Friday, March 28, 2014



by Thu Thien Nguyên

European and American historians generally have theorized that the human civilization first took root in the Near East, India or China. But recent discoveries in Southeast Asia suggest that men were cultivating plants there, making pottery, and casting bronze implements as early as anywhere on earth. We can divide the scholars into two main groups. First group compose the historians and archaeologists as Georges Coedès, Grahame Clark, Madeleine Colani who followed the traditional theory in relating that the human civilization first took root in the Near East, India or China. Second group include the historians and archaeologists like Wilhelm Solheim II, Carl Sauer, Chester Gorman, Stephen Oppenheimer, Bình Nguyên Lộc who confirmed that the human culture developed first in the East. Wilhelm Solheim II was very well known when he projected the new light on a forgotten past, and Stephen Oppenheimer was an excellent scholar by verifying that the East was Eden in the prehistory. With his work entitled “Eden in the East, The Drowned Continent of Southeast Asia “, Stephen Oppenheimer has shaken the world. In this work, Stephen Oppenheimer used Archaeology, Genetics, Language and Mythology to study history.

At first, Stephen Oppenheimer pointed out the faults of the historians of his time:
“Yet historians have assumed, by default that Southeast Asian cultures are simply secondary offshoots from the mainland Asian civilizations of India and China. Such a dismissive view is underserved and ignores abundant evidence of antiquity and unique sophistication’…. They usually make the assumption of a West-to East influence ….There are more reasons than cultural arrogance for this blinkered view of Southeast Asian prehistory [1]

Stephen Oppenheimer negated the theory of his comtemporary historians because “Several recent archaeological finds have cast doubt on the accepted view that this area first civilized from China and the West. Systematic agriculture in Indonesia long antedated parallel achivements in the tradictional Old World cradles of the Neolithic Revolution in the Near Est” (Oppenheimer, 4).

By the evidence Oppenheimer found, he proclaimed:
” In this book I describe my own exploration and analysis of the evidence for the people of the lost continent who fertilized the great cultures not only of the Far East but the Middle and Near East as well over 7000 years ago, and provided Eurasia with its library of folklore (viii)

Wilhelm Solheim II has the same idea with Stephen Oppenheimer when he came to Thailand in 1963 and excavated at Non Not Tha[2].


Eden garden is a myth in Genesis. Eden is a happy place. With the book entiled Eden in the East, Stephen Oppenheimer declares that the East was a wealthy and developed country in prehistory. He describes Southeast Asia in prehistory “ At the height of the Ice Age around 20,000 – 18,000 years ago, Southeast Asia formed a continent twice the size of India and included what we now call Indo-China, Malaysia and Indonesia. The South China Sea, the Gulf of Thailand and the Java Sea which were then dry formed the connecting part of the continent. Geologically, this half –sunken continent is termed the Sunda shelf or Sundaland. The flat land area lost by Sundaland after the Ice Age was as largr as India. Eventually only the scattered mountainous island of the Malay archipedago were leaft. A similar and vast swathe of land was also lost from the Pacific cost of Asia. Land that formerly stretched between Korea, Japan, China and Taiwan is now called the Yellow Sea and the East China Sea. Today’s port along the present south coast-line of China, such as Hong Kong, were hundreds of miles inland during the Ice Age. (10)

Stephen Oppenheimer’s book has four important points:
-The East was a great continent
-The Culture of the East
-The Continent was sunken by flood.
-The Split of the Sunda in prehistory


Stephen Oppenheimer utilizes Graham Hancock’s Fingerprints of the God to prove that there was a lost founder civilization in the Antarcic. He points out the “Piri Re’is”map which shows the existence of the Atlantic coast of the Antarcic beneath the present ice cap. The other features shown with equal accuracy on the map are the east coast of South America and the west coast of Africa and Europe. Several other maps of the time, discovered by Hapgood, shows similar features. Since the last time the Antartic continent was free of ice was around 4000BC, Hancock ‘s hypothesis, made previously by other authors, is that someone living at least 6000 years ago had the seafaring and mathemathical ability to survey coastline and calculate global projections (6).

Unfortunately, Hancock’s hypothesis only explains the lost civilization in Atlantic, but Stephen Oppenheimer uses this hypothesis for a different continent- the drown Sunda shelf of Southeast Asia (7). Hence, Stephen Oppenheimer hypothesizes that during the Ice Age, Southeast Asia was a single huge continent- a land mass which included Indo-China, Malaysia and Indonesia. After the Ice Age ended, there was a dramatic rise in sea- level that split up the continent into the archipelago of islands today. It was the same process that the land bridge between North America and Asia disappeared (17).

It is the case of MU, a lost continent whose concept and the name were proposed by 19th-century traveler and writer Augustus Le Plongeon, who claimed that several ancient civilizations, such as those of Egypt and Mesoamerica, were created by refugees from Mu—which he located in the Atlantic Ocean. This concept was popularized and expanded by James Churchward, who asserted that Mu was once located in the Pacific.

It is also the same case as the city wall in Hujing islet which sits seven nautical miles off the coast of Magong City, Taiwan. When the tide ebbs, visitors can see the clear sea water, which is what makes this place, "Hujing Clear Deep" (虎井澄淵), one of the eight best known sights in Penghu. There is also a legend: the legend of "Hujing Sunken City" (虎井沈城). It says that there was something that resembled a decadent city wall lying at the bottom of the ocean beneath Hujing. In 1976, then county magistrate Xie You-wen asked Penghu native Steve Shieh to search for the legendary sunken city. There has two discrepant theories among academics: one states that "the sunken ancient city is the basaltic columnar joint terrain extended under the sea from Tongpan and Hujing, therefore forming the false impression of a sunken city". The other theory says that there must be the sunken ancient city. However, research by geologists shows that if the wall is formed from the natural stone, it must be seamless and only one block. On the other hand, if it was man-made, then it must have separate sections. Moreover, if the wall is long and straight, it is very likely that it was man-made. Specifically, the rocks are the same size, with square corners, and gaps between the stones were filled. Also, the empty seats on cruciform walls, with flat and smooth coupling circuit. This is entirely consistent with current construction standards (Wikipedia).

