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DISCLAIMER: THE STORY(s) DEPICTED ON THIS SITE AND THE PERSON(s) DEPICTED IN THE STORY ARE NOT REAL. DESCRIPTION: Although few ancient Chinese maps are extant, it is evident from various descriptions in early geographical literature and Korean copies and imitations of old Chinese maps that the Terrestrial Continent was centered around China, encircled by a large ring of water quite similar to Homera€™s Oceanus, and further enclosed by an imaginary outer continent (#105, #254, #255, #256).
The subject of this monograph is a map referred to as Yoktae chewang honil kangnido [Map of historical emperors and kings and of integrated borders and terrain], also known as the Honil kangni yoktae kukto chi to [Map of integrated regions and terrains and of historical countries and capitals], and hereafter will be simply referred to as the Kangnido.
According to the preface found in China€™s Yangcha€™on chip, the map is a synthesis of two earlier Chinese maps, an early 14th century (~1330) map by Li Tse-min [Zemin] and another map from the late 14th century (~1370) by Cha€™ing Cha€™n [Qing Jun], both maps now lost however.
The place to begin discussion of this very unusual map is with its preface, the crucial part of which is translated here from the text on the Ryukoku copy, with reference to the closely similar version in Cha€™A?an Chin's collected works, the Yangcha€™on chip. Takahashi Tadashi has shown that the Kangnidoa€™s Chinese transcriptions of place-names in southwest Asia, Africa, and Europe come from Persianized Arabic originals. The European part of the map, which is said to contain some 100 names, has not yet been the object of an individual study, and no details of this section of the Kangnido seem to have been published. Cha€™A?an Chin observed in his preface that the Kuang yu ta€™u had only sketchy treatment of the area east of the Liao River and of Korea. The last major element of the map to be supplied, as far as the Koreans were concerned, was Japan. It is generally assumed by Korean cartographical specialists that this map, brought back in 1401, was the basis for the representation of Japan on the Kangnido.
The northeastern coast of Africa, as well as Arabia, Asia Minor and the Mediterranean Sea with Italy and Spain were, as a whole, known to the Chinese from the 12th century, either by description, or, in the case of the African and Arabian coasts, from their own experience. Prior to the Age of Great Discoveries, the African world below the Sahara, by all indications, was essentially an enigma to geographers in Europe.
From the other side, the Arabs undoubtedly possessed considerable advantages that enabled them to venture across the dry lands and beyond. While numerous places in North Africa were mentioned by Chinese authors of the 8th and 9th centuries, it is more difficult to establish a clear milestone for the advance of Chinaa€™s knowledge concerning tropical Africa. Returning to Cha€™A?an Chin and Li Huia€™s map, the delineation of the southern half of Africa is of particular interest. The fact that the names of the Chinese cities on China€™s map are all the same as on the maps from 1320, further substantiates that the basic content of the map, as a whole, must date back to the famous Chinese cartographer Chu Ssu-pena€™s own time. Whatever the emphasis of the cartographer, rivers as a rule, were the most prominent landmarks in every Chinese map; and for the inland areas (central Asia especially) China€™s map is a good example of the Korean conformity to Chinese tradition, and we see the magnitude of rivers and other water bodies greatly exaggerated.
Another contributing factor in the mapa€™s remarkable knowledge of the West is that which was obtained as a result of the near conquest of the entire known [inhabited] world, or oikoumene, by the Mongols during the 13th century.
The overall disposition and bulk of the different components of the Kangnido at first make an odd appearance. Little is known about how the Kangnido came to Japan, but it probably arrived there independently on three separate occasions. The graphic above illustrates a proposed hypothetical development or a€?transitiona€? of the Korean world map, beginning with the Kangnido of 1402 through to the Cha€™onhado [map of all under heaven] in the 16th century (see #231). This information permits the conclusion that the Kangnido was probably often copied in Korea during the 15th and 16th centuries. Thus Japan is righted and put in its proper place, the respective masses of Korea, China, and Africa are brought into more accurate relation, and England and Scandinavia emerge from Europe.
Movable type printing with cast metal movable type, which Korea had pioneered among the East Asian nations in 1242, underwent considerable development and refinement under the 15th century kings; by the time Gutenberg perfected his press in 1454, hundreds of editions of books in Chinese and several in Korean had been printed in Korea with movable type. The spirit that animated all of these projects, and that marks the 15th century as perhaps Koreaa€™s greatest, was both national and international in character, and showed a high degree of independent thinking. In addition to practical administrative concerns, mapmaking served to strengthen the national prestige and royal power. The Honil kangni yoktae kukto chi to [Map of Integrated Lands and Regions of Historical Countries and Capitals, short name Kangnido] is a world map that was made in Korea in 1402, the second year of the reign of Taejong of Joseon.
