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0348 Marco Polo : vol.1
Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 348 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000271
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THE REGISTERS OF FAMILIES AND LODGERS MARCO POLO church of Nestorian Christians only. And since I have described to you about the FB city, so will I tell you another thing which does well to relate. Now you may know R P that all the burghers of this city, fathers of families, and also of all the others in the whole province of Mangi, have a custom and usage like this. For each has his name and FB the names of his wife and of his sons and of the wives of his sons and of his slaves FB and maids and of all those of his house written on the door of his house. And it is also written there how many horses he keeps. And if it happens that any of them R dies they have his name taken away; and if any is born there or is received his name FA R is also added there likewise with the others. And in this way the lords and rulers of each city know all the people whom they have in their towns. And it is done also [68c] through all the province of Mangi and of that of Catai. And again I will tell you another fine custom which there is. For you may know that all those who FB TA keep inns and who lodge wayfarers in these two provinces, they write on the door of the VB house' all those who come to lodge in their inns by their names, and what day of what FB R month, and the week, he lodges there with the day and the hour that they leave, so that all through the year the great Kaan can know who goes and who conies throughout z his land. And it is indeed a thing which befits wise men. Again in the province of R Z Mangi almost all the poor and needy people • who cannot bring up their children, • sell sons and daughters to others who are rich and noble that for the price of them they may be able to sustain R Z themselves and that the children may • be better brought up and may • have a more comfortable R living with those persons. •And to speak a comparison of the pepper which is consumed in this city, so that from this you may be able to estimate the quantity of the victuals, flesh, wines, spices, which are provided for the general expenditure which they make; Master Marc watched Z the reckoning made by one of those who attend at the Customs of the great Kaan, that. in the city of Quinsai it has been found by inquiry that on any day you please forty-three loads of pepper are expended for its use, and every load is of the weight of 223 pounds; and so from this you can calculate how many are the other spices which are expended there, and also how many necessaries are required for the whole expenses. We speak of a certain wonder which happened when Baian was at the siege of this city, namely that when king Facfur fed from his face, a multitude of the people of the city was escaping in a boat by a certain vast river broad and deep which passes on one side of the city. And while they thus fled by this river, at that instant the river was wholly dried up, so that Baian, learning this, went to that place and compelled all those who _fled to return to the city. And a fish was found lying on the dry land across the bed of the river which was something wonderful to see, for it was quite a hundred paces long, but the bulk by no means corresponded to the length. It was indeed all hairy, and many ate of it,

alle finestre P: in suis quaternis R: sopra un libro