But Stephen Oppenheimer’s hypothesis now becomes evidence due to the discovery of an enigmatic structure by Masaaki Kimura (木村政昭, November 6, 1940, Yokohama - a Professor Emeritus from the Faculty of Science of the University of the Ryukyus, Okinawa, Japan) in 90s. This structure is described by some as 'pyramid-like', at Iseki Point just off the southernmost Japanese island of Yonaguni-Jima, stretching for many hundreds of miles north of Taiwan, and the westernmost of the Ryukyus. In a report given to the 21st Pacific Science Congress in 2007, he suggested that it had been built 2,000 to 3,000 years ago as the sea level then was close to current levels (Wikipedia)


Like Stephen Oppenheimer, Wilhelm Solheim II realizes that the Southeast Asia was a wealthy and developed country in prehistory. He writes:

“Now, however, discoveries in Southeast Asia are forcing us to re-examine these traditions. Material excavated and analyzed during the past five years suggests that men were cultivating plants there, making pottery, and casting bronze implements as early as anywhere on earth.
The evidence comes from archeological sites in northeastern and northwestern Thailand, with support from excavations in Taiwan, North and South Viet Nam, other areas in Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines, and even from northern Australia.
Materials uncovered and dated by carbon 14* are the cultural remains of people whose ancestors may have been growing plants and making polished stone tools and pottery thousands of years earlier than were the peoples of the Near East, India, or China”

In his book, Stephen Oppenheimer writes:”The oceanographic record shows that the sea rose at least 100 metres (500 feet) during three floods, which started approximately 14,000,11,500 and 8,000 years ago. Thus the inhabitants of the flooded coastal settlements would have been forced to move, carrying any skills they had elsewhere. Now we can see some vestiges of the Southeast Asian culture which proved that the East started their revolution well, before the West. Around 12000 years ago, not long after the first flood, pottery appeared for the first time in southern Japan. Some 1500 years later there is evidence of pots being made in China and Indo China. These examples of pottery making antedate any from Mesopotamia, India or Miditerrannean region by 2500- 3500 years (18-19). Indo-China have revealed artifactual evidence of early rice-growing and other agriculture, such as small ground- edged slate knives for rice cutting and hoes in the Spirit Cave near the Burmese border and in Vietnam. All of them date back to the fifth millennium BC, and show continuity with the previous Hoabinhian cultures (69).


Three floods and many earthquakes caused the sink of Sundaland. Stephen Oppenheimer has many theories and evidences of the Sunda sunken in the ocean.

(1). Flood myths: Historicity of Noah’s flood (23). And according to the Bible, based on earlier Sumerian text, Eden is placed in the East in Genesis2. Genesis 11 relates that “as men migrated from the East, they found a plain… of Sinar [Sumer] and settled there (9).
(2). Immanue Velikovsky’s book called World in Collision published in 1950 produced detailed evidence to support his theory that Venus repeatedly approached the Earth more than 4000 years ago, causing widespread natural disasters because of gravitational effects, overheating and flooding (7).

(3).Oceanographic evidence: three massive and rapid ice-meltsthat accounted for the bulk of the 20-130 m rise in the world sea-level after the last Ice Age (7).
(4).Melankovitch’s theory can predict a mooth ‘S’ shaped uniformitarian curve of melting ice caps over the past 20,000 years (27).

(5).Paul Blanchon’s work shows all three floods (29).
(6).The strong superwaves arised from the crustal strains when Laurentide ice of Canada collapsed and melted around 8000 years ago. The release of energy from the Earth’s crush would have produced waves rolling across the Pacific and inundating all shores and flat hinterlands in direct line. The coasts of China, Japan, Philippines, New Guinea, New Ireland would have suffered the brunt of these walls from 50metres to maybe as much as 300 metres high.This raised global sea-levels by 20-40 centimetres immediately. On the beaches of the Sunda shelf at that time sea water would have flooded inland up to a maximum 4 km within two days. The floods, waves and earthquakes caused the land loss and forced people out to sea (107-108).


After the Ice Age around 20,000-18,000 years ago, a dramatic rise in sea-level split up the huge continent of Sundaland.The great continent was divided into three parts. One part sunk to the bottom of the sea. Another part became the islands now Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines etc.The rest was the continent including Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and Myanma.The disasters also evoked the great waves of Exodus from the sinking Sunda self about 8000 and 7500 years ago. A group of people moved south towards Australia, the other went west into the Indian Ocean, some migrated north towards the Asian mainland. When they left their lost paradise, they carried with them their domestic animals, food plants, and their culture in large ocean-going canoes to the new land (10).


 In his work, Stephen Oppenheimer proclaims that the East was an Eden. Vietnam belonged to the Sunda in prehistory, hence Vietnam was an Eden too. After three floods, the sea was moving inexorably at up to a kilometer a year over the Sunda, the suvivors had to move out their country in one of the following ways:

(1).Hundreds of kilometres inland to a more mountainous area to continue horticulture.
(2).Futher into the lowland jungle to continue foraging.
(3).Some people stayed on the strand and build home and fishing platforms on stilts, thus ignoring the rising water.

(4).To sail away to lands with more coastal elevation and less jungle. These were the first argonauts of Pacific. The sailing solution appears to have been taken by many different island cultures in Indonesia, who still build the houses to look like boats and say their ancestors were flooded out from a lost homeland and had to migrate across the sea. Those migrants who could not get a foothold in the remaining islands of Southeast Asia had to disperse to the four points of the compass (110).

Before the flood, Vietnamese and the Southeast Asian people had the same continent, and spoke the Austro-Asiatic language. Vietnamese people were the original residents in Hòa Bình because “the so-called Hoabinhians, pre-Neothilic inhabitants of Indo-China from at least 10,000 years ago, are usually thought to have been of ancestors of Austro- Asiatic speakers and are presumed to have learnt their agricultural skills thousands of years latter by diffusion from Early Neolithic futher north in China (69). The Cham and their putative ancestors the Sa Huỳnh were also the original residents because they have been in Vietnam from the second millennium BC (91).

Wilhelm Solheim II and Stephen Oppenheimer are two well-known historians who focus on the research of the Southeast Asia. Some historians concluded that the culture of Vietnam is one of the oldest in Southeast Asia; the ancient Bronze age Dong Son culture is considered to be one of its most important progenitors. Đông Sơn drums are bronzedrums fabricated by the Dong Son culture, in the Red River Delta of northern Vietnam.