It is the second oldest surviving world map from East Asia, after the similar Chinese Da Ming Hun Yi Tu, part of a tradition begun in the 1320s when geographical information about western countries became available via Islamic geographers in the Mongol empire. Chin had returned from a trip to China in the summer of 1399, probably bringing the two Chinese maps with him, and both ministers had just completed reporting on land surveys of Koreaa€™s northern frontiers to the royal court. In the fourth year of the Jianwen era (1402), Gim Sahyeong and Yi Mu, and later Li Hui, analyzed the two Chinese maps and combined these two maps into a single map.
The map depicts the general form of the Old World, from Africa and Europe in the west to Japan in the east although the western portion is much smaller than its actual size.
Place names based on traditional Chinese knowledge and Islamic knowledge coexist separately.
Chinese Exploration: Some have used this map as evidence of early global exploration by China. It is one of the oldest surviving world maps from East Asia although the exact date of creation remains unknown. The place names of China on the map reflect the political situation in 1389, or the 22nd year of the reign of the Hongwu Emperor.
Relationship to other maps: Maps had for centuries played an important role in the government of such a vast country, and surviving examples on stone dating from AD 1137 (Book II, #218) but based on much earlier surveys, show great accuracy, using a grid system. By the early years of the 14th century, when Mongol domination over much of Eurasia created favorable conditions for east-west communication, Islamic maps of Europe and Africa had found their way to China, encouraging Chinese cartographers to create world maps incorporating the new information.
Scholars consider that the Da Ming Hun Yi Tu was ultimately based on a world map named Shengjiao Guangbei Tu (e???•™a»?e?«a?–).
Compared to the Kangnido, the Da Ming Hun Yi Tu provides more detailed information on Mongolia and Central Asia and India.
It replicates the curvature of the Earth by compression of areas furthest away from China (most obviously the extreme horizontal squeeze of Europe), their reduced size making both a geographical and a political statement. The European coverage goes only as far as the new portolan mapping, showing the Mediterranean and Black Sea areas.
Hunyi jiangli lidai guodu zhi tu[General map of the distances and the historic capitals]: Honkoo-ji Tokiwa Museum of Historical Materials, Shimabara, Nagasaki prefecture. Chinaa€™s towns and cities, its river systems, and the Great Wall are all shown on the map. Cha€™A?ana€™s own role was probably important, even though he insists that he only stood in the background and a€?enjoyably watched the making of the map.a€? But he was being modest and tactful, since he was younger in age and junior in rank to the two ministers.
A A A  The European part of the map, which is said to contain some 100 names, has not yet been the object of an individual study, and no details of this section of the Kangnido seem to have been published. John Thomas North (pictured), originally a Yorkshire mechanic, became a friend of the future King George V and was worth $10 million in 1889? King George V of the United Kingdom was a member of the Society for the Prevention of Calling Sleeping Car Porters "George"?
19 crewmen of the Russian oceanliner SS Czar received the Silver Sea Gallantry Medal from King George V of the United Kingdom for rescuing 102 survivors from a burning ship in October 1913? RATHER, THIS FICTIONAL STORY IS BASED ON THE RESULTS THAT SOME PEOPLE WHO HAVE USED THESE PRODUCTS HAVE ACHIEVED.
This map of the world was made in Korea in 1402, the second year of the reign of Taejong of Joseon. Li Tse-min, of whom we know nothing save that he flourished around 1330, produced a ShA?ng-chiao kuang-pei ta€™u [Map for the Diffusion of Instruction]. We do not know how many tens of millions of li there are from China in the center to the four seas at the outer limits, but in compressing and mapping it on a folio sheet several feet in size, it is indeed difficult to achieve precision; that is why [the results of] the mapmakers have generally been either too diffuse or too abbreviated.
But the real cartographer, even though Cha€™A?an minimizes his role, was Li Hui, whose entire career was in rather low-ranking but often special positions.
While some of Takahashia€™s matches do not command credence in early-modern Chinese phonological terms, he generally makes a convincing case.
The Mediterranean is clearly recognizable, as are the Iberian and Italian peninsulas and the Adriatic, but until the place-names can be read and interpreted it will be impossible to come to any firm understanding of it. His language suggests that some image of Korea, however deficient, was on the original Kuang yu ta€™u (#227) and that this was supplemented or replaced by Li Hui. At this particular moment in time, Koreaa€™s relations with the Japanese were very difficult owing to the continuing problem of Japanese marauders, who were beyond the ability of the Ashikaga Shogunate to control. As maps of Japan go in this period, the outline on this one is unusually good: the positioning of Kyushu with respect to Honshu is quite accurate, and the bend north of the Kanto area is indicated better than on many of the Gyoki - style maps then current. Aside from the effect of the inhospitable barriers surrounding the region, two great retarding factors that hindered the Europeans from crossing the immense waste, or from sailing into the tropical waters, was their belief in the Ocean of Darkness [Atlantic] and the fear of extreme heat on land and in the water further south.
