16 AUGUST 1919, Page 23

History of the Portuguese in Bengal. By J. J. A.

Campos. (Calcutta and London : Butterworth. 6 rupees 8 annas net.)— Early in the sixteenth century the Portuguese, not content with Western India, Ceylon, and Malaysia, turned their attention to Bengal, and from their settlements at Satgaon and Hooghly, above the future site of Calcutta, built up a great trade. Shah Jahan besieged and took Hooghly in 1632, and the Dutch harried the Portuguese traders, now under Spanish rule and therefore regarded as enemies. Many Portuguese took to piracy in the Sunderbunds and gained a very evil reputation. But the prestige acquired by the Portuguese as the first Europeans to visit and trade with the East faded very slowly. Mr. Campos reminds us in his interesting book that Portuguese had become a lingua franca for Eastern ports, and that Clive " knew no Indian language but could speak Portuguese fluently and com- manded his native troops in the Portuguese language." There were Portuguese victims in the Black Hole. The adventurers intermarried with the natives. The missionaries converted many thousands of natives to the Roman Catholic faith and baptized them with Portuguese names. A considerable number of the descendants of the mixed marriages (Luso-Indians) and of the natives (Feringhis) Christianized by the Portuguese are still to be found in Bengal. Mr. Campos has taken great pains with his narrative, which describes in detail a notable episode in the history of European relations with India.