The drums, cast in bronze using the lost wax method, are up to a meter in height and weigh up to 100 kg. Dong Son drums were apparently both musical instruments and cult objects. They are decorated with geometric patterns, scenes of daily life and war, animals and birds, and boats. The earliest drum found in 1976 existed 2700 years ago in Wangjiaba in Yunnan Chuxiong Yi Autonomous Prefecture China. It is classified into the bigger and heavier Yue drums including the Dong Son drums, and the Dian drums, into 8 subtypes, purported to be invented by Ma Yuan and Zhuge Liang. But the Book of the Later Han said Ma melt the bronze drums seized from the rebel Lạc Việt in Jiaozhi into horse.

The discovery of Đông Sơn drums in New Guinea, is seen as proof of trade connections - spanning at least the past thousand years - between this region and the technologically advanced societies of Java and China. The most well-known classification of the bronze drums was made by the Austrian archaeologist F. Heger in 1902 in his Alte metalltrommeln aus Südost Asien. He collected 22 bronze drums and the records or photographs of another 143, which he divided into four types (I, II, III, IV) and three transitory types (I-II, II-IV, I-IV) based on their form, distribution, decoration, and chemical composition. He believed that Type I, found mainly in northern Vietnam and referred to as the Dong Son drum by Vietnamese scholars, was the earliest. Before the 1950s, some other classifications were proposed, but none of them were as widely adopted as Heger's.[4]

The first excavated drums came from the site of Dong Son, in Thanh Hoa Province south of Hanoi, excavated by M. Pajot in 1924 and reported by V. Goloubew in 1929. Goloubew (1929:11, 1932:139; Karlgren 1942:2-5; van Heekeren 1958:92-93) dated the early type of drum (Heger Type1) to the middle or the second half of the first century A.D. Besides, a lot of Dongson bronze drums were reported from South ChinaThailand, Laos, West Malaysia, and Indonesia as fareast as western Irian Jaya, but the largest concentration of the drums is from northern VietNam (Kempers1988).[5]

According to Stéphen Oppenheimer, the Bronze Age Dong Son culture and its forerunners in Vietnam of the first millennium BC, was virtually the only early complex civilization to be given credence as indigenous to the region… Several recent archaeoligical finds have cast doubt on the accepted view that this area was first civilized from China and the West…Astonishingly early Bronze Age artefacts have been found in grave sites in Ban Chiang, in Southern Thailand and Phùng Nguyen in northern Vietnam. The dating of these sites has aroused much controversy, but recently, impeccable carbon date taken from rice chaff within pots have given confidence for a Bronze Age date of the early second millennium BC in Bang Chiang. Two of these dates went back much further- one two nearly 5000 years ago and the other to nearly 6000 years ago. These later dates, if valid would straddle the earliest Near Eastern Bronze Age sites, and would be before the Chinese achieved this stage of development “[6]

Beside the skill of bronze casters, Vietnamese also were skilled at cultivating rice, keeping buffaloes and pigs, fishing and sailing with long dug-out canoes. According to Wilhelm G. Solheim II, the agriculture of Vietnam was the earliest one in the world, it dated back about 15.000 BC:”In 1952 Carl Sauer, an American geographer, went a step further. He hypothesized that the first plant domestication in the world took place in Southeast Asia. He speculated that it was brought about by people much earlier than the Dong Son period, people whose primitive culture was known as Hoabinhian. Archeologists did not immediately take up Sauer's theory.

  • I agree with Sauer that the first domestication of plants in the world was done by people of the Hoabinhian culture, somewhere in Southeast Asia. It would not surprise me if this had begun as early as 15,000 B.C.
  • I suggest that the earliest dated edge-ground stone tools, found in northern Australia and dated by carbon 14 at about 20,000 B.C., are of Hoabinhian origin.
  • While the earliest dates for pottery now known are from Japan at about 10,000 B.C., I expect that when more of the Hoabinhian sites with cord-marked pottery are dated, we will find that pottery was being made by these people well before 10,000 B.C., and was possibly invented by them.
  • * The traditional reconstruction of Southeast Asian prehistory has had migrations from the north bringing important developments in technology to Southeast Asia. I suggest instead that the first neolithic (that is, late Stone Age) culture of North China, known as the Yangshao, developed out of a Hoabinhian subculture that moved north from northern Southeast Asia about the sixth or seventh millennium B.C.
  • I suggest that the later so-called Lungshan culture, which supposedly grew from the Yangshao in North China and then exploded to the east and southeast, instead developed in South China and moved northward. Both of these cultures developed out of a Hoabinhian base.
  • Dugout canoes had probably been used on the rivers of Southeast Asia long before the fifth millennium B.C. Probably not long before 4000 B.C. the outrigger was invented in Southeast Asia, adding the stability needed to move by sea. I believe that movement out of the area by boat, beginning about 4000 B.C., led to accidental voyages from Southeast Asia to Taiwan and Japan, bringing to Japan tare cultivation and perhaps other crops.
  • Sometime during the third millennium B.C. the now-expert boat-using peoples of Southeast Asia were entering the islands of Indonesia and the Philippines. 'They brought with them a geometric art style -- spirals and triangles and rectangles in band patterns-that was used in pottery, wood carvings, tattoos, bark cloth, and later woven textiles. These are the same geometric art motifs that were found on Dong Son bronzes and hypothesized to have come from eastern Europe. · The Southeast Asians also moved west, reaching Madagascar probably around 2,000 years ago. It would appear that they contributed a number of important domesticated plants to the economy of eastern Africa.
  • At about the same time, contact began between Viet Nam and the Mediterranean, probably by sea as a result of developing trade. Several unusual bronzes, strongly suggesting eastern Mediterranean origins, have been found at the Dong Son site.[7].

Stephen Oppenheimer equally claimed that Hoa Bình was the capital of rice production, and the university of agriculture at the dawn of human kind: The so- Hoabinhians, the pre-Neolithic inhabitants of Indo- China from at least 10.000 years ago, are presumed to have learnt their agriculture skill thousands of years later by diffusion from EarlyNeothilic cultures futher north in China. The earliest sign of rice in China is further up the Yangtze at Pengtoushan dated to 6500-5800 BC but it is not clear if the grains were from wild or domesticated plants[8].