The earliest Chinese reference to North Africa can be found in the Ching-hsing-chi [An Account of Travels and Experiences], written by Ta Huan in 762 A.D. In the first place, the shape of the continent, which is basically triangular, and its general orientation, south, are clearly recognizable.
However, the Kangnido map of the world presents a totally different emphasis from that of Chu Ssu-pen. Similarly along the coast from China to Africa, major rivers such as the Red, Mekong, Menam, Salween, Ganges, Indus, Tigris, and Euphrates are laid out in an unmistakable sequence in order to bring forth the locations of the many states and cities between them.a€?The treatment of the western regions is also very interesting in that it includes about 100 place-names for Europe and about 35 for Africa (unfortunately, though, it has not been possible for scholars to identify many of them). And a final point of interest concerning this remarkable map is that it could not possibly have benefited from the information which the Chinese explorer Cheng Ho certainly had brought back five years later concerning the peninsularity of India. On the one hand, there is nothing formulaic or mandated about its structure, such as the traditional European T-in-O scheme, or the wheel arrangement of the quasi-cosmographic cha€™onhado of later Korean popularity (see #231).
China and India, like a monstrous cell that had not yet divided, make up a dominating mass that overfills the entire center of the map. A map whose composition was guided by the nation's top educator and Confucian ideologist, and presided over by two ministers of state, was surely destined for display in a prominent, central place in the capital. Both the Ryukoku and Honmyo-ji copies were evidently part of the loot from Hideyoshia€™s invasion of Korea (1592-1598). However, there are some scholars that will argue that this illustration should be reversed and that the Cha€™onhado design preceded the Kangnido world concept, at least in China. But the map as a whole, and particularly its treatment of India and Africa, strongly evokes the Kangnido. Finally, King Sejong in 1443 invented the Korean alphabet, an amazingly original and scientific system which still serves as the writing system of Korea and which is the only indigenous alphabetic system in use among the East Asian countries. Koreans did not merely copy the Chinese culture they imported, but recast and it into forms and institutions that were distinctively different from Chinaa€™s. At this time, Joseon needed comprehensive maps for the reform of administrative districts and a move of the capital. It depicts the general form of the Old World, from Africa and Europe in the west to Japan in the east. The map currently in RyA«koku University (hereafter referred to as the RyA«koku map) has gathered scholarly attention since the early 20th century.
Since Li Zemina€™s map had problems, they added the enlarged Korea, and also appended a map of Japan. It contains the cartographic knowledge of Afro-Eurasia that cannot be found in the east in the pre-Mongol period.
These areas are depicted in great detail while place names are sparsely distributed in northwestern Eurasia.
The knowledge of the contour of Africa predates the European explorations of Vasco da Gama. China began to explore the territories to the west from the embassy of Zhang Qian in 126 B.C.
The original text was written in classical Chinese, but Manchu labels were later superimposed on them.


It depicts the general form of the Old World, placing China in the center and stretching northward to Mongolia, southward to Java, eastward to central Japan, and westward to Africa and Europe.
Japanese scholar Miya Noriko speculated on the motivation behind it: Although the Hongwu Emperor, first of the Ming dynasty, drove the Mongol Yuan Dynasty out of China in 1368, Mongols maintained military power that posed a real threat to the new dynasty. By then the Chinese had also developed the magnetic compass, and in the 13th century western versions of that device allowed European cartography, almost abandoned after the fall of the western Roman Empire, to catch up with Chinese standards of accuracy. In Manchuria, Changbai Mountain, where the foundation myth of the Manchu Aisin Gioro imperial family was set, is overly portrayed. Outside China, sub-Saharan Africa is depicted in a good approximation of the correct shape, complete with mountains near the southern tip. Unlike the African lake, those seas are not shaded with wave symbols, and nor is the nearby Caspian Sea, mapped in Islamic style with two islands, suggesting that the whole area is based on a single Islamic map. THE RESULTS PORTRAYED IN THE STORY AND IN THE COMMENTS ARE ILLUSTRATIVE, AND MAY NOT BE THE RESULTS THAT YOU ACHIEVE WITH THESE PRODUCTS.
It easily predates any world map known from either China or Japan and is therefore the oldest such work surviving in the East Asian cartographical tradition, and the only one prior to the Ricci world maps of the late 15th and early 16th centuries.
The map by the Tiantai monk Cha€™ing ChA?n (1328-1392) must have been made some forty or fifty years later; it was called Hun-i chiang-li ta€™u [Map of the Territories of the One World].
