Friday, 24 July 2009

Ahmed bin Majid and Vasco da Gama

Ahmed bin Majid (أحمد بن ماجد‎), was an Arab navigator and cartographer born in 1421 in Julphar, which is now known as Ras Al Khaimah. This city makes up one of the seven Emirates of the United Arab Emirates, but at that time it was classified as the coast of Oman. He was raised with a family famous for seafaring; at the age of 17 he was able to navigate ships. He was so famous that he was known as the first Arab seaman. The exact date is not known, but bin Majid probably died in 1500. He became famous in the West as thenavigator who has been associated with helpingVasco da Gama find his way from Africa to India using an Arab map then unknown to European sailors.

Ahmad ibn Majid was born in Oman, probably in 1432, the year Zheng He’s junks docked at Jiddah. The last of his approximately 40 known compositions, a poem on the heavens, is dated 1500, the same year Pedro Álvares Cabral discovered Brazil on his way to India by way of the Cape of Good Hope—thus linking Europe, the New World, Africa and Asia in a single voyage. Ibn Majid must have died soon after that date, his life spanning the most critical century in the history of the ocean whose currents, winds, reefs, shoals, headlands, harbors, seamarks and stars he spent a lifetime studying.

Vasco da Gama’s epochal voyage around the Cape of Good Hope in 1498 has often been presented as the irruption of a dynamic, technologically advanced western power into an essentially static and backward Asia. Yet the Mediterranean and Indian Ocean worlds in the late 15th century were both responding to common historical forces. When Vasco da Gama’s ship landed in Calicut in 1499 and the two worlds met, it was the visitors from the West who were at an economic and cultural disadvantage, only partially offset by their superior weapons. The Zamorin of Calicut, when showed the gifts brought by the Portuguese—the little bells and beads and the rough cloth—concluded that the Portuguese came from a poor and backward country, and advised them that, next time, they should bring gold. This they did—but even that came not from Portugal, but from Africa.


  1. i hate this site

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    i hate ahmed bin majid

  2. No one hates Ahmad Bin Majid ..
    If you hate him,, we hate you ..
    Genuis !

  3. Does There anyone Told You to Open This Site \ Google ?!..

  4. but y do u all guys hate ahmed bin majid