04 April 2018

16 Apr (Mon): Talk on "Did China Admiral Zheng He’s fleet visit VivoCity Singapore in early 15th century?"

VivoCity, one of the largest shopping malls in Singapore, sits on land that was part of Keppel Harbour.

A “Dragon tooth” replica was erected in Labrador Park by the Singapore Tourism Board.
Labrador from Sentosa's Tanjung Rimau
'Dragon tooth' replica on Labrador seen from Sentosa.

It probably drew inspiration from “Longyamen” (龙牙门,Dragon Tooth Gate) which appeared in the travelogue “Dao yi zhi lue” (Description of the Barbarians of the Isles) written by the ancient mariner and trader Wang Dayuan during the Yuan Dynasty in the 14th century.

“Longyamen” also appeared in “Wubei Zhi” (Zheng He Nautical Charts).
Sentosa's natural shores at sunrise
Vivo City from the living shores of Sentosa.

In the Wubei Zhi, Longyamen was drawn in the navigation map as a standalone island. In the same map, there is another venue called Temasek (单马锡) distanced away although both places appeared to be around the Singapore Strait through the use of modern interpretation.
Enormous cruise ship passing Sentosa and Labrador
Humungous ships still pass between Sentosa and Labrador.

Are Longyamen, Temasek and Singapore referring to the same destination? Did Zheng He’s fleet visit Singapore?

Find out at this talk by Lee Kok Leong, a former naval architect with a keen interest in heritage focusing on the immigrant history between Singapore and China.

The talk is free but registration is required.

More details about the talk on the Singapore Maritime Heritage Interest Group website.

Date: 16 Apr (Mon)
Time: 6.30pm
Venue: The POD, Level 16, National Library Building, 100 Victoria St, S18806

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