Fine example of the first detailed French military plan of Pondicherry, dedicated the Joseph Francois Dupleix, with his coat of arms.
The map shows the well fortified trading post of Pondicherry and environs, as it appeared at the end of the period in which it was controlled by the French.
Puticeri had originally been acquired in 1674 by the Compagnie des Indes, a French trading company granted a trading licence by Louis XIV in 1644. Pondicherry was briefly occupied by the Dutch from 1693 and 1697, at which time its fortifications were significantly improved.
Beginning in 1740, the British began repeated attacks in the region. Under the command of Joseph-François Dupleix, the French held off the British, but Lally, Dupleix's successor, was eventually forced to surrender Pondicherry to the British in January, 1761. Pondicherry was returned to the French in 1816, and was held by them continuously until 1954, when it was returned to India.