The Portuguese in Eastern Arabia
The transference of the possession of the great Indian trade from the hands of the Venetians to the Portuguese, from the Portuguese to the Dutch, and from the Dutch to the English during the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, is a matter of much interest and importance, and it may be as well to give a slight sketch of the earlier events before proceeding to the transactions of the Portuguese in Arabia. It was in the year 1514 that the Portuguese first visited and explored the island of Bahrain, on the north-east coast of Arabia. After the subjection of Hormuz, three places on the Arab coast, viz., Kilhat, Muscat, and Sohar, became stations for the Portuguese factors and merchants, who were appointed and controlled from Hormuz. In 1718 the Portuguese thought they had a chance of recovering their position in the Gulf.