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0369 Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1
Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1 / Page 369 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000042
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to read or hear tell of; wherefore I am not careful to write them at present..

23. How the King of Zampa keepeth many elephants and many wives.

At a distance of many days from this kingdom is another which is called Zampa,r and 'tis a very fine country, having great store of victuals and of all good things. The king of the country, it was said when I was there, had, what with sons and with daughters, a good two hundred children ; for he hath many wives and other women whom he keepeth. This king hath also fourteen thousand tame elephants, which he made to be kept and tended by his boors as here oxen and various other animals are kept in partnership.3 [And

1 The Cianba and Ziamba of Polo, the Sanf of the Arabian geographers (as Mr. Lane I believe first pointed out), the Champa of Jordanus, the Tsiompa and Champa of our modern maps, to the south of Cochin China, of which it now forms a part. Remusat appears to consider that in the middle ages Cochin China was included in Champa.

Many of the copies read Campa, and this (Campaa) is the form in which the name appears in old Portuguese writers, and in Pigafetta (in Ramusio ; the Milan Pigafetta has Chiempa), Probably Çampa was the intended form in these cases.

Champa was the name of an ancient Buddhist royal city on the Ganges, near the modern Bhâgalpiir, and was probably adopted by the Indo-Chinese country after its conversion to Buddhism according to the practice so generally followed in Indo-China and the great islands.

2 Polo says that when he was in Champa in 1285 the king had three hundred and twenty-six sons and daughters. A Chinese account of the adjoining Chinla or Cambodia, translated by Remusat, says the king of that country had five wives, and from three thousand to five thousand concubines. (Nouv. Mèlanges As. i. 71). The late well-known king of Persia, Futteh All Shah, left behind him nearly three thousand direct descendants, and his son Sheikh Ali Mirza used to ride attended by a body guard of sixty sons of his own. (Rawlinson's Herodotus, i, 221).

3 "Sicut...tenentur ad Socedam." Ital. Soccitd, the name for a sort of metairie in cattle-keeping, the cattle being tended for the owners on a division of profits.

Cambodia and the adjoining regions abound in domesticated elephants to a degree unknown elsewhere in Asia. See Jordanus and note (Hex. Soc.) p. 37 ; also Ibn Batuta in this collection infra ; Remusat in the article just quoted ; J.R.G.S. xxvii, 93, 105, and xxxii, p. 146).