3 1735 060 728 809

ST-'T- 1^



IN Tllli





Concerning the Kingdoms and Marvels of the East.


By colonel HENRY YULE, C.B.






Till- ri^lit oj lyanstalioii is racnviJ.


"AvSpa jJLoi evverre MoOcra TroXvrpoiTov 09 fjuaXa ttoXKo.


XloWoiv S' avOpMTTWv thev aarea koI voov eyvw.

Odyssey^ I.



Che suole a riguardar giovare altrui:'

Dante, Purgatory^ IV.

London: rurNTED bv William clowes and sons, duke stkeet, stamfokd stkeei,





Princess of Pied7noiit,








The amount of appropriate material, and of acquaintance with the medieval geography of some parts of Asia, which was acquired during the compilation of a work of kindred character for the Hakluyt Society,* could hardly fail to suggest as a fresh labour in the same field the preparation of a new English edition of Marco Polo. Indeed one kindly critic (in the Examiner) laid it upon the writer as a duty to undertake that task.

Though at least one respectable English edition has appeared since Marsden'Sj-f^ the latter has continued to be the standard edition, and maintains not only its reputation but its market value. It is indeed the work of a sagacious, learned, and right-minded man, which can never be spoken of otherwise than with respect. But since Marsden pub- lished his quarto (1818) vast stores of new knowledge have become available in elucidation both of the contents of Marco Polo's book and of its literary history. The works of writers such as Klaproth, Abel-Remusat, D'Avezac, Reinaud, Quatremere, Julien, I. J. Schmidt, Gilde- meister, Ritter, Hammer-Purgstall, Erdmann, D'Ohsson, Defremery, Elliot, Erskine, and many more, which throw light directly or incidentally on Marco Polo, have, for the

* Calhay and The Way Thither, being a Colleetion of Minor Mediez'al Notices of China. London, 1866. The necessities of the case have required the repetition in the present work of the substance of some notes already printed (but hardly published) in the other.

t Viz. Mr. Hugh Murray's. I mean no disrespect to Mr. T. Wright's edition, but it is, and professes to be, scarcely other than a reproduction of Marsden's, with abridg- ment of his notes.


most part, appeared since then. Nor, as regards tlie literary history of the book, were any just views possible at a time when what may be called the Fontal MSS. (in French) were unpublished and unexamined.

Besides the works which have thus occasionally or inci- dentally thrown light upon the Traveller's book, various editions of the book itself have since Marsden's time been published in foreign countries, accompanied by comments of more or less value. All have contributed something to the illustration of the book or its history ; the last and most learned of the editors, M. Pauthier, has so contri- buted in large measure. I had occasion some years ago ^ to speak freely my opinion of the merits and demerits of M. Pauthier'sv work ; and to the latter at least I have no desire to recur here. /

Another of his critics, a much more accomplished as well as more favourable one,! seems to intimate the opinion that there would scarcely be room in future for new com- mentaries. Something of the kind was said of Marsden's at the time of its publication. I imagine, however, that whilst our libraries endure the Iliad will continue to find new translators, and Marco Polo though one hopes not so plentifully new editors.

The justification of the book's existence must however be looked for, and it is hoped may be found, in the book itself, and not in the Preface. The work claims to be judged as a whole, but it may be allowable, in these days of scanty leisure, to indicate below a few instances of what is believed to be new matter in an edition of Marco Polo ; by which however it is by no means intended that all such matter is claimed by the editor as his own.|'

* In the Quarterly Review for July, 1868. f M. Nicolas Khanikoff.

\ In the Preliminary Notices will be found new matter on the Personal and Family History of the Traveller, illustrated by documents ; and a more elaborate attempt


From the commencement of the work it was fek that the task was one which no man, though he were far better equipped and much more conveniently situated than the pre- sent writer, could satisfactorily accomplish from his own re- sources, and help was sought on special points wherever it seemed likely to be found. In scarcely any quarter was the application made in vain. Some who have aided most materially are indeed very old and valued friends ; but to many others who have done the same the applicant was unknown ; and some of these again, with whom the editor began correspondence on this subject as a stranger, he is happy to think that he may now call friends.

To none am I more indebted than to the Cavaliere GuGLiELMo Berchet, of Venice, for his ample, accurate, and generous assistance in furnishing me with Venetian documents, and in many other ways. Especial thanks are

than I have seen elsewhere to classify and account for the different texts of the work, and to trace their mutual relation.

As regards geographical elucidations, I may point to the explanation of the name Ghcluchelan (I. p. 55), to the discussion of the route from Kerman to Hormuz, and the identification of the sites of Old Hormuz, of Cobinan and Dogana, the establishment of the position and continued existence of Kes/itn, the note on Pehi and CJiarchan, on Gog and Magog, on the geography of the route from Siiidafu to Carajan, on A7iin and Colomafi, on Rlutafili, Cail, and Ely.

As regards historical illustrations, I would cite the notes regarding the Queens Bolgana and Cocachhi, on the Karaunahs, &c., on the title of King of Bengal applied to the K. of Burma, and those bearing upon the Malay and Abyssinian chronologies.

