The Garden Guide

Book: Journey and Embassy to Samarkand
Chapter: Azerbijan

Garden banquet Samarkand

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After the lord, and his women, had drunk a great deal, they began to eat many sheep and horses, roasted whole, which were served up on very large skins, like printed leather, which men carried round; and there was so much that it took three hundred men and more to bring it, and there was a great noise when they brought it before the lord. They then put it into the basins, and served it up without bread, according to the custom; and all this time cartloads of meat did not cease to arrive, and camels with panniers full of meat, which was placed on the ground, in great heaps, and eaten by the rest of the people. Afterwards they brought many tables, without cloths, on which were dishes of meat cooked with rice, and bread made with sugar. As night came on they placed many lighted lanterns before the lord; and they commenced eating and drinking again, as well the men as the ladies, so that the feast lasted all night; and during the night two relations of the lord were married. When the ambassadors saw that this would last all the night, and they had had as much as they wanted, they returned to their lodgings, while the lord and his ladies continued their revelry {Ali of Yezd mentions that the Frank ambassadors were invited to this banquet, 'for,' says he, 'even the kasses, the smallest of fish, have their places in the sea.'}.