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History of Chennai

January 09, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 194

Chennai which is also known as Madras is the fourth largest city in India. It is the capital of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and has a long and interesting history. There were three main provinces in South India namely Thondai Naadu, Nadu Naadu and Kongu Naadu apart from the three kingdoms of Chera, Chola and Pandiya. Chennai was a part of that Thondai Naadu and is situated between Nellore and Cuddalore on the coast of Bay of Bengal.

Tondaman Ilam Tiraiyan ruled over Chennai in 2nd century A.D. He was succeeded by the Chola King Ilam Killi. From 3rd century to 9th century, Pallavas and Kalabhras ruled this place. From 879 A.D. to 1264 A. D. Chola dynasty held supremacy over this region. In 1264, Pandya ruler Jatavarman Sundara Pandiyan captured the area and brought it under his control. Following the rule of Bahmini Kingdom, Vijayanagar Emperor Kumara Kampana II conquered this place in 1361 and extended the Vijayanagar Empire over Tondaimandalam.

In 1522 Portuguese traders came to Chennai and built a port called San Tome. In 1612 this area went into the hands of the Dutch settlers and they settled down at Pulicat which was located at the north of Chennai. During this time British East India Company also arrived there and wanted to choose the right place for their settlement. Nayaks were ruling over at that time and English approached Damarla Venkatadri Nayakudu in 1639. On 22nd August 1639, the village of Madraspatnam was given on lease to the English man Sir Francis Day for a period of two years and they were given rights to build fort and castle.

The first actual settlement of English in Madraspatnam took place on 20th February 1640. After two years, the agreement was renewed by Sri Rangarayulu. According to this, the Narimedu region was added to the Madraspatnam village. The construction of St. George Fort was started on 23rd April 1640.

In 17th century, the people of Madraspatnam were affected by plague and war. Fort St. George was their last resort often. In 1698 Thomas Pitt became the Governor of Madras and during this time, the place saw huge development in trade and commerce and as a result, many mansions and houses were built and many churches and schools were started.

French captured Fort St. George in 1746 and in 1749 through the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, English got it back. British waged four wars with the ruler of Mysore Hyder Ali and his son Tipu Sultan. Also it drove French, Danish and Dutch out of the land and established the Madras Presidency with Madras as its capital in 18th century. The villages of Triplicane, Puraisaiwalkam, Chetpet and Egmore were added to this region and the city was then known as Chennapatnam. The name Chennapatnam was supposed to be given by Damarla Venkatrdri Nayakudi in memory of his father Damarla Chennappa Nayakudu.

After the independence of India, Madras became the capital of the Madras State. In the year 1968, Madras State was renamed as Tamil Nadu. The city was renamed as Chennai in 1996 by the then ruling DMK party. The old Chennai photos and Chennai videos are found online in many websites showing the long history of its formation.

Suhaina Mazhar is a freelance content writer and blogger and has written thousands of original articles. Click here to find out interesting details about Chennai and watch Chennai photos and Chennai videos.

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