TO BENGAL, AND THEN ONWARD
SHIPWRECKED IN MAABAR
this, we sailed with the vessel, which had waited for us, to the Maabar
districts. But when we had made half the voyage, the wind rose upon us,
and we were near drowning. We then cut down our mast, and every moment
expected death. Providence, however, was favourable to us; for there came
boats from the infidel inhabitants of the Maabar, which brought us to land.
I then told them that I was the messenger of their King, and that he was
my relation; upon which they landed us, and treated us very honourably.
They wrote to the King on this, as I also did, telling him what had happened.
After three days came an Emir from the Sultan, with a number of cavalry;
for me they brought a palanquin and ten horses, to carry me. We then set
out for the presence of the King, Ghiath Oddin El Damgani, who at this
time enjoyed the supreme power in the Maabar districts.
parts formerly belonged to the Emperor of Hindustan, the Sultan Mohammed.
They were then seized by the Sherif, Jalal Oddin Hasan Shah, who held them
for five years. After this his brother's son, Kotb Oddin, came to the supreme
rule; but he was killed, in consequence of his bad conduct. After this,
one of the Emirs of the Sherif Jalal Oddin came into power, that is, this
Ghiath Oddin, who married a daughter of Jalal Oddin; the mother of which
daughter was sister to my wife when I was Judge in Dehli.
I had got near his house, he sent one of his chamberlains to meet me; and,
when I entered, he received me graciously, and gave me a seat. He was at
this tine in his camp; so he erected three tents for me opposite those
of his Judge, Sadar El Zaman. He also sent me a carpet, provisions, and
was a very warlike prince; and as he happened to be in the neighbourhood
of an infidel, whose army amounted to one hundred and twenty thousand men,
an attempt was made to take these Maabar districts out of the hands of
the Mohammedans. This infidel prince accordingly made an attack on the
town of Kian, which belongs to the Maabar, and in which there were six
thousand soldiers, put them to the rout, and besieged it. This was reported
to the Sultan, and that the town was nearly lost. He then marched out with
his forces, which amounted to seven thousand, every man of whom took off
his turban, and hung it upon the neck of his horse, which is, in India,
an intimation that they are bent upon death. They then made a charge upon
the infidel king, while his men were taking their mid-day repose and besieging
Kian, and put them to the rout. The greater part of them was killed; nor
did one, except the cavalry, or those who concealed themselves in the woods,
escape. The Sultan was taken prisoner, his wealth seized, himself afterwards
killed, and I saw his body hanging against a wall in the town.
THE FAKEERS OF PATTAN
left the King's station, until he should return from his expedition, and
came to the city of Fattan, which is large and beautiful, and situated
upon the sea-shore. Its harbour is truly wonderful. In this city there
are grapes and good pomegranates. I saw in this place the Sheikh Salih
Mohammed of Nisabur, one of the fanatical Fakeers who suffer their hair
to flow down loosely upon their shoulders. This man had seven foxes with
him, all of which ate and sat with the Fakeers. There were also with him
thirty other Fakeers, one of whom had a gazelle with a lion in the same
place, which was unmolested by the lion.
proceeded for the purpose of presenting myself to the Sultan at the city
of Maturah, which is large, and not unlike Dehli. In this I found a great
mortality, which had destroyed the greatest part of the inhabitants. The
King, Ghiath Oddin, returned at this time to his palace sick, and soon
after died. He appointed his brother's son, Nasir Oddin, to be his successor.
In this place, too, I caught a fever which nearly destroyed me; but, as
Providence restored me to health, I requested permission of the King Nasir
Oddin to proceed on my journey, which was granted.
returned to the city of Fattan (Pattan), and thence by sea to Kawlam, one
of the cities of Malabar, where I remained three months, on account of
the sickness which had happened to me. From this place I set out to visit
the Sultan Jamal Oddin of Hinaur, who had received a promise from me to
return. The infidel Hindoos, however, came out against us in twelve war
vessels, between (the last place mentioned and) Fakanun; and, giving us
severe battle, at length overcame us, and took our ship. They then stripped
us of all. From me they took all the jewels and rubies given me by the
King of Battala, as well as the additional presents of the pious Sheikhs,
leaving me only one pair of trowsers: and thus were we landed nearly naked.
I then returned to Kalikut, and entered one of the mosques. When some of
the lawyers and merchants, who had known me in Dehli, heard of my situation,
they clothed and received me honourably.