His map of Korea, which was separately known, was almost certainly the basis for the Korean part of the world map.
One of the more interesting correspondences is the name placed by the mountains near the Ptolemaic twin lakes that are the source of the Nile.
Li is known to have produced a map of Korea, called the Pa€™altodo, [Map of the Eight Provinces], and it was probably a version of this that appears today on the Kangnido. Diplomatic initiatives were in progress, and coastal defenses and strategies were undergoing constant development.
But for the joining of Shikoku to Honshu, the three main islands (adding Kyushu; Hokkaido, of course, not included at that time) make a very decent appearance. As a matter of fact, the first terrestrial globe ever manufactured in China (1267) owes its existence to the Arabic scholar Djamal-ud-Din. In spite of the dangers, real and imagined, adventurers from the Greco-Roman days down to the time of Henry the Navigator persisted in probing the unknown beyond the Canaries, some passing by Cape Verde and others reaching as far as the coast of Sierre Leone. As the map title suggests, it aims at showing the locations of a€?all the countries and major cities in history in a comprehensive coveragea€?.
For those areas that are identifiable, in the northern part of Africa the Sahara is colored in black, like the Gobi in so many Chinese maps (including the famous Kuang Yu Ta€™u, #227), and the position of Alexandria is indicated by the placement of a prominent pagoda-like object representing the famous Pharos. Only in a subsequent version of about 1580 (in the Imperial Palace at Peking) is India shown as a pronounced, separate peninsula between southeast Asia and Africa. The attempt here was to study the best maps available in China, Korea, and Japan, and put together a comprehensive, indeed a€?integrateda€? [honil], map that included every known part of the world, truly a breathtaking objective by the cartographic standards of any nation at that time.
It was probably on a screen or a wall in some important palace building frequented by the king and senior officials. The Ryukoku map was reportedly given by Hideyoshi to the Honganji, an important Buddhist temple in Kyoto. According to Korean historian Gari Ledyard the key element in this proposed hypothetical development is the Arabian peninsula, which with the Red Sea and the Arabian Sea forms a peninsula between the two rivers on the Cha€™onhado. It also seems conceivable that it is reflected in an interesting map entitled Yoji chondo (Yeoji jeondo) [the Complete Terrestrial Map], dated about 1775 (illustrated below). This is good evidence that the Kangnido tradition was not broken by the Hideyoshi wars, but stayed alive in Korea for two more centuries.
It is similar to the 15th century Kangnido in general structure: large Asia, small Africa and Europe, undefined India. 1419-1450) and his son King Sejo (r.1455-1468) extended Korean cartographical foundations by standardizing linear measurement and assembling detailed distance data between Seoul and the approximately 335 districts of the country. The Kangnido is a perfect example of this process: China, either as originator or transmitter, provided Korea with most of the materials for the map, but the transformation and processing of those materials into a genuine world map was conceived and executed in Korea. It was also pursuing a restoration of its northern border and relocation of its population, as well as responding to coastal raids by Japanese pirates. Although, overall, it is less geographically accurate than its Chinese cousin, most obviously in the depiction of rivers and small islands, it does feature some improvements (particularly the depictions of Korea and Japan, and a less cramped version of Africa). The other map is the Tenri map, located in Tenri University and is called by a similar name (a¤§??Za?‹a?–). Li Hui supplemented many gaps and omissions on Li Zemina€™s map with Koreaa€™s own map, and added a map of Japan, making an entirely new map.
Place names presented on the map suggest that the western portion of the map reflects roughly the situation of the early 14th century. Names based on the former were placed to the north and east of Besh Baliq even if they are actually located to the west. They correspond to the territories of Ilkhanate and the rival Golden Horde respectively, reinforcing Ilkhanate as the main source of information. In particular, the southern tip of Africa is quite clearly depicted, as well as a river that may correspond to the Orange River in Southern Africa. The map was created in China sometime during the Ming Dynasty and handed over to the new rulers of China, the Manchus.
Others maintain a cautious attitude, suggesting that what was revised in 1389 is probably a source map of the Da Ming Hun Yi Tu and that the Da Ming Hun Yi Tu itself was created much later. The situation was changed in 1388 when Uskhal Khan of Northern Yuan was killed and the Khubilaid line of succession was terminated.
Other extant maps considered to be based on Lia€™s map are some copies of the Kangnido (1402) and a pair of maps named Dongnan Haiyi Tu (??±a?—?µ·a¤·a?–) and Xinan Haiyi Tu (e??a?—?µ·a¤·a?–), which is recorded in the Kuang Yu Tu (a»?e?‡a?–)(1555) by Luo Hongxian (#227). It presents India as a peninsula while it sinks into the a€?Chinese continenta€? on the Kangnido.
