Science & Culture
Odoric of Pordenone
Odoric of Pordenone (also known as Odorico Mattiussi or Mattiuzzi) was born to a Czech family in Villanova (now a part of Pordenone), Italy, in 1286 and he joined the Franciscan Order as a young man. The pope entrusted the first Christian missions, as well as later ones, to the Franciscans. After taking his vows, Odoric was sent to Asia circa 1316. His accounts of his journeys became popular and likely were plagiarized by John Mandeville. Odoric's travels led him through what is now Turkey, Iraq, Iran, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, China, and Tibet. Some of his descriptions of the people of those lands were more extensive than those of Marco Polo.
Odoric died in 1331 and was formally beatified by Pope Benedict XIV in 1755.
“Odoric of Pordenone.” New Advent Catholic Encyclopedia. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12281a.htm
Santi Beati. “Beato Odorico da Pordenone.” http://www.santiebeati.it/dettaglio/37700