I then thought of returning to the Emperor of Hindustan: but I was afraid
of his severity, and that he might ask me, why I had separated from the
present. I then went on board another ship, and this pleased me, and returned
to the Maldive Islands, on account of the little boy I had left there.
When I had seen him, however, I left him in kindness to his mother.
A MEETING WITH A SHEIKH IN BENGAL
Vizier then furnished me with provisions, and I sailed for Bengal, which
is an extensive and plentiful country. I never saw a country in which provisions
were so cheap. I there saw one of the religious of the west, who told me,
that he had bought provisions for himself and his family for a whole year
with eight dirhems. The first town I entered here was Sadkawan, which is
large and situated on the sea-shore.
king of Bengal was at this time Fakhr Oddin: he was an eminent man, kind
to strangers and persons of the Sufi persuasion: but I did not present
myself to him, nor did I see him, because he was opposed to the Emperor,
and was then in open rebellion against him. From Sadkawan I travelled for
the mountains of Kamru, which are at the distance of one month from this
place. These are extensive mountains, and they join the mountains of Thibet,
where there are musk gazelles. The inhabitants of these mountains are,
like the Turks, famous for their attention to magic.
in visiting these mountains was, to meet one of the saints, namely, the
Sheikh Jalal Oddin of Tebriz. This Sheikh was one of the greatest saints,
and one of those singular individuals who had the power of working great
and notable miracles. He had also lived to a remarkably great age. He told
me, that he had seen El Mostaasim the Calif in Bagdad: and his companions
told me afterwards that he died at the age of one hundred and fifty years;
that he fasted through a space of about forty years, never breaking his
fast till he had fasted throughout ten successive days. He had a cow, on
the milk of which he usually breakfasted; and his practice was to sit up
all night. It was by his means that the people of these mountains became
Mohammedans; and on this account it was, that he, resided among them.
of his companions told me, that on the day before his death he invited
them all to come to him; he then said to them: To-morrow I depart from
you, Deo volente [=God willing], and my vicegerent with you is God besides
whom there is no other God. When the evening of the following day had arrived,
and he had performed the last prostration of the evening prayer, he was
taken by God. On the side of the cave in which he had resided was found
a grave ready dug, and by it a, winding sheet and burial spices. The people
then washed and buried him in them, and said their prayers over him.
I was on my journey to see this Sheikh, four of his companions met me at
the distance of two days, and told me, that the Sheikh had said to the
Fakeers who were with them, A western religious traveller is coming to
you: go out and meet him. It was, said they, by the order of the Sheikh
that we came to you; notwithstanding the fact that he had no knowledge
whatever of my circumstances, except what he had by divine revelation.
I went with them accordingly to his cell without the cave, near which there
was no building whatever. The people of this country are partly Mohammedans,
and partly infidels; both of whom visit the Sheikh and bring valuable presents.
On these the Fakeers, and other persons who arrive here, subsist. As for
the Sheikh himself, he confines himself to the milk of his cow, as already
I presented myself to him, he arose and embraced me. He then asked one
of my country and travels, of which I informed him. He then said to the
Fakeers: Treat him honourably. They accordingly carried me to the cell,
and kept me as their guest for three days. On the day I presented myself
to the Sheikh he had on a religious garment, made of fine goat's hair.
I was astonished at it, and said, to myself, I wish the Sheikh would give
it me. When I went in to bid him farewell, he arose and went to the side
of the cave, took off the goat's hair garment, as well as the fillet of
his head and his sleeves, and put them on me.
Fakeers then told me, that it was not his practice to put on this garment:
and that he had put it on only on the occasion of my coming, for he had
said to them: This garment will be wished for by a Mogrebine; but an infidel
king shall take it from him, and shall give it to our brother Borhan Oddin
of Sagirj, whose it is, and for whose use it has been made. When I was
told this by the Fakeers, I said: As I have a blessing from the Sheikh,
and as he has clothed me with his own clothes, I will never enter with
them into the presence of any king either infidel or Moslem.
LATER EVENTS IN CHINA AS PREDICTED
BY THE SHEIKH
this I left the Sheikh. It happened, however, after a considerable time,
that I entered the country of China, and went as far as the city of Khansa.
