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.
one at the foot, and one on either side of her door.  I observed likewise one of our silver chalices, probably taken from some church in Hungary, which hung against the wall, full of ashes, on the top of which lay a black stone; but these priests not only do not teach them that such things are evil, but even practice similar things.  We continued our visits for three days, by which time she was restored to perfect health.  During these visits, she continued to rally me on my silence, and endeavoured to teach me their language.

I honoured the monk Sergius as my bishop, because he could speak the language, though he was totally uneducated; and I afterwards learnt, when I came to his own country on my return, that he was no priest, but merely an adventurous weaver.  In many things he acted in a way that much displeased me, for he caused to be made for himself a folding chair such as bishops use, and gloves, and a cap of peacocks feathers, with a small gold cross; but I was well pleased with the cross.  He had scabbed feet, which he endeavoured to palliate with ointments[3]; was very presumptuous in speech, was present at many of the vain and idolatrous rites of the Nestorians, and had many other vanities with which I was much displeased.  Yet we joined his society for die honour of the cross, as he got a banner full of crosses on a cane as long as a lance, and we carried the cross aloft through among all the tents of the Tartars, singing Vexilla regis prodeant, &c. to the great regret of the Mahometans, who were envious of our favour.

I was informed of a certain Armenian who came, as he said, from Jerusalem along with the monk Sergius, carrying a silver cross of about four marks weight, adorned with precious stones, which he presented to Mangu-khan, who asked what was his petition.  He represented himself to be the son of an Armenian priest, whose church had been destroyed by the Saracens, and craved his help for rebuilding that church.  Being asked how much that might cost, he said two hundred jascots, or two thousand marks; and the khan ordered letters to be given him, ordering those who received the tribute of Persia and the Greater Armenia, to pay him that sum in silver[4].  The monk continued to carry this cross about with him wherever he went, and the Nestorian priests became envious of the profit which he derived from its use.

[1] From the whole of this story, it would appear that the lady Cota was
    hysterical from constipation; and that Sergius had the good fortune to
    remove the cause by a few doses of rhubarb.—­E.

[2] About L. 30, perhaps equal in efficacy to L. 300 of modern days; no bad
    fee for administering a dose of rhubarb.—­E.

[3] This surely was a sinless infirmity, and needed not to have been
    recorded to his dishonour.  He was probably afflicted with chilblains,
    in consequence of the severity of the Tartarian climate.—­E.

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