No house aristocrat of the days of late Middle Ages did not do without the most popular work called the "Book of Miracles of Light". Its author - the Venetian merchant Marco Polo - for his life managed to visit almost all the lands, known to the Europeans at that time. "The Book of Miracles of the World" for centuries was one of the most discussed works, served as a source of inspiration for the discovers and a guide for the emerging profession of geographers. And even today, it enjoys popularity: first, this work contains a huge reservoir of historical information, and secondly, it's just an entertaining view of medieval countries in the eyes of the Venetian merchant.
Marco Polo went to his long journey aged 17 years. In Venice in Jerusalem, his father and uncle were taken with him in Jerusalem - famous merchants. By and large, it was they who showed young Venetian all those countries whose impressions he described in the book. By the beginning of the 13th century, the Venice Republic has significantly expanded its merchants, and its merchants sought to establish new trading routes. Father and Uncle Marco Polo were in the forefront of research missions. In 1260, they arrived in Crimea, after which, together with Caravan, they got to Bukhara - one of the largest at the time of the city of Central Asia. Just then, there were active combat actions around the buchara, so the brothers were forced to spend several years inside the city walls before going along with one of the Persian caravans in a distant journey to the mythical for Europeans China China. Reaching the place, they found that China is not a mythical at all, but a real country, and in its capital - Beijing - the Mongolian Khan Khubilay settled, who tried the defeat of the Chinese Imperial Dynasty Sun. The polo brothers were well accepted by the Vladyka half of the world and, loaded with gifts, went back to bring Hanu oil from the tomb of Jesus in Jerusalem.
Returning, they took a 17-year-old brand with them, and they went to execute Kubila's request. It is from Jerusalem in 1271 and began the legendary journey Marco, which the whole europe later learned. Previously, due to the permanent attacks of the robbers, the Silk Road, one of the branches of which ran the path of the Polo family, was full of dangers, and only desperate bravers were solved on it. Now the entire trading route was under the care of the Mongolian Empire, which ensures the safety of all travelers, which largely predetermined the success of the campaign. On its way to the subwayless Venetian visited the territory of modern Armenia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, India, Indonesia and China. Many Marco Polo learned from the merchants encountered.
This is interesting: In those days, Persian was considered the international language of trade, so the Venetian's own language with their foreign colleagues who owned it easily.
20 years - exactly so much lasted by Marko Polo's journey. He lived most of this time at the Palace of Mongolian Khan, who accepted him with a big welcome. For several years, European even performed the responsibilities of the governor of one of the Chinese cities. Over the years, he learned a lot about the extensive possessions of the Mongolian Empire and bordering countries. First of all, of course, Marco interested trading opportunities with these regions. Finally, in 1291, Marco Polo was able to persuade Khan to give him the opportunity to return to his homeland.
Arriving in Venice, the traveler did not sit idle, but went volunteer in the ranks of the Venetian army, fought with the Genoesers. In one of the battles, Marko was captured, after which he was detained. Surprisingly, but this event was fateful for all world history. In prison, Marco Polo met the Italian writer Rusticello. Prisoners began to fervent free time, recording stories about Venetian travel around the world. The merchant told the writer about other people's cultures and countries, and he had thoughts and memories of the art form.
The stories Marco Polo, who came to freedom after 2 years, trembled all of Europe. Knowledge of Catholic countries about the peoples living outside the Mediterranean were extremely scarce and full of prejudice. For example, it was believed that all the Mongols of the Mongol - Wild Bears. And in the "Book of Miracles of Light", they seemed quite developed civilization with severe laws and orders in the whole state, which could only envy Europe. About India, the inhabitants of the Old World knew only on the campaigns of Alexander Macedonsky, from which more than one and a half thousand years have passed, and China has been presented at all as a certain mythical non-existent country. Actually, that is why Nobody believed Marco Polo.
But, as often happens, recognition to the Venetian has come after his death. More and more ingenic merchants confirmed information from the book, the knowledge of Europeans about the world has become more and more. The development of typography made it possible to make a work available for a rich class of people, and not just for the elect. In the end, the "Book of Wonderland" began to be used as a geographical guide: the notes of the Venetian were inspired by researchers of distant lands, Columbus himself had a copy of this book with him, going into search of India. And Marco Polo took an outstanding place in history and began to be considered the first traveler.
Although it would be more correct to consider Marco Polo not the first traveler, but the first person who wrote a book about the journey. Many merchants passed to him by the same routes connected to Europe with Asia, and contacts between Europe and China took place even during the Roman Empire. Moreover, some modern researchers questioned the journey of the Venetian merchant: there are too many cultural features to which Marco Polo was obliged to pay attention to the book. For example, no word is not told about the use of hieroglyphs, nor about the Great Wall of China, nor the famous Chinese china and tea. There are frequent confusion and with dates of historical events. Sometimes it seems that the European traveler wrote all his book, relying on the stories of other merchants who really traveled to distant lands. In the Mongolian and Chinese historical chronicles of the time and does not meet the information about Marco Polo - only some merchants from the West appear, which could well come from, for example, Novgorod lands. On the other hand, the geographical description of the travel route does not cause doubts about their accuracy. Be that as it may, the "Book of Miracles of Light" had a huge impact on many generations of Europeans, pushing them to research new corners of the planet. What is more surprising, the book for 8 centuries remains in demand and popular with readers.