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0415 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 415 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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172. COILUM   399

On brazil-wood in general, its other name sappan, and on the particular sort called columbino, colombino, etc., see « Brazil » and cf. Y, II, 380-381; Hobson-Jobson2, 113, 794; EVANS, Pegolotti, 433; HEyD, II, 587-590; HR, 217; Fe, 246.

For the ginger colombino, cf. Y, rI, 381; EVANS, Pegolotti, 419; and, above all, HEYD, II, 619-623.

Although I have retained the « coiiomin » of F, Z and L, it may be that « *coilomi », perhaps a Persian adjectival form in -i, also existed. Some mss. readings seem to point to it, and Pegolotti, though generally writing «colombino », speaks twice in the same passage of the sort of brazil-wood called « coionmi » (EvANS, 361). « Colonmi » may either be a copyist's error for « *coiomin », or represent « *coiomi ».


cailan Ft

cailem Lr

cailon L

choilon V

choilu TAi

choylu, choyul TA3

coillon Fr coillum VA coilom Ll coilon F, Z, V coi/um F, FA, FB co/im VB

coulam R coylum P orbai VLr orbay VL, S sorlym G

All the mss. point to coi- for the beginning of the word (« Coulam » of R is probably a case of RAMusro's « editing »), although we should expect co-, or cu-, or cou- (in value of cu-); as to the final, the original French text perhaps had « *Coilom » (> *Coiiô > Coilon), or even «*Couiom ». The name is the same as that of modern Quilon on the coast of Travancore; in Tamil, « Kullam », though « Kollam » occurs an inscription of 1265 (cf. JA, 1922, rr, 49).

Most of the ancient quotations of the name are assembled in Y, II, 377-380; Hobson-Jobson2, 751-752; DAMES, Barbosa, II, 3, 96-97; and HALLBERG, 153-157. Since a would-be Syriac mention of « Colon » in the middle of the 7th cent. has been retained in Y, II, 377, it may be remarked that YULE himself had justly renounced it in Hobson-Jobson. Quiion appears for the first time in the Külam-Masai (= Kûlam of Malabar) of the Arabic travellers of the 9th cent.; Suiaymân, in 851, speaks of the taxes paid by Chinese ships at Killam-Masai (FERRAND, Voyage du marchand arabe Sulaymân, 40). The mediaeval Western form is « Columbum », « Columbo », etc., occurring in many sources, from Jourdain Cathala (see the documents added to CORDIER'S edition) and Marignolli to the Catalan Map; a sanskritized form Kolamba is known epigraphically. To the various quotations already produced, I may add « Colom » in Guillaume Adam (Hist. des Crois., Arm. II, 552). A name « Khimbû » appears in a Hebrew document found in the Cairo Geniza,