Portuguese Ceylon

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Portuguese Ceylon

Ceilão Português (Portuguese)
පෘතුගීසි ලංකාව (Sinhalese)
போர்த்துக்கேய இலங்கை (Tamil)
1597–1658
Flag of Ceilão Português
Flag
of Ceilão Português
Coat of arms
Extent of Portuguese rule in Ceylon
Extent of Portuguese rule in Ceylon
StatusDefunct
CapitalColombo
Common languagesPortuguese
Sinhalese
Tamil
Religion
Roman Catholicism
King of Portugal 
• 1597–1598
Philip I
• 1598–1621
Philip II
• 1621–1640
Philip III
• 1640–1656
John IV
• 1656–1658
Afonso VI
Captain-Generals 
• 1597–1614
Jerónimo de Azevedo
• 1656–1658
António de Amaral de Meneses
Historical eraColonialism
• Portuguese arrival
1505
• Death of Dharmapala of Kotte
27 May 1597
1633
• Surrender of Jaffna
June 1658
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Kingdom of Kotte
Kingdom of Jaffna
Dutch Ceylon
Today part of Sri Lanka

Portuguese Ceylon (Portuguese: Ceilão Português, Sinhala: පෘතුගීසි ලංකාව Puruthugisi Lankawa, Tamil: போர்த்துக்கேய இலங்கை Porthukeya Ilankai) is the name given to the territory on Ceylon, modern-day Sri-Lanka, controlled by the Portuguese Empire between 1597 and 1658.

Portuguese presence in the island lasted from 1505 to 1658. Their arrival was largely accidental, and the Portuguese sought control of commerce, rather than territory. The Portuguese were later drawn into the internal politics of the island with the political upheaval of the Wijayaba Kollaya, and used these internal divisions to their advantage during the Sinhalese–Portuguese War, first in an attempt to control the production of valuable cinnamon and later of the entire island. Direct Portuguese rule did not begin until after the death of Dharmapala of Kotte, who died without an heir, and had bequeathed the Kingdom of Kotte to the Portuguese monarch in 1580.[1] That allowed the Portuguese sufficient claim to the Kingdom of Kotte upon Dharmapala's death in 1597. Portuguese rule began with much resistance by the local population.[2]

Eventually, the Kingdom of Kandy sought help from the Dutch East India Company, with whom they initially entered into agreement. After the collapse of the Iberian economy in 1627, the Dutch–Portuguese War saw the Dutch conquest of most of Portugal's Asian colonies - Ceylon included, between 1638 and 1658. Nevertheless, elements of Portuguese culture from this colonial period remain in Sri Lanka.

Part of a series on the
History of Kandy
Temple of the Tooth, Kandy
Kingdom of Kandy (1469–1815)
Colonial Kandy (1815–1948)
Kandy (1948–present)
See also
Flag of Sri Lanka.svg Sri Lanka portal

History[edit]

Arrival and establishment of the Portuguese (1505-1543)[edit]

The first contact between Sri Lanka and the Portuguese happened in 1505-6. It was largely accidental and it wasn't until 12 years later that the Portuguese sought to establish a fortified trading settlement.[3]

The Kingdom of Kotte as a Portuguese vassal (1543-1597)[edit]

Annexation of Kotte and war with Kandy (1597)[edit]

Direct Portuguese rule began after the death of Dharmapala of Kotte who bequeathed the Kingdom of Kotte to the Portuguese monarch.[4] By 1600 the Portuguese had consolidated the main centers of rebellion, the Kelani and Kalu ganga basins, leaving the border regions to Sinhalese resistance.[5]

Conquest of Jaffna (1619)[edit]

Dutch conquest (1638-1658)[edit]

Administration[edit]

Administrative structure[edit]

Administrative divisions[edit]

Taxation[edit]

Military[edit]

Demographics and ethnicities[edit]

Economy[edit]

Legacy[edit]

Food

There are many foods of Portuguese influence that are still popular in Sri Lanka. For example, lingus and pastries.

Language

Sinhala words for certain types of Western attire/ furniture/ food & drink are derived from the Portuguese. Some examples are below:

Sinhala Word Meaning Portuguese Word
Mesaya Table Mesa (Table)
Almaariya Cupboard Armário (Cupboard)
Sapaththuwa Shoe Sapato (Shoe)
Sidaadiya City Cidade (City)
Bébadda (colloq.) Drunkard Bebidas (Drinks)


See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ De Silva (1981), p. 114
  2. ^ De Silva (1981), p. 100
  3. ^ De Silva (1981), p. 100
  4. ^ De Silva (1981), p. 114
  5. ^ De Silva (1981), p. 115

Bibliography[edit]

  • De Silva, K. M. (1981). A History of Sri Lanka. India: University of California Press. ISBN 0-520-04320-0.
  • C. Gaston Pereira, Kandy fights the Portuguese. Sri Lanka: Vijitha Yapa Publications, July 2007. ISBN 978-955-1266-77-6
  • Channa Wicremasekera, Kandy at War. Sri Lanka: Vijitha Yapa Publications, 2004. ISBN 955-8095-52-4
  • Michael Roberts, Sinhala Consciousness in the Kandyan Period. Sri Lanka: Vijitha Yapa Publications, 2004. ISBN 955-8095-31-1,
  • Abeysinghe, Tikiri (2005). Jaffna under the Portuguese. Colombo: Stamford Lake. p. 66. ISBN 955-1131-70-1.
  • Kunarasa, K (2003). The Jaffna Dynasty. Johor Bahru: Dynasty of Jaffna King’s Historical Society. p. 122. ISBN 955-8455-00-8.
  • Gnanaprakasar, Swamy (2003). A Critical History of Jaffna (review of Yalpana Vaipava Malai). New Delhi: Asian Educational Services. p. 122. ISBN 81-206-1686-3.
  • Senaka Weeraratna, Repression of Buddhism in Sri Lanka by the Portuguese (1505–1658)

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 2°11′20″N 102°23′4″E / 2.18889°N 102.38444°E / 2.18889; 102.38444