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Celebrated Travels And Travelers

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An Excerpt:  "Nicolo and Matteo remained a year in the Mongolian camp, but a war breaking out at this time between Barkaï, and Houlagou, the conqueror of Persia, the two
brothers, not wishing to be in the midst of a country where war was being waged,
went to Bokhara, and there they remained three years. But when Barkaï was
vanquished and his capital taken, the partisans of Houlagou induced the two
Venetians to follow them to the residence of the grand Khan of Tartary, who was
sure to give them a hearty welcome. This Kublaï-Khan, the fourth son of
Gengis-Khan, was Emperor of China, and was then at his summer-palace in
Mongolia, on the frontier of the Chinese empire.
The Venetian merchants set out, and were a whole year crossing the immense
extent of country lying between Bokhara and the northern limits of China.
Kublaï-Khan was much pleased to receive these strangers from the distant West.
He fêted them, and asked, with much eagerness, for any information that they
could give him of what was happening in Europe, requiring details of the
government of the various kings and emperors, and their methods of making war;
and he then conversed at some length about the Pope and the state of the Latin
Church. Matteo and Nicolo fortunately spoke the Tartar language fluently, so
they could freely answer all the emperor's questions."


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