Vietnam donates Great An Nam Map to House of European History

Nguyên Hùng Son, deputy director of the Vietnamese Academy of Diplomacy presented, on June 16 in Brussels, to the management of the House of European History the great old geographical map of An Nam (An Nam i Quốc họa).

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Nguyên Hùng Son, Deputy Director of the Vietnam Academy of Diplomacy, presented Simina Badica, Curator of the House of European History, with the Geographical Map of Great An Nam, on June 16 in Brussels.

Photo: VNA/CVN

The Geographical Map of Great An Nam is compiled in 1838 by French bishop Jean-Louis Taberd who was apostolic vicar of Lai Thiêu, in Cochinchina, and titular bishop of Isauropolis in 1830. This work was published in Serampore in India in 84 x 45 cm format. It was the largest and most detailed geographic map of An Nam at that time.

In particular, the geographical map of Grand An Nam, whose names are written in three languages: Chinese, Vietnamese (An Nam i Quốc họa) and Latin (Tabula Geographica Imperii Anamitici), above which appears the words ”Paracel seu Cát Vàng” (meaning, Paracel or Yellow sand). This shows that since XVIe century, many Westerners know the Hoàng Sa islands and consider them to be Vietnamese possessions.

The second peculiarity is that the map shows a group of islands in the middle of the East Sea, located at 160 from the north parallel and at 1,100 from the east longitude. On this card, we see these words: “Paracel seu Golden Sands”. This inscription confirms that the Paracel island group as it is called by the West is the Cát Vàng (or Hoàng Sa) island group as contemporary Vietnamese call it.

The geographical map was drawn up in 1838 by the French bishop Jean-Louis Taberd and published at Serampore in India in 84 x 45cm format.

Photo: VNA/CVN

The presentation of the Great An Nam card (An Nam Dai Quoc hoa dô) to the House of European History is an initiative of the Vietnamese Embassy in Belgium and shows the very close cooperation between Vietnam and Belgium in various political, cultural and historical fields.”underlined Nguyên Hùng Son, deputy director of the Vietnam Academy of Diplomacy.

And to add to that “vsThis donation demonstrates our contribution to helping Europeans better understand Vietnam’s history, Vietnam’s interactive history, thereby enabling international friends to have a clear view of the history of the East Sea.”. “This map also explains how the French came to our country, interacted with countries in the region, saw the shape of our country and drew it with a clear recognition of Vietnamese territory. The Hoàng Sa and Truong Sa Islands are clearly marked by France as Sand Gold in this map and it helps European friends to understand the history of the East Sea”.

Meanwhile, the representative of the European History Museum, curator Simina Badica, said that the museum currently stores and exhibits objects from more than 200 countries. “We are happy to receive this item from Vietnam. It’s the first time in our country. This map will be exhibited in the museum’s collection, helping researchers and visitors to better understand Vietnam’s geographical history. I hope that cooperation and exchanges with Vietnam in the field of history and culture will continue to develop.” M . saidI Simina.

Nguyen Hung Son (2e to the right), Deputy Director of the Vietnam Academy of Diplomacy, on June 17 visited Professor of International Law Jean Salmon (left).

Photo: Huong Giang/VNA/CVN

As part of his working visit to Belgium and Europe, on 17 June Nguyên Hùng Son visited Professor of International Law Jean Salmon. This international lawyer gave the Vietnamese side 13 boxes of documents on Vietnam’s land and sea borders, one of which was dated 1960 and dedicated to the Paracels.

Professor Jean Salmon, currently 91 years old, is a lawyer and professor of international law at the Free University of Brussels. He is an adviser to the Vietnam Border Commission on border issues and diplomatic law.


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