I just sumarize the works of Wilhelm Solheim II and Stephen Oppenheimer who studied history of humankind, chiefly history of the East, including Vietnam. The next part, I will present the studies of Vietnamese scholars in researching Vietnamese culture. Some studies took root in Vietnamese history books, or Vietnamese legends, but mainly researchs based on the Chinese documents. The most brilliant scholar in the Lê dynasty was Lê Quý Đôn (1726–1784). He was a native of Duyen Ha village in present-day Thái Bình province, an 18th-century Vietnamese philosopher, poet, encyclopedist, and government official. Lê Quý Đôn was responsible for a large number of encyclopedic, historical, bibliographical, and philosophical works. His important works for our study of Vietnamese culture are Vân Đài Loại Ngữ 類語 (The High Tower of Famous Sayings) and Kiến Văn Tiểu Lục 聞 小錄 (The Reading Notebook) and Phủ Biên Tạp Lục 撫邊雜錄 (Miscellaneous Chronicles of the Pacified Frontier 1776). Beside Lê Tắc, Nguyễn Trãi, Phan Huy Chú, Nguyễn Văn Siêu were the prominent historians.


Many people think that Vietnam in the ancient times was a small and poor tribe. But many evidences denyed that idea. The first King Hùng was the founder of Hong Bang dynasty whose members ruled Vietnam around 2879 B.C to 258 BC. He was also the founder of VănLang state (the former name of Vietnam).Under the HongBang dynasty, VănLang was a great country, bordered by the Pacific ocean to the east, Dòngtíng hú 洞庭湖 (Hunan province) to the north, Hồ Tôn to the south (Champa).Văn Lang composed 15 prefectures (regions)[9]. Hence, Văn Lang was biger than Guangdong plus Guangxi.Vietnam was not a wealthy country but had a lot of gold and precious products. Yaoshi liuji 姚氏六州記 commented that the Qin occupied Vietnam because Vietnam had plenty of pearl, jade and gem[10]. In 196BC, Zhao Tuo gave Lù Jiǎ 陸賈(240BC- -170 BC), a Chinese envoy embassardor two thousand liang of gold[11]. In 984, King Lê Hoàn built a lot of palaces. The columns of Bách Bảo Thiên Tuế Palace on the Đại Vân mountain were covered with gold and silver, and the Long Lộc palace was inlaid with siver tiles. In 986, when the Chinese envoy ambassador came, King Lê Hoàn laid out all the pearls, and valuable objects in the ground in order to show off his wealthiness[12]. In 1289, under the reign of king Yuán Shizu 世祖(1215-1294) of China, King Trần NhânTông sent a long list of precious products of Vietnam which were never be seen in China[13].

Xue zong 薛綜 (?-243), courtesy name Jingwen, was an official of the state of Eastern Wu during the Three Kingdoms period, a chief of Jiaozhi (Giao Chỉ- Vietnam) district of the dynasty Eastern Wu 東吳( 229-280 AD) reported to the China King that Jiaozhi has many huge mountains, big rivers, wide land with different costoms[14]. Yuan Chan袁燦, a Chinese envoy ambassador of the dynasty Ch'ing ch'ao清朝 reported to his King: “In Vietnam, population is very large, land flat but narrow, verywhere are rice fields. In the countrysides, there are many houses standing closely like the bowls in a basket[15].

We have the data of Vietnamese population about the 3rd century according to the History book of the Hán Dynasty (202 BC–AD 220). During the Qin and the Han dynasties, Vietnam was occupied by Chinese, and was devided into three commanderies or districts (郡) as Jiaozhi, Jiaozhi and Rinan. In ancient times, the population comprised only men from the age of 15 to 50 or 60 years old.

Book of the Early Han (206BC-3AD) 前漢書
-Jiaozhi district 交 趾 (Giao Chỉ): 92,440 houses 746,237 men; 10 subdistricts
- Jiaozhi district 九真 (Cửu Chân): 35,742 houses; 166,113 men; 7 subdistricts.
-Rinan district日南 (Nhật Nam): 15,460 houses; 69,485 men; 5 subdistricts.
Total: 143,642 houses; 981,835 men; 22 subdistricts
Book of the Later Han (23AD-220AD) 後漢書

- Jiaozhi district交 趾: -- - --- 12 cities.
- Jiu zhen district 九真: 46,513 houses; 209,894 men, 5 cities.
- Rinan district日南: 18,460 houses; 100,676 men, 5 cities[16].

Because Book of Later Han did not have the data of Jiaozhi district, we can use the data of the book of the Early Han, therefore we have an equivalent numbers;

- Jiaozhi district交 趾: 92,400 houses; 746,237men; 12 cities.
- Jiu zhen district 九真: 46,513 houses; 209,894 men; 5 cities.
- Rinan district日南: 18,460 houses; 100,676 men; 5 cities[17].
Total: 157, 373 houses; 1,057,707 men; 22 cities

At the same time, Guangdong, the most populous province in China, with the area of 179,800km2 had 59,390 houses; 318 men. Guangxi with an area of 236, 700 km2, had12.415 houses; 71.161 men[18]. Guangdong and Guangxi had a total of 416,500km2, 71,805 houses, and 389,673 men, when Vietnam with three districts (Giao chỉ, Cửu Chân, Nhật Nam) had an area of 246,522km2 ;301,015 houses; 1,139, 542 men, 22 cities with the strongholds.

We will have a comparative table:

Three districts of Vietnam
 Two provinces of China

Vietnam covers an area of 312,000km2, Cochichina 65,478 km². Nhậtnam district is the old name of present- day BìnhĐịnh province. Guangdong and Guangxi had areas as big as two times of Vietnam, but did not have large population, and many houses as Vietnam. Population of Vietnam increased quickly. The Lý dynasy had a population of 3.300.100, the Trần dynasty 4.900.000, Lê dynasty 5.006.500[19].Those details would let us know why when China undrewent the wars or natural calamity, a lot of Chinese people fled to Vietnam, a peaceful country, an Eden in the East, although Vietnam was not a powerful nation.

