1421 is the Gavin Menzies book published in 2002 alleging that the Chinese* discovered America earlier than Columbus – and in fact circled round the globe. I’ve read it, and it paints an interesting argument but without hard evidence to back it up, it really is just a load of rubbish. The book and its allegations have been getting a lot of airtime in mainstream media and Menzie’s roadshows (including one in Singapore) and some academics, led by Geoff Wade at the National University of Singapore have been campaigning to set the record straight. More importantly, they’ve been lobbying authorities and publishers to get the book out of the History section and place it in Fiction. Check out their website www.1421exposed.com to see their blow-by-blow refutations of the book.
* The Chinese, led by Admiral Zheng He[/tag], who has been documented as having travelled through Southeast Asia, including Dan-Ma-Hsi (Temasek, or Singapore) and Melaka, and as far as Persia.