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0014 Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1
Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1 / Page 14 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000042
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" Sed si aliqua scribimus propter noticiam legentium qua in partibus vestris nesciuntur, non debetis propter hoc nos appellare mendaces, qui vobis referimus ilia quæ ipsi vidimus vel ab aliis pro certo audivimus quos esse credimus fide dignos. Imo est valde crudele ut homo propter bonum quod facit ab aliis infametur."—Joannis de Plano Carpini Prologus.

—" Such also is the case with Geography. For the experience of ages confesses that many of the outlying tracts of the earth remain excluded from the bounds of accurate knowledge, owing to the difficulty of penetrating regions of such vast extent; whilst some countries are very different from the descriptions that have been given of them on the faith of travellers' tales too uncritically accepted, and others, through the partial operation of revolutions and catastrophes, are no longer what they used to be. Hence it is needful, as a general rule, to abide by the most recent accounts that we possess, keeping an eye, however, all the while, upon the statements of older authors, and on what can be critically educed from their narratives, so as to form some judgment as to what is worthy of credit and what is not."—The Geography of Claudius Ptolemy, i, 5.

"Wherefore the task we have undertaken is a double one : first, to preserve the opinions of our author in their integrity, so far as they call for no correction; secondly, where he has failed in making things clear, to set forth the correct view to the best of our ability from the narratives that are accessible to us, and from the data afforded by more accurate maps."—Id., i, 19.

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