Chronology of Asian maritime history

    1281: Kublai Khan launched a second attack on Japan, with fleets from Korea and China: thousands of ships and 100-140,000 men. A typhoon destroyed most of the invaders. The Japanese named the storms ‘winds of god’, or ‘kamikaze’, and assumed they were under divine protection. The Takashima ship, one of hundreds sunk in Imari Bay in Kyushu, has been excavated. She was estimated to be 70m long, and the wood and granite used in her 7m anchor both come from Fujian. Finds include red leather armour, a commander’s bronze seal engraved in Chinese and Mongolian, helmets and weapons, mortars for pounding gunpowder, and shrapnel-filled ceramic grenades.


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