Monday, December 20, 2010

Colonial India (contd-1)

4 Vessels (St. Gabriel, St. Raphael, Berrio, Food Vessel) weighed anchor in Lisbon towards India . (Below the route they used- black line)

Vasco da Gama arrived in India (Calicut, in the present state of Kerala, to be more precise). He had to negotiate with the local Governor (the SaamoothiriManavikraman Raja) in order to obtain favourable commercial deals  - these negotiations proved to be very difficult due to the cultural differences ( in thed west, Kings expected to receive  opulent presents), therefore the merchandise introduced by the portuguese did not impress the local zamorins ( Saamoothiris = a title used by the Eradi Rulers). Still, Vasco da Gama insisted and in the end he managed to get a letter ( from the zamorin) conceding Portugal the trade of cinnamon, clove, ginger, pepper, and gems. In exchange, Manavikraman Raja wanted gold, silver, coral, and scarlet.