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Using GIS to Map Chen Cheng's Journey from China to Herat in 1414.

Using GIS to Map Chen Cheng's Journey from China to Herat in 1414

Dr Sally K Church

Map sequence of Chen Cheng's journey from China to Herat (1414).
Map sequence of Chen Cheng's journey from China to Herat (1414).
The diary of the Ming dynasty diplomat Chen Cheng, written during his 4,800-kilometre journey to Herat in 1414, provides an opportunity to map the route he followed across Central Asia, from the beginning of the Silk Road in China to the present-day capital of Afghanistan. Mapping the route not only documents Chen Cheng's journey and brings it to life, but also generates precise georeferences for the over 100 places named in his account. It is also possible to find approximate locations for unnamed places where he camped by the side of the road.