The Travels of Marco Polo, by Marco Polo

Table of Contents

Preface to Third Edition

Preface to Second Edition.

Original Preface.

[Original Dedication.]

Marco Polo and his Book.

Introductory Notices.

  1. Obscurities in the History of His Life and Book. Ramusio’s Statements.

  2. Sketch of the State of the East at the Time of the Journeys of the Polo Family.

  3. The Polo Family. Personal History of the Travellers Down to Their Final Return from the East.

  4. Digression Concerning the Mansion of the Polo Family at Venice.

  5. Digression Concerning the War-Galleys of the Mediterranean States in the Middle Ages.

  6. The Jealousies and Naval Wars of Venice and Genoa. Lamba Doria’s Expedition to the Adriatic; Battle of Curzola; and Imprisonment of Marco Polo by the Genoese.

  7. Rusticiano or Rustichello of Pisa, Marco Polo’s Fellow-Prisoner at Genoa, the Scribe who Wrote Down the Travels.

  8. Notices of Marco Polo’s History, After the Termination of His Imprisonment at Genoa.

  9. Marco Polo’s Book; and the Language in which it was First Written.

  10. Various Types of Text of Marco Polo’s Book.

  11. Some Estimate of the Character of Polo and His Book.

  12. Contemporary Recognition of Polo and His Book.

  13. Nature of Polo’s Influence on Geographical Knowledge.

  14. Explanations Regarding the Basis Adopted for the Present Translation.

The Book of Marco Polo.


  1. How the Two Brothers Polo Set Forth from Constantinople to Traverse the World.
  2. How the Two Brothers Went on Beyond Soldaia.
  3. How the Two Brothers, After Crossing a Desert, Came to the City of Bocara, and Fell in with Certain Envoys There.
  4. How the Two Brothers Took the Envoys’ Counsel, and Went to the Court of the Great Kaan.
  5. How the Two Brothers Arrived at the Court of the Great Kaan.
  6. How the Great Kaan Asked All About the Manners of the Christians, and Particularly About the Pope of Rome.
  7. How the Great Kaan Sent the Two Brothers as His Envoys to the Pope.
  8. How the Great Kaan Gave Them a Tablet of Gold, Bearing His Orders in Their Behalf.
  9. How the Two Brothers Came to the City of Acre.
  10. How the Two Brothers Again Departed from Venice, on Their Way Back to the Great Kaan, and Took with Them Mark, the Son Of Messer Nicolas.
  11. How the Two Brothers Set Out from Acre, and Mark Along with Them.
  12. How the Two Brothers Presented Themselves Before the New Pope.
  13. How Messer Nicolo and Messer Maffeo Polo, Accompanied by Mark, Travelled to the Court of the Great Kaan.
  14. How Messer Nicolo and Messer Maffeo Polo and Marco Presented Themselves Before the Great Kaan.
  15. How the Emperor Sent Mark on an Embassy of His.
  16. How Mark Returned from the Mission Whereon he had Been Sent.
  17. How Messer Nicolo, Messer Maffeo, and Messer Marco, Asked Leave of the Great Kaan to Go Their Way.
  18. How the Two Brothers and Messer Marco Took Leave of the Great Kaan, and Returned to Their Own Country.

Book First.

Account of regions visited or heard of on the journey from the lesser Armenia to the Court of the Great Kaan at Chandu.

Book I.