Vietnam had a large population, and had a number of cities. In the Han (203BC –220) dynasty and the Eastern Wu dynasty during the Three Kingdoms period (220AD-280AD), the Jiaoche commandery comprised Guangdong and Guangxi, and the Chief town of the commandery was Long Biên (Hanoi). Thus, Hanoi at that time was the capital of Vietnam and the South of China[20]. Vietnam has the earliest Southeast Asian urban sites. Those at Cổ Loa inland in the north date to the third century BC (Stephen Oppenheimer, 3). Therefore, Cổ Loa, Long Biên, Luy Lâu were the large cities in the olden time. Especially, in the Han domination, the Trưng Sisters revolted against the Chinese and occupied 65 cities[21]. Those details clarify that at that time, many cities developed in Vietnam.

The number of city is important but art of Art Architecture is more important. Vietnam had many genious architects. Cổ Loa was a citadel built near Phong Khe, about 20 km to the North of today’s Hanoi, during the end of the Hồng Bàng Dynasty (about 257 BCE). The fortress had a spiral-shape but its architect was a mystery. Nguyễn An 阮安 Ruan An (1381-1453) was a Ming Dynastyeunuch, architect, and hydraulicspecialist between the first and fifth decades of the 15th century. Born in Vietnam, he was taken as tribute from Vietnam to China and later became a eunuch and architect in service to the Chinese emperors. He, along with numerous architects, such as master designers and planners Cai Xin (蔡信), Chen Gui (陳珪), and Wu zhong (吳中), master carpenter Kuai xiang (蒯祥), and master mason Lu Xiang (陸祥), was an important principal designer and a chief builder of the Forbidden City in Beijing. Under the reign of Zhengtong Emperor, Nguyen An had a major role in the reconstruction of the wall of Beijing. He was also a hydraulicspecialist, who was involved in at least three hydraulic projects and had a flawless record. Book 304th of 明史 History of Ming Dynasty glorified him so much (Wikipedia).


In the past time, Vietnamese people walked bare foot, no hat with short haircut in order to work easily in the forests and in the muddy fields. They built the houses on stilts to avoid the wild beast, got bark for clothes, grasses for mats, trees for foods, pulp rice for wine, animals and fish for salted food, ginger roots for salt. They cultivated with knife and fire. They used bamboo pipes for cooking sticky rice. When a person was sick, the family members killed rooster or ducks for asking the god bless. If the sick person did not recover the health, they killed cows, goats, pigs to beg the devine rescue. If some one was going to die, they knocked the rice mortar for calling help. In the marriage, firstly they used salt for engagement, secondly they killed castles for ceremony, at last they went in a room, ate sticky rice, then slept together[22].

Every men shaved their heads like the monks, excepted the king who did up his hair, and covered his hair with a silk bag like the monk’s hat. The mandarins took blue clothing for the tipped towels. Sometime, people wore shoes but they took them off when they came to the royal palaces. At home they took bare head, when their guests came, they had to wear the hat. Women cut a part of their hair, the rest would be bunched, and set brooch. Everybody had to draw on their skin with the images of sea animals in order to advoid the dangerous sea animals when they went catching fish in the sea. Later the art of tattoo became the body ornament with the images of sickles, or copper incense burners, or some characters or marks on the forehead or the belly. But some customs dissaperared in the Trần dynasty[23].

According to a Chinese book -禮記 Lǐ Jì- the southern people had the marks engraved on their forehead, intersected toes, and they ate uncooked food[24].

In China, when the guests came, and left, the owner went to the gate to meet and to say good bye to them, and to put two hands together to pay respect, but Vietnamese joined two hands together, but did not bow, and the owner stayed at the bed to meet and to say good bye to the guest[25].

In Vietnam, after three days of the birth of a child, the parents had to prepare some trays of food to thank the Goddess of birth. After a month, and a year, the family of the child had to organize a great party to worship their ancestors. The guests who were invited to the party would bring poems, clothes, and toys to celebrate the child’s birth. In the party, the child’s parents always laid out many toys for the child’s choice in order to predict the future of the child. This costom was similar to the Chinese costom in Chiangnan[26].

A Chinese book named Qing shuang zaji 青霜雜記 said that in Lĩnh Nam, people called their friends and relatives not by family number order but by the name of their first child[27].


The first King Hùng was the founder of Hong Bang dynasty whose members ruled Vietnam around 2879 B.C to 258 BC. He was also the founder of VănLang state (the former name of Vietnam).Under the HongBang dynasty, VănLang was a great country, bordered by the Pacific ocean to the east, Dòngtíng hú 洞庭湖 (Hunan province) to the north, Hồ Tôn to the south (Champa). Faced with China's southward expansions, beginning in the early first millennium BC, Văn Lang gradually lost its northern territory; and by around 500 BC, its northern border was equivalent to that of the modern Vietnam state. Văn Lang composed 15 prefectures (regions)[28]. The Vietnamese administrative system was different from the Chinese one. The King’s title was Hùng vương (King Hùng), the high civil mandarin Lạc hầu, the important military mandarin Lạc tướng, prince Quan Lang, pricess Mỵ Nương, the simple mandarin Bố Chánh, sevant Trâu, girl Tinh, subject Côi, hereditary phụ đạo. All the kings of the HongBang dynasty got the same title (Hùng Vương)[29].

