Home > Calcutta (Kolkata), General > Portuguese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Portuguese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Portuguese Church (1799)

~ Catholics Cathedral of Calcutta (Kolkata) ~

Also see my compilation of Calcutta (Kolkata) Churches

Portugese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Portugese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Historical evidences indicate that the Portuguese arrived in Calcutta (Kolkata) much before Job Charnok, but their relationship with the English has never been friendly.

The first Portuguese place of worship in Calcutta (Kolkata) date backs to the late 17 th century, consisted of a mud hut. In 1700 it was converted into a brick structure.

In 1757 Lord Clive expelled the Portuguese from Calcutta (Kolkata) and the Catholic Portuguese Chapel was converted into an Anglican Protestant Chapel.

Four years later the ban was lifted and the Portuguese got back their chapel in 1796. They decided to convert the chapel into a Church and funds were raised. The well known Portuguese traders Baretto Brothers were leading contributors.

The new church, which exsists to this day, was opened to public on 27 Nov. 1799. Designed by James Driver it was constructed at a cost of Rs90,000.

Christmas Mass, Portuguese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Christmas Mass, Portuguese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Dedicated to Rosary Virgin Mary, the Portuguese Church serves as a Cathedral Church for the Catholic Christian’s of Calcutta (Kolkata).

Stained Glass, Portuguese Church

Stained Glass, Portuguese Church

Built in typical Catholic style the Portuguese Church comes in with twin towers which are shaped more like minarets, topped with crowned shaped cupolas. The extended portico is crowned with a triangular pediment decorated with beautiful relief work.

The inside is even more spectacular with long corridor leading to beautifully decorated alterflanked with intricately decorated circular stained glass windows.

The walls are lined with confession boxes and statues of Jesus, Mary, Joseph and various other Biblical character complete with fairies and angles.

But the star attraction of th Portuguese Church are the 14 Cross Station of Christ. The beautiful coloured bass relief tables are framed in polished wooden frame and are hung along the walls of the Portuguese Church.

Portuguese Church located on the Murgihata Street just off the Brabourne Road and Canning Street crossing. Although located in one of the busiest localities of Calcutta (Kolkata) it serves as a oasis of peace like most of the Calcutta (Kolkata) Churches.

Interior of Portuguese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Interior of Portuguese Church, Calcutta (Kolkata)

Reference:

  • 10 Walks in Calcutta by Prosenjit Das Gupta
  • Swasato Kolkata ~ Ingrej Amala er Sthapothya by Nishitranjan Roy

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  1. SD
    March 6, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    I enjoy reading your blog, as a keen Calcutta history buff myself. There’s a small type here though:
    “Built in typical Catholic style the Portuguese Church comes in with twin towers which are shaped more like marinates…” which I presume should be ‘minarets’.

    • March 20, 2013 at 2:11 PM

      Thanks SD for the comment, I have rectified the mistake. Looking forward for more constructive comments.

  2. Calvin
    March 16, 2013 at 9:27 PM

    I love our church so much all the memories of my childhood days…can never forget

    • March 20, 2013 at 2:13 PM

      Thanks Calvin, I feel proud to bring back your childhood memories through my blog.

      Do keep in touch.

  3. May 7, 2013 at 4:25 PM

    Good day I am so glad I found your webpage, I really found you by error, while
    I was searching on Bing for something else,
    Regardless I am here now and would just like to
    say thanks for a tremendous post and a all round exciting blog (I also love the theme/design),
    I don’t have time to read through it all at the minute but I have bookmarked it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read more, Please do keep up the excellent work.

  4. Ivor Mendes
    August 22, 2013 at 6:26 AM

    I like this picture of the new front of the Cathedral , I was studding under the Christian Brothers at the school in the 40’s. now at Dum Dum. I served many Mass for the Bishipos then. Great to see some of the pictures of Churches, but there in never one of St Teresa ,on Lower Circular Rd. now AJC Bose rd. I am still searching for one. Thanks for these and their history.

  5. March 11, 2014 at 4:33 PM

    I enjoy reading your blog, as a keen Calcutta history. There’s a small type here though: Well thats very convincing post….i hope a lot of people will visit this city after your blog review. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Paul Barretto
    March 23, 2014 at 7:55 AM

    Would you know what happened to the tombstones inside the church? I went to the church last year but did not find any of those of my ancestors. I just found a few of the Armenians and Greeks buried in the church.

    Thanks for sharing!

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