the end of the year 1271, when he leaves for its first trip with his father, Marco is
only seventeen years old. For recall, the pope is not any more, and it is a new pope who is
Grégoire X. And though arrived in Acra, the expedition turned back
to entrust the message of Kubilaï Kan. Received with ceremonial, the new pope entrusted to them
letters and presents, such as two Dominican (brother Niccolo de Vicence and Guillaume
brother of Tripoli). But feared crossing the Sultan of Egypt, whose rumour made state of
a raid, the two brothers decided to return.
he Polo followed the
first traces, by sea, until the Crimea. Then crossed Armenia, Persia and Afghanistan,
while following the Silk Road. They took the same way as Niccolo and Matteo ten years before,
making rounding by north, in the south of the Caucasus, and the kingdom of Georgia.
They skirted the Caspian Sea to join Tabriz, then went down in Hormuz, in the border of the
Cilicia (Little Armenia)
* * *
they make poor deals and decide to go up towards Kerman. While passing by Herat, and Balkh,
they arrive at Badakhshan. They remain one year, because Marco fall sick. Once moving again,
they skirt the high mountains chain of Pamirs.
Then enter the province of Sinkiang, to China, and arrive to Samarkand, very noble and grandissime
quoted, where very beautiful gardens and all the fruits are that man can wish. (chap. LII - 52).
Then provinces of Yarcan, Cotan and Ciarcian (act. Turkistan). While arriving at the city of Lop
(perhaps disappeared today), they discovered the Gobi Desert, and crossed it in about thirty days. And
then the province of Tangut, and others still...
History continues here