Muziris- First Emporium of India

If you were a Roman trader in the 1st century CE, chances were you travelled east towards India to do business. You would have gotten onto a ship at Alexandria on the northern coast of Africa, sailed along the eastern coast of Africa, through the Red Sea, then crossed the Arabian sea and headed towards India’s western coast. There were a lot of port cities along that coast, but your first stop would have been Muziris. Why? Continue reading Muziris- First Emporium of India

When Temples Were Banks

It is reported that Mahmud of Ghazni attacked India 17 times between 1000 and 1025 CE. The chief motive behind these raids was money. The kingdoms of India were famed for their unimaginable wealth, and Ghazni was keen to get his hands on as much of it as he could. Do you know where all this wealth that mesmerised Ghazni was locked up in? Temples! Continue reading When Temples Were Banks

The Fierce Queen of Travancore

In the late 1600s, the most respected and the most formidable ruler in Kerala was a queen. Her name was Umayamma Rani and she was the senior-most Queen of the Kingdom of Attingal. You might think that at a time when men ruled, and women were kept locked away in their houses, a powerful queen was an exception, but in fact, she was not. Umayamma came from a long line of powerful queens who, for centuries, had ruled a little kingdom called Attingal. Continue reading The Fierce Queen of Travancore