Marie Koo

Natural History, panel 5 of 18

Oil on canvas, 26” x 26”
The Second Voyage Of Zheng He
Late 1407/early 1408, the fleet sets sail to return ambassadors to their various homelands. Zheng He stayed behind in China to repair a Tianfei temple and to establish a translator academy to prepare for further voyages to the Persian Gulf and beyond. Meanwhile, en route to Calicut, the fleet stopped in Siam, they traded in hardwood, aloes, incense, ivory, kingfisher’s feather, tin, cardamom, chaulmoogra seed oil and were gifted elephants, parrots, peacocks. (As per voyage records, in Siam, women were the traders and made decisions, while men had tiny balls inserted into their scrotum and made tinkling noises as they move).

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