Debal (Sindhi: ديبل; Urdu: ديبل) was a historical port situated near the modern Karachi, Pakistan. It is very adjacent to the nearby Manora Island and was managed by Mansura, and after that by Thatta.
Etymology of Debal
In the Arabic history books, most prominently in the early 8th century accounts of the arrival of the religion Islam in the Indian Sub-continent, it was documented as Daybul. One perspective is that the term was derived from Devalaya, meaning an abode of God in the language of Sanskrit.
In accordance to contemporary archaeologists, Debal was discovered in the first century CE, and soon became the most significant trading city in the province of Sindh. The port city was home to thousands of Sindhi sailors involving the Bawarij. Ibn Hawqal, a tenth-century writer, geographer and chronicler, mentions huts of the city and the dry arid land nearby the city that motivated little agriculture. He highlights how efficiently the people of the city maintained fishing vessels and trade. The Abbasids were the 1st to made huge stone structures involving a city wall and a citadel.
Debal and the Manora Island were toured by Ottoman Admiral Seydi Ali Reis (time period of 1498–1563) and highlighted in his book Mir’ât ül Memâlik in the year of 1554. In the year of 1568, Debal was attacked by the Portuguese Admiral Fernão Mendes Pinto (1509 – 1583) in an effort to capture or ruin the Ottoman vessels anchored there. Fernão Mendes Pinto also says that Sindhi sailors merged the Ottoman Admiral Kurtoğlu Hızır Reis on his voyage to Aceh. Debal was also toured by the British travel writers like Thomas Postans and John Elliott. In accordance to Eliot, who is famous for his vivid account on the Thatta, parts of city of Karachi and the island of Manora at the port of Karachi constituted the city of Debal.