Cape Malays…

and their Heritage

The Alienation (1501 – 1600)

Posted by tahirfarrath on November 4, 2009

Timeline (of Mayhem)

(1501 – 1600)

1509 – Portuguese visit Melaka for the first time.

1511 – April: Portuguese Admiral Albuquerque sets sail from Goa to Melaka. August: Albuquerque’s forces take Melaka. Sultan of Melaka escapes to Riau. Portuguese in Melaka destroy a “Javanese” fleet. Portuguese ship sinks with treasure on way back to Goa. December: Albuquerque sends three ships under da Breu from Melaka to explore eastwards.

1512 – Da Breu expedition travels from Melaka to Madura, Bali, Lombok, Aru and Banda. Two ships are wrecked at Banda. Da Breu returns to Melaka. Francisco Serrão repairs ship and continues to Ambon, Ternate, and Tidore. Serrão offers support to Ternate in a dispute with Tidore – his men build a Portuguese post at Ternate.


1513 – A force from Jepara and Palembang attacks the Portuguese in Melaka, but is repulsed. March Portuguese send an envoy to King of Pajajaran. Portuguese are allowed to build a fort at Sunda Kelapa (now Jakarta). Portuguese build factories at Ternate and Bacan.

1515 – First Portuguese visit Timor.

1520 – Portuguese traders begin visiting Flores and Solor.

1522 – February Portuguese expedition under De Brito arrives on Banda. May De Brito expedition arrive at Ternate, builds a Portuguese fort. Banten, still Hindu, asks for Portuguese help against Muslim Demak. Portuguese build fort at Hitu on Ambon.

1526 – Portuguese build first fort on Timor.


1527 – Expeditions from Spain and Mexico try to drive the Portuguese from Maluku.


1529 – The Kings of Spain and Portugal agree that Maluku should belong to Portugal, and the Philippines should belong to Spain.

1530 – Gowa begins expanding from Makassar.

1536 – Major Portuguese attack on Johore. Antonio da Galvão becomes governor of Portuguese post at Ternate; founds Portuguese post at Ambon. Portuguese take Sultan Tabariji of Ternate to Goa due to suspicions of anti-Portuguese activity, replace him with his brother.

1537 – Acehnese attack on Melaka fails. Salahuddin of Aceh is replaced by Alaudin Riayat Syah I.

1540 – Portuguese in contact with Gowa.

1546 – St. Francis Xavier travels to Morotai, Ambon, and Ternate.

1547 – Aceh attacks Melaka.

1550 – Portuguese begin building forts on Flores.

1551 – Johore attacks Portuguese Melaka with help from Jepara. Force from Ternate takes control of Sultanate of Jailolo on Halmahera with Portuguese help.

1552 – Aceh sends embassy to the Ottoman sultan in Istanbul.

1558 – Leiliato leads a force from Ternate to attack the Portuguese at Hitu. Portuguese build a fortress on Bacan.

1559 – Portuguese missionaries land at Timor.

1560 – Portuguese found mission and trading post at Panarukan, in easternmost Java. Spanish establish a presence at Manado.

1561 – Portuguese Dominican mission founded on Solor.

1564 – Smallpox epidemic at Ambon.

1566 – Portuguese Dominican mission on Solor builds a stone fortress.

1568 – Unsuccessful attack by Aceh on Portuguese Melaka.

1569 – Portuguese build wooden fortress on Ambon island.

1570 – Aceh attacks Johore again, but fails. Sultan Khairun of Ternate signs a treaty of friendship with the Portuguese, but is found poisoned the next day. Portuguese agents are suspected. They had thrown Sultan Khairun in prison and tried to poison him when he would not yield lands to them. Babullah becomes Sultan (until 1583), and vows to drive the Portuguese out of their fortress. Maulana Yusup becomes Sultan of Banten.

1574 – Jepara led another unsuccessful attack on Melaka.

1575 – Sultan Babullah expels the Portuguese from Ternate. The Portuguese in Ternate were under siege in their fortress for five years, and never received help from Melaka or Goa in India. Portuguese build a fort on Tidore instead.

1576 – Portuguese build fort at the present site of the city of Ambon.

1579 – November: Sir Francis Drake of England, after raiding Spanish ships and ports in America, arrives at Ternate. Sultan Babullah, who also hated the Spanish, pledges friendship to England.

1580 – Maulana Muhammad becomes Sultan of Banten. Portugal falls under Spanish crown; Portuguese colonial enterprises are disregarded. Drake visits Sulawesi and Java, on the way back to England. Ternate takes control of Butung.

1585 – Sultan of Aceh sends a letter to Elizabeth I of England. Portuguese ship sent to build a fort and mission on Bali is wrecked just offshore.

1587 – Portuguese in Melaka attack Johore. Portuguese sign a truce with the Sultan of Aceh. Sir Thomas Cavendish of England visits Java.

1591 – Sir James Lancaster of England reaches Aceh and Penang, but his mission is a failure. Ternate attacks Portuguese in Ambon.

1593 – Ternate lays siege on the Portuguese in Ambon again.

1595 – April 2: Dutch expedition under De Houtman leaves for Indies. Portuguese build fort at Ende, Flores.

1596 – June 5: De Houtman expedition reaches Sumatra. June 23: De Houtman expedition reaches Banten. The initial reception is friendly, but after some bad behaviour by the Dutch, the Sultan of Banten, along with the Portuguese stationed in Banten, shell the Dutch ships. The De Houtman expedition continues along north coast of Java. A ship is lost to pirates. More bad behaviour leads to misunderstandings and violence on Madura. A prince of Madura is killed, several Dutch sailors are arrested and taken prisoner, De Houtman has to ransom them for release. Abul Mufakir becomes Sultan of Banten.

1597 – Some members of De Houtman expedition settle on Bali and refuse to leave. A Portuguese fleet under Lourenzo de Brito decides, contrary to instructions, to seek retribution from the Sultan of Banten for doing business with Dutch traders. The fleet is defeated by Banten and forced to retreat. Remnants of the De Houtman expedition (89 of an original 248 sailors) return to Holland with spices.

1598 – 22 Dutch ships in five expeditions set out for the east. The Netherlands States-General suggests that competing companies should merge. De Houtman’s second expedition includes John Davis, an English spy. Van Noort sets off to sail around the southern tip of America to the Indies.

1599 – Dutch expedition under Van Neck reaches Maluku, begins successful trading on Banda, Ambon and Ternate. June: De Houtman is killed in conflict with Sultan of Aceh. Dutch churches begin calls for missionary work in the Indies.

1600 – Van Noort expedition attacks Spanish at Guam. Portuguese establish trading post at Jepara. September: Dutch Admiral Van den Haghen makes an alliance with the Hitu against the Portuguese in Ambon. December 31: Elizabeth I of England charters East India Company.

Colonial contact

The scents of Eden had caught the attention of the colonialists, which also attracted them to the Ternate and Tidore and three smaller islands adjacent to the sprawling island of Halmahera in the Northern Moluccas.

Contact 1599

Maluku – Leaders of Banda met with Dutch traders in 1599

Spices were prized for their flavour and some were also believed to cure everything from the plague to venereal disease, which made spices literally worth their weight in gold.


2 Responses to “The Alienation (1501 – 1600)”

  1. […] The Alienation (1501 – 1600) […]

  2. Ranjit Das said

    Who attac the gou in 1600

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