  1. Here the Book Begins; and First it Speaks of the Lesser Hermenia.
  2. Concerning the Province of Turcomania.
  3. Description of the Greater Hermenia.
  4. Of Georgiania and the Kings Thereof.
  5. Of the Kingdom of Mausul.
  6. Of the Great City of Baudas, and How it was Taken.
  7. How the Calif of Baudas Took Counsel to Slay All the Christians in His Land.
  8. How the Christians Were in Great Dismay Because of what the Calif had Said.
  9. How the One-Eyed Cobler was Desired to Pray for the Christians.
  10. How the Prayer of the One-Eyed Cobler Caused the Mountain to Move.
  11. Of the Noble City of Tauris.
  12. Of the Monastery of St. Barsamo on the Borders of Tauris.
  13. Of the Great Country of Persia; with Some Account of the Three Kings.
  14. What Befell when the Three Kings Returned to Their Own Country.
  15. Of the Eight Kingdoms of Persia, and How They are Named.
  16. Concerning the Great City of Yasdi.
  17. Concerning the Kingdom of Kerman.
  18. Of the City of Camadi and its Ruins; Also Touching the Carauna Robbers.
  19. Of the Descent to the City of Hormos.
  20. Of the Wearisome and Desert Road that has Now to Be Travelled.
  21. Concerning the City of Cobinan and the Things that are Made There.
  22. Of a Certain Desert that Continues for Eight Days’ Journey.
  23. Concerning the Old Man of the Mountain.
  24. How the Old Man Used to Train His Assassins.
  25. How the Old Man Came by His End.
  26. Concerning the City of Sapurgan.
  27. Of the City of Balc.
  28. Of Taican, and the Mountains of Salt. Also of the Province of Casem.
  29. Of the Province of Badashan.
  30. Of the Province of Pashai
  31. Of the Province of Keshimur.
  32. Of the Great River of Badashan.
  33. Of the Kingdom of Cascar.
  34. Of the Great City of Samarcan.
  35. Of the Province of Yarcan.
  36. Of a Province Called Cotan.
  37. Of the Province of Pein.
  38. Of the Province of Charchan.
  39. Of the City of Lop and the Great Desert.
  40. Concerning the Great Province of Tangut.
  41. Of the Province of Camul.
  42. Of the Province of Chingintalas.
  43. Of the Province of Sukchur.
  44. Of the City of Campichu.
  45. Of the City of Etzina.
  46. Of the City of Caracoron.
  47. Of Chinghis, and How he Became the First Kaan of the Tartars.
  48. How Chinghis Mustered His People to March Against Prester John.
  49. How Prester John Marched to Meet Chinghis.
  50. The Battle Between Chinghis Kaan and Prester John.
  51. Of Those who Did Reign After Chinghis Kaan, and of the Customs of the Tartars.
  52. Concerning the Customs of the Tartars.
  53. Concerning the God of the Tartars.
  54. Concerning the Tartar Customs of War.
  55. Concerning the Administering of Justice Among the Tartars.
  56. Sundry Particulars of the Plain Beyond Caracoron.
  57. Of the Kingdom of Erguiul, and Province of Sinju.
  58. Of the Kingdom of Egrigaia.
  59. Concerning the Province of Tenduc, and the Descendants of Prester John.
  60. Concerning the Kaan’s Palace of Chagannor.
  61. Of the City of Chandu, and the Kaan’s Palace There.

Book Second.

(1.) Account of the Great Kaan Cublay; of his palaces and capital; his court, government, and sports.

(2.) Cities and provinces visited by the traveller on one journey westward from the capital to the frontiers of Mien in the direction of India.

(3.) And on another southward from the capital to Fuchu and Zayton.

