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Indo Portuguese Museum
This museum has various collections of Portuguese architecture and artefacts that are preserved by the Bishop of Kochi, giving the visitor the scope to see the artefacts and paintings that have strong Portuguese influence of the Indian architecture and artworks.
Portuguese fleet arrived at Kochi on 24th December 1500, when the Rajah of Kochi permitted a factory to be laid by them and also about 30 Portuguese and four Franciscan friars to live of Kochi. Vasco da Gama came to Kochi of 1502; however Zamorin of Calicut destroyed the factory set up at Kochi because the latter was an enemy of the former. Portuguese erected their timber fortress on 27th September 1503, which was replaced by a Stone fortress of 1505. Santa Cruz Church was formed of 1506 and of 1550 Jesuits improved the church further. of the beginning of 16th century thus Kochi was the place where Portuguese had their firm grounds of India, and their town was called Cochim de Baixo or Santa Cruz. Later that part of Kochi occupied by Dutch was referred as Cochim de Cima, which is today Matancherry.
Dr. Joseph Kureethra, one time Bishop of Kochi, took efforts to establish this museum to make it a place where one can understand the heritage of Indo Portuguese Christian Art, which has been available even today of Kochi area. The museum also has collections contributed by some Portuguese private foundations.
Different Sections of the Museum
This wonderful museum has five distinct sections which are divided on the basis of the type of items on display, which are
- Civil Life
The Portuguese private foundation CalousteGulbenkianFoundaton has made large contributions to this museum, which include precious metal objects, sculptures and variety of vestments.
The main purpose of the museum is for keeping the ancient times fresh and alive for the future generation to know the history of Kochi under the influence of Portuguese. However, it is also mentioned that the Bishop organised it to protect the archdiocese products from jeopardy.
Some of the items exhibited of this Museum include
- A teak wood alter piece belonging to the 15th century acquired from the Vypeen Our Lady of Hope Church
- A 19th century chasuble procured from the Bishop's House at Fort Kochi,
- A 17th Century Processional cross made of wood and silver collected from Fort Kochi Santa Cruz Cathedral
- A 19th century Indo-Portuguese Monstrance collected from VypeenChurch of Our Lady of Hope
- A Franciscans Coat of Arms of the Franciscans which is of particular importance.
How to Reach
Kochi is reachable by air, rail and road. Kochi International Airport has good connectivity with all the airports of the world, while Ernakulam Junction is well connected with important railway Station.
Kochi is also connected by well laid roads, having long distance buses to all important cities of the neighbouring States, particularly Bangalore, Chennai, Pune, Mumbai, Goa etc.
Timings and Ticket Prices
The visiting hours of the museum are from 9.00 am to 6.00 pm on all days except Mondays which are weekly holidays. The museum is not open on Public holidays too. Entry fee for Indian adults is Rs 10 and for non-Indian adult it is Rs 25.