The use of color is particularly effective within China itself, including elegant touches like the ochre tint of the Huang He [Yellow River]. The interior of the continent is extraordinary: a river with twin sources (the common depiction in Classical and Islamic maps of the Nile) starts in the south of the continent, but enters the Red Sea, while the Nile, contrary to the information in non-Chinese maps of the era (though in conformity with a reported Arab geographical legend that farther south from the Sahara Desert is a great lake, far greater than the Caspian Sea) has its source in a vast inland sea.
The original text was written in Classical Chinese, but Manchu labels were later superimposed on them.
THIS PAGE RECEIVES COMPENSATION FOR CLICKS ON OR PURCHASE OF PRODUCTS FEATURED ON THIS SITE. However, by the middle of the eighth century the overland route across Central Asia had become paralyzed, and China was compelled to reorient herself to the warm seas and thus embarked on nearly seven centuries of commercial relations with the Near East.
Although it is no longer preserved in Korea itself, there are three versions in Japan; of these the copy in the Ryukoku University Library (Kyoto) is acknowledged to be the earliest, and in the best condition. Both of these maps made their way to Korea in 1399 through the agency of the Korean ambassador, Chin Shih-Heng (1341-1407), and were combined in 1402 by Li Hui and Cha€™A?an. In the 4th year of the Jianwen era (1402), Left Minister Chin [Shih-Heng] of Sangju, and Right Minister Yi [Mu] of Tanyang, during moments of rest from their governing duties, made a comparative study of these maps and ordered Li Hui, an orderly, to collate them carefully and then combine them into a single map. Judging by Cha€™A?ana€™s description of the monk Cha€™ing ChA?na€™s Hun-i chiang-li ta€™u, it was probably an ordinary historical map of China, compiled in the late 14th century. Though not on the Ryukoku copy of the Kangnido, the Tenri University copy shows the Chinese transcription Zhebulu hama, which Takahashi identifies with Persianized Arabic Djebel alqamar [Mountains of the Moon]. All this was backed by a general Korean effort to improve the governmenta€™s knowledge of Japan, and this involved maps in particular. But this splendid effort seems to be vitiated by orienting the Japanese portion so that west is at the top.
The same holds true for the western half of one of the previously mentioned sources, Li Tse-mina€™s map of ca.
The source of the Nile and the actual shape of the African continent, however, remained largely subject to speculation among the Europeans. The former treatise mentions, among other things, Mo-lin [Maghrib el Aksa, or the Western Territory] and Cha€™iu-sa-lo [Djezyret], the desert expanse between them, and the customs of the inhabitants. The only European exceptions seem to be the world maps of Albertinus de Virga (1415, #240) and the one in the so-called Medicean or Laurentian Sea Atlas (#233), the lattera€™s presumptive date of 1351 being subject to controversy primarily because of its remarkable depiction of the continent of Africa. Hence, no names are given for the southern half of Africa and the Indian Ocean except for the area around Zanzibar that was already the key trading center in East Africa. The interior of the continent is filled in by a body of water surrounding an island that is designated as Huang-sha [desert]. The maps of this type are rightly regarded by such authorities as Fuchs as the most magnificent examples of Yuan cartography, completely over-shadowing all contemporary European or Arabic world maps. To the west, the Arabian peninsula, with a clearly delineated Persian Gulf, and the African continent, with its tip correctly pointing south (and not east, as on many early European maps), hang thinly but with assurance, as if they belonged exactly where they are. But a good understanding of its function is hampered by the fact that we know nothing of its history after its completion. This institution ultimately was divided into two branches, east and west, of which the latter (Nishi Honganji) is today associated with Ryukoku University, which explains the mapa€™s present location.
This map, while clearly influenced by some Sino-Jesuit world map, also shows a strong structural similarity to the Kangnido, as its owner, Yi Cha€™an, has pointed out.
Europe and Africa are much more precisely drawn however, and it is possible to make out words such as a€?Atlantic Oceana€? (a¤§e????‹) Mediterranean sea (a?°a?­?µ·), or Italy (?„?a¤§e‡?a?z). As a result of these efforts, an excellent national map was produced in 1463, and a complete geographical survey of the nation, the Tongguk yoji sungam, was compiled in 1481. At least since Unified Silla and Goryeo periods, Korea was actively trading with Arab nations. It has been suggested that, despite showing most of the rest of the world, the Korean officials who produced the map were less interested in portraying current images of neighboring Asian countries than in presenting an up-to-date image of Korea itself. It is presumed that the RyA«koku map was copied in Korea but it is not clear when the copy was brought to Japan. It is currently located at the Honkoo-ji Tokiwa Museum of Historical Materials, Shimabara, Nagasaki prefecture in Japan. In the East, geographic information about the west was not updated in the post-Mongol period unless Europeans such as Matteo Ricci brought Western knowledge.
