Advent of Europeans-PUC History Notes - MahitiLok

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Advent of Europeans-PUC History Notes

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Advent of Europeans
(15th & 16th Cent.)

In modern times India was invaded by the Europeans. The Portuguese, The Dutch, The English and The French. The Portuguese are the 1st to come to India. Finally, it was the British who remained in India.
There were several factors which made the Europeans come to India. The capturing of Constantinople by the Ottoman Trucks in 1453, the demand for spices of the east in Europe and the monopoly of the Arabs over trade & commerce in the East.

When Vasco-da-Gama landed at Calicut on 21st may 1498, the sea route to India was discovered. Thus came the Portuguese to India. Vasco-da-Gama was well-received by the Zamorin of Calicut Mana Vikramma. When Vasco-da-Gama went back he carried with him products of the East. He returned to India two more times.
The Government of Portugal established the Portuguese Trading Company to regulate trade and commerce. The company was to function under a Viceroy. Francisco De Almeida became the 1st Portuguese Viceroy in India. He initiated the Blue Water Policy, which aimed at the Portuguese Mastery of the Sea. And confined Portuguese relationship with India only for the purpose of trade & commerce.

Alfonzo-De-Albuquerque (1509-1550):
Alfonzo-De-Albuquerque the greatest Portuguese Viceroy in India. The Portuguese trading centres which were confined to Calicut & Cochin, were now extended to other places under Albuquerque. He conquered Goa in 1510 from the Sultan of Bijapur. West Asia in the Persian Gulf and Malaysia in the East were also conquered Diu & Daman also became Portuguese trading centres. In Bengal, Hooghly & Balasore became the Portuguese trading centres. Goa became the Headquarters of the Portuguese in India. Albuquerque thus made the Portuguese strong in India. He was an efficient administer, he integrated the locals into the administration. He encouraged the propagation of Christianity & inter-marriage with the natives. The Viceroys who came after Albuquerque were weak & inefficient. As a result the Portuguese began to decline in India. They finally left India in the mid 17th Century A.D. But three of their settlement, namely Goa, Diu & Daman remained in their hands till 1961.

Causes for Decline of Portuguese:
1.    After Albuquerque the Portuguese administration in India became inefficient because his successor were weak & inefficient.
2.    The Portuguese officials were neglected by the home government. Their salaries were low. Thus they indulged in corruption and malpractice.
3.    The Portuguese adopted forced inter-marriage & conversion to the Christian faith which made the natives hostile.
4.    In 1580 Portugal was merged with Spain which neglected the Portuguese interest in India.
5.    The Portuguese has to face the stiff competition of the Dutch in India.
6.    Portuguese discovered Brazil which diverted their attention from India.
The Impact of Portuguese:
1.    The Portuguese began to spread Christianity in the Malabar & the Konkan coast. Missionaries like St. Francis Xavier, Father Rudolf & Father Monserette played a leading role in propagating the Christian faith.
2.    The Missionaries started schools & colleges along the west coast, where education was imparted in the native language.
3.    The missionaries undertook research on Indian history and culture. Fa Heras has made a deep study on the Indus Valley Civilization.
4.    The Portuguese brought the printing press to India. The Bible came to be printed in the Kannada & Malayalam language.
5.    The Portuguese brought some crops to India like Tobacco, some fruits & vegetables were also introduced by him potatoes, lady’s finger, chilly, pineapple, sapota, groundnuts, etc.

The Dutch

The Portuguese were followed by the Dutch. The East India Company of Netherlands was formed in 1592 to trade with East Indies. Cornelius Houtman is the first Dutch to come to India. The Dutch established trading centres at Nagapatnam in Tamil Nadu, Machalipatnam in Andhra Pradesh, Chinsora in Bengal & at Mahe on the Malabar Coast. The headquarters of the Dutch in India was Nagapatnam. The Dutch could not withstand the stiff competition of the Portuguese and the English and thus left India. The complete monopoly of the Dutch over trade and commerce of Indonesia another reason as to why they left India.

The English

The Portuguese and the Dutch were followed by the English. The charter of Queen Elizabeth issued in 1600 authorised the London company to carry on trade & commerce with the east and other countries. Later King James of England extended the charter for an indefinite period. The first Englishman to come to India for the purpose of trade & commerce is Captain Williams Hawkins. He visited the court of Moghul Emperor Jehangir & received permission to trade at Surat. Later Captain best who came to India received permission to start a factory at Surat Capt. Best defeated the Portuguese in the Battle of Swalley near Surat. In 1615, Sir Thomas Roe visited the court of Jehangir and obtained trade concessions.

The English in the course of time established trading centres at different places in India. Madras became their trading centre whish was fortified by constructing Fort St. George Machalipatnam in A.P., Hariharpur & Balasora in Orissa & Kasim Bazar & Hooghly in Bengal and Patna in Bihar became the trading centres of the English.

