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0365 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 365 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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158. CINGHIS   349

Missions Catholiques of June 18, 1875 (No. 315) an account of their visit to its supposed site. Further information was furnished by PRiEVAL'SKIY, POTANIN, ROCKHILL, BONIN and DE LESDAIN (cf. Y, I, 249-250; Ch, I, 196); CHARIGNON (Ch, I, 207-208) adds recent Sino-Mongolian statements which were made during the controversy of 1921, but to these papers I have had no access.

The name of the place is certain, and is correctly given by most travellers : it is «Ejen-horo» A)än-bora Ajän-qoriya, «the Master's Residence » (« Edjen-joro » in Y, I, 249, and « Edj en

Djoro» in CORDIER, Hist. gén. de la Chine, H, 223, are misreadings erroneously attributed to POTANIN). But there are two «Ejen-horo», the Yäkä-äjän-horâ or « Great Master's Residence », and the Baya-äjän-horâ or «Small Master's Residence ». The « Ejen-horo » marked on our maps (for instance that of POTANIN or the German map of Yü-lin-fu), in the north-eastern part of the Ordos territory and south-west of the camp of the «Dzungar» Prince, as being the supposed tomb of Chinghiz-khan is in fact the Baya-äJän-horâ, the supposed tomb of the wife who is said to have killed Chinghiz. The Yäkä-äjän-borà reputed to be the tomb of Chinghiz lies much more to the south-west, not far from the encampment of the Wan Prince, and in the neighbourhood of the Cayan-nor. Every year, relics of Chinghiz-khan are brought over there from different parts of the Ordos country, on the 21st day of the sixth moon according to POTANIN, on the 21st day of the third moon according to BONIN. The latter date is confirmed by a Mongol account (cf. Ch, I, 207) ; but we do not know why it was chosen. It may be worth noting that among the relics of Chinghiz brought on that occasion, his gun is listed! I am unable to restore most of the names given in PRLEVAL'SKII and BONIN'S accounts. According to GRUM-GRaIMAYLO (b c. cit., II, 64), the site of the Yäkä-äiän-horâ where the relics are kept is called «Baran-conbuk ».

A fresh claim to the discovery of Chinghiz-khan's tomb was made in 1927 by the late P. K. KozLOV. I know it only from the accounts which appeared in the Berliner-Zeitung am

Mittag of October 31, 1927, and in the China Express and Daily Telegraph of November 3, 1927, and I hope it was not reported in the words of the Russian explorer. A direct descendant of Chinghiz-Khan is said to have revealed to KozLov that the tomb lay in the Gobi, «near the ruins of the dead city of Khara Khoto » (probably that of the Edzin-yoi; see « Eçina »). «The remains, in a silver coffin, rest on seventy-eight crowns of princes and chieftains... » Among the treasures buried with the conqueror, is «a copy of the Bible written by an English monk ». The whole story is a good illustration of the abysmal depth which separates credulity from credibility.

All the traditions locating Chinghiz-khan's tomb south of the Gobi, and especially those of the Ordos, may easily be proved to be late inventions; they are the result both of a confusion between the tomb itself and the ordos which attended to the cult of the defunct Emperor, and of the migration of these ordos from northern Mongolia into the great bend of the Huang-ho.

According to BARTHOLD (Otcët o poézdké y Srednyuyu Aziyu, 20), Rasidu-'d-Din speaks of

stone statues (kamennyya baby) erected at the tombs of Chinghiz-khan and of the lineage of Tolui, in front of which sweet-smelling substances were constantly burnt. Unfortunately, I cannot discover the corresponding passage either in BEREZIN or in BLOCHET; BARTHOLD's interpretation can, however, hardly be correct. The word used (in the plural) by Raid is sfirat, «portrait », which may mean a pictorial representation, or a felt or a woven figure, just as well as stone sculpture; on this point I quite agree with the objections raised by GRUM-GRIMAÏLO (Zapadnaya Mongo-