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.

[1] In a former note, it has been mentioned, on the authority of Abulgazi-
    khan, himself a descendant of Zingis, and prince, of Khuaresm, that
    Kublai-khan was only the fifth emperor of the Tartars, and that he
    ascended the throne in 1257.  The difference of date in this latter
    circumstance is quite unimportant, and may have proceeded, either from
    a different way of reckoning, or the delay of intelligence from so
    vast a distance.  But Kublai died in 1292, after reigning thirty-five
    years, according to Abulgazi, and is said to have been then eighty
    years of age.  He must therefore have been forty-five years old at his
    accession, instead of twenty-seven.  Harris indeed mentions in, a note,
    that the age of Kublai in the MSS. and even in many of the printed
    editions, was left blank.—­E.

[2] In Harris, this date is 1286; but as, in a note, this war is said to
    have occurred on occasion of the election of Kublai to the imperial
    dignity in 1257, I have ventured to restore what seems to be the true
    date.  Besides Naiam, in 1286, thirty years of age, could not possibly
    have been the uncle of Kublai.—­E.

[3] The new city of Pekin, of which hereafter.—­E.

[4] The followers of Naiam in this rebellion are said to have consisted of
    four nations, or tribes of Tartars, named Ciazza, Cadi, Barscol, and
    Sitinqui, but of whom no other information or notice remains.—­E.

[5] This is the only notice of the Jews in the east by Marco Polo, and
    serves considerably to confirm the authenticity of Rabbi Banjamin;
    who, as a Jew, felt more interest in attending to his countrymen.—­E.


Account of the Imperial City of Cambalu, and the Court of the Great Khan, or Emperor of the Tartars.

During the three winter months of December, January, and February, Kublai-khan generally resides in Cambalu[1] which is at the north-east border of Kathay.  On the north part of the new city stands the great palace of the khan.  In the first place is a great wall surrounding a vast square enclosure, each side being eight miles in length; the wall is environed on the outside by a deep ditch, and has a great gate in the middle of each side.  Within this outer wall, there is another exactly a mile distant, each side of the square which it forms being six miles; and in the space between these two walls the soldiers attend and perform their exercises and evolutions.  This inner square has three gates on its south side, and the same number on the north; the middle gate of both these sides being greater and more magnificent than the others, and is appropriated to the sole use of the khan, the others being open to all who have a right to pass.  In each corner of this second wall, and in the middle of each side, there are very

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