Background to DNA Research
Neither the author, Gavin Menzies, nor any of his team have medical qualifications. We have relied entirely on the generosity of many geneticists and virologists whose reports are referred to in this document. Without their painstaking work over the last decade we would have got nowhere.
All of the conclusions drawn in this document are those of Gavin Menzies (GM), who takes sole responsibility for them. The inclusion of a report does not in any way imply that the authors agree with the views of GM.
Having said that, it appears to GM that the genetic evidence left by the crews of Zheng He’s fleets is overwhelming. In every place which GM claims the fleets visited they left their genetic legacy. Moreover, we can show that the first Europeans to reach those places found Chinese or Mongolian peoples already there – their DNA does not arise from late Chinese settlers brought over in the ‘gold rush’.
In March 2002, 1421 was ready in final draft – approximately 140 pages. The principal evidence was that European explorers all set sail with charts showing them the way to the New World. Some non-Europeans had provided the information for those charts which covered the whole world – and only the Chinese had the capacity to construct those charts.
In March 2002 GM gave a talk at the Royal Geographical Society, London, which was broadcast – by pure luck – across most of the world. This resulted in a deluge of new evidence in more than 3000 emails. By the time the book went to press in June 2002 it had grown to 600 pages.
Publication of the book in November 2002 and the American edition in January 2003 resulted in a further torrent of evidence – more than 170,000 people visited our website in February. By now we had a young enthusiastic team led by Ian Hudson and Antonia Bowen-Jones. They collated all the evidence as it poured in. It soon became clear that GM had completely underestimated the scale and scope of the voyages – more than 1000 ships had set sail and they had created substantial settlements in the New World. Of even greater importance, we were able to pinpoint exactly where the settlements were and how the Chinese had reached them.
Our next line of enquiry was the logbooks of the first European explorers to reach the places where Zheng He’s fleets had settled. Ian Hudson was able to translate mediaeval Castilian and Portuguese – so for the first time we had full accounts in English. To our amazement we found that the first European explorers had come across a Chinese settlement in every place. Details are given in the Synopsis of Evidence.
We then started on DNA research. Our first thought was to select a company who could reliably and quickly analyse the DNA of local Indian peoples of the Americas who live today where Zheng He’s fleets had settled. For reasons explained later in greater detail, we appointed DNA Print Genomics of Sarasota, Florida in May 2003. Just as we did so, Antonia Bowen-Jones came across the report of Gabriel Novick and colleagues, which came as a bombshell for they had found that “close similarity between the Chinese and native Americans suggests recent gene flow from Asia”. Professor Novick’s report (of 22 Indian peoples of the Americas) from precisely where Zheng He’s fleets had settled – it was as if GM had read Professor Novick’s report then written his book to tailor it to Professor Novick’s results (which he had not). We then researched the various DNA databases in the British Library and by September 2003 had found reports covering every place in the world the fleet had settled. As in everything else in this book, we have discovered nothing new. The evidence has been there all the time.