The most influential Westerner to write about China since thirteenth-century Marco Polo.
China has been long one of the richest, that is, one of the most fertile, best cultivated, most industrious, and most populous countries in the world. It seems, however, to have been long stationary. Marco Polo, who visited it more than five hundred years ago, describes its cultivation, industry, and populousness, almost in the same terms in which they are described by travellers in the present times.Adam Smith
Certainly, for a newspaper director, to have within arm's reach a Travaglio, about whom every starring actor, supporting cast and extra of Italian political life he is ready upon cold request to provide an inquiry brief refined in the most minute details is a nice comfort. But also a bit unsettling. The day I asked him if in that archive, into which no one is allowed to stick their nose, there were a brief with my name on it, Marco changed the subject.indro montanelli