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The Origins of the Lost Fleet of the Mongol EmpireThe Origins of the Lost Fleet of the Mongol Empire

Randall James Sasaki

Narrated by Damian Salandy

Available from Audible

Book published by Texas A&M University Press

In The Origins of the Lost Fleet of the Mongol Empire, Randall Sasaki provides a starting point for understanding the technology of the failed Mongol invasion of Japan in 1281 CE, as well as the history of shipbuilding in East Asia. He has created a timber category database, analyzed methods of joinery, and studied contemporary approaches to shipbuilding in order to ascertain the origins and types of vessels that composed the Mongol fleet.

Although no conclusive statements can be made regarding the origins of the vessels, it appears that historical documents and archaeological evidence correspond well to each other, and that many of the remains analyzed were from smaller vessels built in China's Yangtze River Valley. Large, V-shaped cargo ships and the Korean vessels probably represent a small portion of the timbers raised at the Takashima shipwreck site.

Randall James Sasaki is a PhD candidate in nautical archaeology at Texas A&M University. His previously published work focused on The Battle of Bach Dang near Hai Phong, in northern Vietnam.


“Randall Sasaki provides an insightful, detailed forensic study of the lost fleet of Khubilai Khan. The legend of the 'Divine Wind' is peeled back with careful detail as archaeology shows why such a well-equipped and experienced armada failed some seven centuries ago.”

—James P. Delgado, author, Khubilai Khan's Lost Fleet: In Search of a Legendary Armada

“This book reveals the interesting history and details of ship building and the strategy of the second Mongol invasion of Japan in 1281 through new maritime archaeological findings.”

—Di Wang, Professor of History, Texas A&M University

“If you want to know how Korean and Chinese ships were built during this period, it provides a wealth of valuable information.... For the model-maker, it contains enough information to make a start on building a representative model of a Korean, Yangtze, or Fujian ship.... For those whose focus is maritime history, it offers a window into the Mongol invasion fleet, including its origins, organization, and loss. For those into marine archaeology, it is a fascinating look at how research is done.”

Nautical Research Journal

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University Press Audiobooks