In 257 BC, the last Hùng king was defeated by Thục Phán, who consolidated the Lạc Việt and Âu Việt tribes to form the Âu Lạc state, proclaiming himself An Dương Vương. In 207 BC, a Chinese general named Zhao Tuo defeated An Dương Vương and consolidated Âu Lạc into Nanyue. Nanyue 南越 Nányuè was established in 204 BC at the final collapse of the Qin Dynasty, an ancient kingdom that consisted of parts of the modern Chinese provinces of Guangdong, Guangxi, and Yunnan and northern Vietnam. The Kingdom of Nanyue originally comprised the Qin commanderies of Nanhai南海, Guilin 桂林 and Xiang 湖南. After 179 BC, Zhao Tuo persuaded Minyue, Yelang, Tongshi, and other areas to submit to Nanyue rule, but they were not strictly under Nanyue control. After the Western Han Dynasty defeated Nanyue, its territory was divided into the seven commanderies of Nanhai, Cangwu, Yulin, Hepu, Jiaoche, Jiuzhen, and Rinan.
 In autumn of 111 BC, Emperor Wu of Han sent an army of 100,000 men divided into five companies to attack Nanyue. General Lu Bode, a military leader succeeded in occupying Nanyue. After the fall of Nanyue, the Chinese authorities devided Nanyue into 9 commandaries: Nanhai南海, Cangwu蒼梧, Yulin 桂林, Hepu合浦, Jiaoche 交 趾, Jiuzhen九真, Rinan日南, Zhuya珠崖 and Zhāner 譫耳. Later, the Han king established new territories, dividing Vietnam into Giao Chỉ (Jiaozhi), now the Red River delta; Cửu Chân (Jiu zhen) from modern-day Thanh Hoá to Hà Tĩnh; and Nhật Nam (Rinan), from modern-day Quảng Bình to Binh Định[30]. Lê Quý Đôn said thatVietnam was bordered by Guangxi (China) to the north, Yúnnán to the west, Guangdong, Guangxi and Yúnnán to the northwest, Laos to the southwest, and the Pacific Ocean to the east, and Champa to the south. From the Đinh, Early Lê, Lý and Trần dynasties, Vietnam remained Jiaoche, Jiuzhen and Rinan, but lost 6 districts by the Chinese Imperialism[31].
Thus, Vietnam lost a part of land in Guangdong and Guangxi. Therefore, Emperor Quang Trung (1753-1792) planed to retake Vietnamese lost land[32]. When Lê Quý Đôn came to Guangxi, he missed the lost land, and his ancestor, a mandarin working for Vietnam in Guangxi, and getting a glorious feat of arms in the XVIIth century[33]. For the next thousand years, Vietnam remained mostly under Chinese rule. Early independence movements, such as those of the Trưng Sisters and Lady Triệu, were only temporarily successful, though the region gained a longer period of independence as Vạn Xuân under the Anterior Lý Dynasty between AD 544 and 602. In AD 938, the Vietnamese lord Ngô Quyền defeated the forces of the Chinese Southern Han state at Bạch Đằng River and regained full independence for Vietnam after a millennium of Chinese domination. Renamed as Đại Việt (Great Viet), the nation enjoyed a golden era under the Lý and Trần dynasties. During the rule of the Trần Dynasty, Đại Việt repelled three Mongol invasions.
The Lý Dynasty was a Vietnamese dynasty that began in 1009 when Lý Thái Tổ overthrew the Early Lê dynasty. In 1075, the Lý ruler sent Lý Thường Kiệt and Tôn Đản with more than 100,000 troops to China to attack against the Song troops. In the ensuing 40-day battle near modern-day Nanning, the Đại Việt troops were victorious, capturing the generals of three Song armies. In 1076, the Songs formed an alliance with Champa and the Khmer Empire and sent troops to invade Đại Việt. Lý Nhân Tông sent, again Lý Thường Kiệt to the north to protect Vietnam. Being one of the many great military strategists of Vietnam, Lý Thường Kiệt won the war, killing more than 100,000 Song soldiers and forcing the Song army to retreat. Those two glorious victories over the Song stopped their attempt to extend south[34]. Contrary to Vietnamese information, the Outline of Song History 宋史said that Vietnam was defeat by the Song troops. The Posthumous Book of Two Mr.Cheng (二程遺書 Ercheng Yishu) admitted the Song’s failure caused the death of nearly 200,000 soldiers, only 28,000 survivors. A Chinese poet Huangtính Jian 黄庭堅composed a poem about this war, this poem still remained in the book named Yuan Jian 淵鑑[35].

The Song Emperors and Chinese generals admired Vietnamese milirary science so much. The book of Song history 宋史 said that Thai Diên Khánh, a Chinese mandarin, followed the Vietnamese military system to organize the Chinese troops. Emperor Shenzong (宋神宗1067-1085) also accepted it and praised this renovation[36]. According to Xue zong 薛綜, the Head of Jiaoche district in the Eastern Wu dynasty during the Three Kingdoms period, the forests in Vietnam were full of obstacles and difficult of access Vietnamese people always upheld the nation's traditional undauntedness in struggle. They always disregarded the Chinese mandarins, and always rebelled against the invaders. It was not easy to govern this country[37]. Next to the force of national defense, Vietnam also had the force of people defense.

They organized the combat villages by building the bamboo tree wall around the villages. The Chinese soldiers imitated Vietnam art of defence by growing the bamboo tree. The Jiao Zhou Story交州記 said that in the reign of King Xuan Zong 宣宗 (847-860), Wang Shi王式 a Chinese mandarin working in Vietnam, imated the Vietnamese combat villages by building the bamboo trees wall around the citadel which could last about 20 -30 years, and could prevent the enemy troops invading. Yuheng zhi虞衡志 cited that Guangdong did not have the bamboo trees, hence Huang Ji 黄濟, a Chinese military mandarin, brought bambo from Vietnam to Guangdong to contruct the bamboo strongholds[38].

Vietnamese bow and arrows were the famous weapons. A Chinese book named Yuan jian 淵鑑 reported that the Hongwu Emperor 明太祖 -高皇帝 (1328-1398 ) opened a banquet and shoot contest to his subjects, then gave Vietnamese bow and arrows to them as the gifts. Another book, Bówu jhi博物誌 (Natural Science) recited that the barbarous people in Jiao Zhou 交州 made the long bow and long poisionous coppered arrows[39]. In 1400, the Ming army occupied Vietnam, captured Hồ Quý LyHồ Hán Thương, Hồ Nguyên Trừng and a number of Vietnamese people as Nguyễn Phi Khanh, Nguyễn An. They also seized all Vietnamese books and documents then brought them to China in order to study Vietnamse science and destroy Vietnamese culture. Mingshi 明史 (Ming History),

Tongji 通記 and Gushu poutan 孤樹裒談,three Chinese books, said that when the Ming troops invaded Vietnam and confiscated a lot of Vietnamese canons which the Chinese imperialists considered as the modern and powerfull weapons. So Hồ Nguyên Trừng (Lê Trừng), Hồ Quý Ly’son was appointed the Minister of National Defence with the mission to make the canons[40]. Chinese people were proud the Four Great Inventions: papermaking, the compass, gunpowder and printing (both woodblock and movable type). If Chinese surely had invented gunpowder, why did the Ming King appoint Hồ Nguyên Trừng to an important post?