For example, the Talas River, which was important for the Tang Dynasty was placed to the northeast of Besh Baliq although its actual direction is northwest.
To the north of the African continent, beyond the unexplored a€?blacka€? central mass, a pagoda is represented for the lighthouse of Alexandria, and the Arab word Misr for Cairo (al-QA?hira) and Mogadishu (Maqdashaw) are shown among others. The Buddhist monk Faxian was the first Chinese to sail into the Indian Ocean in the beginning of the fifth century AD, visiting India and Sri Lanka by ship.
It has been kept in the Imperial Palace under the title Qingzi Qian Yitong Tu (??…a­—c°?a?€cµ±a?–) in some catalogs. Comparative studies of these extant maps are conducted to restore the content of Lia€™s original world map. It is presumed that India was portrayed as a peninsula on Lia€™s map but shrunk by Korean Confucians due to their anti-Buddhist policy.
This is likely to be based on vague information about the several great lakes in the region of modern Tanzania, gained during the course of direct trade between China and southeast Africa. The prominent peninsula on the west coast of the Chinese landmass is Malaysia, but India is represented merely as a collection of place-names northwest of Arabia. Hand-colored woodcut map of China and the World, printed on multiple sheets and folding into later orange-papered covers decorated in lotus flower designs.
One notable consequence of this 700-year contact was the stretching of the world in Chinese maps farther westward and southwestward, and the appearance of an ever-increasing number of Arabic place-names.
The principal distinguishing characteristics of the Ryukoku copy are its generally excellent condition and its preservation of the original Ch'an Chin preface. Insofar as the area east of the Liao River and our own countrya€™s territory were concerned, Tse-mina€™s map had many gaps and omissions, so Li Hui supplemented and expanded the map of our country, and added a map of Japan, making it a new map entirely, nicely organized and well worth admiration.


Cha€™ing Cha€™A?n (1328-1392) was a close advisor to the Hongwu emperor (r.1368-1398), who was the founder of the Ming dynasty and himself an erstwhile monk. All in all there are about thirty-five names indicated on or near the African continent, most of them in the Mediterranean area.
Pak Tonji, a military man and diplomatic specialist in Japanese affairs, made at least two trips to Japan, one in 1398-99, the other in 1401, and the second visit resulted in a map. Worse, the whole ensemble is positioned far to the south, so that the first impression of a modern observer is that the Philippines, not Japan, is under view. In fact, during the heyday of Arab settlement in southern China, Canton alone accounted for no less than 100,000 Arab residents.
The Kangnido map, however, proves that the Chinese, via their Arab sources, at least as early as the end of the 13th century, had a more or less correct view of the southern extension of Africa, whereas its northwestern bulge had not been as yet recognized.
On the other hand, its broader coverage of Africa and the rest of the known world in the same scale provides a very valuable supplement to Chu Ssu-pena€™s map of southern Africa (#227). In contrast, the Mediterranean Sea is almost entirely shown as terra firma failing to blacken it in as he has other water areas, perhaps because he was not quite sure that it was indeed an ordinary sea. The extent of the lead which the Yuan cartographers had, however, may perhaps best be appreciated by comparing the Korean map with the renown Catalan Atlas of 1375, which also purported to show Asia as well as Europe, or the 14th century oikoumene (for this comparison, see #235). At the top of Africa the Mediterranean supports a less securely grasped Europe, and the entire north fades into mountains and clouds. The Ryukoku Kangnido, judging by Korean place-name indications, is a copy reflecting place-name changes made around 1460.
The Honmyo-ji copy (paper scroll), which is entitled Dai Minkoku Chizu [Map of Great Ming], was given to that institution by Kato Kiyomasa, its major patron and one of the senior Japanese commanders on the Korean expedition.
During the 1430a€™s Sejong built an astronomical observatory and a variety of astronomical instruments and clocks.
One claims that it was purchased by A?tani KA?zui and others assume that it was obtained during the invasion of Korea (1592-1598) and given to the West Honganji temple by Toyotomi Hideyoshi. The most important difference is that the place names of China have been updated to those of the Ming Dynasty while the original showed administrative divisions of the Mongol Yuan Dynasty.
Based on two Chinese maps from the 14th century, the Shengjiao guangbei tu [Big map that shows the pronunciation of place names] and the Hunyi jiangli tu [General map of the distances also showing historical capitals [of China]].
