Ancient History

                     The History of Thane district can be divided into four major periods, The Early Hindu period partly mythic and partly historic, coming down to about  AD 1300 and properly called Ancient period; the Muslim period lasting from 1300 to 1660 the Maratha period from 1660 to 1800; and the British period since 1880. The chief interest in the history of Thane district is that, with comparatively few and short breaks, some of its ports, Sopara, Kalyan, Thane or Sanjan, has from pre-historic times,  taken a leading part in the foreign commerce of Western India. From pre-historic times the Thane coast has had relation with land beyond the Indian Ocean. From B.C. 2500 to B.C. 500 there are sign of trade with Egypt, Phoenicia and Babylon; from B.C.250 to A.D. 250 there are dealing with, perhaps settlements of, Greeks and Parthians; from A.D. 250 to A.D. 640 there were Persian alliance and Persian settlements; from A.D. 700 to A.D. 1200 there  were Musalman trade relations and Musalman settlements from Arabia and Persia; in 1530 there was part of conquest by the Portuguese; and in 1664  the settlement of British.  
                   The Thane district forms part of North Konkan also called Aprant (The western end) later known as Puri-Konkan after its capital Puri. The earliest known fact in the history of Thane coast & incidentally of Apranta belongs to engraving of Ashoka edicts an basalt bouldes at sopara about six milles  north of vasai. According to Buddhist writting sopara was a royal seat & great center of commerce during the life line of Gautam Buddha (B.C. 540)shilharas regime Thane city was described as pretty town by the Arab writers. The merchants who carried on the Thane trade were local Hindu,  Muslman & Parsi traders. The shilaharas ruled over North Konkan for move than 400 years. They gave liberal patronage to art & Culture the temple at  Ambarnath which is still extant testify the architectural & Sculptural skill of the age.    
       
  MOGHULS (1300-1500)
     
                  During Moghul period, Turk rulers had destroyed many temples & Churches of which they made mosques for Muhammad. Under the emperor of  Delhi, a religous officer or kazi governed by a military officer or malik & Thane.  Under the strong rule of Muhammad Tughlak the Moghul’s maintained their supremacy in north Konkan. In spite of this two Hindu chiefs held territory  on the direct rought between Daulatabad & the coast. Mahadev chief of Baglan & the chief of Jawhar, who in 1341 was recognized by the Delhi court as  the lord of twenty-two forts & of a country yielding a yearly revenue of Rs.9,00,000 in one of its stone inscription dated A.D. 1464 that the Hindu Chief of 


Bhiwandi had power to make land grants.
            
  PORTUGUESES (1500-1670)
           
                 Portuguese history would be incomplete without the mention of Vasai. The Portuguese remain in possession of Vasai for roughly two hundred years  from 1535 to 1739. Nuno da Cunha, who was generally described as the founder of vasai. Timber was sent from vasai to mecca to help the Egyption to  build a fleet.Thane coast was famous for its ship building. The ships built between 1550 & 1600 great ships built at Agashi & Vasai made many voyages  to Europe.  The Portuguese power passed into the hands of Maratha after a long siege by Chimaji Appa, the brother of Peshwa Bajirao I For about sixty-four years, from 1739 to 1802 Vasai remained under the Maratha finally, in 1802 by the Treaty of vasai it became a British possession & 
in 1818 it was incorporated in the Bombay Presidency.
                       
Portuguese-Maratha War, 1737-1741 


                  Already in 1720 the Marathas (Mahrattas) had conquered Kalyat, one of the ports of Vasai (Bassein, Baçaim). In 1732 the Portuguese began  construction of another fort on Vasai, Thana; the Portuguese failed to regularly pay their workers. The latter in 1736 offered to hand over the fortress to  the Marathas.  In 1737, the Marathas, commanded by Chimaji Appa, took possession of Thana, with the island of Salsette (Salcete); the act caused the  Portuguese-Maratha War to break out. Chimaji Appa died the same year. The Portuguese possessions around Vasai, and the center of the Portuguese  colonial Empire in India, Goa, came under attack. The remaining Portuguese forts in Vasai fell in 1738 and 1739 respectively; Vasai surrendered May  16th 1739. Goa held out. In 1741 reinforcements arrived, and the Portuguese, commanded by the Marquis of Lourical, defeated the allied Maratha and  Bhonsle forces at Bardez; the Portuguese territory around Goa was extended (Novas Conquistas); Vasai remained in the hands of the Marathas.  Peace with the Marathas was concluded only in 1759.     

Conquerors and Captains of Vasai

                     General Nuno da Cunha, led the invasion fleet to Capture Bassein.


Garcia de Sâ, fist Portuguese Governor/Captain of Bassein

Garcia de Sâ, fist Portuguese Governor/Captain of Bassein, went on to become governor of Goa.


Jorge Cabral, second Portuguese governor/Captain of Bassein

              Jorge Cabral, second Portuguese governor/Captain of Bassein, later went on to become governor of Goa.