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0162 Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1
Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1 / Page 162 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000042
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But as for the regions beyond those places that we have mentioned, whether it be that the wintry climate and excessive cold renders it hard to penetrate them, or whether it be the result of some supernatural influence from the gods, it is the fact that they never have been explored." From Holler's Geogr. Gr. Minores, i, pp. 303-5.


(Circa A.D. 150).

The inhabited part of our earth is bounded on the east by the Unknown Land which lies along the region occupied by the eastermost nations of Asia Major, the Sim and the nations of SERICE ; and on the south likewise by the Unknown Land which shuts round the Indian Sea, and encompasses that Ethiopia to the south of Libya which is called the land of Agisymba ; to the west by the Unknown Land which embraces the Ethiopic Gulf of Libya, and then by the Western Ocean which lies along the most westerly parts of Libya and of Europe ; and on the north by that continuation of the same ocean which encircles the Britannic Isles and the most northerly parts of Europe, and which goes by the names of Duecalydonian and Sarmatie, and by an Unknown Land which stretches along the most northerly parts of Asia Major, viz., Sarmatia, Scythia, and Serice... .

" The Hyrcanian Sea, called also Caspian, is everywhere shut in by the land, so as to be just the converse of an island encompassed by the water. Such also is the case with that sea which embraces the Indian Sea with its gulfs, the Arabian Gulf, the Persian Gulf, the Gangetic Gulf, and the one which is called distinctively the Great Gulf, this sea

Resacice or Sesadce, but they are no dwarfs, whilst some of the Tibetan tribes of the Himalya are very short. Domestically among AngloIndians this once prized malabathrumn, some qualities of which the Romans purchased at three hundred denarii per pound, is, as far as I know, used only to flavour tarts, custards, and curries. But (besides what Linschoten says) Rheede mentions that, in his time in Malabar, oils in high medical estimation were made from both the root and the leaves of the Karua or wild cinnamon of that coast, a plant no doubt closely allied. And from the former a camphor was extracted, having several of the properties of real camphor and more fragrant.

Mr. Crawfurd has suggested that the finer malabathrum was benzoin, but I believe all the authorities on the subject speak of it as derived from a leaf ; indeed Dioscorides, like our author here, speaks of the stitching up of the leaves. Some part of what Dioscorides says seems indeed to apply to a solid extract, but it may have been of the nature of Rheede's camphor. (See Pliny, xii, 25, 26, 59; xiii, 2; xxxiii, 48; Dioscorides, Joe. cit.; Linschoten, Latin version, Hague, 1599, p. 84; Rheede, Ilorl.u•s Malabaricus, i, 107; Crawl. Diet. Indian Islands, p. 50; on Malabathrum, see also Lassen, i, 283 ; iii, 37, 154 seq.)