Part I. — The Kaan, His Court and Capital.
  1. Of Cublay Kaan, the Great Kaan Now Reigning, and of His Great Puissance.
  2. Concerning the Revolt of Nayan, who was Uncle to the Great Kaan Cublay.
  3. How the Great Kaan Marched Against Nayan.
  4. Of the Battle that the Great Kaan Fought with Nayan.
  5. How the Great Kaan Caused Nayan to Be Put to Death.
  6. How the Great Kaan Went Back to the City of Cambaluc.
  7. How the Kaan Rewarded the Valour of His Captains.
  8. Concerning the Person of the Great Kaan.
  9. Concerning the Great Kaan’s Sons.
  10. Concerning the Palace of the Great Kaan.
  11. Concerning the City of Cambaluc.
  12. How the Great Kaan Maintains a Guard of Twelve Thousand Horse, which are Called Keshican.
  13. The Fashion of the Great Kaan’s Table at His High Feasts.
  14. Concerning the Great Feast Held by the Grand Kaan Every Year on His Birthday.
  15. Of the Great Festival which the Kaan Holds on New Year’s Day.
  16. Concerning the Twelve Thousand Barons who Receive Robes of Cloth of Gold from the Emperor on the Great Festivals, Thirteen Changes a-Piece.
  17. How the Great Kaan Enjoineth His People to Supply Him with Game.
  18. Of the Lions and Leopards and Wolves that the Kaan Keeps for the Chase.
  19. Concerning the Two Brothers who have Charge of the Kaan’s Hounds.
  20. How the Emperor Goes on a Hunting Expedition.
  21. Rehearsal of the Way the Year of the Great Kaan is Distributed.
  22. Concerning the City of Cambaluc, and its Great Traffic and Population.
  23. [Concerning the Oppressions of Achmath the Bailo, and the Plot that was Formed Against Him.]
  24. How the Great Kaan Causeth the Bark of Trees, Made into Something Like Paper, to Pass for Money Over All His Country.
  25. Concerning the Twelve Barons who are Set Over All the Affairs of the Great Kaan.
  26. How the Kaan’s Posts and Runners are Sped Through Many Lands and Provinces.
  27. How the Emperor Bestows Help on His People, when They are Afflicted with Dearth or Murrain.
  28. How the Great Kaan Causes Trees to Be Planted by the Highways.
  29. Concerning the Rice-Wine Drunk by the People of Cathay.
  30. Concerning the Black Stones that are Dug in Cathay, and are Burnt for Fuel.
  31. How the Great Kaan Causes Stores of Corn to Be Made, to Help His People Withal in Time of Dearth.
  32. Of the Charity of the Emperor to the Poor.
  33. [Concerning the Astrologers in the City of Cambaluc.]
  34. [Concerning the Religion of the Cathayans; Their Views as to the Soul; and Their Customs.
Part ii. — Journey to the West and South-West of Cathay.
  1. Here Begins the Description of the Interior of Cathay, and First of the River Pulisanghin.
  2. Account of the City of Juju.
  3. The Kingdom of Taianfu.
  4. Concerning the Castle of Caichu.
  5. How Prester John Treated the Golden King His Prisoner.
  6. Concerning the Great River Caramoran and the City of Cachanfu.
  7. Concerning the City of Kenjanfu.
  8. Concerning the Province of Cuncun, which is Right Wearisome to Travel Through.
  9. Concerning the Province of Acbalec Manzi.
  10. Concerning the Province and City of Sindafu.
  11. Concerning the Province of Tebet.
  12. Further Discourse Concerning Tebet.
  13. Concerning the Province of Caindu.
  14. Concerning the Province of Carajan.
  15. Concerning a Further Part of the Province of Carajan.
  16. Concerning the Province of Zardandan.
  17. Wherein is Related How the King of Mien and Bangala Vowed Vengeance Against the Great Kaan.
  18. Of the Battle that was Fought by the Great Kaan’s Host and His Seneschal, Against the King of Mien.
  19. Of the Great Descent that Leads Towards the Kingdom of Mien.
  20. Concerning the City of Mien, and the Two Towers that are Therein, One of Gold and the Other of Silver.
  21. Concerning the Province of Bangala.
  22. Discourses of the Province of Caugigu.
  23. Concerning the Province of Anin.
  24. Concerning the Province of Coloman.
  25. Concerning the Province of Cuiju.
Part iii. — Journey Southward Through Eastern Provinces of Cathay and Manzi.
  1. Concerning the Cities of Cacanfu and of Changlu.
  2. Concerning the City of Chinangli, and that of Tadinfu, and the Rebellion of Litan.
  3. Concerning the Noble City of Sinjumatu.
  4. Concerning the Cities of Linju and Piju.
  5. Concerning the City of Siju, and the Great River Caramoran.
  6. How the Great Kaan Conquered the Province of Manzi.
  7. Concerning the City of Coiganju.
  8. Of the Cities of Paukin and Cayu.
  9. Of the Cities of Tiju, Tinju, and Yanju.
  10. Concerning the City of Nanghin.
  11. Concerning the Very Noble City of Saianfu, and How its Capture was Effected.
  12. Concerning the City of Sinju and the Great River Kian.
  13. Concerning the City of Caiju.
  14. Of the City of Chinghianfu.
  15. Of the City of Chinginju and the Slaughter of Certain Alans There.
  16. Of the Noble City of Suju.
  17. Description of the Great City of Kinsay, which is the Capital of the Whole Country of Manzi.
  18. [Further Particulars Concerning the Great City of Kinsay.]
  19. Treating of the Great Yearly Revenue that the Great Kaan Hath from Kinsay.
  20. Of the City of Tanpiju and Others.
  21. Concerning the Kingdom of Fuju.
  22. Concerning the Greatness of the City of Fuju.
  23. Of the City and Great Haven of Zayton.

Book Third.

Japan, the archipelago, southern india, and the coasts and islands of the indian sea

  1. Of the Merchant Ships of Manzi that Sail Upon the Indian Seas.
  2. Description of the Island of Chipangu, and the Great Kaan’s Despatch of a Host Against it.
  3. What Further Came of the Great Kaan’s Expedition Against Chipangu.
  4. Concerning the Fashion of the Idols.
  5. Of the Great Country Called Chamba.
  6. Concerning the Great Island of Java.
  7. Wherein the Isles of Sondur and Condur are Spoken Of; and the Kingdom of Locac.
  8. Of the Island Called Pentam, and the City Malaiur
  9. Concerning the Island of Java the Less. The Kingdoms of Ferlec and Basma.
  10. The Kingdoms of Samara and Dagroian.
  11. Of the Kingdoms of Lambri and Fansur.
  12. Concerning the Island of Necuveran.
  13. Concerning the Island of Angamanain.
  14. Concerning the Island of Seilan.
  15. The Same Continued. The History of Sagamoni Borcan and the Beginning of Idolatry.
  16. Concerning the Great Province of Maabar, which is Called India the Greater, and is on the Mainland.
  17. Continues to Speak of the Province of Maabar.
  18. Discoursing of the Place where Lieth the Body of St. Thomas the Apostle; and of the Miracles Thereof.
  19. Concerning the Kingdom of Mutfili.
  20. Concerning the Province of Lar whence the Brahmins Come.
  21. Concerning the City of Cail.
  22. Of the Kingdom of Coilum.
  23. Of the Country Called Comari
  24. Concerning the Kingdom of Eli.
  25. Concerning the Kingdom of Melibar.
  26. Concerning the Kingdom of Gozurat.
  27. Concerning the Kingdom of Tana.
  28. Concerning the Kingdom of Cambaet.
  29. Concerning the Kingdom of Semenat.
  30. Concerning the Kingdom of Kesmacoran.
  31. Discourseth of the Two Islands Called Male and Female, and why They are So Called.
  32. Concerning the Island of Scotra.
  33. Concerning the Island of Madeigascar.
  34. Concerning the Island of Zanghibar. A Word on India in General.
  35. Treating of the Great Province of Abash which is Middle India, and is on the Mainland.
  36. Concerning the Province of Aden.
  37. Concerning the City of Esher.
  38. Concerning the City of Dufar.
  39. Concerning the Gulf of Calatu and the City So Called.
  40. Returns to the City of Hormos Whereof We Spoke Formerly.

