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0375 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 375 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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158. CINGHIS   359

and climbed to the top; the four quarters all lay below. Going again several li, he came near the Lu-chü-ho (the Kerulen), and remained a long time erect on his horse. He [then] bestowed

on the river the name of   Ai7 Yin-ma-ho (' River where the horses are watered '). The
river flows to the north-east. Its course is swift. On both banks, there are numerous luxuriant trees; near the banks are many elms and willows. In the river are islands (»f chou), with much rush and green grass, over a foot long. It is said that it cannot be used for feeding of horses, and that when horses eat it, many fall sick. Fish is plentiful in the river; immediately people

presented some. Camp was pitched on [the bank of] the river. The place was called ,P.   fA
P'ing-mo-chên (' Garrison of the pacified desert ') ».

Since the Emperor Yung-lo, coming from Hsüan-hua-fu and the Lake of the Brahminy Ducks, reached the Kerulen and found it flowing « to the north-east », the spot at which he arrived must have been about that of the confluence of the Sängkür (cf. p. 322) and the Kerulen, or somewhere east of it, and the peak at the foot of which the Mongol « princes » were said to have been buried, and which was seen to the north-east two days (three days in fact, but one must have been a day of rest) before reaching the Kerulen, must have been to the south-east of and not very far from the river. The Darhan-üla (« Ironsmith Mountain ») of our maps, « Tarhan Alin » (ma. alin = mountain) of D'ANVILLE'S Atlas, Tartarie chinoise, 7th sheet, where, according to TIMKOVSKI (Voyage à Péking, I, 173, 179), Chinghiz-khan's anvil was then said to be still preserved and where the Mongols used to assemble every summer to commemorate the conqueror, stands south of the Kerulen, but apparently somewhat too far west to meet the conditions required by the data in Chin Yu-tzû's diary.

But whatever the actual position of the place may be, I cannot agree with the deductions made by PALLADIUS. According to his abridged version of the passage, the « sovereigns » of the Yüan house used to be buried at the foot of the lone peak. The word used by Chin Yu-tzû, however, is not ;0 ti, « Emperor », but f wang, « prince ». Now, I see no cogent reason why Chin Yu-tzû, although writing under the first Emperors of the dynasty which had overthrown the Mongols, should not give to the Mongol sovereigns their ordinary title of « Emperor ». When speaking of the last of them (fol. 2 b), he calls him Shun-ti as everybody does. So it seems to me that by « princes », Chin Yu-tzû may mean members of the Mongol Imperial family, and not the Emperors themselves. Only the Emperors and some of their next-of-kin were buried at the « great qoriq »; but, if the statement put by Chin Yu-tzû into the mouth of Yung-lo has any foundation at all, it may very well be that there existed at the lone peak, during the Mongol period, a qoriq of those princes of the Imperial blood who were not carried to the Burgangaldun. I do not think that, taken at its face value, Chin Yu-tzû's diary can be said to substantiate the statements of P'êng Ta-ya and Hsü T'ing.

VI. — In Trudy c'lenov Ross. dukh. missïï y Pekiné, iv [1866], 252, PALLADIUS says : « According to the tradition among the Mongols, the tombs of Chinghiz-khan and of his descendants [who lived] in China lie at the Tas Mountain, north of Dolôn-nôr, on the way to the Kerulen; the Mongols say that they assemble there every year to pay homage on the 7th of the 7th moon, on the supposed day of the death of Chinghiz-khan. In all likelihood, it is this place