Item description for Columbus Was Last: From 200,000 BC to 1492, A Heretical History of Who Was First by Patrick Huyghe...
In this engrossing narrative,the author assembles the research of archeologists, geographers, geologists, oceanographers, linguists, folklorists, ethnobotanists, and other scholars to convincingly dispell the simplistic legend that Columbus was the first to land on these shores.
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More About Patrick Huyghe
Patrick Huyghe is a journalist and editor of the The Anomalist, a journal that explores the mysteries of science, nature, and history. His articles have appeared in many publications, including the New York Times . He lives in Putnam Valley, New York. .
Patrick Huyghe currently resides in Putnam Valley, in the state of New York.
Reviews - What do customers think about Columbus Was Last: From 200,000 BC to 1492, A Heretical History of Who Was First?
Indispensable Compendium on Pre-Columbus Era Dec 21, 2006
Huyghe begins by reviewing the growing evidence for early settlement of the Americas which is becoming the new paradigm. This establishes that civilization that had a longer time to advance than previously thought, but as Huyghe reminds us, the many differences among "native" populations suggest "the impact of transoceanic latecomers."
Readers will be fascinated by the possibility of Chinese surveyors Ta-Chang and Shu-Hai exploring America over 4000 years ago as recorded in the Chinese Shan Hai Ching texts. This isn't the voyage detailed in Gavin Menzies' book 1421: The year China Discovered America. As he does elsewhere, Huyghe usually doesn't shy away from controversy, here noting the problems with dating and difficulties with matching the text with real locales. The text does reveal locations and peoples that could very well be on this side of the Pacific.
Northeast of Toronto in Peterbourgh is an inscription attributed to early Norse traders 3500 years ago. Such voyages would explain where all of the tons of copper mined from the Lake Superior region went to: Bronze Age Europe. The author then reviews a large sampling of inscriptions found around the Western Hemisphere attributed to Celts, Libyans and others.
He includes more intriguing Chinese voyages, to possible Roman contacts to Polynesians who seem to have left their mark. Plant life found in countries other than their origin. Architecture and artifacts nearly identical to that of foreign lands. One begins to wonder why more scholars don't take such early voyages seriously. And of course, no book like this would be complete without the voyage of Irish monk St. Brendan.
If any voyage should be taken seriously, perhaps Brendan's is it. We know monks fled Ireland from the Vikings and traveled throughout the Atlantic. We know the Vikings found monks in Greenland. And Viking sagas detail Irish found in North America. We made the mistake of not trusting the Norse sagas once before.
This is only a sampling of the voyages of pre-Columbus explorations that Huyghe surveys in his book. This compendium is a must for those interested in America's prehistory. Hopefully the author will produce an updated edition, but until then this book remains an "indispensable history."