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Friday, October 16, 2009

MUIRHEAD`S MYSTERIES:DID A CHINESE SHIP TAKE GIANT SLOTHS FROM ARGENTINA TO NEW ZEALAND? PART TWO.

Dear folks,

You may have read Part One of my blog on this subject; the farcical claim by Gavin Menzies that a Chinese vessel brought two living mylodons from the wilds of Patagonia to New Zealand. Firstly, how did the Chinese seamen capture them? How did they get them on board the ship? How can Menzies be sure the Chinese knew they were male and female? A website I found, called Gavin`s Fantasy Land (the author of the book who made the claim being Gavin Menzies) http://www.dightonrock.com/gavinsfantasyland.htm says:

'Why would the author even include such transparent nonsense,[ that mylodon`s still live in Patagonia] resurrecting an extinct mylodon? (On p.120 of his book Menzies says- “…in recent years, well preserved pieces of this creature, apparently buthchered by the local people,have been found in a cave,leading to the speculation that it may still exist in the wilds of Patagonia.”) We suggest Gavin doesn`t have any real evidence and he`s desperate. He`s setting up his “evidence” for a Chinese visit to New Zealand later, where a pair of these long extinct animals allegedly escape from the Chinese,and later on, he maintains, were the basis for a local legend. So therefore the Chinese must have picked up the mylodons first, as they passed by South America,so they could escape later in New Zealand.'

The author of this website then quotes from page 172 of Menzies book, which I mentioned in Part One of this blog, the “local people” who knew of the alleged wreck of a Chinese ship in Dusky Sound. The source cited in endnote 10 is Robyn Gossett, New Zealand Mysteries, Auckland,1996,p.31. Gossett explains it was not “local people” but the Maori who were keeper of the legend. Gossett devoted three pages to her detailed exploration of the legend,which included access to the log of Captain Robert Murry, who had been fourth officer on the ship. The wreck was not Chinese at all, but rather an English ship, the Endeavour, which went down in 1795.

So basically Menzies`s evidence that the Chinese took mylodons to New Zealand from Patagonia is based upon the flimsiest of evidence. Menzies also believes mylodons were taken to China from South America. A carving of an animal looking like a mylodon was dug up on the east coast of Australia near Gympie in 1966, thus supposedly proving Chinese visitation.

On a website connected to Menzies books there are numerous references to animals allegedly taken by the Chinese from one part of the world to another: The remainder of this blog quotes from this website:

  • Take chickens, As late as 1600 Mediterranean peoples did not have and did know of the galaxy of Asiatic chickens found in the Americas. Asiatic chickens cannot fly; someone took them to the Americas before Europeans got there.

  • Dogs: Chihuahuas were really Chinese dogs that were imported by merchants. One of the supporting theories is that the Asians dwarfed animals and trees and may similarly have reduced the size of the Chihuahua. The flat furry tail, an important part of the Chihuahua is also common to other Asian breeds of toy dogs. The Basenji dog of Central Africa resembles the Australian and Thai dingos,and it was long thought Polynesians brought them from the Malay Archipelago to Madasgascar. However recent DNA analysis suggests basenjis are closely related to dogs of Japan and China.

  • Otters: domesticated otters,trained to fish,found in New Zealand,South Island, found in Ireland….Otters around the Isle of Skye-could they have been brought there by the Chinese fleets? More research needed.

  • Camels to Peru

  • Hippopotamus from Africa to China (Beijing Museum- `Western Han c.208BC`)

  • Water buffalo to South America (Marajoara Island)

  • Blue Magpie (Cyanopica cyanus) found only in southern Spain/Portugal and China and finally:

  • Alligators - states that the species of alligator found in South Eastern United States is also found in but one other place on the planet; an isolated area along the Yangtze River in China. In every aspect other than size, they are identitical though found 12,000 miles apart. Perhaps this is not an anomaly of nature.
These last two are complete nonsense. It has recently been discovered that the two populations of the azure-winged magpie (not the blue magpie, which is another species entirely) are actually distinct species, and the Chinese and American alligators have a number of morphological and genetic differences, and are clearly distinct species.

2 comments:

Retrieverman said...

Chihuahuas are Native American dogs with Spanish and other European dogs crossed in to make them tinier and apple-headed. They are very similar to the hairless dogs, which are all of Latin American origin. (Chinese crested dogs are NOT Chinese. They were actually marketed in the US first, as "African hairless dogs," which they probably also weren't. If there are any Chinese hairless dogs in history, they got there by the Portuguese and Spanish merchants who were responsible for delivering them throughout the world. The actual breed we call a Chinese crested dog comes from a single breeding program in the US from the 1920's.)

And they are also similar to the hunting dogs that all sorts of Native Americans in the Northeast and Northwest kept. I have found several different Chihuahua type hunting dogs kept by Native American peoples in my research, among these are the Canoe Dogs, which look like Corgi/Chihuahua crosses (and were once said be evidence of Madog's discovery of America). These dogs just slightly larger than the Chihuahua, and were used to retrieve ducks by leaping out of canoes.

Another was the Tahltan bear dog, which I call the bear-hunting Canadian Chihuahua.


Tahltan:

http://www.firstnations.de/img/05-3-0-dogs.jpg

These dogs were kept kept in the far North of British Columbia and the Yukon, and were most likely related the to the Canoe dogs, which I think are also related to the Chihuahua and Techichi-type dogs of Mexico.

Actually, the genetic evidence seems to point that all dogs have a Chinese origin, although this is certainly being debated rather hotly in academic circles. The last I saw about Basenji DNA is that they were related to Ugandan and Namibian street dogs than any from China:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8182371.stm

This study is challenging the theory that dogs are from East Asia, which is very interesting.

However, I think it is unlikely that the small Native American dogs are actually Chinese. Native Americans were pretty good dog breeders. In Peru, they had big dogs for guarding their flocks of alpacas in the same way Europeans bred livestock guardian dogs to guard sheep and goats. In the Pacific Northwest, they had dogs that produced wool, which was then shorn to make yarn. The hairless dogs I mentioned earlier are very diverse animals, and judging from the art from the Pre-Columbian period, there were lots of diverse types of domestic dog.

Tilmeeth said...

Sorry, is it just me, but why on earth would the Chinese take animals from one part of the world and let them loose in another (going back to the Mylodon)?

And as much as I hate to our scorn upon a fellow Royal Navy and S&S veteran, Gavin Menzies doesn't even speak Chinese apparently... this website might also be of interest to those interested in this story http://tinyurl.com/yjlq37r