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How Messer Niccolò and Messer Matteo left Conśtantinople to explore the world

How Messer Niccolo and Messer Matteo left Conflantinople to explore the world

YO U must know that, in the year I 2 SO after Christ's Incarnation, when Baldwin was emperor of Constantinople, and Messer Ponte the Venetian

Podesta in that city, there were two brothers there, Messer Niccolo Polo, the father of Messer Marco, and Messer Matteo, brother to Messer Niccolo, who had gone thither from Venice with their merchandise. They were in truth most noble and wise and prudent men. They took counsel together, and decided to go to the Greater Sea with a view to their own gains and profits. Therefore they purchased a quantity of jewels, and sailed from Constantinople in a ship, and went to Soldaia.