LUDOLF VON SUCHEN De Terra Sancta
Concerning the city of Famagusta from De Terra Sancta, 1336
The third city of Cyprus is called Famagusta, situate on the seashore : here are the harbours of all this sea and realm and a concourse of merchants and pilgrims. It lies directly opposite to Armenia, Turkey and Acon. It is the richest of all cities, and her citizens are the richest of men. A citizen once betrothed his daughter, and the jewels of her head-dress were valued by the French knights who came with us as more precious than all the ornaments of the Queen of France. A certain merchant of this city sold to the Sultan a royal orb of gold, and thereon four precious stones, a ruby, an emerald, a sapphire and a pearl, for sixty thousand florins; and anon he sought to buy back that orb for a hundred thousand florins, but it was denied him. The Constable of Jerusalem had four pearls which his wife wore by way of a clasp, and, when and where he would, he could pledge it for three thousand florins. In this city in one shop is more aloe wood than five carts could carry away. I am silent touching drugs, for they are as common there as bread is here, and are sold as commonly. But I dare not speak of their precious stones and golden tissues and other riches, for it were a thing unheard of and incredible. In this city dwell very many wealthy courtesans, of whom some possess more than one hundred thousand florins. I dare not speak of their riches.