably accurate detail.

It is possible but not likely given Columbus unswerving belief in China being just 4,000 miles West of Spain.

Venetian merchant and explorer Nicolo da Conti who had accompanied this unheralded explorer of the Americas and admiral of the greatest fleet of the 14th century.

Zheung He was also a eunuch and Moslem. His Buddhist name Sanbao is how he is remembered and may be where the Arab legends of Sinbad come from.

The 24 remarkably accurate maps he produced still survive.


The Quiz for this unit is below. You may complete and send in anytime.

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Bring back a picture from this unit on China and the discovery of the Channel Islands. Save, the copy and past your picture here.



Describe the type of ships the Chinese Explorers sailed in. Use the Encyclopedia to find information about Chinese sailing ships from that time period.



Draw a map which shows the route you would choose between China and North America. Paste a copy of the picture here.



One of the Chinese Explorers is said to have been a Buddist missionary preaching to the Mayans. How does that compare to the experience the Aztecs had with Christian missionaries.


You may when done, or If you want to start over.