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

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.
and constrains the people to make use of extraordinary expedients to preserve their lives[2].  In this place, their ships or barks are called jase, the planks of which are sewed together with hemp.  Embarking in one of these vessels, in which I could find no iron whatever, I arrived in twenty-eight days sail at Thana[3], in which place four of our friars suffered martyrdom for the Christian faith.  This country is well situated for trade, and has abundance of bread and wine, and of all other articles necessary for the food of man.  The kingdom in ancient times was very large and populous, and was under the dominion of King Porus, who fought a great battle with Alexander the Macedonian conqueror.  The inhabitants are idolaters, worshipping the fire, and likewise paying divine honours to serpents, and even to trees.  The Saracens have conquered the whole of this land, and are themselves under subjection to king Daldili[4].  In this country there are great numbers of black lions; apes and monkies are also very numerous, and their bats are as large as our pigeons.  They have rats also, as large as the dogs in Italy, which are hunted by means of dogs, as cats are unable to cope with them.  In this country every one has a bundle of great boughs of trees, as large as a pillar, standing in a pot of water before the door; and there are many other strange and wonderful novelties, a relation of which would be exceedingly delightful.

[1] By lower India, our author seems here to indicate the southern
    provinces of Persia.—­E.

[2] Tantus est calor, quod virilia hominum exeunt corpus, et descendant
    usque at mediam tibiarum:  ideo faciunt unctionum, et ungunt illa, et
    in, quibusdam sacculis ponunt circa se cingentes, et aliter
    morerentur.

[3] This place seems to have been Tatta, in the Delta of the Indus.—­E.

[4] This unknown king, rex Daldili, is probably an error in translating
    from the Venetian or Friul dialect of Oderic into Monkish Latin, and
    may have been originally Il Re dal Deli, or the King of Delhi.—­E.

SECTION III.

Of the Martyrdom of the Friars[l].

Four of our friars, Tolentinus de Marchia, James of Padua, Demetrius, a lay brother, and Peter de Senis, suffered martyrdom in the city of Thana.  These friars had engaged for their passage at Ormus to Polumbrum, but were forcibly carried to Thana, where there are fifteen houses of Christians, schismatics of the Nestorian communion, and on their arrival they were hospitably entertained in one of these houses.  A strife happened to take place between the man of that house and his wife, in which the man beat his wife severely.  She complained to the kadi, who interrogated her how she could prove her assertion.  On which she answered that there were four priests of the Franks who were present, and could attest the bad usage she had received. 

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