"...Most visitors and even most residents think of Singapore as a
place where nothing much happened until it was discovered by the
British under Sir Stamford Raffles in the early 19th century. And
it only really made something of itself after independence in
Singapore and the The Silk Road of the Sea, however, a splendid new book by John Miksic, an archaeologist at the National University of Singapore, reveals the glaring omission in this account. Singapore was also a thriving, populous city in the 14th century.
...He writes that he hopes his book will show Singaporeans that "the rise of their small island nation is not a recent historical accident; it has a long tradition that deserves to be more widely appreciated." In a country worried about where its roots are and how its national identity should be defined, a fourth surprise is that his work is not even more celebrated." - The Economist Banyan blog