Zheng He's Massive Treasure Ships

You may not have heard of him, but Chinese explorer Zheng He led expeditions on the largest wooden ships ever built almost a century before Christopher Columbus set sail. Columbus' three ships carried 88 passengers total, while Zheng commanded roughly 30,000 men aboard more than 250 ships.

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Key Facts In This Video

  1. Between 1405 and 1433, Zheng He led seven voyages throughout the Indian Ocean on huge treasure ships. 02:00

  2. The Great Wall of China was built with resources the country had because it shopped building enormous ships. 04:04

  3. Christopher Columbus navigated unknown water using just the direction he was going, the speed, and the time (which was determined via hourglass). 06:56

Written by Curiosity Staff September 16, 2014