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0464 Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1
Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1 / Page 464 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000042
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translation two copies exist in the Bibliothèque Impériale,' and one did exist formerly in the Cottonian collection. This French version was printed at Paris in 1529, and subsequently, as mentioned in the bibliography relating to Odoric,2 but I have not seen it.3 It was again printed from the MS. by M. Jacquet in the second series of the Journal Asiatique (vi, pp. 57-72), and from that impression I have translated.

The names of several Archbishops of Soltania have been preserved, and as this work fixes its own date approximately as between the death of John Montecorvino, which it alludes to as recent, and that of Pope John, it must have been written about 1330, and therefore almost certainly by JOHN DE CORA, nominated to the see of Soltania by that Pope in the beginning of the year just mentioned (or somewhat earlier). It does not seem possible to determine from the text whether the author had himself been in Cathay, or only compiled from the reports and letters of others.`

This Archbishop John, a Dominican, was perhaps also, as Le Quien has suggested, the author of a curious work described in Quétif's Scriptores Ordinis Prcedicatorum, as existing in the Colbertian library,5 which was presented to the French king, Philip

1 In MSS. Nos. 7500 and 8392. See the list of MSS. of Odoric, supra, p. 34.

2 Supra, p. 35.

3 I cannot find the work in the Br. Mus. Catalogue.

4 Cora, this John's naine place, is a town of the Roman Campagna six miles from Villetri. M. d'Avezac says that the reference to Montecorvino's funeral implies the author's presence at it, but there appears to be a dif-

ference in the readings. The passage as given in Jacquet's publication in the J. A. runs thus :

Cilz Arceuesques comme il plot a Dieu est nouuellement trespassez de ce siècle. A son obseque et à son sepulture vinrent tres grant multitude de gens crestiens et de paiens, et desciroient ces paiens leurs robes

de dueil," etc. M. D'Avezac's quotation, which appears to be taken from the work as printed in 1529, has vis instead of vinrent.

5 Quétif and Echard, pp. 571-4. It is entitled, "Directorium ad faciendum passagium transmarinum editum per quemdam fratrem ordinis Prcedi-

catorum scribentem experta et visa pocius quam audita, quoci dirigitur serenissimo Domino Philippo Regi Francorum, comtatum anno Dni mille-

simo ccco trigesimo." There is a MS. of the same work in Magdalen College Library at Oxford.