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Punnaikayal is located in Tamil Nadu
Punnaikayal is located in India
Location in Tamil Nadu, India
Coordinates: 8°37′56″N 78°6′43″E / 8.63222°N 78.11194°E / 8.63222; 78.11194Coordinates: 8°37′56″N 78°6′43″E / 8.63222°N 78.11194°E / 8.63222; 78.11194
Country  India
State Tamil Nadu
 • Official Tamil
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)

Punnaikayal (called Punicale by the Portuguese), is a harbour city in Tamil Nadu, India.

Punnaikayal seems to have been the main Portuguese possession on the southern Coast of India for a period of 50 years after their arrival from 1551, when they established 2 hospitals, a seminary, and the next year a mud fort.[1]

The first Tamil Printing press was set up at Punnaikayal in 1579. The Tamil Types had been made by Fr. Joam de Faria. Fr. Henrique Henriques himself composed the following books in Tamil: Thambiran Vanakkam, Kiriiciththiyaani valvakkam, Confessionario (in Tamil: Kompeciyoonaayaru), and the Flos Sanctorum in Tamil, whose title has not come down to us, though we have the whole book.

Punnaikayal was the site of an Ottoman attack against the Portuguese possessions of the coast of India in 1553. The Ottomans raided the Pearl Fishery Coast of South India around Tuticorin, where the Portuguese were attempted to establish trade. They were assisted by the Marakkar Muslims of Malabar, and had the tacit agreement of Vittula Nayak of Madurai.[2] 52 Portuguese were captured at Punnaikayal, and churches burnt down.[2]

Henrique Henriques died at Punnaikayal in 1600.

See also[edit]