Book Fourth

Wars among the Tartar Princes and some account of the Northern countries

  1. Concerning Great Turkey.
  2. Of Certain Battles that Were Fought by King Caidu Against the Armies of His Uncle the Great Kaan.
  3. What the Great Kaan Said to the Mischief Done by Kaidu His Nephew.
  4. Of the Exploits of King Caidu’s Valiant Daughter.
  5. How Abaga Sent His Son Argon in Command Against King Caidu.
  6. How Argon After the Battle Heard that His Father was Dead, and Went to Assume the Sovereignty as was His Right.
  7. How Acomat Soldan Set Out with His Host Against His Nephew who was Coming to Claim the Throne that Belonged to Him,
  8. How Argon Took Counsel with His Followers About Attacking His Uncle Acomat Soldan.
  9. How the Barons of Argon Answered His Address.
  10. The Message Sent by Argon to Acomat.
  11. How Acomat Replied to Argon’s Message.
  12. Of the Battle Between Argon and Acomat, and the Captivity of Argon.
  13. How Argon was Delivered from Prison.
  14. How Argon Got the Sovereignty at Last.
  15. How Acomat was Taken Prisoner.
  16. How Acomat was Slain by Order of His Nephew.
  17. How Argon was Recognised as Sovereign.
  18. How Kiacatu Seized the Sovereignty After Argon’s Death.
  19. How Baidu Seized the Sovereignty After the Death of Kiacatu.
  20. Concerning King Conchi who Rules the Far North.
  21. Concerning the Land of Darkness.
  22. Description of Rosia and its People. Province of Lac.
  23. He Begins to Speak of the Straits of Constantinople, but Decides to Leave that Matter.
  24. Concerning the Tartars of the Ponent and Their Lords.
  25. Of the War that Arose Between Alau and Barca, and the Battles that They Fought.
  26. How Barca and His Army Advanced to Meet Alau.
  27. How Alau Addressed His Followers.
  28. Of the Great Battle Between Alau and Barca.
  29. How Totamangu was Lord of the Tartars of the Ponent.
  30. Of the Second Message that Toctai Sent to Nogai, and His Reply.
  31. How Toctai Marched Against Nogai.
  32. How Toctai and Nogai Address Their People, and the Next Day Join Battle.
  33. The Valiant Feats and Victory of King Nogai.
  34. Conclusion.


  1. Geneaology of the House of Chinghiz, to end of Thirteenth Century.
  2. The Polo Families.
  3. Calendar of Documents Relating to Marco Polo and his Family.
  4. Comparative Specimens of Different Recensions of Polo’s Text.
  5. The Preface of Friar Pipino to his Latin Version of Marco Polo. (Circa 1315–1320.)
  6. Note of Mss. of Marco Polo so far as they are known.
  7. Diagram showing Filiation of Chief Mss. and Editions of Marco Polo.
  8. Bibliography of Marco Polo’s Book.
  9. Titles of Works which are cited by abbreviated References in this Book.
  10. Values of certain Moneys, Weights, and Measures, occurring in this Book.
  11. Sundry Supplementary Notes on Special Subjects. —(H.C.)


Notes and Addenda to Sir Henry Yule’s Edition, Containing the Results of Recent Research and Discovery, By Henri Cordier

Introductory Notices.
Book First.
Book Second.

Part I. — The Kaan, His Court and Capital.

Part II. — Journey to the West and South-West of Cathay.

Part III. — Journey Southward Through Eastern Provinces of Cathay and Manzi.

Book Third.
Book Fourth.

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:59