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Cochin or Kochi In 1729 – Antique Hand Colored Map

Antique 1729 hand-colored map of Cochin or Kochi. The Portuguese built a fort in Cochin. Beginning with a stockade made out of a thick double row of coconut trunks. And called it Fort Santiago in 1503.  It was later renamed Emmanuel after rebuilding it with granite stone blocks. Although commonly called Fort Cochin to this day.

The Portuguese were the first Europeans to land in India by the maritime route. Arriving at Calicut, now Kozhikode in 1498.  The sole intention was to procure the elusive pepper that was indigenous to the Malabar region (Kerala). Although a common household spice and certainly not to given a second glance. But even before Cleopatra’s time pepper was traded in Europe as a rare commodity.

That it was worth its weight in gold and only the wealthy could afford it. For centuries it spurred Europeans to search for the source of this magnificent spice. The Portuguese were the first to get hold of the secret maritime route to Calicut. Arriving in the city in 1498 the rest is history. Not being very popular with the Zamorin they moved to Cochin, then a tiny fishing village. Kochi grew under Portuguese control to become a magnificent city.

See my post Fort Cochin – Antique Map Plan 1761. Read also How 500 years of immigration has gifted Fort Kochi a deep sense of multiculturalism

Did you know- after the discovery of Calicut in 1498 the Europeans would go on to discover Sri Lanka (1505), Malaysia (1511), Indonesia, China (1513), and Japan (1543). 

From the collection- Raja Ravi Varma’s “Birth of Shakuntala” Oleograph c1894.,  A British Soldier’s Farewell In Bombay – Old Postcard 1908., Mumbai Suburban Railway Electrification – Old Print 1926., Army & Navy Store 1922 Catalogue Bombay – Old Book

The images are of the actual items from my collection. And Not a photocopy, pirated, reproduced, or stock photos or taken from other sources.