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0074 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 74 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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giryuï (miswritten « cheegey» for «chergey» in Codex Cumanicus, 129; cf. also BROCKELMANN, Kigyari, 148). But both would suppose very corrupt forms to be represented by avigi (*carciga, or the like).


accambale R   azambale, azamballe VB

The pseudo-king of Champa, whose name is due to a misreading; see « Ciamba » and Vol. I, 366.


açur F   azuro V, VA, VB   lapis lazuli L

azurum Z, L   azurro TAI, TA3   lapis lazuli P, VL

arzurum LT   azurum L   lasur, lazur G

asur FA   azzurro TA3, R   oltra marin (azuro) VB

azur FB, Gr   lapis laçul LT   ultramarinum (azurum) L

azurium P, Gr

In French and Italian texts it is usually lazur, etc., but, with the exception of G, the l may be taken as the article 1'.

Polo mentions « açur » (as a mineral) three times, in the chapters on « Badascian » (Vol. r, 137), on « Tenduc » (Vol. r, 182), and in the description of the palace of Qubilai (Vol. I, 211) . He certainly takes « açur » in its original meaning of lapis-lazuli, and commentators have admitted that we are really concerned with lapis-lazuli in the three passages; this will be discussed later.

The genealogy of the word « açur », azure, is generally established as follows (cf. LOKOTSCH, Etym. lVörterb., No. 1311; BENVENISTE, in JA, 1936, 228) :

Skr. rdjdvarta, rdjavarta, ldjavarta (cf. FINGT, Lapidaires indiens, xviii, 92, 201) > Pers. la:vard, lazvard > Arab. ldzvard; late Armen. laivard, lazurd. From Arab. ldzvard, > low Greek Xaoupcov; low Latin lazurius, lazur, lazulum (hence « lapis-lazuli »); French azur, It. azurro, azzurro, Span. azul, Port. azul (> Indian modem vernac. Konk. dzûl; Tet. in Timor, ajul; cf. DALGADO, Influência do vocab. português, 16), the initial 1- having been mistaken for the article. Azur appears in French already in the Chanson de Roland (c. A. D. 1110).

From Skr. rdjavarta > Buddh. Sogd. r'5ßrt (? BENVENISTE) > Uigh. razwart and ariwrt (MÜLLER and von GABAIN, Uig. IV, in SPA TV, 1931, 703) > Mong. ralivar (KovALEvsKII, 2659) > Manchu rasivar (ZAKHAROV, 1019, with a wrong Skr. etymology raitar).