The Garden Guide

Book: Journey and Embassy to Samarkand
Chapter: Viii Ambassadors Return

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On Sunday, the 21st of December, they arrived at a great city called Baubartel, belonging to the government of Khorassan (Iran/Afganistan) , which is at the foot of snow peaked mountains, and is a very cold place, and the city was in a plain, and had no wall. Here they gave the ambassadors horses and food, and all that they required; and they remained until Wednesday. On Thursday, the 25th of December, being Christmas day, which ended the year of our Lord 1405, they departed, and travelled over high snowy mountains for five days, and the land was thinly inhabited, and very cold. On Thursday, the 1st of January, they came to a very large city, which was on a plain beyond these mountains, and was called Cabria, and it had no wall. They remained here until Saturday, and this city is in the land of Media. On Saturday, the 3rd of January, they departed, and travelled over plains, in a hot country, without any ice or snow. On Monday, they came to a city called Jagaro, without any wall, and they were now on the same road that they had travelled over in coming. On Wednesday, they again set out, and travelled over plains, without coming to any habitation during the whole day, and they passed the night in a large building, near a ruined castle, and the building was also deserted. On Thursday, they departed, and travelled the whole day without seeing any inhabited place; but in the evening they came to a village; and the road, during the last two days, had traversed a hilly country, without snow, and very hot. On Friday they travelled all day, without seeing any habitation; but on Saturday, at the hour of vespers, they came to a large city called Bostan. On Monday, they arrived at Damghan, and when they were about a league from that city, a strong cold wind sprung up, the day being clear, and the cold was so great, that it was very wonderful how the men and beasts could endure it. When they came to the city, they inquired concerning that strong wind; and they were told that in a hill above the city, there was a fountain, and that when any dirty thing fell into it, a fierce wind rose up, which did not cease until it was clean again. The following day some men were sent with staves and hooks to clean the fountain, upon which the wind went down. The ambassadors rested for two days. On Wednesday, the 15th of January, they departed, and left the road to the castle of Perescote, by which they had come, because it went over snowy mountains. They took the left hand road, and travelled over a plain. In the night they slept at a large deserted building, and, travelling for two days without coming to any inhabited place, they reached a great city called Cenan {Semnoon, the first town in Khorassan (Iran/Afganistan) , coming from Tehran. Close round the walls there is a little cultivation, but the rest of the plain is brown and desolate up to the feet of the mountains, which frown in gloomy grandeur around it. It is a wretched poverty stricken place.- Fraser; Ferier}, on Saturday, at the hour of vespers. Here the land of Media ended, and Persia commenced. This city is in a plain, at the foot of some high mountains. It is very populous, and has no wall. On Tuesday, they came to a small castle, and there was much snow on the road. They then travelled over hills, where there are many springs of brackish water; and on Friday, the 23rd of January, they came to a great city called Vatami, which was nearly depopulated, and without any wall, and they call this land, the land of Rei. In this land there was a great Meerza, who was son-in-law to Timur Beg, having married his daughter. He was with another great knight named Baxam Beg, and the son-in-law of Timur Beg was named Cumalexa Meerza. These were the people who took charge of the servants of the ambassadors, when they were sick, and they found them all there, except two who had died. Those who survived had been kindly treated by these lords, who always provided them with what they wanted. On Monday the ambassadors dined with the son-in-law of the lord, who gave them fresh horses, and on Tuesday they departed.