Upon a certain occasion, when my companions had all left me on account
of the press of the multitude, and I had this garment on, andwas on the
road, I met the Vizier with a large body. He happened to cast his eyes
upon me, and called me to him. He then took me by the hand, and asked me
why I had come to this country; nor did he leave me until we came to the
King's palace. I wished to go, but he would not allow me to do so, but
took me in to the King, who interrogated me about the Mohammedan sovereigns;
to all which I gave answers. He then cast his eyes upon the garment, and
began to praise it, and said to the Vizier: Take it off him. To this I
could offer no resistance, so he took it; but ordered me ten dresses of
honour, and a horse with its furniture, and money for my necessities. This
changed my mind. I then called to mind the words of the Sheikh, that an
infidel king should take it; and my wonder was increased.
a year had elapsed, I entered the palace of the King of China at a Khan
Balik, my object was to visit the cell of the Sheikh Borhan Oddin of Sagirj.
I did so, and found him reading, and the very goat's-hair garment I have
been mentioning was on him. I was surprised at this, and was turning the
garment over in my hand, when he said, Why do you turn the garment over,
do you know it? I said, I do; it is the garment which the King of Khansa
took from me. He answered: This garment was made for me by my brother Jalal
Oddin, for my own use, who also wrote to me to say that the garment would
come to me by such a person. He then produced the letter, which I read,
and could not help wondering at the exactness of the Sheikh. I then told
him of the origin of the story. He answered, My brother Jalal Oddin was
superior to all this: he had a perfect control over human nature;but now
he has been taken to God's mercy. He then said, I have been told, that
he performed the morning prayer every day in Mecca; that he went on the
pilgrimage annually, because he was never to be seen on the two days of
Arafat and the feast, no one knowing whither he had gone.
ONWARD TO JAVA, AND A DOG-MOUTHED RACE
however, I had bid farewell to the Sheikh Jalal Oddin, I travelled to the
city of Jabnak, which is very large and beautiful; it is divided by the
river which descends from the mountains of Kamru, called the Blue River.
By this one may travel to Bengal and the countries of Laknouti. Upon it
are gardens, mills, and villages, which it refreshes and gladdens like
the Nile of Egypt. The inhabitants of these parts are infidels, tributary
to the Mohammedans. By this river I travelled for fifteen days, proceeding
from road to road, till I came to the city of Sutirkawan. Here I found
a junk which was proceeding to Java (Sumatra), between which and this place
there is a distance of forty days.
therefore, and after a voyage of fifty days, came to the countries of the
Barahnakar, a people who have mouths like those of dogs. This is a vile
race. They have no religion, neither that of the Hindoos nor any other.
They live in houses made of reeds upon the sea-shore. Their trees are those
of the banana, the fawfel and the betel-nut. Their men are of the same
form with ourselves, except that their mouths are like those of dogs; but
the women have mouths like other folks. The men go naked, without the least
covering whatever: one only among them (I saw) who had put his virilia
into a painted hollow reed, which was hung to his belly. The women cover
themselves with the leaves of trees. One who had had much intercourse with
them, told me that they copulate like beasts, without the least concealment.
The men will have thirty or more wives; but adultery is not committed.
Should any one, however, be convicted of this crime, his punishment is,
to be hanged till he is dead, unless he brings either a friend or slave
who is willing to be hanged for him: he may then go free. The sentence
for the woman is, that the King shall command all his servants to trample
upon her one after another, till she dies: she is then thrown into the
sea. The women resist the men to a degree beyond their nature.
the men, from their baseness of character, and fear about the women, will
not allow any one of the merchants to proceed on the sea in the front of
their houses. They will merely consult and trade with them, carrying them
fresh water on the backs of elephants. When we put into their port, their
King came to us riding upon an elephant, upon which there was something
like a saddle-cloth made of skin. The King himself was dressed in goat-skin,
the hairy part of which he had turned outwards; upon his head was a turban
of coloured silk, and in his hand a short silver spear. With him was a
number of his relations riding upon elephants, and using a language which
no one could understand, unless he had been some time among them. We sent
him the usual present: for every ship putting into any port of India is
expected to send a present to the magistrate of the place. Now these people
buy and receive as presents, she-elephants, over which they put their saddle-cloth,
but do not completely clothe them. But any ship not giving them their present,
they will so work upon with their magic, that the sea will rise upon it,
and it will perish; or they will return upon and injure it.