Its skin is an inch thick." Giraffe is the iranised form of the
arabic zuraefa. Mention is made of giraffes by Chinese authors at Aden
and Mekka. Cf. FERRAND, J. Asiatique, July-August, 1918, pp. 155-158.
XXXIV., p. 422.
We read in the Tao i chi lio: "This country [Ts'eng yao lo] is to the
south-west of the Ta Shih (Arabs). There are no trees on the coast; most
of the land is saline. The arable ground is poor, so there is but little
grain of any kind, and they mostly raise yams to take its place.
"If any ship going there to trade carries rice as cargo, it makes very
"The climate is irregular. In their usages they have the rectitude of
"Men and women twist up their hair; they wear a short seamless shirt. The
occupation of the people is netting birds and beasts for food.
"They boil sea-water to make salt and ferment the juice of the sugar-cane
to make spirits. They have a ruler.
"The native products comprise red sandal-wood, dark red sugar-cane,
elephants' tusks, ambergris, native gold, ya tsui tan-fan, lit.,
'duck-bill sulphate of copper.'
"The goods used in trading are ivory boxes, trade silver, coloured satins,
and the like." (ROCKHILL, T'oung Pao, XVI., 1915, pp. 622-3.) Cf. CHAU
JU-KWA, p. 126.
XXXIV., p. 423. "There is a great deal of trade, and many merchants and
vessels go thither. But the staple trade of the Island is elephants'
teeth, which are very abundant; and they have also much ambergris, as
whales are plentiful."
Chau Ju-kwa has, p. 126: "The products of the country [Ts'oeng-pa] consist
of elephants' tusks, native gold, ambergris and yellow sandal-wood."
XXXVI., p. 438.
In the Ying yai sheng lan we read that "the kingdom (of A-tan) is on the
sea-coast. It is rich and prosperous, the people follow the doctrine of
the Moslims and their speech is Arabic. Their tempers are overbearing and
violent. They have seven to eight thousand well-trained soldiers, horse
and foot, whom the neighbouring countries fear." (W.W. ROCKHILL, T'oung
Pao XVI., 1915, p. 607.) There is a description of the giraffe under the
name of K'i lin; it "has forelegs over nine feet long, its hind ones are
about six feet. Beside its ears grow fleshy horns. It has a cow's tail and
a deer's body. It eats millet, beans, and flour cakes" (p. 609). In the
Si Yang Chao kung tien lu (1520 A.D.), we have a similar description:
"Its front legs are nine feet long, its hind legs six feet. Its hoofs have
three clefts, it has a flat mouth. Two short fleshy horns rise from the
back of the top of its head. It has a cow's tail and a deer's body. This
animal is called K'i lin; it eats grain of any kind." (Ibid.) Cf.
FERRAND, J. Asiatique, July-Aug., 1918, pp. 155-158.
XXXVI., p. 439.
At the time of Chau Ju-kwa, Aden was perhaps the most important port of
Arabia for the African and Arabian trade with India and the countries
beyond. It seems highly probable that the Ma-li-pa of the Chinese must be
understood as including Aden, of which they make no mention whatsoever,
but which was one of "the great commercial centres of the Arabs." HIRTH
and ROCKHILL, p. 25 n.
XXXVI., pp. 442 seq.
THE CITY OF ESHER.
Shehr, a port on the Hadramaut coast, is mentioned by Chau Ju-kwa under
the name of Shi ho among the dependencies of the country of the Ta-shi
(Arabs.). (HIRTH and ROCKHILL, p. 116.)
XXXVIII., pp. 444-445.
We read in the Ying yai sheng lan: "This country [Tsu fa erh] is between
the sea and the mountains. To the east and south is nothing but the sea.
To the north and west are ranges of mountains. One reaches it from the
kingdom of Ku-li (Calicut) journeying north-westward for ten days and
nights. It has no walled towns or villages. The people all follow the
religion of the Moslims. Their physical appearance is good, their culture
is great, the language sincere.
"The native products are frankincense, which is the sap of a tree. There
is also dragon's blood, aloes, myrrh, an-hsi-hsiang (benzoin), liquid
storax, muh-pieh-tzu (Momordica cochinchinensis), and the like, all of
which they exchange for Chinese hempen cloth, silks, and china-ware."
(ROCKHILL, T'oung Pao, XVI., 1915, pp. 611-612.)
The Sing ch'a sheng lan mentions: "The products are the tsu-la-fa
(giraffe), gold coins, leopards, ostriches, frankincense, ambergris."
(Ibid., p. 614.)
Dufar is mentioned by Chau Ju-kwa under the name of Nu-fa among the
dependencies of the country of the Ta-shi (Arabs). (HIRTH and ROCKHILL,
pp. 116, 121.)
XXXVIII., pp. 445-449.
Chau Ju-kwa (HIRTH and ROCKHILL, pp. 195-196) tells us: Ju hiang ('milk
incense'), or huen-lu-hiang, comes from the three Ta-shi countries of
Ma-lo-pa, Shi-ho, and Nu-fa, from the depths of the remotest mountain
valleys. The tree which yields this drug may, on the whole, be compared to
the sung (pine). Its trunk is notched with a hatchet, upon which the
resin flows out, and when hardened, turns into incense, which is gathered
and made into lumps. It is transported on elephants to the Ta-shi (on the
coast); the Ta-shi load it upon their ships for barter against other goods
in San-fo-ts'i: and it is for this reason that the incense is commonly
collected at San-fo-ts'i [the three ports of the Hadhranaut coast].
"When the foreign merchants come to that place to trade, the Customs
authorities, according to the relative strength of its fragrance,
distinguish thirteen classes of incense.