What is more powerful than a cannon giant

author:Leadership Collection

There is a saying in Europe: Southeast Asia is the Mediterranean of the East.

If we talk about the intricacies of the sea area and the frequent shipping and trade exchanges, there are indeed some similarities. But there is one difference: the Mediterranean countries still have their own world; The rise and fall of the countries of Southeast Asia are quietly influenced by forces other than this.

It is said that from the 14th century to the 15th century, the most arrogant country in Southeast Asia, called Majapahit in the History of Ming, was based in present-day East Java Province, Indonesia.

In 1292, Kublai Khan's army marched south from Quanzhou. The Majapahit king Ketarayasa first joined forces with the Yuan army, and then suddenly defected, defeated the Yuan army, and unified Java.

Then, start to get proud.

What is more powerful than a cannon giant

The historical economic pillars of Southeast Asian countries are roughly divided into rice farming and maritime trade. Looking at the history of Southeast Asian countries, it is not difficult to summarize this characteristic: in the rice plain region, political centralization and the state are prone to occur; In the coastal areas of river valleys, loose commercial federations and ocean-going seafaring were prone to emerge.

For the early maritime trade in Southeast Asia, China was key. A large number of Southeast Asian shipping personnel rely on southern China and countries east of India for food.

So Sri Buddha, who occupied the island of Sumatra, was one of the richest countries in Southeast Asia for a long time.

Until the rise of Majapahit in Java.

The secret of Majapahit is spices. Southeast Asia has the so-called Moluccas, which is the Spice Islands.

Western Europeans had just finished their crusades, were consuming a lot of meat, and were fond of Asian spices. Majapahit occupies the Spice Islands, has enough spice production, and naturally eats meat in large bowls, drinks in large bowls, and divides gold and silver in large chunks. To control Sumatra is to control the production of spices: hematrice, nutmeg, white sandalwood, and a lot of money.

But their good days were not so long.

What is more powerful than a cannon giant

In 1396, a dead prince of Sri Buddha, named Bairi Misoula, was attacked by Majapahit and fled with his retinue to Temasek in the Malay Peninsula and proclaimed himself king.

It is said that when he was chased by the Siamese army, the prince ran and ran, rested under a tree, and saw a hunting dog cornering a small moose, and the little moose fought back and kicked the dog into the river. Prince Bai felt that this was a good place and stationed and did not leave.

It was 1402.

A year later, Ming Chengzu of the Ming Dynasty sent an envoy to worship the prince's eyes.

Two years later, Prince Bai personally went to the Ming Dynasty to meet Ming Cheng Zu Nagong. Ming Chengzu was very happy and made him king: from now on, worshipping the prince is worshipping the king, there is no need to recognize the Manchu Boyi as the boss, the Ming Dynasty takes care of you!

After that, Zheng He took his fleet south, Weijia overseas, Southeast Asian countries, especially Majapahit Island, did not dare to move.

This protective umbrella opened by the Ming Dynasty produced a huge effect.

The place occupied by Bairi Missoula is a key position in Southeast Asian shipping. Originally, there was Siam in the west and Majapahit in the east, which gave him a headache. However, the canonization of Ming Chengzu, coupled with Zheng He's great name, allowed him to develop safely and calmly here. Zheng He's ship will also fight here, who dares to toss blindly?

With this good place to connect to China in the north and India in the west, Majapahit seems redundant.

What is more powerful than a cannon giant

△ Comic strip "Zheng He Goes to the West". Image source: Chinese Comic Book Digital Library

Zheng He made his last voyage to Nanyang in 1433, ending the great maritime era of the Ming Dynasty. But for so many decades, that's enough:

By 1428, Majapahit had lost control of West Java, and the area controlled by Bari Missoula had become the core of Southeast Asian trade.

Beginning in 1444, the Majapahit tribute to the Ming Dynasty became intermittent, and at the same time, the heaven and earth established by Bairi Missoula continued to pay tribute to the Ming Dynasty, sending rhinoceros horn, ivory, tortoiseshell, parrots, frankincense, cloves, agarwood, black bears, black apes, ebony, etc., all the way to the Chenghua period.

In 1527, the Majapahit kingdom was destroyed, and the world established by Bairimi Soula became the new trading center of Southeast Asia. That's the Kingdom of Malacca.

And Temasek that he fancy that day, which is still thriving and prosperous today, Singapore.

Five hundred years ago, you can see the shadow of modern Southeast Asia.

The so-called Weiga Extreme Domain is not necessarily really a cannon giant fighting ping-pong. A canonization of Ming Chengzu, Zheng He's magnificent fleet, came and went, changed the entire pattern of Southeast Asia.

You don't even need to occupy this territory to be enough to influence history - that is the real power.

Excerpt from | "Leadership Digest" October 2021

Manuscript source | "Look at the World"

Author of this article | Zhang Jiawei

Responsible Editor | Young

WeChat Edit | Note late