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0515 Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1
Cathay and the Way Thither : vol.1 / Page 515 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000042
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horseback. And these couriers and messengers have bells hung to their waists or to their whips. And so when one of these couriers cometh bringing the despatches of the emperor, and draweth near unto one of those houses aforesaid, he maketh his bells to jingle ; and know that at this sound one of the other couriers in the house girdeth himself and taketh those despatches, and carrieth them off to another house ; and so with the rest. And they stop not running, day nor night, until the letters be arrived whither they were to go. And thus the Emperor shall have in xv days news of a country that shall be as far off as three months' journey.1 He receiveth also right courteously envoys and ambassadors from any foreign country or lordship, and furnisheth them with all that they require in coming and in going, throughout the extent of his realm.2

2. Concerning the Sôvereign Bishop, who is the Pope of the Empire of Cathay.

This realm of Cathay hath a sovereign bishop, such as the Pope is with us. Those of the country and of his religion call him the Grand Trutius.3 He is liegeman of the aforesaid Emperor the Great Caan, and obeyeth him as his sovereign lord. ' But the Emperor honoureth him above all other men. And when the Emperor rideth in his company he maketh him to ride close by his side. And the Emperor

1 See Odoric, p. 138.

2 See the narrative of Marignolli, and that of Shah Rukh's ambassadors in Notices et Extraits, tom. xiv. The rules for the provision of accommodation, etc., to ambassadors, may be seen in Pauthier's Chine

Moderne, p. 212.

3 Afterwards written the Grand Trucins. I cannot track the word, or say which is right. I suspect it is a mistranscription for Tyuinus. Tuin was a name used among the Tartars (among the Uigurs properly according to Quatremère) for a Buddhist priest. See Rubruquis, pp. 352, 355; Quatremère's Rashideddin, p. 198; Hammer, Gesch. der Goldenen Horde, p. 217 ; King Hethum's Narrative in Jour. As., s. ii, tom. xii, p. 289; and

Odoric, ante, p. 83.