Similarly, India and Tibet are based on traditional Chinese knowledge, mainly gained by Buddhist pilgrimage up to the Tang Dynasty. Afterwards, China engaged heavily in sea travel, especially following the expansion of Islam on the continent in the eighth century. It is currently kept in protective storage at the First Historical Archive of China, in Beijing. The Da Ming Hun Yi Tu is especially important because Luoa€™s copies dropped most place names except for coastal areas and islands and the Kangnido was influenced by Korean cartography. Africa and Arabia on the Da Ming Hun Yi Tu resemble those on the Kangnido while Europe is considerably different. Another manifestation of the same problem, dependence on external sources for geographical information, can be seen to the south of Korea, at the far right side of the map, where Japan, over-sized and misshapen, confusingly meets the much more correctly sized and positioned Taiwan. The texts taken from the Chinese original are particularly interesting: the legend on the right gives details of the 29 strategic border crossings, and that on the left describes 33 foreign countries, with the European and African place names taken from Jesuit sources such as Riccia€™s 1602 map. While the Terrestrial Continent remained intact until the Jesuit era in Chinese cartography with Fr.
Painted on silk and still preserving its colors well, it is a very large map, nearly square at 171 x 164 cm (5 x 4 ft).
Apart from its use as a source for the Kangnido, nothing is known of Cha€™ing ChA?na€™s map.
A later report quoted his statement that in 1402 he had been given a map by the title: Bishu no kami, Minamoto Mitsusuke.
A possible explanation for this is that the cartographers had run out of space on the right (east) edge of the Kangnido, and so had to place Japan in the open sea to the south.
It too must go back to an Islamic prototype that, like the globe, belonged to the later 13th century.
Through the ensuing long period of Sino-Arab trade and intellectual exchange, the Chinese, on their part, were able to accumulate a good deal of this valuable information concerning the Indian Ocean and the continent of Africa.
Also his statement concerning the a€?Giant Birdsa€™ there that could swallow camels, appears almost identical to the description by Marco Polo a century later.
It is hardly believable that such a representation should be casual or the result of mere speculation.
The relief features and an additional stream flowing westward in South Africa roughly corresponding to the Orange River, indicates that Cha€™A?an Chin was not entirely negligent on the least inhabited part of that continent. On the eastern side of the map, a relatively massive Korea, easily occupying as much space as the whole African continent (which, to be sure, is unduly small) identifies itself as a very important place, while Japan, as if randomly flipped off the fingers into the ocean, floats uncertainly in the South China Sea.
Nothing is reported concerning the provenance of the Tenri University copy (silk scroll, no title), but according to a study by Unno Kazutaka, it is a a€?sister mapa€? to the Honmyo-ji scroll; his persuasive analysis of the place names indicates that both maps were copied in Korea about 1568, from a version already cartographically distant from the Ryukoku copy. This provided a foundation for continued research and observation in the reigns of his successors. To the west of the a€?olda€? India, contemporary place names of India such as Delhi, Badaun and Duwayjir Duwayqir (Persianized form of Devagiri) are shown. The Maghreb and the Iberian peninsulas are depicted in detail, while Genoa and Venice are omitted. The Tang Dynasty writer Duan Chengshi, along with other writers, wrote detailed descriptions of Africa, its coastal commerce, and slave trade. It is also distinct from the Kangnido in the depiction of the source of the Yellow River, which looks very similar to that in Luoa€™s Kuang Yu Tu (#227). It was first brought to scholarly notice by the Japanese historical geographer Ogawa Takuji, in 1928. By looking at maps one can know terrestrial distances and get help in the work of government. Its chief contribution to the latter is believed to have been the Chinese historical dimension, the indication of the areas and capitals of the earlier dynasties, which was accomplished by a combination of textual notes and cartographic devices.
But since Japan had always appeared east of southern China on Chinese maps, there was some earlier cartographic basis for its placement there.
This being the case, the picture of Africa as given on the lower left of the reproduction is of particular interest.
That China was indeed a beneficiary of this Arab monopoly can be evidenced by several Chinese world maps such as those by Chu Ssu-pen ca. Chao Ju-kuo, commissioner of the maritime trade office at Cha€™A?an-chou (Marco Poloa€™s Zaiton) which had extensive contact with the Arab merchants, and author of Chu-fan-chih (1226), provided the first account of the products from the East African coast, Somalia to Zanzibar, including an elaborate description of the ostrich and the giraffe.
Most scholars such as Walter Fuchs are inclined to assume that the cartographic heritage of the Arabs had been transmitted to the Chinese, albeit incompletely and probably did not always reflect the actual experiences of their seafarers.
To the left of it lies Spain, and to the southeast Arabia is outlined as a long protruding peninsula.
The relative size and disposition of the three major East Asian countries reflects a plausible Korean view of the world in the early 15th century: Korea projecting itself as a major East Asian state, refurbishing its traditional view of China as the major center of civilization, and playing its eternal game of keeping Japan as far away as possible. Many projects were also carried out in meteorology and agronomy which not only led to new scientific understanding in Korea but which provided for rationalized administration and taxation. The most obvious feature distinguishing this later version from the original Kangnido map is the more correct size and orientation of Japan. There are over 100 names for the European countries alone, including Alumangia for the Latin word Alemania [Germany]. Wang Dayuan was the first Chinese ship captain to sail into the Mediterranean Sea (by Mamluk Egypt) and as far as Morocco in North Africa during the 14th century.
