A Study of the “Sunset State"
明成祖登基后,实行开放的对外政策,派遣郑和下西洋,与世界各国建立了友好关系。永乐年间,“日落国”入明朝贡,然而“日落国”究竟位于何处,至今是一个谜。事实上,中国记载的“日落国”即阿拉伯人所谓的Djabulsa,中国载籍中又称“茶弼沙国”,指的是欧洲,而永乐年间入贡的“日落国”即罗马教皇国。“日落国”的入贡,是明代外交和郑和下西洋的一大成就,也是中欧关系史上重要事件。Emperor Yongle of the Ming Dynasty carried out a policy of opening to the outside world, and sent Zheng He to navigate to the “Western sea" to establish friendly relationship with other countries. At that time, a mission from a country called the “Sunset State" paid their tribute to the Ming court. It remained a mystery as to where this country lied. After careful textual research, the author believes that the “Sunset State" in China's historical records was what the Arabians call “Djabulsa". In China, it was called the “Chabisha State" as well, which referred to Europe, or the Curia Romana in specific. Paying tribute by the “Sunset State" marks a grand accomplishment in the Ming's foreign affairs and Zheng He's voyages, and it is also an important event in Sino-European relationship.