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0212 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 212 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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196   123. CASCAR

gives here « Dely », instead of the « Dilivar » (q. v.) of F. Whether « Dilivar » be Delhi or not, the fact that there is in RAMUSIO a chapter on « Dely » (which is not Delhi; see «Eli») followed by a chapter on «Malabar» (—Malabar) may have influenced his readings in the chapter on the Qaraunas; in other words, both his « Dely » and his « Malabar » of the chapter on the Qaraunas are open to suspicion. I think it probable, in the present case, that RAMUSIO's « Malabar » was altered from the name which reads « Dilivar » in F; this is also the solution adopted on second thought by BENEDETTO (B', 43, 430).

Finally, I must explain why, in the above notes, I have supposed that Polo had been assaulted by the Qaraunas on the outward journey. On the return journey, the three Polos, conveying the two princesses, travelled in state until they had met Ghazan, and it appears very unlikely that

they should have been then attacked by the Qaraunas. Later on, they were always in North-Western Persia, far from « Camadi» and from the Qaraunas. On the other hand, they passed through the regions infested by the Qaraunas on the outward journey, and they travelled then as private individuals, perhaps with a caravan of merchants; I think it was then that the attack took place, in 1272.


calscar FAt carschar Z casar FB

cascar F, FA, FB, L, LT, P, chasar, chascar VA

VL, Z   chaschar V, VA

caschar V, VB, VL; R   chasciar TA', TM

This is the well-known) Ar   •Kâsyar. The earliest Western mention of the modern name

which I know of occurs in the Latin translation, made at Damietta in 1221 from the Arabic, of a document concerning the Mongol campaign against the Mussulmans; there it is written « Chassar », « Casahar », « Chasahar », etc. (cf. ZARNCKE, Der Priester Johannes II, 32, 34, 46, 49). «Caschat» (read «Caschar») is next mentioned in the letter of Sembat the Constable dated February 7, 1248 (in Vincent de Beauvais, xxxii, 92; D'ACHERY, Spicilegium2, III, 624-628; Y', I, 162, 263; on the date, cf. Pel, 130). Fra Mauro's « Chaschar » (HALLBERG, 121) comes from Polo. In Ricci's arrangement of GOES'S Diary, we find the same spelling « Cascàr » as in Polo (cf. TACCHI-VENTURI, Opere storiche del P. Matteo Ricci, I, 536).

On Kâsyar, cf. CHAVANNES, Doc. sur les Tou-kiue, 121-122; Y, I, 182-183; STEIN, Ancient Khotan, I, 47-72; « Kashghar », by BARTHOLD in EI; Br, II, 45-47, 230-234; Mi, 200-281.

The ancient names of Kâsyar, and « Kâsyar », itself have already been much discussed, but it is now possible to be more precise on some points.

Kâsyar is first mentioned in Chinese texts under the name j fj Shu-lo (*Siwo-lak); it goes back to c. 130-125 B. C. and remained the only one in current use among the Chinese down to c. A. D. 1000. Some Buddhist pilgrims however, from c. A. D. 400 to the end of the 8th cent.,