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0343 Marco Polo : vol.1
Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 343 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000271
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  • 152.



great merchandise of many kinds and of great value come and go there from Indie and FA FA

from other foreign parts in very great number, • which add to the value of the city. And from FA P FA

this city of Quinsai to the harbour is a great river,- which makes this harbour as it enters the R R

sea, by which the ships are able to come up to the city; and all the day the ships of R

Quinsai go up and down with merchandise • at their pleasure • and there they load on to other FB R

ships which go through different parts of Indie and of Catai.1 And this river also goes through

other parts and cities more distant than to this city. And again I tell you that after he FB R

had reduced to his obedience all the province of Mangi, which was one single kingdom, the R

great Kaan has divided it into nine parts, that is to say that he has made nine very great

kings of it, so that each is a great kingdom; and they go to stay there to govern and to R

administer justice to the people. But always [67c] you understand that all these kings are

there for the great Kaan & in this way, that they make each year the report of each

kingdom separately to the factors of the great lord, of the revenue and expenses, and P

of their rule, and of all things belonging to their kingdom. And in this city of Quinsai R P

continually •holds his court and dwells one of these nine kings and is lord of more than a R

hundred and forty cities all • very great and rich. Moreover I shall tell you one thing R z

more at which you will be much astonished. For I tell you there is no doubt that in VB

the vast province of Mangi are altogether quite 1200 cities, besides the castles and the towns FA P FA

of which there is great quantity, • all fair and rich, • all dwelt in by agreat multitude of rich and VB R

industrious people, and in each is a guard for the great Kaan as large as I shall tell you,

according to the extent and need of the case, • to guard them against rebellion. You may know z VB

quite truly that in each city of these 1200 cities, that which has least of them, there FA

are a thousand men between foot and horse; and such there is which is guarded by ten VB

thousand, and such by twenty thousand, and such by thirty thousand, more & less z

according to the state of the lands and their power, • and all are paid by the lord; so that they VB

are really so great in number that it can hardly be counted and I dare not tell it, VB

fearing that I shall not be believed; but the city of Quinsai certainly has a guard of thirty

thousand soldiers.. And the greater part of the revenues of the cities which are collected in the R

treasury of the great Kaan is set aside for the maintenance of these guards of mercenaries.

And if it happens that some cities rebel (for the men, overtaken by some madness or intoxication,

often murder their rulers), the moment the event is heard the neighbouring cities send so many

men of these armies who destroy those cities which have made the mistake; for it would be a

long affair to wish to make an army come from another province of Catai, which would require

two months time. But do not understand that these men are all Tartars, but they

are from Catai, good men at arms. • For the Tartars are horsemen and do not stay except FA R

1 By "there" (iui) must be understood Gampu; "this city", below, is Quinsai.