In the interpretation of outlandish phrases, I may refer to the notes on Oitdanique, Noito, Barguerlac, Argon, Sensin, Kes/iicati, Toscaol, Bulaj-guchi, Gaf-paul,8ic.

Among miscellaneous elucidations, to the disquisition on the Arbre Sol or Sec in vol. i., and to that on Medieval Military Engines in vol. ii.

In a variety of cases it has been necessary to refer to Eastern languages for pertinent elucidations or etymologies. The editor would however be sorry to fall under the ban of the medieval adage :

" l'i>- gui docet quod 71011 safiit Dejinitur Besita 1 "'

and may as well reprint here what was written in the Preface to Cathay :

" I am painfully sensible that in regard to many subjects dealt with in the follow- ing pages, nothing can make up for the want of genuine Oriental learning. A fair familiarity with Hindustani for many years, and some reminiscences of elementary Persian, have been useful in their degree ; but it is probable that they may sometimes also have led me astray, as such slender lights are apt to do."


also due to Dr. William Lockhart, who has supplied the materials for some of the most valuable illustrations ; to Lieutenant Francis Garnier, of the French Navy, the gallant and accomphshed leader (after the death of Captain Doudart de la Gree) of the memorable expedition up the Mekong to Yunnan ; to the Rev. Dr. Caldwell, of the S. P. G. Mission in Tinnevelly, for copious and valu- able notes on Southern India ; to my friends Col. Robert Maclagan, R.E., Sir Arthur Phayre, and Col. Henry Man, for very valuable notes and other aid ; to Professor A. Schiefner, of St. Petersburg, for his courteous com- munication of very interesting illustrations not otherwise accessible ; to Major-General Alexander Cunningham, of my own corps, for several valuable letters ; to my friends Dr. Thomas Oldham, Director of the Geological Survey of India, Mr. Daniel Hanbury, F.R.S., Mr. Edward Ihomas, Mr. James Fergusson, F.R.S., Sir Bartle Frere, and Dr. Hugh Cleghorn, for constant interest in the work and readiness to assist its progress ; to Mr. A. Wylie, the learned Agent of the B. and F. Bible Society at Shanghai, for valuable help ; to the Hon. G. P. Marsh, U. S. Minister at the Court of Italy, for untiring kindness in the communication of his ample stores of knowledge, and of books. I have also to express my obligations to Dr. NicoLo Barozzi, Director of the City Museum at Venice, and to Professor A. S. Minotto, of the same city ; to Professor Arminius Vambery, the eminent traveller ; to Professor Fluckiger, of Bern ; to the Rev. H. A. Jaeschke, of the Moravian Mission in British Tibet ; to Colonel Lewis Pelly, British Resident in the Persian Gulf; to Pandit Manphul, C. S. I. (for a most interesting communication on Badakhshan) ; to my brother officer, Major T. G. Montgomerie, R.E., of the Indian Tri- gonometrical Survey ; to Commendatore Negri, the in-


defatigable President of the Italian Geographical Society ; to Dr. ZoTENBERG, of the Great Paris Library, and to M. Ch. Maunoir, Secretary-General of the Societe de Geographic ; to Professor Henry Giglioli, at Florence ; lo my old friend Major-General Albert Fytche, Chief Commissioner of British Burma ; to Dr. Rost and Dr. Forbes-Watson, of the India Office Library and Museum; to Mr. R. H. Major, and Mr. R. K. Douglas, of the British Museum; to Mr. N. B. Dennys, of Hongkong; and to Mr. C. Gardner, of the Consular Establishment in China. There are not a few others to whom my thanks are equally due ; but it is feared that the number of names already mentioned may seem ridiculous, compared with the result, to those who do not appreciate from how many quarters the facts needful for a work which in its course intersects so many fields required to be collected, one by one. I must not however omit acknowledgments to the present Earl of Derby for his courteous permission, when at the head of the Foreign Office, to inspect Mr. Abbott's valuable un- published Report upon some of the Interior Provinces of Persia ; and to Mr. T. T. Cooper, one of the most adventurous travellers of modern times, for leave to quote some passages from his unpublished diary.

Pat,ermo, December ■^\, 1870.



Dedication v

Preface vii

Explanatory List of Illustrations xiii



I. Obscurities in the History of his Life and Book.

Ramusio's Statements xxxiii

§ I. Obscurities, &c. 2. Ramusio his earliest Biographer; his Account of Polo. 3. He vindicates Polo's Geography. 4. Compares him with Columbus. 5. Recounts a Tradition of the Traveller's Return to Venice. 6. Recounts Marco's Capture by the Genoese. 7. His statements about Marco's liberation and marriage. 8. His account of the Family Polo and its ter- mination.

II. Sketch of the State of the East at the Time of the

Journeys of the Polo Family xi

§ 9. State of the Levant. 10. The various Mongol Sovereignties in Asia and Eastern Europe, ii. China. 12. India and Indo- China.

III. The Polo Family. Personal History of the Travel- lers TILL their final RETURN FROM THE EaST .. xliv

§ 13. Alleged origin of the Polos. 14. Claims to Nobility. 15. The Elder Marco Polo. 16. Nicolo and Maffeo Polo commence their Travels. 17. Their Intercourse with Kublai Kaan. 18. Their return home, and Marco's appearance on the scene. 19. Second Journey of the Polo Brothers, accompanied by Marco.

