¶Of India. chap. 73.
INde is a Countrey in East Asia, and hath that name of the Riuer Indus, and is cloased therewith in the West. This Countrey stretcheth from the South side into the East, and out of the North vnto the Mount Caucasus. Therein are manye manner of men•, and Townes, and also the Ilande Tra∣bo, fult of precious stones, and Ele∣phauts.
Page [unnumbered]Therein be also the Ilands Grisa, and Arge, that are plenteous and rich of gold and of siluer, and also profitable in trées that neuer léese their leaues. And in In∣die be most noble riuers, Ganges, Indus, and Hippanes, that adorne the Coun∣tries of Inde. Also Inde is most whole∣some in Westerne winde, and beareth corne twice a yeare. Therein be men of dyed coulour, and great Elephants, and Unicornes, and Popiniayes, and Hebe∣ous a trée, that so is called, Cinamom, Pepper, and a réede that smelleth full •••éete. It sendeth out thereof precious stones, Berillus, Chrisoprassus, Carbun∣cles, Adamantes, Margarites, and Uni∣ons, that great Ladies so feruentlye de∣sire. There be hills of golde, and it is impossible to come thereto for dragons and Griphous, and for many manner of men wonderfully shapen, as Isido. saith: and all these foresaid words be his, libro decimo quinto. Also among all Coun∣tries and landes of the world, Inde is greatest, most rich, most mightie, & most full of people. Therefore Plinius. li. 6. ca. 19. telleth wonders of the might & mul∣titude of the Indes. And he saith, that in Inde be many kings, and some of them hath vnder him foure hundred thousand men of armes, and some sixe hundred Cuneos of horsemen, and 9. thousande Elephants, that take wages euery daye, and so the land is most full of riches.
And some one hath sixtie thousand foote men, and a thousand horse men, and sea∣uen hundred Elephants, & alwaye these men be arayed to warre and to battell, and so the land is strong, mightie & rich. And as it is sayd there, some of the In∣dies till the earth, and some vse chiualry, and some vse merchaundise and lead out chaffer,* some rule and gouerne The comminte at best. And some be about the kings, and some be Iustices & domes men, some giue them principally to Re∣ligions, and to learning of wit and of wisedome: and as among all Countries and landes Inde is the greatest & most rich: so among all landes, Inde is most wonderfull. For as Plinius saith li. 7. chap. 3. Inde aboundeth in wonders, by a long space toward Aethiopia. In In∣de be many huge beasts bred, and more greater bounds, than in other lands. Al∣so there be so high trées, that men may not shoote to the top with an arrowe, as it is sayd, and that maketh the plenty & fatnesse of the earth, and temperatenesse of weather, of aire, and of water. Figge trées spred there so broade, that manye great companies of Knights may sit at meate vnder the shadowe of one trée. Al∣so, there are so great réedes and so long, that euery péece betwéene two knottes, beareth sometime thrée men ouer ye wa∣ter. Also there be men of great stature, passing fiue Cubites of height, and they neuer spet, and haue neuer head ach, nor tooth ach, nor sore eyen, nor they bée not grieued with passing heate of the Sun, but rather made more harde and sadde therewith. Also their Philosophers, that they call Gimnosophistae, stande in most hot grauell from the morning till euen, and behold the Sunne without blemish∣ing of their eyen. Also there, in some mountains be men with the soles of the feete turned backward, and the foote also, with eight toes in one foote. Also ther be some with houndes heades, and be cloa∣thed in skinnes of wilde beasts, & they barke as hounds, and speake none other∣wise: and they liue by hunting and fow∣ling, and they are armed with theyr nayles and féeth, and be full many, aboue sixe score thousand, as he sayth. Also a∣mong some nations of Inde, be women that beare neuer childe but once, and the children were white haired, anone as they be borne. There be Satires and o∣ther men wonderfully shapen: of them it is spoken in the treatise of monstrous beasts. Also in the ende of Inde, about the rising of Ganges be men without mouths, and they be cloathed in mosse, and in rough hairy things, which they gather of trées, and liue commonly by o∣dors & smell at the nosethrills. And they neither eate, neither drink but only smel odors of floures and of wilde appples, & liue so, & they die anone in euill odor and smell: and other there be, that liue full long, & séeme aged neuer, but dye as if were in middle age. Also some be hore in youth, & black in age. Plini. rehearseth Page 229 these wonders and many other moe.