IBN BATUTA, bi.-too'ta., ABU ABDUL LAH MOHAMMED, Moslem traveler: b. Tangier, 1304; d. 1378. When he became 21 years of age he started an his journeys. His first trip was along the Mediterranean coast from Tangier to Alexandria. He visited Cairo, Aleppo and Damascus, and then journeyed to Mecca. After crossing to Isfahan and going back to Bagdad, he again made the pilgrimage to Mecca, remaining for three years. His next trip took him down the Red Sea to Aden; then along the African coast, and back by a cir cuitous route through Oman and Arabia to Mecca again. After a short stay, he again set forth, this time through Syria and Asia Minor, to Kaffa on the Black Sea. This was his first acquaintance with a Christian city. For a time thereafter he attached himself to the Khan Mohammed Uzbeg; and, with the court of a certain Greek princess who was of the same train, visited Constantinople. A trip through the lower part of Russia and his return to the Indus occupied the years until 1333. Not long
afterward he was appointed kazi of Delhi by the ruler, Mohammed Tugklak. Here he re mained for a number of years, retiring when his profligacy had destroyed his prestige. How ever, when the Chinese emperor had sent an emissary to Delhi and a man was needed to return with his contingent, Ibu Batuta was chosen. A wreck destroyed the party, and he was stranded at Calicut. He journeyed on to the Maldive Islands, becoming kazi there; visited Bengal, Burma and journeyed far into the interior of China. Eventually he stopped at Jerusalem and Cairo and returned in 1349 to Morocco, and thence to Tangiers. His last wanderings took him to Spain, central Africa and Egypt. His book narrating his many ad ventures was dictated by orders from the king. His descriptions are vivid and accurate, full of life and color. A French translation by De fremery and Sanguinetti was published at Paris (4 vols., 1858-59).