As the Europeans arrive on the Coromandel Coast…


“Imperialism is the monopoly stage of capitalism.”

The proximity of the ports on the Eastern parts of India, to Southeast Asia and China, made them very attractive for the Europeans. The first Europeans to set foot on the shores were the Portuguese in the 16th Century; in all probability they were linked to Jesuit missions, as well as the spice trade which started to dominate the scene right across Indian coastline then. Details of their travels to South India can be traced in the accounts of Jesuit Antonio Rubino, written in early 17th century.

The Danes were next in line, setting up a trading base close by in Tranquebar (Tharangambadi) in the year 1620. The Dutch East India Company built the magnificent Sadras fort as a commercial outpost at Sadhurangapattinam in the early 17th century. Continue reading


The DNA of a modern city


One of the localities of Madras that has always fascinated me right from childhood has been Royapuram. At a young age, it was perhaps more to do with the fact that it was a place to avoid due to it being an area for miscreants. However, it also is a place home to 3 landmarks that perhaps best exemplify the spirit of Madras. Continue reading