National Institute of Informatics - Digital Silk Road Project
Digital Archive of Toyo Bunko Rare Books

> > > >
Color New!IIIF Color HighRes Gray HighRes PDF   Japanese English
0049 Marco Polo : vol.1
Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 49 (Color Image)

New!Citation Information

doi: 10.20676/00000271
Citation Format: Chicago | APA | Harvard | IEEE

OCR Text



The best short statement of the family history of the manuscripts is naturally provided by Signor L. F. BENEDETTO. His view is summed up like this : The extant manuscripts may be divided into two groups, A and B, both ultimately derived from a lost copy (Oi) of the lost original (0). The archetype (also lost) of B was much more faithful to 01 than the archetype of A was. Group A is represented by F (Paris, B.N., MS. fr. 1116, the best of all extant MSS.) which retains the original language, and by F1, F2, F3 which only survive in their respective translations into Court French (sub-group FG), Tuscan (sub-group TA),' and Venetian (sub-group VA, including the most popular Latin version P). Group B is represented by a lost manuscript or manuscripts known only by RAMUSIO's printed text, and Z the Latin text which is printed in this edition. These are of the first importance for the completion and correction of the text of Group A ; and there are also several other B texts which BENEDETTO was able to use in a less degree for the reconstruction of 01.2

For this restoration, in whatever degree it may be possible, of the original words of Marco Polo there are, as will have been seen above, three ancient copies of the book which are of primary importance. These are (1) the Franco-Italian text in the Bibliothèque Nationale at Paris (MS. français iii 6), known as F ; (2) the Italian version by G.-B. RAMUSIO, first published in 1559, known as R ; and (3) the Latin text in the Chapter Library at Toledo, here referred to as Z.

(i) F was written in Italy in the first half of the 14th century, parchment, measuring about 292 X 205 mill., 112 leaves in twelve gatherings of 12, 10, io, 8, 8, io, Io, Io, Io, 10, Io, 4 leaves, two columns to a page, 34 or 35 lines to a column : fol. la-3d Table of chapter headings ; fol. 4a incipit Ci cofinancent le lobriqe de cest liure qui est appelle le deuisement dou monde (pl. 22) ; fol. iiic explicit schanpoit ausint. deo gratias amen. This text was printed literatim (with several errors) by the Société de Géographie as Tome I of Recueil de Voyages et de Mémoires,

i This includes the famous della Crusca MS. at Florence (TA'), on whose flyleaf is the following note : Questo libro si chiama la nauigagone di messere marcho polo Nobile Cittadino di vinegia scritto in firenze da niccholo Ormanni mio bisauolo da lato di mia madre quale mori negli anni di christo mille trecento noue quale lo porto mia madre in casa nostra del Riccio ede di me piero del riccio e di mio fratello 1458 and just below : compro per me Piero del Nero questo di 7(?) di sette 1589 L7 BENEDETTO is content to say that we are not bound to believe the first note, written 15o years afterwards ; but books were rarer and memories longer than they are now and, in the absence of pala ographical or documentary evidence against it, it may at least be regarded with respect. See pl. 27.

2 Marco Polo, 1932, pp. xxi, xxii.