The company obtained Bombay from the English King Charles II who received it as a part of dowry, when he married the Potuguese Princess Catherine. Ahmedabad Broach in Gujarat & Agra in Uttar Pradesh also became their trading centres. The English acquired three villages in Bengal which later developed to become Calcutta. The later Moghul Emperor Farookh Siyar granted the English the firman which permitted them to carry on duty free trade in Bengal. The Headquarters of the English Company in India was Madras.

Thus the English permanently settled in India till 1947. In 1707 the different trading companies came together to form the “United Company of the Merchants of England trading to East Indies”. It was this Company which carried on trade & commerce with India till 1857.

The French

The last Europeans to come to India is the French. Colbert the minister of Louie XIV, the Bourban king of France established the French East India Company in 1664 which was authorized to carry on commerce & colonise the East Indies.

In 1667 came Caron, the first French to India. The French first traded at Surat. The well-known French Viceroy in India is Franco Martin. He extended the French commercial activities in India by establishing French settlements at Balasore, Chinsora & Machalipatnam. Pondicherry the most important French trading centre in India was also established by him Pondicherry became the Headquarters of French in India.

The interference of French in the affairs of the Carnatic under Duplex brought the French into conflict with the English.

Thus was fought the Carnatic wars in which the French were defeated & consequently left India in the 1760’s competition from the English & the discovery of Indo-China are the causes which made the French leave India.

The Establishment of British Supremacy in India

Ever since the British came to India they have to face the contention of the Europeans powers like the Dutch, the Portuguese & the French.

The Portuguese & the Dutch however were not serious competitor to the English. The only real rival of the English was the French. The objective of the English to establish a complete monopoly of trade & commerce in India brought them into conflict with the French. As a result was fought the Carnatic was between the English and the French in India, which was to decide as to who was supreme in India.

The causes of the Carnatic wars between the English & the French was because of the difference that existed between them outside India.

Carnatic Wars

First Carnatic War (1746-1748):

The cause of the first Carnatic war is the question of succession to the Austrian throne. The differences between the English & the French regarding this event had its effect felt upon India. When the war began to Europe in 1746, the English in India expected military from the home Government to fight against the French.

Duplex, the Governor of Pondicherry called for help from the French Government of Mauritius. Accordingly La Bourdonnais the French General, came to India & even conquered Madras. Duplex did not surrender Madras as promised to the Nawab of Arcot, Anwaruddin & Duplex in which Amuaruddin was defeated in the Battle of St. Thomas. Thus the French under Duplex were victorious in the First Carnatic War.

When the Treaty of Aix La Chapelle signed between the English & the French in Europe the war came to an end, in India as well. Accordingly to the treaty the French agreed to return Madras to the English & the English on their part were to surrender the French territories which they had captured.

Second Carnatic War (1748-1756):

The main cause of the second Carnatic war is the question of succession to the throne of Hyderabad. On the death of the Nizam of Hyderabad, his son Nasir Jang and his grandson Muzafar Jang contended for the throne of Hyderbad. Musaffar Jang sought that help of Chanda Sahib, who wanted to become the king of Arcot. Chanda Saheb sought the help of the French. On the other hand Nazir Jang sought the help of the British.

The war broke out in 1748 with the help of the French Governord Duplex. Chanda Saheb defeated & killed Anwaruddin and became the Nawab of Arcot. Musaffor Jang became the Nizam of Hyderabad. Thus Duplex successfully asserted the French supremacy against the English. On the death of Musaffor Jang, Salabath Jang was placed on the throne of Hyderabad by the French General Bussy for which the French were rewarded with Northern Sarkars. Howeverthe French success were short lived.
Robert Clive an Englishman changed the course of the war. He defeated Chanda Saheb & captured Arcot & Trichunapalli & placed on the throne of Arcot Anwaruddin’s son Mohammed Ali. As the French forced defeat the home Government recalled Duplex & appointed Godehue as the Governor. As the French could no longer continue with the fight, they were ready for peace. The war came to an end when the Treaty of Trichunapalli was signed. Accordingly the English & the French agreed to not to interfere in the affairs of Carnatic and secondly they agreed to exchange prisoners of war. Robert Clive took the Northern Sarkars.

Third Carnatic War:

The cause of the third Carnatic war is the seven years war that broke out in Europe between the English & the French.

During the third Carnatic war the French General was Count De Lally. The French lost the support of Arcot as the Nizam Salbath Jang had joined the English. The war began when Count De Lally attacked Madras. But he was defeated by the English General Sir Eyre Coote in the Battle of Wandiwash. The English captured Pondicherry & Count De Lally was forced to surrender Karaikal & Jinji were also captured by the English. Thus the French lost the Carnatic war.

The war came to end with the signing of treaty of Paris in Europe between the English & the French. Accordingly the French settlements were to be returned but the French were not to build fortification. Secondly the English & the French were to exchange prisoners of war.

The Carnatic wars thus prepared the Ground for the English to establish their supremacy in India in the long run.






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