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0408 Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1
Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1 / Page 408 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000042
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tians, Turks, and idolaters, all receiving from the court what they have need of.] 1

39. Of the order of the Great Caan when he journeyeth.

Now, this lord passeth the summer at a certain place which is called SANDU,2 situated towards the north, and the coolest habitation in the world. But in the winter season he abideth in Cambalech. And when he will ride from the one place to the other this is the order thereof. He hath four armies of horsemen, one of which goeth a day's march in front of him, one at each side, and one a day's march in rear, so that he goeth always, as it were, in the middle of a cross. And marching thus, each army hath its route laid down for it day

1 MIN.. RAM.

2 The Ciandu of Marco Polo, where stood that magnificent park and palace, his description of which set Coleridge a-dreaming (or dreaming that he dreamt) that wonderful poem which tells how

" In Xanadu did Kublai Khan

A spacious pleasure dome decree."

This becomes all the more curious when we are told on an authority of which Coleridge could have known nothing, that the palace was designed to correspond with one which Kublai had seen in a dream, and of which his memory had retained the plan.

The place was originally Kaiphingfu, called by the Tartars Kaiminfu, the Chemenfu (miswritten Clemenfu) of Polo ; it stood about 150 li beyond the wall, and ten days' journey from Pekin. From Kublai it received the name of Shangtu or "Upper Court" ; more than one palace was built in the vicinity, and from 1264 when Kublai began to visit this district, till the fall of the dynasty, these palaces continued frequented by the emperors as summer residences.

In the wail which Ssanang Setzen, the Mongol historian, puts into the mouth of Toghon Temur, the last of the dynasty, when flying from his throne, the changes of lamentation are rung upon the loss of "My DAïTU, my capital, my gloriously adorned ! my SHANGTU, my cool and delicious summer seat, pleasure dwelling of the earlier gods!"

The ruins of the palace and city existed at the end of the seventeenth century, when they were seen by Gerbillon; and the imperial geography of the existing dynasty mentions.that those ruins contained an inscription of the reign of Kublai. The city is stated to be that which appears in D'Anville's map as Tchao-Naiman-Soumé-hoton. (Klaproth's Rashideddin in Tourn. Asiat., 2nd ser., xi, 345-50 ; M. Polo, Introd. 6 ; i, 24 ; Duhalde, iv; Deguignes, i; 296; Schmidt, p. 137).