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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

Marco Polo (1254–1324)

Polo, Marco. A famous Italian traveler; born at Venice, 1254; died there, 1324. He accompanied his father and his uncle, Venetian traders, 1271, on their second journey to the court of Kublai, the Khan of Tartary. Marco won the favor of Kublai, and was taken into his service: he was employed on various important missions to the remotest parts of the Khan’s dominions, and thus collected information regarding the countries and their inhabitants. The three Venetians started on their return home, 1292, by way of Cochin-China, Sumatra, Ceylon, Ormus, Trebizond, and Constantinople, reaching Venice in 1295. Marco commanded a Venetian galley in the war with Genoa, and was taken prisoner, 1298; while in prison he dictated to Rusticiano of Pisa an account of his travels, which Rusticiano wrote out in French and nine years later revised and amended. The title of the book is simply ‘The Book of Marco Polo.’ About 80 MS. copies of it are extant, differing each from each considerably.