Of Asia, and of the Prouinces of hit. Isidorus, libro quarto decimo. Capitulum undecimum.
ISIDORUS rehersethe that Asia toke that name of the name of a woman, somme tyme inhabitenge in hit, whiche conteynethe mony prouinces, of whom hit schalle be ex|pressede by ordre. Inde is terminate from the este with the*. [Of Ynde and of [the] mervayles of h[it].] rysenge of the sonne, of the sowthe with the occean, of the parte weste with the floode of Ynde, and of the northe with the hille callede Caucasus. That lond berrethe twyes corne in oon yere, bryngenge furthe men of a spottede colour, hauenge in hit nyȝhtengales, elephauntes, pepir, precious stones, berilles, crisoprassus, carbuncles, adamantes, and hilles of golde. Neuerthelesse hyt is as impossible to go to theyme for dragones and grifynnes and other diuerse wonders of men. Ynde is moste amonge alle oþer regiones Page 81, vol.1 moste plentuous, moste in peple, hauenge in hit moste mer|uayles and wondres. There is a figge tre soe expande, that mony multitudes of peple may sytte vnder the latitude of oon figge tre. The plente of the sonne, the temperaunce of heuyn, and habundaunce of water do cause that. Tullius de Tusculanis quæstionibus. Ynde hathe mony kynges and peple. Somme peple tylle the erthe, somme vse marchandise, somme cheuallery, somme intende to sapience and discipline. There be trees of so semely stature that vnnethe the altitude of theym may be atteynede by the schote of an arowe, the space betwene ij. knottes of a reede makethe a bootte for iij. men. There be men also of v. cubites, whiche dye not, neither waile. Also there be men of the measure of a cubite callede pigmeis, whiche gendre in the iiijthe yere of theire age, and wexe hoore in the vthe: these men gedrede in a multitude, syttenge on wedres, fiȝhte ageyne cranes, whose nestes and egges thei breke leste their enmyes be multipliede ouer hugely Page 83, vol.1 on theyme. Also there be men hauenge hedes lyke dogges, whiche be callede Cynocephali,*. [Cenophali, Harl. MS.] berkenge more like to dogges then to the voices of men, clothede with skynnes of wylde [folio 25b] bestes y-armede with teithe and talaundes, lyffenge by haw|kenge and huntenge. Also somme men lyve there oonly by odour. Also somme of that cuntre wexe hoore in yowthe and blakke in their age. Also in somme partes of Ynde be men hauenge holowe fyngers in their hondes. Petrus, capitulo 196.*. [The reference should be to Cic. Tusc. Quæst. lib. v. c. 27.] There is a peple in Ynde to whom hit is lawefulle to haue mony wyfes; but, the man dedde, alle his wifes comme to gedre, that wife that was luffedde beste of hym schalle be buryede with hym, hauenge that for a grete solace. Petrus, 196. The trees of the sonne and of the moone be in Ynde, by the apples of whom prestes lyffede by vc. yeres. Thei were namede the trees of the sonne and of the moone, for as soone as the sonne sende Page 85, vol.1 furthe his beames and towchede the altitude of eny of theyme, alle the tre movede and ȝafe answeres to men stond|enge abowte. Hit was doen in lyke wyse to the trees of the moone. Hit was interdicte by those trees to kynge Alexander, that he scholde not entre in to Babylon. Isidorus, libro quinto decimo. Offir is an yle off Ynde, where is plente of golde, to whom hit is goen from the grete see by the Redde see.