In Vân Đài Loại Ngữ, Lê Quý Đôn introduced a variety of natural resources and products in Vietnam[41]. Bencao congxin 本草從新 indicated that the Chinese colonialists under the Han dynasty explored Vietnam for the valuable products[42]. Howerver, I focused only rice in Vietnam. Many Chinese and Vietnamese historians recognized many things:

(1).Vietnamese people worked hard, they had two seasons of rice cultivating[43].
(2).Vietnam had rice of high productivity. Gujin zhu 古今註 said (in 123 Han dynasty) that in Jiuzhen 150 rice plants got 768 aristas[44]

(3).Vietnam had a variety of rice: Bencao本草 said of two sorts of rice, but Lê Quý Đôn recited about 50 kinds of rice in Vietnam, particularly in Sơn Nam, Nghệ An, Cao Bằng, Thái Nguyên etc. Guang zhi 廣志, a book published in the Tang dynasty, cited 9 genres of rice in Vietnam. Guangdong xinyu 廣東新語 cited 10 types of rice[45]. That even also indicated that Chinese colonialists exploited Viet namese people overmuch.

(4).Vietnam was the big ganary. Vietnam had a large amount of rice so they had to pay a great number of grain of taxes to the Chinese King . Guangdong xinyu 廣東新語 said each year Jiaoche paid 1,260,000 斛.The total tax in Guangdong, Guangxi, Yúnnán 雲南, Fújiàn 福建, Guìzhōu 貴州 was smaller than that of Jiaoche[46]

(5). China did not have or did not have enough rice. King Zhenzong (真宗 (998-1022) sent the messenger to Champa to buy 30,000斛 of rice. Bencao本草 called this genre of rice as xianli 秈粒[47]. Bencao本草 said Vietnam was next to Champa, so the rice riped in the summer in two countries also called lúa chiêm[48].

Guangdong was a big province of China, but people liked business and cultivation of tobacco and tree, consequently due to lack of rice, they had to import rice from Vietnam[49]

(6).Vietnam was one of the first countries cultivating rice. The Jiaozhou Story交州記 by Zenggun 曾袞 wrote in 877:” Long ago, Jiaoche was a fruitful land, the king called Hùng vương, the mandarin Hùng hầu, rice field Hùng điền, the peasants cultivating rice Hùng dân”[50].
Jiaozhou waiyu ji交州外域記 reported:” In the olden time, without king, madarins, and administrative system, in JiaoZhou Vietnamese people followed the tide to plant rice[51].

According to Tianzhong ji天中記 of Suijing ji 水經注,Vietnamese people cultivated rice 600 years before the Han dynasty[52].
But Suijing ji, Tianzhong ji and number of Chinese and Vietnamese historians were wrong when they said that RenYan任延, Head of Jiuzhen district in the Chinese domination taught Vietnamese to cultivate rice[53]. RenYan lived in the reign of king
Han GuangWu di 漢光武帝 (6 BC – 57), but Tianzhong ji and Suijing ji recited that Vietnamese knew how to plant rice 600 years before the Han dynasty.

In184BC, Luhou呂后 (241BC – 180 BC) fobade Vietnam to buy iron , copper and animals[54]. In 111BC, Lu Bode invaded Vietnam, and killed Prime Minister Lữ Gia吕嘉(?-111BC), three Vietnamese mandarins had to carry 300 buffaloes and 1,000 jars of wine to surrender[55].
Those details demonstrated that before the Qin dynastyVietnam could cultivate rice in two seasons and in the water or in the plain or on the mountain. They also used iron plough with the traction of buffalloes. Vietnamese already acquired a high technique of agriculture so Vietnam was a big ganary in the East, and people could use rice to produce wine. 


Jiaozhou ji 交州記 said that in the golden time, Vietnamese made the bronze boats[56]. Stephen Oppenheimer, Wilhelm Solheim II recognized that Vietnamese could caste bronze drums thousands of years earlier than were the peoples of the Near East, India, or China”. A number of Chinese poets expressed their feeling when they heard the sound of Vietnamese bronze drums. Xuhun 許渾 (844 ?) wrote a poem entitled “Say good bye to a friend coming back to the south”:

送客南歸有懷(許渾 唐詩)


The river is blue and the lake has the color of spring,
When raising the cup to welcome the guest coming
We heard sound of the bronze drum from a ceremony of god worship.
On the dyke, the pine and the willow are blue
In the Capital we drink for the departure of a friend.

Sunguang xian 孙光宪 (901-968)wrote Pusa man菩薩蠻
木棉花映丛祠小, 越禽声里春光晓。
The Barbarians’ Bodhisattva
The flowers make the little pagoda bright,
The Vietnamese birds sing in the spring morning
When beating the bronze drums, the Barbarians sing
In the pagoda, northern people are crowded

Wenting yun 溫廷筠 (812-870)

瀆神詞 (溫廷筠)


The river god
They beat the bronze drum to worship the river god,
In the yard there are many flags
Wind blows and light flashes on the river
The cloud and smoke cover the mountain of Chu楚 country.

Dumu (803-852) wrote:


In the Spring, in a palace
I hear the sound of the Barbarians’ bronze drums
(In memory of Zhongling, a place I visited last time)

Chenyu 陈羽( 577-589) wrote a poem when he was in Qianwei


This night, the moon on the river is very pitiful,
I also feel very sad
Because of the sound of the bronze drum of the Barbarians
(The sound of the barbarians’ bronze drum under the Qianwei rampart)
In the Tang dynasty, Zhongling, Qianwei and Chu which situated in the Southern China, near Vietnam were labeled barbarous countries (The Baiyue or Hundred Yue 百越). In those poems, Chinese poets said of the Vietnamese bird, Vietnamese songs Vietnamese women and Vietnamese bronze drums. Vietnamese bronze drums used for art and religion. Vietnamese civilization spead everywhere, it came from the south to the north even to the Chinese capital.
The sound of Vietnamse bronze drums influenced on the Chinese life. It also affected Chinese history. The Vietnamese bronze drums frightened the Mongol troops. After thre e time of defeats by Vietnamese army, Trần Phu (陳孚)[57]a Chinese envoy ambassador to Vietnam composed a poem entitled “Feeling” when he came back home:

交州使還感事 ( 陳孚)

My feeling when come back home from Jiaozhou (Vietnam)
Fortunately, from the youth, I got an important role in the royal court,
Obeying my King’s order, I went to the South without consideration of my life.
In the foreign country, I did not receive any family letter,
In the military staff, I had many problems to resolve.
Looking at the bright sword, I was very sad
Hearing the bronze drum, I was so frightened that my head became white.
I am very happy when coming back safely.
But  many times I awake from dream with horror!
In the golden time, Vietnamese people were very skilled in bronze drum casting and rice cultivating. They built a wealthy and happy country with a variety of cities and large population. If the East was Eden, Vietnam was Eden too.


