Abstract

Abstract:

This article revisits the historiography around the Foral of 1526, the initial document issued by the Comptroller of the Exchequer that embedded the Portuguese Crown within the administration of the gaunkaria, a form of agrarian landholding in Goa. It suggests that the Foral was constitutively a legal document that enacted a relationship between the sovereign, local territory, and community. This tends to be overlooked, as the Foral has been primarily accorded a place in the economic history of the gaunkaria. Over the centuries, complaints about revenue arrangements concerning the gaunkaria held the state accountable to the terms of the Foral as a pact that had been violated; an indication that the significance of the document had changed over time. The essay suggests that while the gaunkars may have disingenuously over-read the terms of the Foral, their interpretations constitute a significant political dimension to the document.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-8050
Print ISSN
1045-6007
Pages
pp. 185-212
Launched on MUSE
2018-08-21
Open Access
No
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