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0113 Marco Polo : vol.1
Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 113 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000271
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kinds, . and water enough. The Saracens of the city of Tauris are very cruel people, evil G V vB

and disloyal, and do much harm to the Christians and to all the other people who are not of v

their law..


TAURIS. Cap. 10.

In the borders of Tauris is a very religious monastery with the title of the Blessed Saint

Barsamo.' There is an abbot with many monks who wear the habit like that of the Carmelites.

And that they may not be given up to idleness these are always making woollen girdles, which

they then place on the altar of the Blessed Barsamo when they celebrate the Offices. And when

they go though the provinces begging (like the Brothers of the Holy Spirit) they give of them

to their friends and to the noblemen, because they are good to take away the pain which any one

may have in the body, and for this reason everyone devoutly wishes to have them.

OF THE GREAT WONDER OF THE MOUNTAIN WHICH HAPPENED IN BAUDAC BEFORE IT WAS TAKEN BY THE GREAT CAN. And we wish to tell you also a v great wonder which happened between Baudac and Mosul.' It was true that in about the 12753 year from the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ there z v

was a very evil and cruel calif of Saracens in Baudac who, wishing very great evil to the v VA

Christians—and this is natural to all Saracens, to hate Christians—, both day and night LT

thought of nothing else but • of a means and plan how he could make all the Christians R Z

of his land turn Saracen again or, if not, that [12b] he might rob them and spoil them VB

of their things and make them all be put to death. And about this he consulted

every day with his monks and with one of his casses4 of his law, for all together FB FB

wished great evil to the Christians. And it is a true thing that all the Saracens of

the world always wish great ill to all the Christians of the world. Now it happened FB

one day. at last that the calif who was very learned, searching certain writings, that is the v z V

Gospels of holy Scripture, with the wise men who were round him found a point

of Scripture in a Gospel such as I shall tell you. They find that in a Gospels it says z

  • 26•

  • 27


    1 Monasterio intitolato it beato Barsamo santo, molto deuoto. B. finds great difficulty in

    the last two words (Marco Polo, p. 43o; cf. B. p. 23). The present version follows MARSDEN.

    2 VA: dentro baldacho e mosul and In le contrade de turfs e baldacho P: inter thaurisium et baldachum cf. p. 74 note 3 above.

    3 Z, V, R: 1225. FG,TA, LT, VB: 1275. VA,P omit.

    4 Casses may be kasrs, the Arabic for "priest". See PN. FB: vng des prestres de sa boy.

    5 As examples of small corruptions and perhaps deliberate variations we give : TA': innuno

    vasello iscritto (twice) V: in vno vanzelio . . . the dizea dio chop la suo bocha VA: "One day those wise men said to the calif, Sir, we have found that which you go seeking. The Gospel

    of the Christians says whoever shall have so much faith as the size of a seed of mustard, that