20. Marco's Employment by Kublai Kaan ; and his Journeys.

21. Circumstances of the departure of the Polos from the Kaan's Court. 22. They pass by Persia to Venice. Their relations there.



IV. Digression concerning the Mansion of the Polo

Family at S. Giovanni Grisostomo Iv

§ 23. Probable period of their establishment at S. Giovanni Grisostomo. 24. Relics of the Casa Polo in the Corte Sabbionera. 2/\.a. Recent corroboration as to traditional site of the Casa Polo.

V. Digression concerning the War-Galleys of the Medi- terranean States in the Middle Ages Ix

§ 25. Arrangement of the Rowers in Medieval Galleys ; a separate Oar to every Man. 26. Change of System in i6th Century. 27. Some details of 13th-century Galleys. 28. Fighting Arrange- ments. 29. Crew of a Galley and Staff of a Fleet. 30. Music and miscellaneous particulars.

VI. The Jealousies and Naval Wars of Venice and Genoa. Lamba Doria's Expedition to the Adriatic ; Battle of Curzola ; and Imprisonment OF Marco Polo dy the Genoese Ixx

§ 31. Growing Jealousies and Outbreaks between the Republics. 32. Battle in Bay of Ayas in 1294. 33. Lamba Doria's Expedition to the Adriatic. 34. The Fleets come in sight of each other at Curzola. 35. The Venetians defeated, and Marco Polo a Prisoner. 36. Marco Polo in Prison dictates his Book to Rusticiano of Pisa. Release of Venetian Prisoners. 37. Grounds on which the story of Marco Polo's capture at Curzola rests.

VII. Rusticiano or Rustichello of Pisa, Marco Polo's Fellow-Prisoner at Genoa, the Scribe who wrote DOWN his Travels Ixxxiii

§ 38. Rusticiano, perhaps a Prisoner from Meloria. 39. A Person known from other Sources. 40. Character of his Romance Compilations. 41. Identity of the Romance Compiler with Polo's Fellow - prisoner. 42. Further particulars regarding Rusticiano.

VIII. Notices of Marco Polo's History after the Ter- mination OF his Imprisonment at Genoa ' .. .. xcii

§ 43. Death of Marco's Father before 1300. Will of his Brother Maffeo. 44. Documentary Notices of Polo at this time. The Sobriquet of ]\IiIione. 45. Polo's relations with Thibault de Cepoy. 46. His Marriage, and his Daughters. Marco as a Merchant. 47. His Last Will ; and Death. 48. Place of Sepulture. Professed Portraits of Polo. 49. Further History of the Polo Family.

IX. Marco Polo's Book ; and the Language in which it

was first written cvi

§ 50. General Statement of what the Book contains. 51. Language of the original Work. 52. Old French Text of the Societe de Geographic. 53. Conclusive proof that the Old French Text is the source of all the others. 54. Greatly diffused employment I >f French in that age.



X. Various Types of Text of Marco Polo's Book .. .. cxv

§ 55. Four Principal Types of Text. First, that of the Geographic or Oldest French. 56. Second, the Remodelled French Text ; followed by Pauthier. 57. The Bern MS. and two others form a sub-class of this Type. 58. Third, Friar Pipino's Latin. 59. The Latin of Grynaeus, a Translation at Fifth hand. 60. Fourth, Ramusio's Italian. 61. Injudicious Tamperings in Ramusio. 62. Genuine Statements peculiar to Ramusio. 63. Hypothesis of the Sources of the Ramusian Version. 64. Summary in regard to Text of Polo. 65. Notice of a Curious Irish Version.

XL Some Estimate of the Character of Polo and his

Book c.\xix

§ 66. Grounds of Polo's Pre-eminence among Medieval Travellers. 67. His true claims to glory. 68. Elis personal attributes seen but dimly. 69. Absence of scientific notions. 70. Map constructed on Polo's data. 71. Singular omissions of Polo in regard to China ; historical inaccuracies. 72. Was Polo's Book materi- ally affected by the Scribe Rusticiano ? 73. Marco's reading embraced the Alexandrian Romances. Examples. 74. In- justice long done to Polo. Singular Modern Example.

XIL Contemporary Recognition of Polo and his Book .. cxl

§ 75. How far was there diffusion of his Book in his own day ? 76. Contemporary References to Polo. T. de Cepoy ; Pipino ; Jacopo d'Acqui ; Giov. Villani. 77. Pietro d'Abano ; Jean le Long of Vpres. 78. Curious borrowings from Polo in the Romance of Bauduin de Sebourg.

XIII. Nature of Polo's Influence on Geographical Know-

ledge cli

§ 79. Tardy operation, and causes thereof. 80. General characteristics of Medieval Cosmography. 81. Roger Bacon as a Geographer. 82. Marino Sanuto the Elder. 83. The Catalan Map of 1375, the most complete medieval embodiment of Polo's Geography. 84. Era Mauro's Map. Confusions in Cartography of the i6th Century from the endeavour to combine new and old informa- tion. 85. Gradual disappearance of Polo's nomenclature. 86. Alleged introduction of Block-printed Books into Europe by Marco Polo. 87. Frequent opportunities for such introduc- tion in the Age following Polo's.

