A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 01 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 770 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 01.

We came to our old empty house, where they provided us in bedding and coverlids, and gave us some fuel They gave us the carcase of a small lean sheep, as food for us three in six days, and lent us a pot and trivet to boil our flesh, and gave us a platter of millet every day.  We boiled our meat first in water, and afterwards boiled our millet in the broth; and that was our whole allowance, which would have sufficed if we had been suffered to eat in peace, but there were many starved fellows about the court that thrust themselves in among us, and insisted to partake.  The cold became very severe, and Mangu-khan sent us three fur coats, with the hair outwards, which we thankfully received; but we represented that we had not a house in which we could pray for the khan, our cottage being so small that we could scarcely stand up in it, neither could we open our books on account of smoke, after the fire was lighted.  On this the khan sent to ask the monk if he would be pleased with our company, who gladly received us; and after this we had a better house before the court, where none lodged but we and the soothsayers, they in front of the first lady, and we at the farthest end, towards the east, before the palace of the last lady.  We made this alteration on the 13th of January.

Next morning all the Nestorian priests collected at the chapel, and smote on a board, instead of ringing a bell.  They then sang matins very reverently, put on all their ornaments, and prepared the censer and incense.  After waiting some time, Cotata Caten[1], the principal wife of the khan, came into the chapel, attended by many ladies, and having with her Baltu, her eldest son, and several other children.  All these prostrated themselves, ducking after the manner of the Nestorians; they then touched all the images and kissed their hands, and afterwards gave the right hand of fellowship to all who stood beside them, which is the custom among the Nestorians.  The priest sang many hymns, and gave the lady some incense in her hand, which she threw into the fire, and then the priests perfumed her.  After this she began to put off the ornaments of her head, called Bacca, and I saw her bareheaded; but as we were now commanded to leave the chapel, I know not what followed.  As I was going out I saw a silver basin brought, but I am ignorant if she was then baptized, but rather think not; because at Easter I saw a fount consecrated with great solemnity, and some persons baptized, but no such ceremony was seen on the present occasion, and I know they do not celebrate the mass in a tent, but only in a standing church.

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 01 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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