Lengthy ahead of Vasco da Gama rounded the Cape of excellent wish en path to India, the peoples of Africa, the center East, and Asia engaged in energetic cross-cultural exchanges around the Indian Ocean. This publication makes a speciality of the years seven-hundred to 1500, a interval whilst robust dynasties ruled either areas, to rfile the connection among the Islamic and chinese language worlds earlier than the arriving of the Europeans. via a detailed research of the maps, geographic debts, and travelogues compiled by way of either chinese language and Islamic writers, the ebook lines the advance of significant contacts among humans in China and the Islamic global and explores their interactions on concerns as various as international relations, trade, mutual figuring out, international geography, navigation, shipbuilding, and clinical exploration. whilst the Mongols governed either China and Iran within the 13th and fourteenth centuries, their geographic knowing of every other's society elevated markedly. This wealthy, attractive, and pioneering examine bargains glimpses into the worlds of Asian geographers and mapmakers, whose accrued knowledge underpinned the distinguished voyages of eu explorers like Vasco da Gama.

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