XIV. Explanations regarding the Basis adopted for the

present Translation clix

§ 88. Texts followed by Marsden and by Pauthier. 89. Eclectic Formation of the English Text of this Translation. 90. Mode of rendering Proper Names.





Preliminary Address of Rusticiano of Pisa .. .. i


I. ^How THE Two Brothers Polo set forth from Con- stantinople TO TRAVERSE THE WORLD 2

Notes. i. Chronology. 2. '■'■ The Great Sea^ The Port of Soldaia.

II.— How THE Two Brothers went on beyond Soldaia .. 4 Notes. i. Site and Ruins of Sar at. 2. City of Bolghar. 3. Alau Lord of the Levant (i.e., Hulaku). 4. Ucaca on the Wolga. 5. River Tiger i.

III.— How THE Two Brothers, after crossing a Desert, CAME to the City of Bocara, and fell in with certain Envoys there 9

Notes. i. "Bocara a City of Persia" 2. The Great Kaaii's


IV. How THE Two Brothers took the Envoys' counsel,


V. How THE Two Brothers arrived at the Court of

THE Great Kaan 11

VI. How THE Great Kaan asked all about the manners of the Christians, and particularly about the Pope of Rome 11

Note. Apostoille.

VII. How THE Great Kaan sent the Two Brothers as

his Envoys to the Pope 12

Notes.— I. 77^1? Great Kaaiis Letter. 2. The Seven Arts. 3. Re- ligious Indifference of the Alongol Princes.

VIII. How THE Great Kaan gave them a Tablet of Gold,

bearing his orders in THEIR BEHALF •• . •• .. 14

Notes.— I. The Tablet. 2. The Port of Ay as.

IX. How THE Two Brothers came to the City of Acre ;


Notes. l. Names of the deceased Pope and of the Legate. 2. Negro- font. 3. Mark's age.

X. How THE Two Brothers again departed from Venice, on their Way back to the Great Kaan, and took with them Mark, the Son of Messer Nicolas i8

Note. Oil from the Holy Sepulchre.


Chap. Page

XI. How THE Two Brothers set out from Acre, and

Mark along with them ig

Note.- Pope Gregory X. and his Election.

XII.— How THE Two Brothers presented themselves

before the new Pope 21

Notes. i. William of Tripoli. 2. Poiuers conceded to Missionary Friars. 3. Bundtckdar and his Invasion of Armettia. 4. The Templars in Cilician Armenia.

XIII. How Messer Nicolas and Messer Maffeo Polo, accompanied by Mark, travelled to the Court OF the Great Kaan 24

Note.— 77/<' City of Kemenfn, Summer Residetice of Kublai.

XIV. How Messer Nicolo and Messer Maffeo Polo and Marco presented themselves before the Great Kaan 25

Notes. l. Verbal. 2. " Vast re Homme."

XV. How THE Lord sent Mark on an Embassy of his 27

Notes. i. The four Characters learned by Marco, what ? 2. Na- ture of his employment.

XVI. How Mark returned from the Mission whereon

HE had been sent 29

XVII.— How Messer Nicolo, Messer Maffeo, and Messer Marco, asked Leave of the Great Kaan to go THEIR Way 30

Notes. I. Risks to Foreigners on a change of Sovereign. 2. The Lady Bolgana. 3. Passage from Ramusio.

XVIII.— How THE Two Brothers and Messer Marco took Leave OF the Great Kaan, and returned to their own Country 32

Notes. i. Mongol Royal Messengers. 2. Mongol communication

with the King of England. 3. Medieval Ships of China.

4. Passage from China to Su7natra. 5. Mortality among the

party. 6. The Lady Cocachin in Persian History. 7. Death

of the Kaan. 8. The Princess of Manzi.


Account of Regions Visited or heard of on the Journey from the Lesser Armenia to the Court of the Great Kaan at Chandti.

I. Here the Book begins; and first it speaks of

the Lesser Hermenia 41

Notes. l. Little Armenia. 2. y^/6'rt'////^^^Chasteaux. 3. Sickliness of Cilician Coast. 4. The phrase '^ hz. ierre."

VOL. I. b


Chap. Page

II. Concerning the Province of Turcomania 43

Notes. l. Brutality of the people. 2. Application of name Tnxco- mania.

III. Description of the Greater Hermenia 45

Notes. i. Erzingan. Buckrams, what were they ? 2. Erzrum. 3. Baiburt. 4. Ararat, 5. Oil ivells of Baku.

IV. Of Georgiania and the Kings thereof 49

Notes. l. Georgian Kings. 2. The Georgians. 3. The Iron Gates

and Wall of Alexatider. 4. Box forests. 5- Goshawks. 6.

Fish Miracle. 7. Sea of Ghel or Ghelan. 8. N'ames of the Caspian, atid Navigation thereon.

V. Of the Kingdom of Mausul 57

Notes. l. Atabeks of Mosul. 2. Nestorian and facobite Christians.