[1] Stephen Oppenheimer, Eden in the East The Drowned Continent of Southeast Asia “. Phoenix, London, 1998, 1-4.
[2] Wilhelm Solheim II. New Light On A Forgotten Past. National Geographic.Vol 139 . No 3, March, 197
[3]W.G. Solheim II. New Light on a Forgotten Past. National Geographic.Vol 139 . No 3, March, 1971, p.339
[4] Higham, Charles (1996). The Bronze Age of Southeast Asia. Cambridge World Archaeology. ISBN0-521-56505-7.p.128.
[5] Solheim, W. G. II. 1990. A Brief History of the Dongson Concept. Asian Perspectives 28 (1): 23-30.
[6] Stephen Oppenheimer. Eden in the East. The Drowned Continent of SoutheastAsia. Phenix. London,1999,4-5.
[7] Solheim II, Wilhelm G. New Light on a forgotten Past. National Geographic.Vol 139 . No 3, March, 1971, p.339.
[8] Stephen Oppenheimer. Eden In The East. 69.
[9] Ngô Sĩ Liên. Đại Việt sử ký toàn thư I (Complete Annals of Đại Việt), Khoa Học Xã hội, HàNội, 1967, 61;--Trần Trọng Kim. Viet Nam Sử Lược. Tân Việt, Saigon, 1958, 24
[10] Nguyễn Văn Siêu, Phương Đình Dư Địa Chí ( Geograpy), Ngô Mạnh Nghinh dịch, Tự Do, Saigon,1960, 14
[11] Ngô Sĩ Liên. Đại Việt sử ký toàn thư I,73. liang :unit of weight equal to 50 grams
[12]Ngô Sĩ Liên I. 193-196.
[13] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, Tạ Quang Phat dịch, Phủ QVK, Saigon 1972, 224.
[14]Lê Tắc, An NamChí Lược (History of Vietnam), DHHuế, 1961, tr.112.
[15]Lê Quý Đôn, Kiến Văn Tiểu Lục I (The Reading Notebook),Trúc Viên Lê Mạnh Liêu dịch, Bộ QGGD,Saigon,1963,p.256.
[16]Nguyễn Văn Siêu, Phương Đình Dư Địa Chí ( Geograpy), Ngô Mạnh Nghinh dịch, Tự Do, Saigon,1960, p.17-18.
[17]Nguyễn Văn Siêu, Phương Đình Dư Địa Chí, p.17-18.
[18] Phan Huy Chú, Dư Địa Chí, Nguyễn Thọ Dực dịch, QVK ,Saigon, 1972,tr. 28-29;-- Lê Quý Đôn, Phủ Biên Tạp Lục I, Lê Xuân Giáo dịch, Phủ Quốc Vụ Khanh, Saigon,1972,28
[19] Nguyễn Trãi, Nguyễn Trãi toàn tập,KHXH, Hanoi,1976,tr.213-214).
[21] Ngô sĩ Liên. Đại Việt Sử Ký Toàn Thư I. KHXH. Hà Nội,1967, 91;--Trần Trọng Kim, 45.
[22]-Lê Tắc, p.116; --TrầnThế Pháp. Lĩnh Nam Chích quái 嶺南摭怪) "The strange tales of Lĩnh Nam (Vietnam)". Story of Hồng Bàng family;--Story of the white pheasant; --Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ II, Tạ Quang Phat dịch, Phủ QVK, Saigon 1972, 22;
[23] Lê Quý Đôn, Kiến Văn Tiểu Lục I, p. 116-119;--Lê Tắc, 45,83; --Ngô Sĩ Liên I, [24] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 217.
[25]Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ II, 25.
[26] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ II, 27
[27] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ II, 145.
[28] Ngô Sĩ Liên I, 61;-- Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loai Ngữ I,254.
[29]Nguyễn Văn Siêu, Phương Đinh Dư Địa Chí,55;-- Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loai Ngữ ,tr.147;--
Ngô sĩ Liên I, 61;--TrầnThế Pháp. Lĩnh Nam Chích quái. Story of Hồng Bàng family;
[30]Ngô Sĩ Liên I, 87;--Trần TrọngKim, Việt Nam Sử Lược, Tân Việt, Saigon, 1958, 45;-- Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loai Ngữ I,257.
[31] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 221, 257.
[32]Trần TrọngKim, 383;-- Đại Nam Liệt Truyện, Thuận Hóa, 1993. tập II, quyển 30, Truyện Ngụy Tây-Nguyễn Văn Huệ, 256.
[33] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 249.
[34] Trần TrọngKim, 107;--Wikipedia,
[35] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 271-273.
[36] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ II, 81.
[37] Lê Tắc, 112.
[38] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 213.
[39] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ III, 159.
[40] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ II,77.
[41] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 222 ; III, Phẩm vật, 124-329.
[42] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ III, 263.
[43] Chuxue ji 初學記 and Yiwu zhi異物志,Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ III, 233,241.
[44] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ III, 233
[45] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ III, 241,243.
[46] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 219.斛ancient measuring vessel.
[47] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ III, 243-244
[48] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ III,243-244
[49] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 275.
Nguyễn Văn Siêu, 55.
[51] Lê Tắc,39.
[52] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 286.
[53] Lê Quý Đôn, Vân Đài Loại Ngữ I, 286.
[54] Ngô Sĩ Liên, I,73, 78.
[55] Ngô Sĩ Liên, I, 87.
[56] Nguyễn Văn Siêu, 18.
[57] Tài liệu Trung Quốc hiện nay ghi là tên Trần Phù. Phan Huy Chú có chép bài thơ này, và ghi tên là của sứ giả Trần Cương Trung 陳剛中.KVTL I, 245.
Nguyễn Thiên Thụ

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