Matteo Ricci in the late 15th century, it is clearly evident that by the middle of the 15th century, Chinaa€™s own centrality in her concept of the world had been substantially reduced.
The entire land area was on it, all but the islands of Iki and Tsushima, so added them and doubled the scale.a€? In 1420, this report states, he formally presented this map to the Board of Rites, which was the branch of the Choson [Korean] government that handled foreign affairs. 1320 (#227), the nautical charts from Cheng Hoa€™s expedition of 1405-1433, preserved in the Wu-pei-chih (1621), and, of course, the present map under consideration, Cha€™A?an China€™s. This north-south extension and shape of Africa can be seen in the cartography of the Arabs as early as the 13th century on Ibn Saa€™ida€™s world map (Book II, #216). The large, round island east of Arabia is simply named Hai-tao [island], which apparently represents Sri Lanka (Ceylon). On the other hand, Koreans were telling themselves that theirs was not just an East Asian country, but part of the larger world.
The geographical knowledge represented in the map beyond China and Korea seems mainly a result of 14th century trade connections within the Mongol Empire. Li is mentioned by the Ming cartographer Lo Hung-Hsien (1504-64) as a contemporary and possibly as an associate of Chu Ssu-Pen (see #227). Interestingly, the Korean makers of the Tenri and Honmyo-ji copies corrected the orientation to the north, even while substituting more conventional Gyoki-style outlines. These cartographic portrayals of the continent of Africa pre-date the Portuguese exploratory efforts by nearly a century.
It should also be mentioned that the southern tip of Africa is shown in almost the same form on Chu Ssu-pena€™s atlas Kuang YuA? Ta€™u, preserved in a copy dated 1541 - 1555 (#227) the original edition of which, the YuA?-Ta€™u, again, is dated 1320, i.e. To the east of Sri Lanka, India betrays its triangular shape only by a river, obviously the Ganges. The scholar Aoyamaa€™s careful study of the Chinese place-names on the Kangnido shows them in general accord with those on Chua€™s map, as preserved in Loa€™s Kuang yu ta€™u, but with variants that would indicate place-name changes made in 1328-1329; this suggests that the Kangnidoa€™s source map was made around 1330.
They also represent the culmination of an era of Sino-Arab exchange of geographical information long before the Jesuit scholars, beginning with Matteo Ricci, ushered in another era in the late 16th century. The long river emerging to the south is the Hei-shui [Salween], and the great lake in the upper center combines the Black and the Caspian Seas.
Since Chu explicitly excluded most non-Chinese areas from his map, Aoyama and others have reasoned that Li Tse-min must have found his cartographic sources for these areas elsewhere, the only plausible source being Islamic maps, which made their appearance in China under Mongol rule. Thus the cartographic expression manifested in this map of China€™s reflects the last phase of traditional Chinese cartography that, again, was conceptually based upon the idea of one single Terrestrial Continent of which Africa became considered as an arm. In the utmost northwest, Germany and France are marked phonetically, A-lu-mang-ni-a and Fa-li-si-na; here, in the West, the Azores are also shown. This knowledge, presumably acquired from first-hand experience and Arab contact, not only manifested itself in the emerging world concept of Chinese cartography, but also served to facilitate the spurt of maritime activities in the Indian Ocean and along the coast of East Africa in the early Ming Dynasty (late 14th, early 15th centuries).
This representation of the Atlantic island group is indeed remarkable, especially on a map produced in the Far East at such an early time, when comparable detail of the Far East is scant on European maps of the same period. In the Kyujanggak Library of Seoul National University there is a modern Korean hand copy done during the 1980s, considered highly researched and beautifully executed.
But for the missing or incomplete detail in the eastern areas of Manchuria, Korea, and Japan, that map bears a very close resemblance to the Kangnido. Of the two largest capitals in the world, as judged from the selection of symbols adopted by Chin, one is obviously Pyongyang in Korea, and the other is a European city of apparent equal importance, the position of which would suggest the city of Budapest. Based on a legend of the temple, it has been believed naively that the HonmyA?ji map was given to KatA? Kiyomasa by Toyotomi Hideyoshi in preparation for the Korean campaigns. However, the Seonjo Sillok of Korea reports that in 1593 the son of a Korean official who had surrendered to KatA? copied and offered map(s) of China and Korea to him. This map was discovered in the HonkA?ji temple of Shimabara, Nagasaki in 1988 and is much larger than the RyA«koku map.



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