3. Mosolins. 4. The Kurds. 5- Mush and Mardi?t.

VI. Of the Great City of Baudas, and how it was taken 60

Notes. i. Baudas, or Baghdad. 2. Island of Kish. 3. Basra.

4. Baldachins and other silk textures; Animal patterns.

5. Chronology. 6. The Death of the Khalif Mostdsim.

VII. How THE Calif of Baudas took counsel to slay all

the Christians in his Land 65

Notes. i. Chronology. 2. " id'.f Regisles ^/ j<?j Casses."

VIII. How THE Christians were in Great Dismay because

of what the Calif had said 66

Note. The word " cralantur."

IX. How THE One-eyed Cobler was desired to pray for

the Christians 67

X. How the Prayer of the One-eyed Cobler caused

the Mountain to move 68

Note. The Mountain Miracle.

XI. Of the Noble City of Tauris 70

Notes. l. Tabriz. 2. Cremesor. 3. Traffic at Tabriz. 4. The Torizi. 5. Character of City and People.

XII. Of the Monastery of Saint Barsa.mo on the Borders

of Tauris 72

Note. The Monastery of Barsau?na.

XIII. Of the Great Country of Persia ; with some account

of the Three Kings 73

Notes. i. Kala'a Atishparastdn. 2. The Three Kings.

XIV. How the Three Kings returned to their own

Country 75

Notes. I. The three mystic Gifts. 2. The Worshipped Fire. 3. Sdvah and Avah. The Legend in Mas'udi. Embellishments of the Story of the Magi.


Chap. Page

XV.— Of the Eight Kingdoms of Persia, and how


Notes. l. The Eight Kingdoms. 2. Export of Horses, and Prices. 3. Persian brigands. 4. Persian ivine.

XVI.— Concerning the Great City of Yasdi 84

Notes.— I. Yczd. 2. Yezd to Kertnan. The Woods spoken of .

XVII. Concerning the Kingdom of Kerman 86

Notes. i. City and Province of Kerman. 2. Turquoises. 3. On- danique or Indian Steel. 4. Manufactures of Kerman. 5. Falcons.

XVIII. Of the City of Camadi and its Ruins ; also

touching the Carauna Robbers 91

Notes. l. Products of the warmer plains. 2. Humped oxen and fat-tailed sheep. 3. Scarani. 4. The Karaunahs and Nigu- darian Bands. 5. Canosalmi.

XIX.— Of the Descent to the City of Hormos loi

Notes. i. Site of Old Hormuz and Geography of the Route from Kerman to Hormuz. 2. Dates and Fish Diet. 3. Stitched Vessels. "One rudder," tohy noticed as peculiar. 4. Great heat at Hormuz. 5. The Simiim. 6. History of Hormuz, and Polo's Ruomedan Acomat. 7. Second Route between Hormuz and Kerman.

XX.~Of the Wearisome and Desert Road that has

NOW TO BE travelled 11$

Notes. l. Desert of Liit. Subterraneous Canals.

XXI.— Concerning the City of Cobinan and the things

that are made there 117

Notes. i. Koh-Bandn. 2. Production of Tutia.

XXII.— Of a certain Desert that continues for eight

days' Journey 119

Notes.— I. Deserts of A'horasan . 2. 7"/^^ Arbre Sol ^;- Arbre Sec.

XXIII.— Concerning the Old Man of the Mountain.. .. 132

Notes. i. The Assassins, Hashishin, or Muldhidah. 2. Apparoit alhision in Boccaccio to this story.

XXIV. How THE Old Man used to train his Assassins .. 134

Notes. i. The story 'widely spread. Notable murders by the Sectaries. 2. Their different branches.

XXV. How the Old Man came by his End 138

Note. History of the Destruction of the Sect by Hulaku. Castles of Alamut and Girdkuh.

XXVI.— Concerning the City of Sapurgan 140

Note. Shibrgdn, and the route followed. Dried Melons.

b 2


Chap. Page

XXVIL— Of the City of Balc 142

Notes. i. Balkh. 2. CotDttry meaut by V)o^zxi2L. 3. Lions in the Oxiis Valley.

XXVIIL— Of Taican, and the Mountains of Salt. Also of

THE Province of Casem i44

Notes. i. Talikan. 2. Mines of Rock-salt. 3. Ethnological characteristics. 4. Kishm. 5- Porcupines. 6. Old Capital of Badakhshan. 7. New Capital.

XXIX.- -Of the Province of Badashan 149

Notes. l. Dialects of Badakhshan. Alexandrian lineage of the Princes. 2. Badakhshan and the Balas Rtiby. 3. Azure Mines. 4. Naked barley. 5. Wild sheep. 6. Scenery of Badakhshan. 7. Repeated devastation of the Country from War. 8. Amplitude of femini7ie garments.

XXX.— Of the Province of Pashai 155

Note. On the cotmtry intended by this name.

XXXI.— Of the Province of Keshimur 157

Notes. i. Kashmir language. 2. Kashmir Conjicrors. 3. Im- portance of Kashmir in History of Buddhism. 4. Character of the People. 5. Vicissitudes of Buddhism in Kashmir. 6. Buddhist practice as to slaughter of animals. 7. Coral.

