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Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 647 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 01.

[1] This Pinkerton calls Moabar on the margin, and Nachabar in the text, of
    his dissertation on the Trevigi edition of Marco Polo, very justly
    observing that it refers to Coromandel, or the Carnatic below the
    gauts.  Harris erroneously substitutes Malabar.  Moabar and Madura may
    have a similar origin, as may Nachabar and Nega-patnam.—­E.

[2] The fish here alluded to are sharks; and the same custom of employing
    bramins to defend the fishermen, by conjuration, against this
    formidable enemy, is continued to the present day.—­E.

[3] Mr Pinkerton, from the Trevigi edition, has this passage as follows: 
    “The king of Vor, one of the princes of Nacbabar, purchases about
    10,000 horses yearly from the country of Cormos, formerly mentioned,
    each horse costing five sazi of gold.”—­E.

[4] Tarantulas is assuredly, a mistake here for centipedes and scorpions,
    which are common all over India.—­E.

SECTION XX.

Of the Kingdom of Murfili, and the Diamond Mines, and some other Countries of India.

Murfili or Monsul[1], is five hundred miles northwards from Moabar, and is inhabited by idolaters.  In the mountains of this country there are diamonds, which the people search for after the great rains.  They afterwards ascend these mountains in the summer, though with great labour, on account of the excessive heat, and find abundance of these precious stones among the gravel; and are on these occasions much exposed to danger from the vast numbers of serpents which shelter themselves in the holes and caverns of the rocks, in which the diamonds are found in greatest abundance.  Among other methods of obtaining the diamonds, they make, use of the following artifice:  There are great numbers of white eagles, which rest in the upper parts of these rocks for the sake of feeding on the serpents, which are found at the bottom of the deep vallies and precipices where the men dare not go.  They therefore throw pieces of raw meat down into these deep places, which the eagles seeing, stoop for, and seize with all the little stones and gravel which adhere to them.  The people afterwards search the eagles nests when they leave them, and carefully pick out all the little stones they can find, and even carefully examine the eagles dung in quest of diamonds[2].  The kings and great men of the country keep all the largest and finest diamonds that are procured from these mines, and allow the merchants to sell the rest.

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