Men Go From Surrye Unto The City Of Akon In A Day.
And it was
clept some-time Ptolemais.
And it was some-time a city of
Christian men, full fair, but it is now destroyed; and it stands
upon the sea. And from Venice to Akon, by sea, is two thousand and
four score miles of Lombardy; and from Calabria, or from Sicily to
Akon, by sea, is a 1300 miles of Lombardy; and the isle of Crete is
right in the midway.
And beside the city of Akon, toward the sea, six score furlongs on
the right side, toward the south, is the Hill of Carmel, where
Elijah the prophet dwelled, and there was first the Order of Friars
Carmelites founded. This hill is not right great, nor full high.
And at the foot of this hill was some-time a good city of Christian
men, that men clept Caiffa, for Caiaphas first founded it; but it
is now all wasted. And on the left side of the Hill of Carmel is a
town, that men clepe Saffre, and that is set on another hill.
There Saint James and Saint John were born; and, in worship of them
there is a fair church. And from Ptolemais, that men clepe now
Akon, unto a great hill, that is clept Scale of Tyre, is one
hundred furlongs. And beside the city of Akon runneth a little
river, that is clept Belon.
And there nigh is the Foss of Mennon that is all round; and it is
one hundred cubits of largeness, and it is all full of gravel,
shining bright, of the which men make fair verres and clear. And
men come from far, by water in ships, and by land with carts, for
to fetch of that gravel. And though there be never so much taken
away thereof in the day, at morrow it is as full again as ever it
was; and that is a great marvel. And there is evermore great wind
in that foss, that stirreth evermore the gravel, and maketh it
trouble. And if any man do therein any manner metal, it turneth
anon to glass. And the glass, that is made of that gravel, if it
be done again into the gravel, it turneth anon into gravel as it
was first. And therefore some men say, that it is a swallow of the
Also from Akon, above-said, go men forth four journeys to the city
of Palestine, that was of the Philistines, that now is clept Gaza,
that is a gay city and a rich; and it is right fair and full of
folk, and it is a little from the sea. And from this city brought
Samson the strong the gates upon an high land, when he was taken in
that city, and there he slew in a palace the king and himself, and
great number of the best of the Philistines, the which had put out
his eyen and shaved his head, and imprisoned him by treason of
Dalida his paramour. And therefore he made fall upon them a great
hall, when they were at meat.
And from thence go men to the city of Cesarea, and so to the Castle
of Pilgrims, and so to Ascalon; and then to Jaffa, and so to
And whoso will go by land through the land of Babylon, where the
soldan dwelleth commonly, he must get grace of him and leave to go
more siker through those lands and countries.
And for to go to the Mount of Sinai, before that men go to
Jerusalem, they shall go from Gaza to the Castle of Daire. And
after that, men come out of Syria, and enter into wilderness, and
there the way is full sandy; and that wilderness and desert lasteth
eight journeys, but always men find good inns, and all that they
need of victuals. And men clepe that wilderness Achelleke. And
when a man cometh out of that desert, he entereth into Egypt, that
men clepe Egypt-Canopac, and after other language, men clepe it
Morsyn. And there first men find a good town, that is clept
Belethe; and it is at the end of the kingdom of Aleppo. And from
thence men go to Babylon and to Cairo.
OF MANY NAMES OF SOLDANS, AND OF THE TOWER OF BABYLON
AT Babylon there is a fair church of our Lady, where she dwelled
seven year, when she fled out of the land of Judea for dread of
King Herod. And there lieth the body of Saint Barbara the virgin
and martyr. And there dwelled Joseph, when he was sold of his
brethren. And there made Nebuchadnezzar the king put three
children into the furnace of fire, for they were in the right truth
of belief, the which children men clept Anania, Azariah, Mishael,
as the Psalm of BENEDICITE saith: but Nebuchadnezzar clept them
otherwise, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, that is to say, God
glorious, God victorious, and God over all things and realms: and
that was for the miracle, that he saw God's Son go with the
children through the fire, as he said.
There dwelleth the soldan in his Calahelyke (for there is commonly
his seat) in a fair castle, strong and great, and well set upon a
rock. In that castle dwell alway, to keep it and to serve the
soldan, more then 6000 persons, that take all their necessaries off
the soldan's court. I ought right well to know it; for I dwelled
with him as soldier in his wars a great while against the Bedouins.
And he would have married me full highly to a great prince's
daughter, if I would have forsaken my law and my belief; but I
thank God, I had no will to do it, for nothing that he behight me.
And ye shall understand that the soldan is lord of five kingdoms,
that he hath conquered and appropred to him by strength.
Enter page number
Page 8 of 81
Words from 7153 to 8156