XXXII. Of the Great River of Badashan ; and Plain of

Pamier 162

Notes, i. The Upper Oxus and Wakhan. The title Nono. 2. The Plateau of Pamer. The Great Wild Sheep. Fire at great altitudes. 3. Bolor.

XXXIII. Of the Kingdom of Cascar 169

Note. Kashga r.

XXXIV.— Of the Great City of Samarcan 170

Notes. ^ l. Christians in Samarkand. 2. Chagatai^s relation to Kublai mis-stated. 3. The Miracle of the Stone.

XXXV.— Of the Province of Yarcan 173

Note. Yarkand. Goitre prevalent there.

XXXVI. Of a Province called Cotan 173

Notes. i. ^'^ Adoration of Mahommet." 2. Khotan.

XXXVII. Of the Province of Pein 175

Notes. i. Position of Pein. 2. The \\x or 'Jade. 3. Temporary marriages.

XXXVIII.— Of the Province of Charchan 178

Note. Position of Charchan and Lop.

XXXIX. Of the City of Lop, and the Great Desert .. iSo

Notes. l. Geographical discrepancy. 2. Superstitions as to Deserts; their 'wide diffusion. The Sound of Drums in certain satidy acclivities.


Chap. Page

XL. Concerning the Great Province of Tangut .. 184 Notes. i. Tangut. 2. Buddhism encountered here. 3. Kalmak superstition, the "Heaven's Ram." 4. Chinese customs de- scribed here. 5. Mongol disposal of the Dead. 6. Super- stitious practice of p/voiding to carry out the dead by the house- door ; its wide diffusioti.

XLL— Of the Province of Camul 189

Notes.— I. Kamul. 2. Character of the people. 3. Shameless custom. 4. Parallel.

XLIL— Of the Province of Chingintalas 191

Notes. l . The Country intended. 2. Asbestos Mountain. 3. The four Elements. 4. and ^. The Story of the Salamander. Asbestos fabrics.

XLIIL— Of the Province of Sukchur 195

Notes. i. Explanatory. 1. The City of Stihchau. 3. Rhubarb country. 4. Poisonous Pasture.

XLIV. Of the City of Campichu 197

Notes.— I. The City of Kanchau. 2. Recumbent Buddh as. \ Bud- dhist Days of Special Worship. 4. Matrimonial customs. 5 . Textual.

XLV. Of the City of Etzina 202

Notes.— I. Position of Yetsina. 2. Textual. 3. The Wild Ass of Mongolia.

XLVL Of the City of Caracoron 203

Notes. i. Karakorutn. 2. Chorcha. 3. Prester John.

XLVIL— Of Chinghis, and how he became the First Kaan

OF THE Tartars 209

Notes. i. Chronology. 2. Relations betiaeen Chinghiz and Aung Khan, the Prester John of Polo.

XLVIIL How Chinghis mustered his People to march

against Prester John 211

XLIX. How Prester John marched to meet Chinghis.. 212

Notes. i. Plain of Tenduc. 2. Divitiation by T%vigs and Arrows.

L. The Battle between Chinghis Kaan and Prester

John. Death of Chinghis 215

Note. Real circumstances and date of the Death of Chinghiz.

LL Of those who did Reign after Chinghis Kaan,

and of the Customs of the Tartars 216

Notes. i. Origin of the Cambuscan of Chaucer. 2. Historical errors. 3. The Place of Sepulture of Chinghiz. 4. Bar- barous Funeral Superstition.

LI L— Concerning the Customs of the Tartars .. .. 219 Notes. i. Tartar Huts. 2. Tartar Waggons. 3. Pharcwh^s Rat. 4. Chastity of the JVomen. 5. Polygamy and Marriage Customs,


Chap. P^'^''

LI 1 1.— Concerning the Gou of the Tartars 224

Notes. i. The old Tartar idols. 2. Kianiz.

LI v.— Concerning the Tartar Customs of War .. .. 228

Notes. i. Tartar Arms. 2. The Decimal Division of their Troops. 3. Textual. 4. Blood-drinking. 5. Kurut, or Tartar Curd. 6. The Mongol military rapidity and terrorism. 7. Corrup- tion of their Nomade simplicity.

LV. Concerning the Administration of Justice among

the Tartars 234

Notes. i. The Cudgel. 2. Punishment of Theft. 3. Marriage of the Dead. 4. Textual.

LVL— Sundry Particulars of the Plain beyond Cara-


Notes. i. Textual. 2. Bargu, the Mecrit, the Reindeer, and Chase of Waterfowl. 3. The bird Barguerlac, the Syrrhaptes. 4. Gerfalcons.

LVII. Of the Kingdom of Erguiul, and Province of

SiNju 241

Notes. l. Er guild. 2. Siningfu. 3. The Yak. 4. The Alusk Deer. 5. The Reeves's Pheasant.

LVIII. Of the Kingdom of Egrigaia 247

Notes. l. Egrigaia. 2. Calachan. 3. White Camels, and Camlets ; Siclatoun.

