Kollam kŏl´əm [key], formerly Quilon kwē´lôn [key], city (1991 pop. 362,572), Kerala state, SW India, on the Arabian Sea. It is a market for coconut products, spices, tea, coffee, and rice. Mineral processing and other manufactures are important. Kollam is the oldest city on the Malabar Coast . In the 7th cent. it was noted by a Nestorian patriarch as the southernmost point of Christian influence in India. By the time the Dutch occupied Kollam in 1662, the Portuguese had already established a factory there. Soon after the Dutch came, the British East India Company took control of Kollam. Coastal areas of the city were hard-hit by the Dec., 2004, tsunami.
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