According to Luigi Foscolo Benedetto’s prolegomena to the critical edition of 1928, the Italian translation of Marco Polo’s book published by Giovanni Battista Ramusio in the Secondo volume delle Navigazioni e viaggi («R») resulted from the collation of five different texts. One of his main sources was very close to the Latin translation preserved by the manuscript in the Archivio y Biblioteca Capitulares de Toledo, Zelada 49-20 («Z»), which displays supplementary contents of undoubted authenticity compared to the rest of the manuscript transmission. Recent research has proved that the Z-redaction progressively increased in size over the course of time. Some pieces of evidence suggest that Ramusio made his translation from a text containing further authentic variants compared to the model of the Zelada codex. The results reported in the present study confirm the hypothesis that the addenda distinguishing Z and R from all remaining witnesses are the product of Marco Polo’s reworking of his book.
Marco Polo. Giovanni Battista Ramusio. Devisement dou monde. Milione. Luigi Foscolo Benedetto. Manoscritto Zelada 49-20. Cina. Pechino. Lugou Qiao. Ponte di Marco Polo.