LIX. Concerning the Province of Tenduc, and the

Descendants of Prester John 249

Notes. l. The name and place Tenduc. King George. 2. Standing Marriage Compact. The title Gurgaii. 3. Azure. 4. The /«v;w Argon ««^ Guasmul. 77?^ Dungens. 5. The Rampart of Gog and Magog. 6. Tartary cloths. 7. Siwanhivafu.

LX. Concerning the Kaan's Palace of Chagannor .. 260

Notes. i. 7%^ iwr^f Sesnes. 2. Chagan-nor. 3. The fve species of Crane described by Polo. 4. The zvord Cator.

LXI. Of the City of Chandu, and the Kaan's Palace


Notes. i. Chandu, properly Shangtu. 2. The Bamboo Palace. Uses of the Bamboo. 3. Kublai's Annual Migration to Shangtu. 4. The White Horses. The Oirad Tribe. 5. The A/are's Milk Festival. 6. Weather Conjuring. 7. Ascription of Cannibalism to Tibetans, &^c. 8. The term Bacsi. 9. Magical Feats ascribed to the Lamas. 10. Vast extent of Lama Convents. 11. Married Lamas. 12. Patarins. 13. The Ascetics called Sensin.




Chap. Pack

I. Of Cublay Kaan, the Great Kaan now reigning, and

OF HIS Great Puissance 295

Note. Eulogies of Kublai.

II. Concerning the Revolt of Nayan, who was Uncle

TO THE Great Kaan Cublay 296

Notes i. Chronology. 2. Kublai^s Age. 3. His Wars. 4. N'ayan, and his true relationship to Kublai.

III.— How THE Great Kaan marched against Nayan.. .. 298

Note. Addition from Ramiisio.

IV.— Of the Battle that the Great Kaan fought with

Nayan 3°°

Notes. i. The word V>x&X.t%(i}sxQ. 2. Explanatoiy. 3. TheNakkara. 4. Parallel Passages. 5. Verbal. 6. The Story of Nayan.

v.— How the Great Kaan caused Nayan to be put to

Death 306

Notes. l. The Shedding of Royal Blood avoided. 2. Chorcha, Kaoli, Barskul, Sikintinju. 3. yrd)s in China.

VI.— How the Great Kaan went back to the City of

Cambaluc 309

Note. Passage from Pamusio respecting the Kaan''s views of Re- ligion. Reinarks.

VII.— How the Kaan rewarded the Valour of his

Captains 312

Notes. l. Parallel from Sanang Setzen. 2. The Golden Honorary Tablets or Paizah of the Mongols. 3. Umbrellas. 4. The Gerfalcon Tablets.

VIII. Concerning the Person of the Great Kaan .. 318

Notes. i. Colour of his Eyes. His Wives. 3. The Kungurat Tribe. Competitive Examination in Beauty.

IX. Concerning the Great Kaan's Sons 321

Notes. i. KublaVs intended Heir. 2. His other Sons.

X. Concerning the Palace of the Great Kaan .. .. 324

Notes. I. The word 'Yz.xc2^'s,z\. 2. Arsenals of the Palace. 3. The

Gates. 4. Various Readijtgs. 5. Wide diffusion of the kind

of Palace here described. 6. Parallel description. 7. Modern

account of the Lake, &'c. 8. " Roze de ra9ur." 9. The

Green Mount. 10. Textual.


Chap. Page

XI. Concerning the City of Cambaluc 331

Notes. i. Chronology, ^c. of Peking. 2. The City Wall. 3. Changes in the extent of the City. 4. Its ground plan. 5. Alarm Toxoers. 6. Uneasiness of the Mongol rulers respecting the Chinese.

XII. How THE Great Kaan maintains a Guard of Twelve Thousand Horse, which are called

Keshican 336

Note. The term Quescican.

XIII.— The Fashion of the Great Kaan's Table at his

High Feasts 338

Notes. i. Order of the Tables. 2. The ivord Vernique. 3. The Buffet of Liquors. 4. The sttperstition of the Threshold. 5. Chinese Etiquettes. 6. Jugglers at the Banquet.

XIV. Concerning the Great Feast held by the Grand

Kaan every year on his Birthday 343

Notes. l. The Chinese Year. 2. ^^ Beaten Gold.'''' 3. Texttial. Festal changes of costume.

XV.— Of the Great Festival which the Kaan holds

ON New Year's Day 346

Notes. l. The White Month. 2. Mystic value of the number 9. 3. Elephants at Peking. 4. Adoration of Tablets. Ko7v-tozv.

XVI.— Concerning the Twelve Thousand Barons who receive Robes of Cloth of Gold from the Emperor on the Great Festivals, thirteen

changes a-piece 349

Notes. i. Textual. 2. The words Gamut and Boigal. 3. Tame Lions.

XVII. How the Great Kaan enjoineth his People to


Note. Parallel Passage.

XVIII. Of the Lions and Leopards and Wolves that

THE Kaan keeps for the Chase 353

Notes. i. The Cheeta or Hunting Leopard. 2. Lynxes. 3. The Tiger, termed Lion by Polo. 4. The Barktit Eagle.

XIX.— Concerning the Two Brothers who have charge

OF THE Kaan's Hounds 356

Note, The Masters of the Hounds, and their title.

