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0459 Marco Polo : vol.1
Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 459 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000271
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story ? You may know quite truly that as long as they have arrows they did nor cease to shoot, those that were whole and hearty; for you may know well that there were among them dead and wounded to death in very great quantity, so that z in an evil hour was that battle begun for both sides, so many of them were dead both of one side and of other. And when they have shot and drawn out all the z arrows they put the bows into the bow-cases. Then they laid hands on the swords and on the clubs and run the one upon the other, and huge blows with the sword z and with the clubs began to be given. And they begin a very cruel and most evil z battle. Now' can one see the giving and receiving of huge blows; now can one see feet and hands and arms cut off; now can one see many men cast dead on the ground; z for you may know quite truly that it does not stay long after they begin the battle of brands before all the ground was covered with men dead and wounded to death, and with horses also. And without mistake king Caidu showed great prowess FA of arms there, and if his body only were not there they will have [98a] many times forsaken the field, and he would be discomfited. But he did so well in all things and z gave so great comfort to his people in every place where the danger was greater that vs they kept themselves up very bravely. And on the other side those two barons, LT namely the son to the great Kaan and the son to the son of the Prester Johan, did likewise very well in all things. •For they rushed most valiantly into the great presses and z FA did such great feats of arms and cheered their men so well that it was a wonder. And what shall I go telling you ? You may know truly that this battle lasted so long that it was FA one of the most cruel and evil battles that ever was with so many men between Tartars, v z as those who were present said. The noise of people was so great there' and the clash LT of the swords & of the clubs that one did not hear God thundering for it. Again I tell you without mistake that both the sides exert themselves with all their might to put the one people the others to discomfiture, and therefore they exerted themselves to fight each beyond measure. But all this avails nothing that the one people should v be able to put the other to discomfiture, but I tell you quite truly that the battle lasts from morning until after vespers, nor can the one chase the other from the LT field. But so many of them were dead both on one side and on other that it was a pity to see; for in evil hour was that battle begun for both sides. For many men died thereby and many ladies were widows thereby and many children were orphans thereby and many other ladies were for ever thereby in mourning and in tears-

' ilor possibly for alor, but it should probably be omitted as the following clauses begin with or. Z: tunc B. suggests alor but prints or. cf. p. 395 n. 2.

2 entre tartars de iens it hi estoit si grant la nose   1824: Tartars. De jens B.: Tartars de fens. 11
In either case the phrase is unusual, if not unique.