An introductory room, entitled The Circle, guides the viewer into the world between 1000 to 1500. Maritime networks are being created with greater intensity than ever before. These networks produced the global environment that ultimately gave birth to global trade.
Navigators of the Ming Dynasty of China, the Arab lands, the British Isles, the ports of the Iberian Peninsula, Japan, and Greater India, drew their own “maps” on seas they traveled. Among the most intrepid are the ancestors of Filipinos, called the Nusantao and the Austronesians who pioneered navigation in both the Pacific and Indian Oceans.
This room is called The Circle because it conveys visual information on how eventually, the world’s navigational networks interconnected to circle the world.