XX. How THE Emperor goes on a Hunting Expedi- tion

- Notes. i. Direction of the Tour. 2. Hawking Establishments. 3. The word Toskaul. 4. The zvord Bularguchi. 5. Kublai's Litter. 6. Kachar Modun. 7. The Kaan's Great Tents. 8. The Sable and Ermine. 9. Petis dc la Croix.



Chap. P'^''^

XXL— How THE Great Kaan, on returning from his HuNTTNG Expedition, holds a Great Court and Entertainment 3^5

Note. 77^/j- chapter peculiar to the 2itd Type of 3ISS.

XXI L— Concerning the City of Cambaluc, and its

great Traffic and Population 3^7

Notes. i. Suburbs of Peking. 2. The word Fondaco.

XXI I L— [Concerning the Oppressions of Achmath the Bailo, and the Plot that was formed against him] 370

Notes. l. Chapter peculiar to Hamusio. 2. A'ublai's Administra- tion. The Rise of Ahmad. 3. The tertn BsWo. 4. The Con- spiracy against Ahmad as related by Gaubil from the Chinese. 5. Marco' s presence and upright conduct commemorated in the Chinese Annals. The Kaan's prejudice against Mahomedans.

XXIV.— How THE Great Kaan causeth the Bark of Trees,


Money over all his Country 37^

Note. Chinese Paper Currency.

XXV.— Concerning the Twelve Barons who are set


Note.— The Ministers of the Mongol Dynasty. The term Sing.

XXVL— How THE Kaan's Posts and Runners are sped

through many Lands and Provinces 388

Notes. i. Textiuil. 2. The word M zm. 3. Go^'ernment Hostebies. 4. Digression from Ramusio. 5. Posts Extraordinary. 6. Discipline of the Posts. 7. Antiquity of Posts in China, &=c.

XXVII.— How THE Emperor bestows help on his People,


Murrain 393

Note. Kublai's remissions, and justice.

XXVIII.— How THE Great Kaan causes Trees to be planted

BY the Highways 394

XXIX.— Concerning the Rice-V^ine drunk by the People

OF Cathay 394

Note. Rice loine.

XXX.— Concerning the Black Stones that are dug in

Cathay, and are burnt for Fuel 395

Note. Consumption of Coal in China.

XXXL— How THE Great Kaan causes Stores of Corn to


OF Dearth 39^

Note.— 7'/?c' Chinese Public Granaries.


Chap. Page

XXXII. Of the Charity of the Emperor to the Poor .. 397

Note. Buddhist influence, and Chinese charities.

XXXIII. [Concerning the Astrologers in the City of

Cambaluc] 399

Notes, l. The word Tacuin. The Chinese Almanacs. 2. The Chinese and Mongol Cycle.

XXXIV.— [Concerning the Religion of the Cathayans; their views as to the Soul ; and their Customs] 404

Notes. i. Textual. 2. £>o. 3. Exceptions to the general charge of Irreligion brought against the Chinese. 4. Politeness. 5- Filial Piety.



To face Title . . . Doorway of the House of Marco Polo in the Corte Sab- bionera at Venice (see p. Ivii). Woodcut from a drawing by Signer L. Rosso, Venice.

,, pa^^e c. Reduced Facsimile of the Will of Marco Polo, preserved in

St. Mark's Library. On half the scale of the original. Photo- lithography, from a negative taken under the superintendence of Cavaliere G. Berchet.

,, ,, cviii. Facsimile of Handwriting from the Ckusca Italian MS. of Polo's Book, and of the indorsement upon it. Lithograph from a tracing by the Editor.

,, ,, cxxxiv. Probable view of Marco Polo's own Geography : a Map of the World, formed as far as possible from tlie Traveller's own data. Drawn by the Editor.

,, ,, I. Marco Polo's Itineraries, No. I. Western Asia.

jMap illustrating the geographical position of the City of Sarai.

,, ,, 6. s Plan of part of the remains of the same city. Reduced from a

I Russian plan published by M. Grigorieff.

,, ,, 28. Reduced Facsimile of part of the Buddhist Inscription of

the Mongol Era, on the Archway at Keu-yung-kwan in the Pass of Nankau, north-west of Peking, showing four of the characters in use under the Mongol Dynasty. Photolithograph from original impressions taken by, and in the possession of, Mr. A. Wylie. See an Article by Mr. Wylie in the y. A\ A. S.for 1870, /. 14.

iPlan of Ayas, the Laias of Polo. From an Admiralty Chart. Plan of position of Dilawar, the supposed site of the Dilavar of Polo. Ext. from a Survey by Lt.-Col. D. G. Robinson, R.E.

,, ,, 108. Marco Polo's Itineraries, No. II. Routes between Kerman

and HoRMUZ.

,, ,, 168. Do. do. No. III. Regions on and near the

Upper Oxus.

,, ,, 316. '^ Table d^ Or de Cotnmandetnent ;^^ the Paiza of the Mongols, from a specimen found in Siberia. Reduced to one-half the scale of the original, from an engraving in a Paper by I. J. Schmidt. in the Bulletin de la Classe historico-philologique de I'Acad.