Old Goa, India

Many a perceptive visitor to Goa will be struck by how the story of Goa is popularly told. The glory days seem to begin with the Portuguese, whose spine-tingling inquisition in Goa and the destruction of the material culture that preceded them is conveniently glossed over. Is this because most Goans see themselves as cultural heirs to the Portuguese and would rather forget the unpalatable stuff, much like how white Americans relate to their ancestors' encounter with Native Americans? Is the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), in the museum they run in Velha Goa, making a sly political dig in displaying this "heroic" ballad by Luis de Camoens—the national poet of Portugal in the 16th century—on Albuquerque's conquest of Goa?

What glorious palms of Goa's isle I see
Their blossoms spread, great Albuquerque, for thee!
Through castles walls the hero breaks his way,
And opens with his sword the dread array
Of Moors and Pagans; through their depths he rides,
Through spears and showering fire the battle guides,
As bulls enraged, or lions smear'd with gore,
His bands sweep wide o'er Goa's purpled shore.

Basilica of Bom Jesus (1, 2)

Inside (main altar, rear view)

Relics of the body of
St. Francis Xavier

Statue of St. Francis Xavier

Church of St. Francis of Assisi

... Courtyard and museum

... Inside the church (1, 2)

Chapel of St. Catherine

Se cathedral

Se cathedral facade

Inside Se cathedral (1, 2, 3)

Chapel inside Se cathedral

Viceroy's arch

... Inside the church (1, 2)

Church of St. Catejan

Gate of Adil Shah's palace (more)

Mandovi river (more)

Soon to be hitched

Never to be hitched

Convent of St. Monica

Church of St. Augustine

Under restoration by the ASI

Ruinas (1, 2)

Old age home (more)


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